Jim Reel, born and raised in western North Carolina, has been an avid backpacker since 1999. He attended his first Sierra Club backpack trip in the Sawtooth Mountains of Idaho, in 2005 and became a Sierra Club Outings Leader in 2006. Jim’s inspiration in becoming an outings leader was to continue John Muir's vision of taking folks to special places and inspiring them to help protect these places. Since his first trip in 2005, Jim has led backpacking trips in Idaho, Montana, Colorado, Wyoming, Utah and Arkansas. He is also a hiking and backpacking leader for the Carolina Mountain Club in North Carolina.