Shopping Alps & Meters at The St. Regis Aspen wouldn’t be possible without Jarrod Hollinger and his business, Aspen Outfitting Company. In addition to hosting Alps & Meters in his space, he also runs a storied guide business, sharing Aspen’s best-kept secrets with clientele that come to him year after year to take them out in the mountains. We caught up with Jarrod ahead of this week’s Aspen Food & Wine Classic to hear about how he spends summer in Aspen!
Tell us about your guide business at Aspen Outfitting Co.? Can you share a little bit of the history of the shop?
Aspen Outfitting was founded by my father, Jon Hollinger, in 1969. He was passionate about the wilderness from a young age, and always dreamed about sharing his love for the outdoors and making a living by guiding outdoor activities. When he moved to Aspen, he quickly realized that he had found the perfect setting for a life lived outside. He had a background In hospitality, and a passion for people. He was a master at creating unique, memorable experiences. We strive to honor his memory by showcasing only the best outdoor activities that Aspen has to offer, from fly-fishing the Roaring Fork River, to upland bird hunting, snowshoeing and guided hikes.
What's your favorite way to get outside in the Aspen summertime? Any summer traditions?
I grew up hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, and kayaking; but fly fishing is by far my favorite way to spend time outside in Aspen during the summers. The golden light, the soft summer breeze coming off the river, and the prospect of catching a wild trout is a combination that is hard to beat. Growing up, my dad and I would go out on the river after work for the late afternoon hatch. More days than I can count we didn’t stop fishing until it was well past dark - those are some of my favorite memories!
In your opinion, what's the most underrated Aspen summer destination?
There is a section of the Roaring Fork River that runs right behind the Benedict Music Tent. The dry fly fishing is very good, and more often than not you will be fishing to the sound of classical music drifting down from the summer concerts. It is a pretty special place.
Best place to grab dinner after a day on the water or in the mountains? Cocktail of choice?
My favorite place to grab dinner after a day on the water is the Woody Creek Tavern. It Is a great old school Aspen hideout, and they serve late for all those nights that we fish until after dark. Depending on how the fishing was, I suggest you try one of their local Colorado beers on draft, or a pitcher of their world famous fresh lime margaritas.
Any essential Alps & Meters pieces for summer adventure?
The Touring Henley has quickly become one of my favorite pieces of gear! Merino wool is such a versatile fabric, wicking sweat and keeping you cool or insulated depending on the conditions. It’s a functional base layer on the river, and looks great after fishing for dinner in town, as well.
What does “Designed by Tradition” mean to you?
To me, “designed by tradition” means that Alps & Meters gear and clothing is derived from years of outdoor experience. The materials are tried and true, the fit and aesthetic reflect the ideal of a life well lived in the mountains. At AOC, I try to keep the tradition of the business alive and stay true to my dad’s initial intention, which is to share the mountains and rivers he was so passionate about with visitors to the area, and inspire and cultivate a love of the outdoors, while being able to get out myself!