Small business owner Jimmy Funkhouser fell in love with the outdoors during a hike on the Appalachian Trail


Episode 2 of AMERICAN DOERS, a new 12-part video series featuring original thinkers, innovators, craftspeople, risk-takers and artisans across the United States.

Jimmy Funkhouser was climbing the corporate ladder and chasing what he thought was the American Dream when he had a change of heart.

After the outdoorsman went on a hike along the Appalachian trail, a new adventure began.

“We hiked for three days and it changed my life. I never experienced fear like that,” Funkhouser shares with PEOPLE. “I remember thinking every tree was a bear. Every sound was a bear. It was just very visceral and personal and it changed me.”

Credit: Dorie Hagler
Credit: Dorie Hagler

He realized his version of the “American dream” was actually living in fear, in fear of chasing what really made him happy.

For more American Doers, go to

So, he quit his corporate job of 10 years, packed his bags and moved to Colorado to opening Feral, his very own outdoor gear shop.

Credit: Dorie Hagler

“There’s a lot of different ways to grow, but adventure — it snaps you there very quickly,” he says.” “What are you afraid of? What stands on the opposite side of what you’re afraid of? That’s adventure.”