The Adventure


Posted by Jane Carswell on Tue, Oct 15, 2013

CMH Summer Adventures, a Canadian Signature Experience, has been named to National Geographic Travel’s list of “50 Places of a Lifetime: Canada,” a new digital supplement showcasing the best travel products and destinations throughout Canada.

Heli-Hiking in the Canadian RockiesThe “50 Places of a Lifetime: Canada” list, co-presented with the Canadian Tourism Commission, is divided into categories dedicated to “Urban Places,” “Country Unbound,” “Paradise Found” and “Wild Spaces”—the latter highlighting “Heli-Hiking in the Canadian Rockies” as one of the 14 featured trips.  CMH Summer Adventures is the only activity-driven offering featured as one of Canada’s top 50 “places,” alongside Prince Albert National Park, the Georgian Bay and The Canadian Badlands, among other iconic destinations.

“Canada’s Places of a Lifetime reveals a country more nuanced, little known and invites discovery.  You’ll find a country as original and unique as any in the world, with unlimited possibilities for touring,” says Keith Bellows, editor-in-chief of National Geographic Traveler.

“We are so honored to be recognized by our partners at National Geographic for the work that we do to share this special part of the Canadian wilderness with travellers from around the world,” says Joe Flannery, President of CMH Heli-Skiing and Summer Adventures.  “We are privileged to be the stewards of this pristine environment and to protect it for future generations.”

To see the complete list of “50 Places of a Lifetime: Canada,” please visit:  Track the hashtag #Canada50 on Twitter and Instagram.

For more information about CMH Summer Adventures, please visit or call 1-800-661-0252.  And follow CMH Summer Adventures on Twitter at @cmh_heli.

Canada's Rick Mercer takes on CMH's Mount Nimbus via ferrata

Posted by Jane Carswell on Fri, Oct 04, 2013



The Bobbie Burns High-Flying Heli Adventure, a Canadian Signature Experience from CMH Summer Adventures, will be featured in the season premiere of The Rick Mercer Report, the wildly popular satirical news program now in its 11th season on CBC, which will air on Tuesday, October 8, 2013 at 8PM.

In each episode of The Rick Mercer Report, Mercer travels to one or two different areas of Canada to profile real Canadian people and experiences; in this premiere episode of Season 11, Mercer tackles the extraordinary Mount Nimbus via ferrata and suspension bridge that make up CMH’s signature High-Flying Heli Adventure in the Bobbie Burns sub-range of British Columbia’s pristine Columbia Mountains.

“We were thrilled to have Rick, who is such a great ambassador for Canada, vist CMH Summer Adventures and experience the Purcell Mountain Range of British Columbia from the awe-inspiring perspective that only CMH can provide,” says Joe Flannery, President of CMH Heli-Skiing and Summer Adventures.  “It was our pleasure to provide Rick a spectacular, safe and exhilarating experience in the Canadian wilderness!”


For more information about CMH High-Flying Heli Adventures at the Bobbie Burns Lodge and all other CMH Summer Adventures,  visit or call 1-800-661-0252.

Tags: Bobbie Burns Lodge, High Flying Adventure, CMH Guides

Canadian Geographic's Neil Ever Osborne to lead photography workshop

Posted by Sarah Pearson on Mon, Jul 08, 2013

Teaming up with the Canadian Geographic Photo Club, CMH is pleased to announce a 2013 photography workshop geared toward outdoor enthusiasts.  Taking place September 7 – 10, 2013, acclaimed photographer Neil Ever Osborne, along with CMH hiking guides, will lead workshop guests into the remote reaches of the Canadian Rockies to view some of the most photogenic landscapes in the world. 

CMH Photography Workshop

Inspired by his passion for visual storytelling,Neil Ever Osborne provides three days of photography instruction. He shares his talents and knowledge during this workshop amid many visually stunning landscapes within the Bugaboo Mountain ranges, areas accessible only by daily helicopter flights. Guests have the opportunity to photographically capture September’s brilliant blue skies, snow-capped peaks and craggy mountains, glistening rivers and lakes, baring witness to and documenting the glorious change of alpine scenery as it slowly transitions into autumn.  

CMH Bugaboo LodgeLocated beneath towering granite spires, the dramatic CMH Bugaboo Lodge serves as homebase for participants. Each evening, guests relax in alpine inspired accommodations while enjoying freshly prepared gourmet cuisine.  Workshop participants share and discuss their photography with fellow hikers and while Osborne further guides guests in discovering their storytelling ability through the exploration of photographic composition.

