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Meet Our Guide Team...

LEADING TOURS FROM RIVER TO RIM
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Join us for a tour that is much more than simply looking at the might and majesty of the Grand Canyon. Understand the Who, how, what, and why of this awe-inspiring landscape as you see it from a Biblical perspective. Each of our guides is dedicated to making your Grand Canyon experience the trip of a lifetime!

At Canyon Ministries, our guides share a biblical worldview and our same Foundational Beliefs. They are also highly experienced in leading people in God’s great outdoors, and specifically the Grand Canyon and areas throughout the American Southwest.  More importantly, they have an understanding of why the Grand Canyon and surrounding area are significant from a biblical perspective, and will convey that to you on each and every tour we conduct.

Take a look at our guide team and get to know the folks
who are our boots on the ground and feet in the water!

 


GRAND CANYON RIM TOUR GUIDES

 

Jon Albert

Jon Albert has been serving as the Executive Director of Canyon Ministries since June of 2013.  He and his beautiful family make their home in the mountains just west of Flagstaff, AZ. The wilderness has always been a powerful place of worship for Jon. God has enabled him to apply his passion for the outdoors to the advancement of the kingdom. He has been a commercial wilderness guide since 1992 around the U.S., Canada, and the Dominican Republic.

In addition to his wilderness adventures, Jon has been a pastor, Christian school Bible teacher and administrator, public school administrator, and coach. Jon has a master’s degree in theology and has been studying geology in Grand Canyon since 2008.

Jon has an infectious joy for life and the Lord, which impacts every trip he is on. He has this to say about leading a trip, “Spending time in the Grand Canyon is like being invited into the workshop of a master craftsman and listening as He displays and explains His work. Leading a trip in the Grand Canyon is like being the one who opens the door to the workshop and excitedly says, ‘Listen to the master.’”

Some of the people Jon has lead in the outdoors have said this about him:

I’ve spent many days in the wilderness with Jon, he’s in his element there. Jon is a man of character firmly founded in Jesus. Jon’s walk with God is his passion. It’s obvious to me that God has gifted Jon with a great perspective of truth and an ability to teach and lead others to the foot of God’s throne. – Jason Schneider

Jon Albert is a remarkable leader, speaker, teacher, and guide. I have taken multiple trips with high school students with Jon and each and every time the trip was not only incredibly successful, but also very, very impactful for my students. Jon has a gift. He is very good at using this gift to bring others to a place where they can see God in a compelling and often life changing way. – Jake Vanada, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Twin Cities Director, MN

Bryce Brothers

Bryce Brothers has been a long time resident here in Northern Arizona and has a wealth of knowledge about its various highlights and history.  Bryce and his beautiful family live in Flagstaff.  When Bryce is not leading tours at the Grand Canyon you might find him at Coconino High School, where he is an English teacher and heads up one of the top Speech and Debate teams in Northern Arizona!

Bryce is a great “people person” and loves sharing the beauty of God’s creation at the Grand Canyon with folks from around the world.

Guy Forsythe

Guy ForsytheGuy Forsythe and his wife Cindy moved to Sedona, AZ from Ohio in 2003, after working as a public high school technology teacher for 30 years. In 2004, they founded Crying Rocks Ministry. They publish a newsletter that is mailed to every street address in Sedona four times a year. The newsletter explains the evidence for a created young earth. Guy also speaks to churches and creation groups.
 
In addition, Guy teaches a 6-class course on creation science yearly in Sedona. Guy has recently published a paper (co-authored by John Whitmore, another Canyon Ministries guide, and Paul Garner) as a result of discovering geological features in the Coconino Formation that have never before been mentioned in the professional geology literature. The features he found make it clear that the Coconino Formation was deposited rapidly by water and not slowly by air as is assumed by most geologists.
 

Adam Huff

Adam Huff joined Canyon Ministries in July 2018. He moved to Arizona from northern Kentucky where he was employed with Answers in Genesis at the Creation Museum for 11 years.

An avid outdoor enthusiast, Adam has logged hundreds of miles hiking in various terrains at locations across the country. Having a passion for backpacking and camping, Adam is thrilled to be able to serve at Canyon Ministries, where he can combine his love for the outdoors with his passion for creation apologetics.

