Expert Profile: Josh Bessette
Live to Play, Play to Live
- Expert name: Josh Bessette
- Affiliation: U.S. Army
- Occupation: Bureau of Reclamation
- Location: Grand Coulee, WA
- Date joined ExpertVoice: 2016
Experts come from all walks of life. And with over a million of them on ExpertVoice, we try to get to know as many of them as possible. Recently, we had the chance to get to know Josh Bessette, from Grand Coulee, Washington by way of Shiocton, Wisconsin. Josh works for the Bureau of Reclamation, has been on ExpertVoice since 2016 and recently joined the ExpertVoice ambassador program, the Expert Collective.
What do you do for a living?
For a job I work for the Bureau of Reclamation helping run the Apprenticeship Programs at Grand Coulee. For living I play outside. I love expeditionary trips; whether stickbow hunting in the wilderness or extended paddles exploring island chains, the more nights in a row the better. I also try to bring the experiences I had growing up with a Tom Sawyer/Huck Finn lifestyle to my children. Bringing them opportunities to connect to the wild and animals has been very fulfilling.
What are your hobbies outside of work?
Archery. I absolutely love flinging arrows. I love the feel of steel on stone when I sharpen broadheads, waxing the bowstring, the smell of Ferr-l-tite and a propane torch, everything about the process centers me. I am a voracious reader and study a little bit of everything. Kayaking and coyote hunting have filled a lot of my “free time” and lately my son has taken to shotgunning, so I have enjoyed learning the art of Sporting Clays and Skeet. A year ago I volunteered as a coach for the Youth Shooting Program at our local Sportsman’s Club. I also have an old (1968) Westerasmaskiner Snow-Trac I am working on restoring.
How has ExpertVoice helped in your line of work and in your hobbies?
I’d be lying if I didn’t say the discounts are one of the biggest immediate benefits. I would either use lesser gear, make my own, or do without if it were not for some of the cost offsets. I have always been selective and deliberate with my gear choices and have really leveled up because of some of the offerings from manufacturers and ExpertVoice. The reviews are also a huge help in selecting the right gear. Many e-commerce sites have reviews by bot or the review never goes beyond the unboxing. I love having a platform that users go to for reviews and seeing the gear in use, especially hard use.
What are some of your favorite brands on ExpertVoice? Why?
Ariat has an awesome ExpertVoice community, always shows so much support, and has such positive interactions and bomb-proof offerings. Outdoor Research makes great gear and I find it fits me well. I destroyed my back in my mid 20’s and have become a fan of Mystery Ranch. My Longbow pack is still my go to for most 2-3 day hunts. With the volume of shooting my son does, MEC has allowed us to maintain our supply of shotgun shells. I carry a couple of Case knives in my kill kit and always have one in my pocket and still have the first jack knife I got from my Grandpa.
We thank Josh for his time and especially his expertise. If you want to see what else Josh has been up to, check out his expert profile. He’s certified in over 150 brands, written 13 different product recommendations and is ranked in the top 5% in not one, but three different categories – Hunting, Hiking and Camping.