“It’s all about exploration,” states woodworker as well as snowmaker Rob Paulsen from Leadville, Carbon Monoxide, the greatest bundled city in the U.S. There he functions 9 months a year—in some cases 80 hrs a week—so he can pay for taking the various other 3 months off to take a trip. Between changes or throughout his restricted leisure time, Paulsen, that rocks a mullet as well as a missing out on front tooth, heads out in the wild every opportunity he obtains.

Paulsen states his nomad way of life returns to his young people, where he matured in an army family members, as well as it prevailed for him to walk around. He invested the initial years of his life in San Diego; from there he relocated to Japan for 2 years, as well as for the following ten years he resided in upstate New York. His job has actually taken him to Hood River, Oregon as well as Leadville.

Working to reach the outdoors

November is the beginning of snowmaking period, which implies that on weekend breaks he prepares the neighborhood inclines for opening up day at Breckenridge Ski Resort, where he’ll function all evening. He’ll after that head to his woodworker day task at Downstream Construction. He’s likewise beginning his very own building and construction organization. Stacking job is just short-term—snowmaking period just lasts 2 months—however the additional coin he makes goes much when it pertains to adventuring in the wild.

“I work for a company that puts a high value on lifestyle, so they are cool with me taking a month off or taking five days off for a kayaking expedition. I take a pay cut for it, but it’s worth it so I can do the things I value.”

Living the outside way of life

And the journeys accumulate, with images revealing him billing Class V rapids in his creekboat, head grew securely ahead as he goes down right into falls. Others reveal a complete smile twisting around his 26-year-old face, shirtless with a cool mixture in hand, his mullet jabbing out in all instructions. To Paulsen, it’s insufficient to recreate in the sporting activities he enjoys; it’s everything about living as well as taking a breath the way of life.

Rob Paulsen

“Mullets are a thing in whitewater kayaking, an identifying mark. It’s one of those fringe sports where everyone is a bit out there. It’s what climbing was 30 years ago,” he states, describing the hippies that brought medicines as well as the rock & roll way of life to Yosemite throughout the 1970s totally free climbing up change. Back after that, hardcore mountain climbers put on white painters’ trousers, paisley t shirts, as well as headbands, as well as it wasn’t unusual for them to take LSD (as seen in Valley Uprising). Paulsen states that the exact same counterculture experience professional athlete ambiance lives today in experience kayaking, which’s his draw to the sporting activity.


Name: Rob Paulsen
Title: Professional Fun Hog, Expedition Kayaker, Backcountry Skier
Location: Leadville, Colorado, altitude 10,152 feet

Paulsen pond skimming in Taos, New Mexico
Paulsen fish pond skimming in Taos, New Mexico Ethan Kirk

How did you knock your tooth out?

I knocked it out throughout a solo mtb flight exterior St. George, Utah. My face was all bloodied. I got on my means to meeting pals in Vegas to climb up. I collapsed prior to satisfying them at the airport terminal.

Got stitches, however the medical professional couldn’t conserve the tooth, as well as we still wound up going climbing up. I climbed up lengthy paths while on discomfort medications. I had a blast for the remainder of the week, despite having my tooth missing out on. When I knocked my tooth off 2 years earlier, I’ve shook the Joe Dirt appearance since.

What’s your perfect exploration kayak journey?

I do points like three-day Class V-plus river kayaking journeys in grizzly bear region, where you’re much from aid if you do glitch.

Any pointers for viewers on living a much more met outside way of life?

If you’re attempting to live a much more met outside way of life, you require to concentrate on that. If you stay in a huge city as well as operate in a high-stress task, perhaps assess where you live. It doesn’t set you back a whole lot to live this way of life; you require to concentrate on arriving.

My concern was intending to do that, as well as I adhered to that. I likewise discovered that you can do building and construction anywhere. That’s why I quit of university after 3 terms as well as began functioning building and construction to obtain a consistent income. After one year of job, I took my initial three-month climbing as well as kayaking journey.

I think that if you desire something poor sufficient, you’ll determine a method to make it take place. There is constantly a method to accomplish your objectives; it’s never ever far too late for a profession modification; it’s simply effort.

Rob Paulsen camping in Hyalite Canyon near Bozeman, Montana
Rob Paulsen outdoor camping in Hyalite Canyon near Bozeman, Montana Ryan Wichelns

How do you load your days?

When I leave at 3 p.m., I load it—depends upon the period as well as why I love Colorado—I obtain delighted concerning kayak period, mtb period, and afterwards ski period. We have a Monday evening kayaking team in the summertimes where we have kayaking beer slaloms. Catch a swirl, consume a beer; that’s just how it functions.

I rise prior to job as well as take place a ski excursion since the hills are best outside where I live.

How do you make it function?

I’m a woodworker, I mount, do end up job, as well as I do ceramic tile. Whatever it is, I attempt to be efficient it. You can constantly do even more to much better on your own. To get brand-new abilities, I view video clips of pros in both job as well as kayaking as well as climbing.

I resided in my vehicle year-round for 4 years, from mid-2016 to mid-2020. This period I obtained an area in Leadville to format building and construction strategies as well as begin my very own organization. But I still take my vehicle out on the weekend breaks as well as oversleep the back. It’s constantly prepared to go.

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