He enjoys exploring the southwest with his family, learning all that he can about its fascinating geology and history in order to better serve as a guide in the Grand Canyon.

John Kelley

John Kelley is an Arizona native who loves hiking and exploring in God’s amazing Creation. John attended Nothern Arizona University in Flagstaff, AZ, where he received his Bachelor of Science in Physical Sciences with an emphasis in Mathematics.  Since he recognized God’s call on his life in seventh grade, John has enjoyed serving God through various opportunities of leadership, pastoring, and teaching. After graduating college John has gone on to teach students in both Arizona and Alaska, Co-hosted “Grace Talk” (a weekly round table radio talk show), and has led hundreds of people on tours in Flagstaff, Grand Canyon, and Israel.

John has also been instrumental in the development of Canyon Ministries through his leadership on the Board of Directors.  John remembers his first River Trip in the Grand Canyon as the time Genesis chapters 1-11 went from “black and white to living color”. He compares that experience to the first time visiting Israel where “the Bible came alive as though it never had before.”

John’s passion of God’s love and truth is evident each time you interact with him. He invites you to come experience God’s Love, Majesty, Truth, Justice, and Redemption with him at the Grand Canyon!

Nate Loper

Nate Loper is the Director of Rim Tour Operations and Technology for Canyon Ministries.  After serving as a pastor for 12 years, he and his family moved from California to join our team.  Nate is also the founder of the Genesis Creation Science Institute, which for years has enabled him to speak at various schools, churches, and conferences nationwide on a wide variety of creation science and biblical history topics.  Over the years he has given creation tours through museums around the world from Los Angeles to London, and has led numerous trips to various national parks all over the American West.  If he’s not at the Grand Canyon, you might find him out tending to his honey bees 🙂

Bert Loper Grand Canyon

Bert Loper

Nate has a deep-running connection to the Grand Canyon and the verdant waters flowing through it.  Not only because he grew up rafting and kayaking its headwaters in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, but also because he is related to the legendary Bert Loper, known by those in his day and river guides ever since as the “Grand Old Man of the Colorado”. 

After having lead numerous trips throughout the canyons and rivers of the American west, Bert died in the Grand Canyon while rowing a river trip on the eve of his 80th birthday in 1949.  Bert had a heart attack in the middle of 24.5 mile rapid and then disappeared down the tongue of the river, never to be seen again…until 25 years later when hikers discovered his bones and belt buckle 46 miles downstream.  Two of Bert’s boats that he built can still be seen on river trips through the Grand Canyon.

Bob Smart

Bob Smart recently retired after decades of serving the State of Arizona and its citizens as a Highway Patrol Officer, and is now part of the Canyon Ministries team. Bob has a great deal of knowledge about the Grand Canyon, and has spent more time hiking its trails than anyone else on our rim tour guide team.

Bob’s intrigue and love for the Grand Canyon dates back to the mid-80’s when he took his first backpacking trip exploring the South Rim. Being thoroughly captivated by God’s majesty through His creation, the canyon has since held a special place in his heart and spirit.

 


GRAND CANYON RIVER TRIP GUIDES

 

Jon Albert

Jon Albert has been serving as the Executive Director of Canyon Ministries since June of 2013.  He and his beautiful family make their home in the mountains just west of Flagstaff, AZ. The wilderness has always been a powerful place of worship for Jon. God has enabled him to apply his passion for the outdoors to the advancement of the kingdom. He has been a commercial wilderness guide since 1992 around the U.S., Canada, and the Dominican Republic.

In addition to his wilderness adventures, Jon has been a pastor, Christian school Bible teacher and administrator, public school administrator, and coach. Jon has a master’s degree in theology and has been studying geology in Grand Canyon since 2008.

Jon has an infectious joy for life and the Lord, which impacts every trip he is on. He has this to say about leading a trip, “Spending time in the Grand Canyon is like being invited into the workshop of a master craftsman and listening as He displays and explains His work. Leading a trip in the Grand Canyon is like being the one who opens the door to the workshop and excitedly says, ‘Listen to the master.’”

