Spotlight: Ethan Wishnick

You already know that founder Ethan spends his days running Toren’s business, but we thought you might be interested in what brought him here and what he does in his spare time.  We sat down to ask him a few questions - check out what he had to say below.

How’d you develop your love for the outdoors?

My parents first put me on skis when I was three, so I really grew up skiing.  We also spent lots of time hiking and camping and at the beach in the summers, so appreciation for the outdoors was a way of life.

What’s your favorite outdoor activity?

Telemark skiing - I picked it up in college to keep challenging myself.  Free your heels, free your mind.

Because you were a ski instructor at Vail, is it safe to assume winter is your favorite season?

Good guess, and I do love winter, but fall is actually my favorite season.  You just can’t beat those crisp sunny days.

Anything you’re particularly excited for now that it’s getting a little warmer?

Mainly I’m looking forward to getting some outdoor exercise time on my home turf - there’s terrific running, hiking and cycling, all nearby.  Of course I’ll miss the snow and skiing, but it’ll be great to be able to just throw on my running shoes or hop on my bike and head out the door.  We also have a few trips to the mountains and the beach planned this summer, which I’m definitely looking forward to.

What does an ideal weekend in New York look like for you?

For me, an ideal weekend in the city includes getting in a great workout, preferably outdoors either in Central Park or on the Hudson.  You’d probably also find me hanging with my wife Sarah and dog Stella or seeking out some of the great food New York City has to offer.

What has been your favorite travel adventure?

My wife and I visited Patagonia a couple of years ago.  We trekked through Parque Nacional los Glaciares in Argentina and on the W circuit in Torres del Paine in Chile, both of which were incredible.  The terrain down there is really wide open and dramatic, and it feels largely untouched by humanity, which is hard to come by these days.

What about your worst outdoor misadventure?

After college, Sarah and I went on an extended cross-country trip.  Near the end of the trip, we visited Arches National Park in Utah, which is on the Colorado Plateau and has a dry climate perfect for camping.  We set up our tent in a beautiful campsite in a little valley area, only to find that we had actually staked out tent in the middle of a wash, and just our luck, we happened to be in Arches on one of its four rainy days a year.  A river gushing against the side of our tent at 4am was a really rude awakening.

What’s the best piece of gear you’ve acquired?

We purchased the Hubba Hubba tent by MSR before our cross-country trip, and nearly ten years later, it’s still going strong (and still in production, which speaks volumes).  The Hubba Hubba is MSR’s two-person backpacking tent, and it checks all the boxes - lightweight, versatile and super easy to set up and break down.

Any special words to live by?

Never waste a day.


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