Shannon LeRoy is an accomplished woodswoman who has spent most of her life living and working in the outdoors, from her youth in Wyoming to her years as the owner and operator of a traditional sporting camp near Greenville, Maine. Shannon is the programs manager for the Appalachian Mountain Club’s Maine Woods Property in the 100-Mile Wilderness, where she coordinates trip logistics and reservations for guests, and guides treks into the lodges on the 66,500-acre preserve. 

Q: How did you develop your passion for the outdoors?  

A: I grew up in Rawlins, Wyo., where the outdoors was all around us. My parents were very much into the outdoors so if I wanted to spend time with them I had to learn to follow along. Every July they would move the family into a camp in the woods and we’d live in a canvas tent. We’d follow animal trails through mountains and prairies and explore for gold and arrowheads.   

Q: How did you get involved with the Appalachian Mountain Club?  

A: My husband, Larry, and I owned Medawisla Camps on Second Roach Pond and my brother-in-law owned Little Lyford Pond Camps. Bob decided to sell Little Lyford to the AMC in 2003. And when we put our camps on the market in 2005, the AMC approached us and we ended up selling to them in 2006. The AMC immediately hired me to help with the transition and I’ve been with them there ever since.   

Q: What was it like operating a Maine sporting camp?  

A: The 14 years at Medawisla were the best of my life. I loved the people and the place. It’s hard work, though, and it got to be a bit much as we got older. I did everything from plumbing, fixing motors, mowing and carpentry to cooking and laundry. But the people made it worth it. We had people who came year after year and they became like extended family. They were there to have a good time with us and that made it all worth it. I love that I’m still connected to the camps.

Q: What do you like about your AMC job?  

A: I like the people. And here I get to work with people just like when we had the camps. My job as programs manager is to put heads in beds. So I design programs that get people wanting to come to Maine to visit the camps, like a fly- fishing camp in June, a family camp in July, and the lodge to lodge skiing in winter. I also do environmental education outreach to schools, getting outside with kids, and looking at frogs, trees and flowers, taking walks and playing with a map and compass. It’s great to watch the kids’ eyes light up!  

Q: What activities do you enjoy during your time off?

A: I love to kayak, especially where I can see lots of birds. During April and December I try to get away and go kayaking in the swamps, savannahs and rivers in South Carolina, and other parts of the south. When I have spare time around here in Greenville I hang out with my horse Crystal, a 2-year-old Morgan. And I help my husband with our Highland cattle business.