Growing up on the East Coast, my wanderlust started young. At 15 I left home to ride freight trains and hitchhike all over North America. My first motorbike was a 1974 Honda CB550, which I bought after hitchhiking to Alaska for a cannery job. Since then I've explored many parts of the world by moto, including places like Africa, Asia, and South/Central America.
When I left home I also dropped out of school. I finished my education later, enrolling first at a junior college (Simon's Rock) and then at Colorado College, where I earned a Bachelor's degree in Economics. After several years in the finance industry, I went back to school again for a graduate degree in business. By the time I finished grad school nobody asked about high school anymore, and my nomadic teenage years were just an interesting campfire story.
Before Mosko I spent a decade running a consumer product design and manufacturing business. Our products were carried in thousands of retail stores worldwide. I saw again and again how the cost of an item would multiply as it traveled from the factory to retail shelves. I also experienced first-hand the challenge of designing something unique when you face the same costs and use the same factories as everyone else. After 10 years of that I'd had enough, so I packed my bike and headed for Panama. The trip had a few surprises in store (described in this article), and ultimately led to my partnership with Andrew and the founding of Mosko Moto.
My appetite for raw, gritty travel is currently stronger than ever, and motorcycles are still my tool of choice. The places I want to explore are endless. When I'm not on a moto I like to mountain bike, kite/windsurf, freedive, hike/backpack, snowboard, and do pretty much anything else outdoors. The Columbia River Gorge is my home & basecamp.
I was born and raised on the West Coast of BC where I learned to ski, mountain bike, and moto. I traded a pair of skis for my first bike, an SP250 Enduro. I loved long, solo explorations on the logging and mining roads north of Vancouver. Jeans, ski gloves, and hiking boots were my riding kit. I knew nothing about the sport of riding, and none of my friends had bikes, but I was hooked for life.
After high school I went to art college, and from there to a two year apprenticeship with a stone sculptor/designer in France. At 19, being free in Paris with a cash job and a bachelor pad was a very formative experience. As sculptors, we completed large installations all over France. We traveled to Spain and the stone quarries in Northern Italy. We even installed a large sculpture in a Saudi Arabian palace. In my free time between projects, I hitchhiked all over Europe. During this period, while living in France, I realized I was drawn more to product design than sculpture. For me, designing is like inventing: I enjoy creating functional items that people actually use.
When my apprenticeship in France was complete I enrolled at Emily Carr Institute in Vancouver, earning a degree in Industrial Design. Since then, working for companies like Burton Snowboards, Gravis, and Mountain Equipment Co-op, I've created many different kinds of action sports equipment, with a particular focus on soft goods. Most recently I spent 9 years as the lead pack/bag designer at Dakine, a soft good company based in the Columbia River Gorge. Designing products for 'peak' experiences like backcountry skiing, mountain biking, and moto really excites me. When Pete and I had the idea to build a business making hardcore outdoor gear for motorsports, I knew it would be a perfect fit.
Oh yah, I also have a very patient wife and two impatient little kids.
My love of action sports started at age 5 in Ontario, Canada when my dad came home and asked, “Who wants to learn how to ski?” I was hooked. Never one for team sports, I gravitated toward the freedom and expression of skateboarding, snowboarding, wakeboarding, and mountain biking.
I moved West for college, studying Industrial Design at the Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design in Vancouver. Industrial Design presented an opportunity to combine my love of all-things outdoors, with my life-long passion for creating things. Living on the West Coast, surrounded by the beauty and wildness of the mountains, was a dream come true. I spent all my free time rock climbing, downhill mountain biking, and backcountry skiing in British Columbia’s rugged backcountry terrain.
I started out as a freelance designer for companies like Mountain Equipment Co-op, Mountain Hardware, and Outdoor Research. Over time this developed into a full-time position at Dakine in Hood River, where I met Andrew in 2006. In 2010 I traded Hood River’s small-town vibes for the sunny surf scene of Ventura, California, and a job designing packs and accessories at Patagonia. After four great years in California, my wife and I missed the expansive wilderness and unmatched trail access of Oregon, so we returned to Hood River and I rejoined Dakine as Category Creative Director for Mountain Bike and Snow.
