Hatcher Pass Avalanche Center

About HPAC

The mission of the Hatcher Pass Avalanche Center is to provide avalanche information and advisories to assist and educate the general public in avoiding avalanches. HPAC provides avalanche information and advisories for the Hatcher Pass area in the Talkeetna Mountains of Alaska.

Advisories are provided each Thursday and Saturday of the winter season, typically mid-Nov to mid-April. Avalanche warnings and significant weather and avalanche event updates are provided intermittently, depending on weather/avalanche events.  A public observation platform (in conjunction with the CNFAIC) is available all winter and monitored daily.

Avalanche Forecasters

Jed Workman

Co-Director and Avalanche Specialist
Jed has been climbing and skiing in the Utah, Wyoming and Alaskan backcountry since 1990 and mountain and ski guiding since 2000. He has instructed and guided for NOLS, the Alaska Mountaineering School, Alaska Avalanche School, Jackson Hole Mountain Guides, Valdez Heli-Ski Guides and Third Edge Heli. He is a current American Avalanche Association pro member and has completed Avalanche level III training. Since 2003 Jed has been a regular backcountry skier at Hatcher Pass and recognizes the need for publicly available avalanche safety information. He has been proactively implementing the vision of a non-agency, community funded, grass-roots avalanche center.

Allie Barker

Co-Director and Avalanche Specialist
Allie has been an avid skier since age 2 and climbing since the mid 90’s.  Allie switched out her race skis for a backcountry set up in the late 90’s, and has never turned back.  Since 2000 she has worked as an instructor and mountain guide for NOLS, Alaska Mountain Guides, Alaska Pacific University, Alaska Mountaineering School and Denali Guiding, and Arctic Wild. She is a current American Avalanche Association pro member, and has completed Avalanche Pro Level III, and is a Wilderness First Responder.  She has been an avalanche educator in Wyoming, Utah, Idaho, Colorado, Washington, and Alaska.  Allie loves spending time in the mountains and especially skiing. Her combined skills and interest in skiing make her an exceptional avalanche forecaster.

In 2008, Allie co-founded the Hatcher Pass Avalanche Center.  She has worked as an avalanche forecaster for HPAC since 2008. Most recently, Allie has delved into avalanche mitigation as well as improving her backcountry snow machining skills.

You will find Allie growing nutrient dense food at Chugach Farm, hunting, fishing, foraging, fermenting food, and training her pup Chaga, in between her time spent digging snow pits and shredding powder.

Ryan Lewthwaite

Assistant Avalanche Specialist
Ryan comes to us from the US Forest Service where he’s been an avalanche educator and Wilderness Ranger for over 15 years. During that time, he has worked with several avalanche centers including: Mount Washington (NH); CAIC (CO); Bridgeport (CA); and even with the Chugach (AK). Ryan brings with him experience as a WEMT and professional rescuer, an AIARE Pro2 accreditation, educator targeting snow-machiners, and a splitboarders perspective. Aside from digging and sliding snow Ryan enjoys being a wildland firefighter, snowcat operator, mountain climber, and can usually be found biking or paddling around with his husky-dog Wooley. Growing up near the Adirondack mountains of NY, Ryan yearns for powder turns and is so glad to be back up in Alaska and especially here at Hatcher Pass.

HPAC Board Of Directors

The Hatcher Pass Avalanche Center INC Board of Directors are a close knit group who are residents of Southcentral Alaska. They bring valuable skills to our organization and work as volunteers behind the scenes to fund raise and ensure operations are sustainable. Interested in helping the board, or joining as a member? Email us at info@hpavalanche.org

Andy Dennis – Board Chair

Andy spent many years working for NOLS as an instructor and Alaska Mountaineering Program Supervisor. He is now an RN in Palmer.  Andy is passionate about giving back to his community by helping to provide avalanche safety information at Hatcher Pass. In his spare time he enjoys chasing his wife and dog around the backcountry of Alaska.

Brian Teachworth – Treasurer

Brian grew up in Alaska and spent much of his youth in the woods hiking, camping and cross-country skiing. He did not learn how to downhill ski until the young age of 30 after chasing his beautiful wife down to Bozeman, MT. He now lives at the base of majestic Lazy Mountain and spends most weekends out in the backcountry skiing. He enjoys giving back to his community and is excited to serve on the HPAC board.

Danielle Reed – Secretary

Dani grew up in Michigan, where she learned to ski starting at the age of three. While in college in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, she worked as a ski instructor, joined ski patrol, and went from ski racer to telemark skier. Soon after she gave up her alpine skis for good and hasn’t looked back. In 2008 she moved to Alaska and spent 9 seasons volunteering on ski patrol at Alyeska. While on ski patrol she taught toboggan handling and avalanche level 1 classes. As a patrol Alumni, she still teaches avalanche education with the local patrols. She has spent many days at Hatcher and joined the HPAC board in 2017 as a way to give back to the community. When she isn’t skiing, she works for the Mat-Su Health Foundation. She lives in Fishhook with her husband, two kids, and two huskies.

Keeton Kroon – Board Member

Keeton was born and raised in the Mat-su Valley.  He grew up taking family adventures to Hatcher Pass and started backcountry skiing there in high school.  Currently, he teaches Mathematics at Palmer High School, enjoys skiing in Hatcher Pass on the weekends, and frequently going on adventures with his wife and children.

Tim Leach – Board Member

Tim Leach grew up skiing the “eastern blue packed powder” in the foothills of the Adirondack Mountains. During these formative years he learned of the direct connection between edge tuning, waxing, and speed. When he encountered real powder in the mountains of the west he had to relearn how to ski. As part of his apprenticeship to the mountains, Tim spent a decade-and-a-half leading courses with the National Outdoor Leadership School, teaching college students, business executives, and Naval Academy Midshipmen leadership and mountaineering skills. In his day job now, Tim is the Transportation Lead for Launch Alaska, a business accelerator partnering with game-changing startups from all over the world to deploy climate-tech solutions in Alaska. Tim lives in the heart of the Matanuska Valley with his son and husky and can regularly be found chasing light with his camera and adventuring in the mountains. No matter what the conditions offer, Tim is still striving to make perfect turns.

Matt Lemons – Board Member

Matt’s background is in climbing and splitboarding. He worked as a wilderness therapy guide in Utah before moving back to Alaska in 2011. He is now a realtor living in Palmer, and he is a member of the Alaska Mountain Rescue Group.

Dave Rector – Board Member

Dave began his career as an outdoor educator in 2007 working for his campus outdoor recreation program at Georgia Southern University. He came to Palmer in 2010 to work for NOLS Alaska. During the offseasons he remained in Alaska and worked in recreation therapy, environmental remediation and ADF&G. He returned to Georgia in 2017 to attend graduate school and coordinate the campus outdoor recreation program at the University of Georgia. He now lives in Palmer with his wife and daughter and is a stay at home dad.

Executive Director and Education Coordinator

Marissa Bieger


Growing up in Buffalo, NY, Marissa’s love of snow was inevitable. Her passion for glaciers originally brought her to Alaska and she spent over ten years teaching for the National Outdoor Leadership School in Alaska, Patagonia, British Columbia, and Washington. She has supervised the NOLS Alaska summer mountaineering program and assisted Denali climbing rangers as a rescue volunteer. Marissa is passionate about providing avalanche education for Alaskan youth and creating pathways for women to work, climb, and ski in the mountains. When not out playing in the snow, you can usually find her gardening or knitting at her home in Palmer.

Avalanche Forecast Boundary

Hatcher Pass Avalanche Center Boundary