Nicholas Solnick is a Louisiana naturalist, environmentalist, outdoor enthusiast and musician. As a native to Louisiana, Nick familiarized himself with local flora, fauna and culture from an early age ; his initial casual encounters developing into a passionate interest. That interest drove him to pursue further research and practical engagement with outdoor and cultural activities. In 2011, Nick graduated from the University of New Orleans with a degree in musical performance specializing in drumming and percussion. It was during his time at UNO where he met his kayak fishing buddy and future owner of Wild Louisiana Tours, Josh Reppel. It was on one of their fishing trips that Josh invited Nick to join the Wild Louisiana Tour Team.
Having come from a military family, Nick was instilled with survival skills and a sense of self reliance by his Marine Corp father. These skills provided him with the foundations for future trips when, in his early twenties, Nick developed an interest in hiking and backpacking. After several smaller outings, he underwent his first major backpacking excursion : the Camino de Santiago, stretching 550 miles across Northern Spain. Since then, he has thru-hiked the Camino a second time, the John Muir trail (220 miles across the High Sierras in California), and the longest local thru-hike, and one of his returning favorites, The Wild Azalea Trail (26 miles in Kisatchie National Forest) along with many smaller hikes stretching both across America, from the deserts in Arizona to the tree-topped mountains of Appalachia and Europe, in the German and Swiss Alps. He also participates in other outdoor activities such as kayaking and rock climbing to keep him in shape for the next big hike.
During the past three years with Wild Louisiana Tours, Nick’s experience in the Manchac Swamp has provided him with a deep understanding of the natural cycles of this delicate ecosystem so unique to Louisiana. He’s familiarized himself with the native birds, reptiles, trees, edible plants as well its ethno-ecology. In doing these swamp tours, Nick’s desire is to, “Pass along my knowledge in hopes that others will also fall in love with the area and want to protect it.”