Julius and Kristin have prepared themselves rigorously for their roles as your hosts and guides. Both are trained in advanced wilderness first aid. Julius has also trained in surviving hostile environments, has a license to operate powerboats and a pilot’s license. He has a decade’s experience as a rafting guide and qualified as a full bear-viewing guide, the highest certification in the industry, in 2009. Julius has also trained in off-road and defensive driving and swift water rescue. Since coming to Canada, he has learned to kayak, mountaineer and ski.
When not guiding, Julius continues to be involved in journalism, politics and conflict. In recent years, he has taught journalism at the University of Alaska, the first non-US citizen to be offered the position of Atwood Professor. He has also been deployed by the British government to Afghanistan to work with Pashtun tribal leaders as part of Nato’s counter-insurgency efforts. He occasionally advises the British military on politics and stabilisation.
Kristin has been passionate about food since she was a young girl. In 2011 she took formal training, graduating from the North West Culinary Institute in Vancouver, one of Canada’s leading training schools for chefs.
Kristin has her own herb and vegetable garden and sources all the other food supplies for the ranch from local suppliers. She is a keen amateur birder with a yard full of songbirds to watch. Kristin looks after Masha and Karu, the two resident dogs.
She has published a biography of an Estonian philosopher, Nikolai Maim, in her native language and frequently travels to Estonia to keep up with her extended family.
Between the two of them, Julius and Kristin speak fluent English, Russian, Hungarian and Estonian as well as some German, French (and Pashto).