Heli-Boarding in the Bugaboos
This is a guest post by Stephanie Wong, CMH's Mountain Operations Assistant.
Before I started working for CMH Heli-Skiing & Summer Adventures, I would never have dreamed I would be able to go heli-boarding. Alas, my dreams have come true! A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to spend a few days at the famous Bugaboo Lodge. Being a female snowboarder, you can imagine that I had some anxiety about fitting in with the rest of the guests at the lodge. Even though I’ve been snowboarding for over 10 years and I head out to the ski hills every day I have off (unfortunately I’ve got the goggle tan to prove it), I was still unsure about how I would be received by the other guests. Before even getting to the lodge, I had butterflies in my stomach and thoughts whirling around inside my head – “Would I hold up the groups? Will there be a lot of walking and traversing? Should I bring collapsible poles?” I felt like I was in heading to my first day of high school all over again! Luckily I was driving up to the lodge with another staff member (Mike Morton) who helped to ease my fears. Not only that, but on the way to the lodge we were driving in a blizzard! Nothing calms your fears like the excitement and anticipation of getting some face shots and pow turns!
Fortunately, my excitement and anticipation were fully rewarded - the first day of skiing was a-m-a-z-i-n-g. It had snowed about 30-40cm the night before, leaving us with fresh blankets of that glorious white fluffy stuff – once I got out of the helicopter my instincts just kicked in and all my fears and butterflies evaporated. Not only that, I was riding with Brodie, an old friend who also happens to work with me in the Banff office. Having a buddy there definitely elevates the fun level!
Back at the lodge, I realized that my childish fears of not fitting in were unfounded. Everyone was so friendly and welcoming – eager to hear about what I do with the Mountain Operations team at the CMH head office. I didn’t feel one step out of place the entire time that I was at the lodge. I even learned a great new game called Perudo and met some fantastic people. It eventually became evident to me that it’s not about what we are at home or what we do for a career, but it’s about the love of skiing that brings us all together. Once you strap on your skis or snowboard, everything else in the world just seems to fade away.
A big thank you to all the Bugaboo staff – thanks for showing me what CMH is really about! Good times, great friends and awesome riding! Can’t wait for next year!
Photo: Steph (in red) sharing a smile with friends new and old in the Bugaboos!