Stout Adventures Trip Leaders

Volunteer trip leaders facilitate an adventures and safe experience for all!  Stout Adventures trip leaders come from all backgrounds and majors. Get to know the leaders below, or if you are interested in becoming a leader yourself, visit out Trip Leader Training page.   

Marissa Popp


How did you get involved in the outdoors?

My earliest experience was at two years old when my parents took me skiing while attached to those lovely harnesses. Otherwise, I grew up going to my Grandpa's cabin and adventuring down the trails and in the river. I began backpacking with my mom when I was twelve and traveled to Isle Royale and Pictured Rocks, MI for some awesome backpacking.

What do you like best about Stout Adventures and/or Trip Leading?

I really enjoy the connections and relationships you can make with people both on trips and being present at the climbing wall. It is awesome to meet people who are passionate about outdoor recreation. I love meeting new people and sharing experiences with them.

Briefly describe your favorite outdoor trip.

My favorite outdoor trip was backpacking Isle Royale. Took the ferry on Lake Superior to the island, backpacked all over, and took a dip in some great swimming areas. Unforgettable trip.

Alec Fotsch (AJ)


How did you get involved in the outdoors?
I have been in love with the outdoors for as long as I can remember. My first outdoors activities were hiking with my parents and snowboarding. Since then my passion has grown to climbing, backpacking, snowboarding, camping, biking and just generally being with the land.

What do you like best about SA and/or trip leading?
I love social interactions. When I get to meet new people and teach them about the outdoors as well as help them learn and gain a respect for outdoors lifestyle that's as good as it gets.

What is your favorite camping meal/recipe?
I like to get creative; it always seems to be random but generally includes quinoa

Briefly describe your favorite outdoor trip.
My best buddy and I went on a 30 mile 3 night backpacking trip on the Superior Hiking Trail before he was deployed to Djibouti. It was a great adventure highlighted by some critical issues such as our stove breaking and forcing us to get creative with finding water.  It was a great learning experience and we also got to take in some beautiful sights!



Madeline O'Neil


My name is Madeline O'Neil, I am a currently a sophomore at UW-Stout with a major in Psychology and a minor in Disability Services. I love anything that requires me to be outside; hiking, canoeing, fishing, swimming, and kayaking are my favs.

 What do I like most about SA or trip leading?- I love being able to teach people new things about the outdoors and see their love for it just as mine grow every time they have a positive experience in the wilderness.

 Briefly describe your favorite outdoor trip- I went on an extended canoeing trip on the Kazan River in Nunavut, Canada that was the most life changing experience that I will always remember.