Valley To Summit
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David Mildenberg

Founder, Executive Director, Wilderness Guide, Rock Climbing Guide, Wilderness First Responder/CPR/AED, AMGA Climbing Wall Instructor (TR), Leave No Trace Master Educator, Leave No Trace State Advocate for Pennsylvania (past), American Alpine Club Ambassador for Wilmington, DE Region, Attorney


Born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, David’s passion for the outdoors was sparked when reading Henry David Thoreau’s Walden during high school. Ultimately, after several personal backpacking trips, David immersed himself in wilderness during a three month mountaineering/sea-kayaking expedition in Patagonia, Chile through the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS). It was in Patagonia where David learned the meaning of exploration, remote living, surviving in harsh weather conditions, communication, risk assessment, teamwork and tolerance for adversity.

Throughout David’s various outdoor adventures, and as a prior field and executive board member of the St. John’s College Search and Rescue Team in Santa Fe, New Mexico, he has development a great interest in outdoor adventure risk management. David attended the 2011 Wilderness Risk Management Conference and completed the National Outdoor Leadership School’s Administrative Risk Management Training course.  David is also a Wilderness First Responder, certified by the the Wilderness Medical Institute of NOLS. To deepen his low-impact skills and education, he also successfully completed the Leave No Trace Master Educator course offered by NOLS through the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics.  In addition to being a lawyer, David is pursuing another career in building Valley to Summit into a successful guided wilderness adventure business that helps bridge the gap between people and nature.

Some of David’s favorite mountains to hike are: the Na’Pali Coast State Park, Kauai, Hawaii; Great Smokey Mountains National Park, TN; Shenandoah National Park, W.V.; White Mountain National Forest, NH; Olympic National Park, WA; Catskill and Adirondack Mountains, NY; Santa Fe National Historic Forest and Pecos Wilderness Area, New Mexico; and, Torres Del Paine National Forest, Patagonia, Chile.

Fun Fact: Favorite backcountry meal is Gado-Gado Spaghetti