This June, Salt Pump welcomed Brittney Martin to the team as our new Youth Programs Manager. Brittney was born and raised in New Portland, Maine, and studied Outdoor Recreation at Lyndon State College in Lyndonville, Vermont. With work experience at the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) and Camp Laurel, she is excited to grow the Salt Pump Kids brand - and find a little time to climb for herself, too.
Describe an early experience climbing or adventuring in the outdoors when you realized “This is for me!”
As a child I spent as much time as possible outside. Summers were spent at outdoor day camps, swimming in the rivers and lakes/ponds, and exploring the woods around my house. Winters were spent skiing, snowmobiling, or sledding. I'm honestly not sure that there was a specific time that I really realized that the outdoors were 'for me!' I believe that it was really a combination of all of the times that were spent adventuring as a kid.
What’s your outdoors “happy place”? What makes it special?
My outdoor 'happy place' is Sugarloaf mountain. I grew up in the Western Mountains of Maine just a short drive from the mountain. As a child, I spent as much time outside as possible through all the seasons. But winter was my favorite. At a young age, I was lucky enough to take ski lessons at Titcom and loved every second of it. Trips to Sugarloaf were however saved for special occasions. We went once (usually for my birthday), maybe twice a winter. When I started looking for my first job, someone suggested I work for Sugarloaf teaching children ski lessons. This stuck and has been a part time job for me for 12 winter seasons now. Sugarloaf has introduced me to some amazing people over the years; children, families, and some of my best friends (including my soon to be husband).
Why do you like working with kids?
Kids are so fun! I love being able to introduce kids to new activities. Seeing them advance throughout the week is amazing. They're so excited to be here and climbing everyday.
What’s a passion / interest you have outside of climbing and the outdoors?
My current interest outside of climbing and the outdoors is wedding planning. With my wedding coming up in a little over a month, it's been the only thing on my mind outside of summer camps.
What’s your favorite food?
My favorite, favorite food is fish tacos served with sweet potato fries.
What’s your favorite thing about Maine? Why?
The variety of outdoor options. It's incredible that Maine allows people to experience so many different activities all within a short driving distance. We're lucky enough to live on the coast and have some of the most incredible ocean views. But be only a few hours drive from any number of mountain ranges.
What’s your favorite thing about going to work every day and why?
I love the community that's been created here. Meeting and hearing everyone's stories has been one of my favorite things since starting. Being a people person, simply being able to interact with everyone on a daily basis is wonderful.
What’s one personal climbing / adventuring goal you have?
While in college, I climbed on almost a daily basis. After graduating and moving back to Maine, I strayed away from climbing. I'd love to get back to a place where I feel strong again.
What’s a professional goal / thing you’re excited about?
I'm excited to help expand the already amazing youth programs here at Salt Pump.