I currently ride a DRZ-400 that’s all setup for Northwest trails and offroad camping. I prefer riding gear that’s streamlined and minimalist, without sacrificing performance. There’s an old saying: “The more you know, the less you need.” Sometimes the best gear is that which accomplishes its mission in the simplest possible way. That’s the perspective I bring to creating riding gear at Mosko.
I grew up in bush Alaska where my family ran a hunting lodge. Our only access was by float plane, ski plane, or snowmobile. I learned to hunt, fish, trap, and survive alone in the backcountry from a very early age. I also learned to work on motors, because the nearest mechanic was an airplane-ride away.
I was home-schooled through a program created specifically for off-grid families like ours. When I was ready to leave Alaska for college, my interest in motors drew me to Flint, Michigan where I earned a Bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering. As a student I was offered an internship at Insitu, a fast-growing manufacturer of aerial drones for the military, located in the Columbia River Gorge. After graduation, Insitu offered me a full time engineering position in their propulsion department, which I accepted.
The propulsion challenges we faced at Insitu were totally unique, many had never been solved on any prior mass-produced engine platform. My work centered on improving heavy fuel engines, and specifically how to burn heavy fuel in a spark-ignited two-stroke. It was fun to break new ground as an engineer, but as Insitu grew into a much larger company (and eventually became a division of Boeing) I missed working in a smaller, scrappier environment. When the operations & engineering position opened up at Mosko, I jumped at it.
Riding my DR650 - or my Ninja with knobbies - through the NW backcountry reminds me of hunting, trapping, and exploring the Alaskan wilderness by snowmobile as a kid. It's great to work in a business I love, and I'm happy to call the Columbia River Gorge home.
As a little girl in Texas I was kind of a tomboy and kind of a nerd. On weekdays, chemistry and literature courses ruled my life. On the weekends, everything changed! I was raising sheep for the 4-H program, climbing indoors at the local gym (I was ranked 13th in the nation by the USCCA), and ripping around the track on a YZ125. Not to mention a slew of other organized sports like water polo and softball.
After high school, it was decided… I was going to be a doctor. That was the plan. I studied chemistry at UTSA, took all the necessary prerequisites, and managed to work throughout college for a small family practice in San Antonio. My family relocated from Texas to California when I was 21, but I chose Washington. I’d always been attracted to the rugged landscapes and expansive wilderness of the Northwest and found it just north of Seattle in Everett, where I landed a position in cardiology, allowing me to further explore my interest in medicine and bolster my qualifications for medical school.
That first year in the Northwest my personal and professional interests began to diverge. On the one hand, my love of science and desire to help others was pulling me toward medicine so I applied to medical schools, ultimately being accepted at my school of choice. On the other hand, my love of motorcycles and thirst for international travel was were growing. I logged 15,000 dirt miles on my first street legal bike, a BMW 650 Sertao, and was already pushing the reasonable limits of ‘vacation time.’
Riding through South Africa, Zimbabwe, Botswana, and Namibia resolved my silent internal debate. I wanted to see the world and meet everyone in it, and I still do! I came to the Columbia Gorge and somehow created my own position at Mosko, we're calling it ‘Director of First Impressions' Brand/Marketing Manager. What does that mean? Who knows. Sometimes Pete and I are in the booth at motorcycle shows, sometimes I'm grinding on a new product launch (photos/website/etc.), sometimes I chime in on new product development, and sometimes I’m just riding. Like everything at Mosko, it’s a work in progress.
Born in Missoula, MT my family moved to South America when I was 1 yo, where my parents, who are teachers, wanted to explore and open me up to a world of possibility and culture. I grew up in Peru, with Spanish as a first language until we moved back to the Pacific NW at age 6.
Even though my parents divorced at this time, they always integrated outdoor adventure into everything we did- and because they were teachers, summers were full of backpacking, cycling, exploring nature, travelling to different countries and in general, opening our eyes to everything nature and adventure had to offer.
Not one for conformity, this adventurous lifestyle fed right into the choices I made as an adult: Freedom first, combined with learning –and don’t ever settle. Four days after graduating high school, I moved to Missoula, MT to work for the Conservation Corp building trail and mapping abandoned mines in the wilderness for 2 years- dreamy!
