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Timberline Adventures Moves to Lafayette

Couple Leaves Silicon Valley to Run Colorado Active Travel Company

Denver, CO (June 1, 2014) After 30 years working at Silicon Valley companies including Texas Instruments and Adobe Systems Inc., Dave Harris walked away from the high tech world to take over Timberline Adventures (http://timbertours.com), a Colorado-based active travel company, which he now runs with his wife Kisa.

Dave and Kisa have long been avid cyclists and hikers. They did California’s “Death Ride” together -- a 130-mile day ride up 16,000 feet and over 5 passes. They jumped at the opportunity to reinvent themselves as bike and hike tour operators. As a Colorado native, Kisa was thrilled at the prospect of being able to finish raising her family in her home state.

These days Dave and Kisa spend their time guiding trips to places like Oregon’s Rogue River Wilderness, Canada’s Kootenay region, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and Death Valley. That’s the fun part. Juggling the myriad logistical tasks and innumerable details involved in running over 60 bike tours and hiking trips a year all over North America is significantly more demanding.

The key, the couple says, is passion and teamwork.

“Being able to build a business that’s so aligned with my passion is fantastic. Being able to do it with my husband is just tremendous,” says Kisa.

While leaving established careers and buying a travel company certainly involved risk, it was not a decision made blindly. They had been customers of Timberline Adventures for 22 years and knew the company well. When the founders retired in 2011, Dave and Kisa were eager to take over a solid operation they respected. This was no fly-by-night startup. Timberline Adventures has been guiding active travel vacations for 32 years and was recently recognized with the National Geographic 50 Tours of a Lifetime Award in 2013.

For Dave, the change has been liberating.

“Once the euphoria of their early success fades, a lot of tech companies have the tendency to get stuck. I found my final years in Silicon Valley were mostly an execution game instead of a learning game. With Timberline I am challenged every day and constantly trying new things. And I’m exploring sublimely beautiful places on a bike or hiking trail.”

That combination of challenge, discovery and fun which Dave was seeking when he left high tech is what defines Timberline Adventures’ trips. Though the trips can be physically challenging, itineraries are designed to be flexible so they can be adapted to different fitness levels. Nature is another key ingredient. Timberline’s trip roster includes 37 different national parks, including Glacier, Yosemite, Acadia, Big Bend, and Hawaii’s Volcanoes National Park.

The couple is excited about moving the business to Lafayette. They knew they wanted to move the office from south Denver closer to home, and spent seven months looking for the right spot, finally settling on the former Boy Scouts office next to Boulder Blimp. An important selection criteria was to ensure that they could easily bike or run to work. “It feels like we’re getting in on the ground floor. Things are starting to get interesting here in Lafayette. We’re glad that Timberline Adventures is part of it,” says Dave.

“Moving the business here cements our connection to the community, and that’s important to us,” adds Kisa. The couple’s three daughters attend Monarch High School in Louisville and Kisa teaches fitness classes at Balfour Senior Living and the YMCA.


Routes, mileage and accommodations are subject to change due to safety, road/trail conditions, weather and availability.