Susan & Team

About CBO


Author Susan Purvis reads Go Find

Susan Purvis, Wilderness Emergency Medical Technician

Susan Purvis saves lives and teaches others to do the same. She’s been teaching wilderness medical and avalanche courses for 20 years. Not only is she a sought after speaker and educator, Susan is an author and explorer.

Her book Go Find: My Journey to Find the Lost–And Myself is a bestselling and an award-winning memoir. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times.

Susan Purvis is a Lead Instructor with Wilderness Medical Associates and the American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education (AIARE). She is a professional member of the American Avalanche Association (AAA), the Explorers Club. She spent over a decade as team leader for Crested Butte Mountain Rescue. Susan is one of 800 women inducted into The Explorers Club. In the winter Susan guides for The Mountain Guides and Snowbird Mountain Guides.

Susan’s love for outdoor adventure and medicine has taken her to the hottest, coldest, and highest places on earth: Ethiopia, Antarctica, and Nepal. As a wilderness medicine specialist and extraordinary speaker, Susan has worked on film sets for National Geographic Channel, truTV, appeared on the science documentary, The Hottest Place on Earth, aired on the BBC and Discovery. She’s been featured or quoted in the Wall Street Journal, Smithsonian, on CNN, television, numerous magazines, and newspaper articles. See Susan’s authors page for a television, radio and news articles here.

Since 1998, Susan has owned and operated Crested Butte Outdoors International, based in Whitefish, Montana. Her mission is to teach students how to think critically in unconventional settings.

An explorer by passion, Susan combines wilderness medicine, desert survival, exploration geology, and K9 training to land jobs on all seven continents. She teaches high altitude medicine for the local Mount Kilimanjaro and Mount Everest Guides. Susan has served as a medic at a remote field camp (Holtanna Glacier) and ice breaker (SS GOULD) in Antarctica, explored for gold in the Dominican Republic and produced a documentary in the Amazon jungle. Susan also spent a decade working at an urgent care ski clinic in Crested Butte where she also worked as a professional ski patroller, guide, K9 avalanche specialist and SAR member. Susan was named a brand Ambassador for Marmot and received Congressional Recognition for her role in avalanche search and rescue. (Search dogs and avalanche dogs)

When Susan is not teaching you can find her boating on the cold, clear rivers in northern Montana or skiing Colorado’s high peaks.

Book Susan for your next keynote? Contact Wendy Hirdler at moc.s1696031344rekae1696031344psyek1696031344@ydne1696031344w1696031344 with

Go Find: My Journey to Find the Lost–And Myself (Blackstone) is her first book and narrated by Susan.

Rocco Altobelli, Flight Paramedic

Since 1989 Rocco has been a professional ski patroller, worked on urban and rural ambulances, a search and rescue coordinator, an avalanche rescue dog handler, a raft guide, a firefighter and an EMS and wilderness medicine instructor. When he’s not teaching he can be found mountain biking and backpacking, backcountry skiing, or canoeing with his family and dog. Rocco pays the bills working as a flight paramedic servicing Northern Idaho, Montana and Washington State.

Peggy Miller, Urban & Wilderness Paramedic

Peggy has been an active volunteer emergency medical services provider for the past 25 years with a busy fire  department just outside Washington, DC. The past 15 years have been at the paramedic level.   She also holds paramedic licensure in the state of Montana.

For the past 18 summers, Peggy has been working for the US Forest Service in the wildland fire environment. Currently a Public Information Officer, Peggy has held numerous other positions with the Forest Service, including fire line qualified paramedic and nationally qualified Medical Unit Leader. Peggy has been to wildland fire assignments in Alaska, Montana, Oregon, Washington, Colorado, Idaho, Wyoming, Georgia, and Texas.

As a former Maryland Instructor Certification Review Board Level II EMS instructor, Peggy taught EMT and CPR classes at the Montgomery County Fire Rescue Training Academy and the University of Maryland Fire Rescue Institute until she relocated to Montana in 2009. While in Montana she was the EMS Training Coordinator and instructor for the Whitefish Fire Department until she moved back to Maryland in 2012.  Peggy is an Assistant Instructor with Wilderness Medical Associates International.

An avid hiker, camper, sail boater and scuba diver, Peggy enjoys the outdoors. She is the mother of 3 grown children and the very proud grandmother of 4 young grandchildren. Peggy resides in Frederick Maryland.

Mark Fisher, W-EMT

Colonel Mark Fisher (Fish) started his outdoor career in the early 1990s, when he enlisted in the United States Marine Corps and became an Assault Climber. His passion for climbing encouraged him to pursue a degree in Outdoor Recreation and Kinesiology. He serves as the Director of Military Training at Snowbird Resort. He is also a long-time ski patroller and K-9 Hander.


  • Wilderness EMT since 1998
  • Mountain Mobility Instructor/Advisor for United States Special Operations Command.
  • Snowbird Ski Patroller since 2005.
  • American Avalanche Association Certified Instructor
  • Wasatch Backcountry Rescue Dog Handler

Tim Shaw

Tim is a seasoned outdoor educator with more than 20 years experience as a guide, a risk manager and an educator.  Tim has a Masters degree from Minnesota State University in Experiential Education.  He took his first Wilderness First Responder course in 1996 and has taught wilderness medicine for the past 14 years.  In addition to instructing wilderness emergency medicine courses for Crested Butte Outdoors, Tim works as a ski patroller at Whitefish Mountain Resort in the winter and guides rock climbing in the summer. He is the year-round manager for The Mountain Guides, Montana.


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