Hometown: Bellevue, Idaho
Profession: Hunting and Packgoat Guide
Born in San Diego, CA, Benji spent his childhood navigating an urban life. Sports and fishing the local bass lakes with his Dad and brother were his primary joys. Spending mornings on the boat and afternoons exploring the shorelines were the foundation of his love for the outdoors
A ski trip to Squaw Valley, CA was accidentally booked to Sun Valley, ID and that opened the door to a mountain life. After the ski trip, Benji and his younger siblings begged and pleaded to move out of the city. The following fall, at the age of ten, school began in the high, thin air of Ketchum, ID.
The mountain life transformed Benji into the adventure seeking hunter that he is today. Bowhunting elk before high school in the mornings in September and antelope after soccer practice was the norm growing up. Once the love for all things wild was born, there was no going back.
After graduating from MSU-Bozeman in Exercise and Wellness, Benji spent 19 years instructing health and physical fitness at the local gym. During those years he developed a passion for lifting big iron. He relentlessly pursued powerlifting, going from local, to state, to national levels, and finally earning a spot at the World Championships in 2003 in Calgary, AB. An underdog at 220 pounds, Benji took the World Championships for the USA.
Realizing that his body had taken quite a toll, his focus returned to hunting and the outdoors. Teaching kids wilderness skills in the summer and guiding big game hunts became his livelihood. Pack goats were also added to the mix, and have been an amazing part of his life, allowing for longer and deeper treks with friends and clients into Idaho’s remote country.
Benji would not be who he is today without the love and support of his family. His wife, Erin, and daughter, Zoe, are the backbone of his life and encourage him to always be himself, to pursue his dreams, and stay wild and free.
Here are the ten items Benji selected to bring on his survival journey to the remote wilderness valley in Labrador, Canada:
1. Sleeping bag
2. Bow and arrows
5. 2-quart pot
6. Ferro rod
9. Trapping wire
10. Fishing line and hooks