Wes Bolin grew up in Minneapolis and played high school hockey at Minneapolis West. Following high school, he played college hockey at Wisconsin-Eau Claire and went to school to become a teacher.
In 1983, Bolin took his first teaching and coaching jobs in Hallock, MN. He was head boys hockey coach at Hallock High School and led the team to two Northwest Conference Championships.
After three years in Hallock, Bolin and his family moved to Fond du Lac, Wis., where he would teach and coach for 18 years. His teams were state runner-up two times, section champions eight times, and Badgerland Conference champions seven times, and in 1995, he was named the Wisconsin High School coach of the year.