Junior Averi Schelhaas is spending her time in the mountains


They say that going to the mountains is like going home. For junior Averi Schelhaas, pieces of her heart are scattered across many mountains, ranging from the Rocky Mountains in Colorado to the Appalachian Mountains out East. Her home away from home is in the mountains, and according to Averi, it’s been that way for as long as she can remember.

“For as long as I can remember, my family has traveled a lot,” Averi said. “I have been to almost all fifty states, and also Canada, and soon France.”

Averi’s adventurous and active personality is one of the many things that fuels her energy for hiking mountains. One of her favorite hiking trips she has been on would be in Banff National Park in Canada.

“It was just so beautiful, and the town sat between these mountains,” Averi said. ” The rivers and lakes were the most turquoise waters I have ever seen. The mountains itself though– they were so incredibly amazing.”

According to Averi, while hiking in Banff, she and her family hiked about 20 kilometers, which is over 12 miles. Although the hike was hard, Averi remembers it being really eye-opening and fascinating.

In addition to Banff National Park, Averi is traveling to France over spring break, and she is looking forward to the hiking she will be doing there.

“I am super excited because it’s just me and my mom going to France,” Averi said. “I would say I am most looking forward to hiking in new scenery and exploring around.”

Her eye for catching beauty translates into photography as well. While she doesn’t just hike mountains, Averi enjoys photographing them and other pieces of nature.

“Just by looking at my Instagram, I feel like you can tell I am an outdoorsy kind of girl,” Averi said. “I don’t take very many pictures of people, and I enjoy capturing more nature photos with mountains and anything with some sort of natural beauty.”

Although her talent for taking pictures would suggest otherwise, her passion for photography began not too long ago.

“There wasn’t a specific thing that really made me start taking pictures,” Averi said. “I saw that some girls in my grade were really passionate about photography, and I realized that I have always liked to take pictures. I first started with just my phone, but now I have a Canon Rebel T6. It takes really nice pictures, and I love it.”

In her upcoming travels to France, Averi hopes to capture a new variety of pictures.

“I’m really looking forward to traveling to Paris,” Averi said. “I mean, the city itself is truly beautiful, and I can’t wait to take some artsy photos by the Eiffel Tower, and of course, all of the nature and scenery.”

Although she has been to many different places, Averi is always on the lookout for new places to travel.

“In general, I just truly love the mountains,” Averi said. “Whether I am taking pictures of them or hiking, I enjoy their presence. [They are] so beautiful and such a big part of my life.”