montana state university

who we are

our story

Founded in 2014, Backcountry Squatters at MSU is the original chapter of this growing organization. They are devoted to promoting female involvement, education, and activity in the outdoor community of Bozeman, Montana. For more information on club meetings and events please refer to their personal facebook group.

Backcountry Squatters helped me to realize that I was capable of so much more than I ever realized. By finding a safe space to learn and ask questions, I was able to find new courage in the outdoors. Without this club, I’m not sure I would have had the fearlessness to try any of the sports that are now my greatest passions.


When I came to MSU, Backcountry Squatters was the platform in which I found not only women to ski, hike, and bike with, but also a supportive group of women to call my friends


 Backcountry Squatters provided me an elaborate network of incredible women to help me expand my reach into outdoor recreation, whether is was building on skills I already had or learning new ones.  Plus, I got to make some amazing friends along the way.


2019/2020 Executive Board

Hannah Mavis                                                                  PRESIDENT

Hannah (aka Ham) is an Oregon dirtbag enjoying life in Montana. Her major is in Microbial Biotechnology, but spends more time riding bikes than actually studying. Ham’s main outdoor adventures include whitewater rafting, cyclocross and mountain biking, as well as attempting to climb rocks. She also covers a myriad of positions at the MSU Outdoor Recreation Program. Ham started biking at age 12 and was the only girl racer in Oregon at that time; they didn’t even have a race category for her. She didn’t mind racing with the big boys, but when she was able to be coached by pro women, she found a community of women athletes that brought her closer to her sport and community. Hannah is a beginner skier, and while on executive board wants to spread the vibe that you don’t have to be good to participate outside. There’s always more for us to learn from each other! Hannah hopes that her involvement in the club will break down barriers in the competitive atmosphere in Bozeman and get everyone stoked to just be apart of something so unique! 

Emily Wiley                                              OUTREACH COORDINATOR

Emily came to Montana State after attending Colorado Rocky Mountain School in Carbondale, Colorado, where she grew up. While in Colorado, she was introduced to many of her outdoor passions such as snowboarding, canyoneering, and kayaking. Emily chose Montana State because it felt like the perfect place to translate and expand on her outdoor interests. Upon arriving at MSU, she was thrilled to learn about Backcountry Squatters. She always wanted to be involved in the clubs mission, and now serves as the outreach coordinator for the Montana State Squatters club branch. Emily is planning on graduating MSU in 2022, with a major in Psychology and double minor in Global Health and Hispanic Studies. She can’t wait to be apart of getting more girls involved in male dominated sports and meeting more rad women! 

Riley Steele                                                                   TREASURER

Riley is a senior studying accounting at MSU, and she chose to go to school in Bozeman because of her passion for the outdoors. She loves snowboarding, backpacking, climbing, biking, and trying any new outdoor sports thrown her way. She looks forward to continuing to build a strong community of women who share similar interests and get stoked on doing things outside together. She’ll also be busy this next year preparing and getting in shape for her thru-hike on the Pacific Crest Trail in 2020. 

Anna Lee                                                                         SECRETARY

Anna is from Olympia, Washington and is a senior at MSU, majoring in Business Management. When she is not in school, you will likely find her outside looking for powder or grilling veggie burgers with her friends on top of 5.FUN graded climbs. She also has strong passion for indoor plants, biking flat roads, Thai food and naps in the sun.


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