Some of the people Jon has lead in the outdoors have said this about him:

I’ve spent many days in the wilderness with Jon, he’s in his element there. Jon is a man of character firmly founded in Jesus. Jon’s walk with God is his passion. It’s obvious to me that God has gifted Jon with a great perspective of truth and an ability to teach and lead others to the foot of God’s throne. – Jason Schneider

Jon Albert is a remarkable leader, speaker, teacher, and guide. I have taken multiple trips with high school students with Jon and each and every time the trip was not only incredibly successful, but also very, very impactful for my students. Jon has a gift. He is very good at using this gift to bring others to a place where they can see God in a compelling and often life changing way. – Jake Vanada, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Twin Cities Director, MN

Dr. Bill Barrick

bill barrickDr. Bill Barrick served as a Professor of Old Testament and the Director of Doctoral Studies at The Master’s Seminary for 19 years. A former missionary in Bangladesh working in Bible translation and theological education, Bill has been teaching, researching, and writing on the exegesis of Genesis 1-11, particularly Noah’s Flood, for many years. He is also well informed on the geology of the southwest United States. Bill recently published Ecclesiastes, the Philippians of the Old Testament. He is a sought after speaker/teacher and travels worldwide proclaiming the truth of God’s Word.

While Bill’s knowledge of the Grand Canyon is extensive, he specializes in the connection between the Bible, the Flood, and the Grand Canyon. As a Biblical and Hebrew scholar, his background allows him to relate to those of all levels of Biblical understanding.

The outdoors has formed a major part of his life since childhood. Besides loving to fish and hike, Bill’s activities have included rock climbing, canoeing, youth camps, wilderness camps, wildlife research (National Science Foundation), and an interest in survival technique.

Bill’s wife, Barbara, his 4 children, and 14 grandchildren complement his creationist views in their own way by multiplying and filling the earth.  Bill is also a member of the Canyon Ministries Board of Directors.

Dr. Danny Faulkner

danny faulknerDr. Danny R. Faulkner has a PhD in Astronomy from Indiana University. For over 25 years, he was on the faculty of the University of South Carolina Lancaster, where he taught physics and astronomy. Danny retired as a full professor and now holds the title of Distinguished Professor Emeritus. In January 2013, he joined Answers in Genesis and its Creation Museum full time. He has published more than a hundred papers in various astronomy and astrophysics journals and is the author of Universe by Design.

Danny’s breadth of knowledge about the universe and the night sky will fascinate you, and may even keep you up at night!

Nate Loper

Nate Loper is the Director of Rim Tour Operations and Technology for Canyon Ministries.  After serving as a pastor for 12 years, he and his family moved from California to join our team.  Nate is also the founder of the Genesis Creation Science Institute, which has enabled him to speak at various schools, churches, and conferences nationwide on a wide variety of creation science and biblical history topics.  Over the years he has given creation tours through museums around the world from Los Angeles to London, and has led numerous trips to various national parks all over the American West.  If he’s not at the Grand Canyon, you might find him out tending to his honey bees 🙂

Bert Loper Grand Canyon

Bert Loper

Nate has a deep-running connection to the Grand Canyon and the verdant waters flowing through it.  Not only because he grew up rafting and kayaking its headwaters in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, but also because he is related to the legendary Bert Loper, known by those in his day and river guides ever since as the “Grand Old Man of the Colorado”. 

After having lead numerous trips throughout the canyons and rivers of the American west, Bert died in the Grand Canyon while rowing a river trip on the eve of his 80th birthday in 1949.  Bert had a heart attack in the middle of 24.5 mile rapid and then disappeared down the tongue of the river, never to be seen again…until 25 years later when hikers discovered his bones and belt buckle 46 miles downstream.  Two of Bert’s boats that he built can still be seen on river trips through the Grand Canyon.

Dr. Terry Mortenson

terry mortensonDr. Terry Mortenson has an MDiv and a PhD in the history of geology and is well-informed on the relationship of the Grand Canyon, geology, and Scripture. After serving with Campus Crusade for Christ for 26 years (mostly in Eastern Europe), he joined the staff of Answers in Genesis in 2001 as a speaker, writer, and researcher. A revised version of his PhD thesis was published as The Great Turning Point: The Church’s Catastrophic Mistake on Geology—Before Darwin. He also co-edited and contributed to Coming to Grips with Genesis: Biblical Authority and the Age of the Earth, which gives an in-depth biblical, historical, and theological defense of young-earth creation. Terry has lectured on creation and evolution in over 25 countries and has been on many trips through the Grand Canyon.

