Winter Meeting Spot:
Branding Iron Cafe
Bondurant, WY 82922
Pat & Jill Maier
Pat and Jill have been guiding and outfitting for over 30 years in some of the most breathtaking wilderness in the Eastern and Western U.S.
After college Pat worked, guided, and was foreman for one of the most formidable outfits in Colorado. In 1982 he brought the concept of outfitting east when he began operating Mountain Trail Horse Center in the vast forest lands of north central PA. And after leaving a career in social work in 1989, Jill also devoted herself full-time to their business.
Under Pat and Jill’s management, Mountain Trail became a premier recreational company like no other in the region. Their fine string of horses enabled them to utilize large tracts of undeveloped and rugged country, taking customers into vast areas of the big Pennsylvania woods that even residents didn’t access. At the time, the Maiers also developed and ran a substantial covered wagon business, operated a vacation rental, and raised elk.
Pat and Jill were both active in the tourism agencies at local and state levels—Pat even received an appointment by the PA Governor to serve on the Governor’s Travel and Tourism Partnership representing outdoor recreation in the state.
Partnering with various state and local agencies and businesses, the Maiers formulated the concept of another company, Nature Quest, that expanded into a geo-tourism operation before they sold it in 2011.
Pat and Jill enjoy showing their natural surroundings and sharing their appreciation of the great outdoors. A lifelong hunter and outdoor enthusiast, Pat also enjoys swapping stories and telling jokes. Now living in Wyoming, Pat and Jill have the opportunity to operate a unique year-around outfit that offers many rare and interesting features, including a base camp with a historic cabin, pristine country where wildlife is prevalent, hunting, snowmobiling, horseback riding, and fishing—all in surroundings reminiscent of the days of mountain men.
They enjoy almost all outdoor activities, and when time allows for creativity, Jill likes to sew and Pat makes useful and decorative items from organic materials, metal, and wood. Pat and Jill have two awesome daughters, Kylie and Shea. Kylie has made her home in WY and helps out with the operation when her schedule allows; while Shea continues her life and career in Pennsylvania.
Ryan is a native of the flatlands of Missouri and grew up in a rural setting, just on the outskirts of the suburbs. He was fortunate to hunt and fish in his own backyard growing up. Ryan’s father supported his outside activities growing up and was an excellent fishing partner. He began guiding fly fishing mostly via drift boats in 2004 on the Green and Snake Rivers at the age of 18.
Since then, Ryan has guided fishing in Wyoming, Oregon, and Mongolia. He graduated from the University of Wyoming in 2012 with a BS in Political Science. While in college, Ryan was able to continue guiding anglers in eastern Wyoming during the school year on the North Platte River, and back to the Green River drainage during the summer. Ryan began tying flies for fly shops at the age of 13 and still uses hair from his dog, Ichabod, as tying material. He is an avid hunter, skier, angler and NRA life member.
When not working, Ryan enjoys spending time with friends and family, playing ice hockey, swinging flies for steelhead in the Pacific Northwest and cooking wild game.