I then worked in the restaurant industry - everywhere from Sedona to Taos to Portland, which afforded me limitless time, travel and adventure, until I got bored from not being challenged. Enter REI, which led to 3 states in 8 years, learning the retail business inside & out, sharing my passion for adventure with others, and learning everything there is about service and gear. Marmot followed the next 7 years in Santa Rosa, CA, and between these 2 companies I came away understanding that creating an authentic, memorable and impactful customer experience is at the heart of any successful business.
Where did my 2-wheeled love affair begin? I grew up on bikes, but Sedona is where I bought my first ‘real’ mountain bike – 6 inches of travel built for free-riding and downhill in the desert, which quickly led to riding every day and racing both on and off-road. Bikes became an integral part of my life that would be the measure of everything that came after; my compass. It’s little wonder that the world of ADV – Endurance and dirt-bike riding finally showed up– surprising that it wasn’t sooner, though in all honesty, probably a good thing as ‘self-preservation’ in adventure now outweighs the thrill of adrenaline haha.
I am currently looking at purchasing a Yamaha WR250R and am super excited to get it all set up for some off-road Mosko Moto-style adventure trips with this amazing team!
I grew up in Montfort, a small village in The Netherlands. As a kid I spent a lot of my time in the forest, either looking for wildlife or on a mountain bike. At 17 I moved to Eindhoven to study Management, Economics and Law. I started exploring the world with a backpack but only found true adventure when I bought my XRV750 Africa Twin and took it for a test ride to Nordkap, the most Northern point of Europe in Norway. It was here that I met an American rider who had been traveling all over the world on his Ducati Street 2. His stories totally captivated me and planted a seed in my head.
After I had finished my Bachelors degree and had spent some time behind a desk at PWC and Philips I concluded that I needed some more action. I joined the army for a while and then moved on to hospitality. I figured out I had a true passion for working with people and making their days. I set up a big restaurant for a hospitality firm and loved my job. But the seed in my head was growing and at 26 I decided to follow my dream and ride my motorcycle, as far as possible, over land to Australia.
When I made it to OZ 14 months later, having traveled through Europe, The Middle East and Asia, I felt I had a better idea of what life was all about. Seeing the world from atop my bike, meeting the people and learning from different cultures had opened my eyes in so many ways. I decided to keep going, working and riding my way around the world.
Years later I made it to the USA and was invited to present at Overland Expo. At the entrance I met Pete and Andrew. Two guys who had this wild idea about making soft luggage for motorcycles. When I saw their designs it was the first time I considered switching from hard to soft luggage. We somehow stayed in touch and once I circumnavigated North and South America with Mosko Gear, totaling 9 years on the road, it was time to bring “The Lizard” to Europe.
Growing up, I watched computers, the internet, and cell phones transform my generation. While many of my friends fed video game addictions, I played outside, rode my bike or tinkered with yet another RC plane. In 2000 I headed off to study Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering. Upstate NY felt like an outdoor mecca in the wake of suburban Connecticut, and I was soon mountain biking or skiing almost every day.
The freedom of college prompted me to question other priorities, and I ended up graduating with an undergrad degree in Business. That was just the beginning of a string of career changes that spanned Tech Consulting, Portfolio Management, Yacht Design, and EV Power Train Development. I guess I have a bit of Millennial in me, but I’ll never regret risks not taken!
WIn early 2016, I finally concluded that I was mature enough to ride motorcycles without rendering my kid fatherless, and I got my endorsement. Around the same time, we also decided to embark on a family adventure. Eleven months in a 13’ Scamp trailer tested our family bonds, turned us all into expert cat-hole diggers, and opened our eyes to the spectacular beauty of North America.
Along the way, we fell in love with the Columbia River Gorge and eventually settled in Hood River. I immediately bought a Honda Grom for my new back-road commute. Those 10 horses proved fun as hell and led to discovering our thriving ADV community and vast expanses of forest land best accessed by off-road motorcycle. In January of 2019, I bought a KTM 350 EXC-F and added another career change to the list. Now I just need to convince my wife that I need more bikes.