Terry’s knowledge and passion for helping people see the connection between Biblical compromise and the age of the earth are obvious both in and out of the Grand Canyon. He says, “I know I’m a real creationist, because my wonderful wife, Margie, and I have eight kids and a growing number of grand-kids.” Terry is also an associate member of the Canyon Ministry Board of Directors.

Dr. Andrew Snelling

andrew snellingDr. Andrew Snelling possesses a PhD in geology from the University of Sydney, has done extensive research in the canyon over the last 20+ years, and has published numerous articles on his work. Dr. Snelling has published more than 30 technical articles and papers in secular journals and books and has worked as a geological consultant in the mining industry for private companies and national and international governmental research organizations.

As a Research Scientist and Professor of Geology at the Graduate School of the Institute for Creation Research, he was a lead researcher on the 8-year creationist research project on radiometric dating methods completed in 2005. Dr. Snelling is currently the Director of Research at Answers in Genesis, and one of the leading creationist geologists in the world, and the author of Earth’s Catastrophic Past, Geology, Creation & the Flood.

Andrew has an exceptional ability to explain the geology of the canyon in a Biblical context in a clear and interesting manner that individuals without any geology background can understand. Andrew and his wife, Kym, live just a few miles from AiG’s Creation Museum just outside Cincinnati. Their three adult Aussie children bring the grandchildren for frequent visits. Andrew is also an associate member of the Canyon Ministry Board of Directors.

Tom Vail

tom paula vailTom Vail founded Canyon Ministries in 1997 after over 15 years of leading trips through the canyon. He began guiding as a non-believer, gave his life to the Lord and began investigating some of the “problems” he always had with the evolutionary explanation he taught on canyon geology. As he learned more about the Biblical model, creation, and the flood, he found it gave a much better explanation of what he saw in the canyon, and it became the focus of the ministry.

Tom is the author of Grand Canyon, a Different View and co-author of the True North Series, which includes guidebooks on the Grand Canyon, Zion and Bryce, and Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. Tom and his wife, Paula, live in Phoenix, AZ when they are not in the bottom of the Grand Canyon. When Paula is on the trip, you are in for a worshipful treat of singing and flute. Tom is the Chairman of the Board for Canyon Ministries.

Dr. John Whitmore

John WhitmoreDr. John Whitmore has been teaching at Cedarville University since 1991. Prior to that, he taught high school science and math and spent a summer working for the United States Geological Survey. John serves on the board of the Creation Geology Society and is a member of the Creation Research Society and the Geological Society of America (GSA). His publications include many GSA abstracts, journal articles, book chapters, popular articles, and an adventure book titled The Great Alaskan Dinosaur Adventure.

John speaks internationally on the topics of creation, geology, and Noah’s Flood and has led many trips in the Grand Canyon. He has been doing research for several years on the Coconino Sandstone found in the Grand Canyon, and will have some interesting facts to share that contradict secular geology but support a global flood.

 

Redwall Cavern


Visiting the Grand Canyon is a memorable experience, no matter what your age or how many times you’ve been there. For the first-time visitor, the immensity of the canyon is often what captivates people. For the veteran visitor, it can be the subtle details of the formations, or the way the light plays off the walls that fascinates. Whether your first visit or fiftieth, the people you have with you also make a world of difference. Be it family and friends or a professional guide, they will influence how you see the canyon.

When it comes to a professional guide, beyond the obvious need for knowledge and the ability to share knowledge in a meaningful way, there is one key factor in how significant your visit will be…worldview. You should be in agreement with your guide on the foundation of what you are seeing. If your guide does not share your worldview (the way you see the world and how it came to be), you will walk away either disappointed or confused.  All our guides share a Biblical worldview of Creation, and the events found in the book of Genesis.  With God’s Word as our foundation we see the world around us revealed through the illumination of scripture.  Indeed the “rocks cry out”, and they help tell the message of God’s plan in creation, destruction, and redemption for all time.

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