Topics of Expertise: Backpacking, climbing, mountaineering, snowboarding, camping, fly fishing
Years in This Expertise: 15+
Number Of Products & Number Of Hours Expert Has Tested: 500+ products, 2,000+ hours
Hailing from the hemlocks and hanging mosses of Washington State, Senior Editor Nick Belcaster is an adventure journalist following threads of stories across the West.
Cruelly stolen from the alpine swales of rural Wisconsin at a young age, Belcaster made do ascending the snows and granite of the North Cascades while completing a journalism degree. A long stint on the Pacific Crest Trail in 2018 codified a life bent on sleeping on minor slopes and picking devil’s club out of his shoes.
After his stretch of trail life, he worked for the American Alpine Institute as first an equipment specialist, then manager, where he outfitted hundreds of climbers for expeditions into the Alaska Range, Andean Cordilleras, and further ranges.
In between these forays into the wilderness, Belcaster contributed freelance articles to national outdoors publications, as well as working regularly as staff writer for local publication Adventures NW magazine.
As Senior Editor for GearJunkie, Belcaster contributes and synthesizes creative efforts to support our in-depth gear reviewing and Buyer’s Guides. He can often be found above treeline, carrying as little as humanly necessary, jotting down notes.
Completed 1,500 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail in 2018
Participated in the Pacific Crest Trail Association P3 Hiker program
Coordinated the American Alpine Institute Guides Choice Award Program
Arranged the provisioning and equipment for a seasons-worth of guided Denali expeditions
Reported for hyper-local outdoors publications and elevated important community stories
Education & Certifications
Education: Bachelor’s of Journalism, Western Washington University
Previous Publications: Climbing Magazine, Mount Baker Experience
A Word From Nick Belcaster
I count myself among the lucky to have slotted into a career path that so closely mirrors my free time as to often blur the line between the two. Writing is one of the great passions of my life, and spinning a worthy tale is a war worth fighting in.
My career was born more out of necessity, as I quickly found as a newly-minted journalist a disdain for conventional newsrooms. Outdoor literary journalism allowed me the breathing room to enjoy my craft, and it’s been the path I’ve been trodding on since.
When I’m not outdoors, curious-onlookers might find me bent over my workbench, where I have a great zeal for tinkering, fixing, and creating.