Your guides, Ari and Elie, both hold current WFR (pronounced 'woofer') certifications. WFR stands for Wilderness First Responder which is a rigorous training to deal with medical incidents in the backcountry. WFR is the industry standard medical training for wilderness guides throughout America and includes training that is specific to the realities of working in the wilderness. While we all hope we never need to use these skills we have taken this training to ensure that your wilderness trip can be enjoyed with the confidence that we have the expertise to do everything in our power to take care of you in the event of an emergency.

Ari Hoffman. Head Guide

Ari has been participating in and/or guiding wilderness trips for over 20 years in a variety of settings and locations including Colorado, Utah, and Alaska. Ari has enjoyed the company of people from many different walks of life on these wilderness trips. Ari counts trips in Utah and Alaska among his favorite wilderness experiences and loves just taking family drives on random roads deep in the Rocky Mountains. Ari graduated from Yeshiva Toras Chaim high school, spent time in Yeshivas Torah Ore in Jerusalem, and completed a Master of Arts degree in couple and family counseling at the University of Colorado at Denver. Ari is a licensed and practicing psychotherapist in Denver, CO where he lives with his wife and two beautiful daughters.

About us

Your kind & friendly Avanim Adventures staff:





Rabbi Elie Ganz. Head Guide & Rabbinical Supe

Rabbi Elie Ganz was born and raised in Scranton, P.A. where he spent much 

time exploring the beautiful Pennsylvania backcountry on foot 

and horseback. 

After returning from a post-high school stint studying in Israel, Elie took his 

first position as an educator, in a high school in Baltimore, before his 21st 

birthday. Two years later he returned to yeshiva to pursue his rabbinic 

ordination. He has since taught Judaic Studies to high school students in 

various institutions including the prestigious 

Ramaz Upper School in Manhattan.

Amidst all this, Elie has managed to hitchhike through, wander around, 

climb up, rappel down and fall off a motorcycle in a good deal of the 

continental United States (and Alaska). 

 

In addition to his s'micha, Elie holds certifications as a teacher from the New Teacher Center of the University of California, a frontal-line therapy and behavioral modification counselor, and an IWLS wilderness instructor. 

 Elie lives in Miami, Florida