Spaces on this workshop are limited. Click here to learn more about this unique landscape photography workshop  or contact CMH Reservations at 1-800-661-0252.

Tags: Speaker Series, CMH Summer Adventures, Bugaboo Lodge, Painting & Photo Workshops, photography, Educational Travel

Canada's Banff National Park (BNP) open for business

Posted by Jane Carswell on Mon, Jun 24, 2013

In a message today from Banff Lake Louise Tourism in response to the recent flooding in western Alberta, the local tourism bureau assures travellers with plans to visit the National Park that they can expect 'business as usual' in Banff and Lake Louise.

Banff AvenueThe release states that "Banff National Park, the Town of Banff and the hamlet of Lake Louise were fortunate to have escaped many of the direct impacts of last week’s storm. Spirits are up and Banff is OPEN for business.

"The recent severe weather triggered flooding in many communities across southern Alberta, cutting off key transportation routes, disrupting power and water supplies, and interrupting communication channels.

The coordinated efforts of the Town of Banff, Parks Canada, and the RCMP, ensured public safety at all times. The Town of Banff’s water supply was never compromised and continuity of essential services was maintained. 

Today, the majority of the national park’s highways have been cleared for travel. Our park information centres are busy welcoming visitors.  And our businesses, from lodging to restaurants, retail to attractions, are welcoming guests."

Access to Banff and Lake Louise is available from all points west and north and most local area attractions are open. 

The release goes on to state "Intensely proud of its heritage as Canada’s first national park, businesses this past week were steadfastly responsive to visitor needs, while the local volunteer community stepped up efforts to help visitors and residents alike. Banff National Park looks forward to hosting visitors and extending a world-class welcome throughout the entire exciting summer season." 

CMH Summer Adventures is preparing to welcome the first visitors of the season on July 5 in the Bobbie Burns.  The Bobbie Burns and Bugaboo Lodges, located in British Columbia, almost 2.5 hrs west of Banff National Park were unaffected by the recent weather events.

For more information, please visit




Tags: Bobbie Burns Lodge, Bugaboo Lodge, Banff

The wonder of alpine birds

Posted by Jane Carswell on Mon, Jun 03, 2013

This is a guest post by Ornithologist Cam Gillies who will be our guest speaker in the Bugaboos July 12-15, 2013.

Bugaboo Spires, BC CanadaWe are on the top of a small peak with a grand view of the Bugaboos and I want you to look away from the granite spires at a small bird running along the snow. Pulling your attention away to look at what appears to be a “LBJ” (little brown job) is tough, but it’s worth a look.  

Upon closer inspection, it isn’t just brown.  Rosy pink, gray and a beautiful brown are all part of the Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch and it is flitting about on the remains of last winter’s cornice.  


It is another part of the magic of the alpine.  These birds, along with a handful of others are only found in the alpine and this one is WAY up in the alpine.  It is eating spiders and insects off the snow at 2400 m.  Up here, there is almost no vegetation apart from the sparse green and purple of moss campion.  But, as probably the highest-altitude breeding bird in North America, this is the place to find these birds.Grey crowned Rosy finches from EOL dot org

Gray-crowned Rosy-Finches only nest in the alpine of western North America and they are a real specialty of the alpine in this part of British Columbia.  Much sought after but seldom seen by birders, a hike in the Bugaboos or Bobbie Burns is a great opportunity to search for this and other alpine birds.  Their habit of breeding on high craggy cliffs makes them hard to find unless you venture into their realm in these high mountains.

Finding birds in high places might take some careful looking, but the effort is soon rewarded.  Golden Eagles, White-tailed Ptarmigan, Horned Lark, Golden-crowned Sparrow, American Pipit, and the “Timberline” form of Brewer’s Sparrow also call the rolling tundra home.  Stopping for a moment to enjoy birds adds depth to the experience of being in these mountains.  I can’t help thinking about how these birds thrive in this environment whether I’m hiking in the mountains or see the mountains from afar.  Truly, a source of wonder.

This year, I am very much looking forward to returning to the Bugaboos for more birding and hiking in the alpine.  It is an area I have been visiting since I was a kid and it is an extraordinary experience every time.  I will also be out before breakfast with anyone interested to see what we can find in the forests around the lodge.  Early July is a remarkable time in the mountains and the morning chorus will be full of local songsters.

To book your space to explore these mountains with Cam and add the grey-crowned rosy finch to your lifelist, call CMH Reservations at 1.800.661.0252.

Photo of the Grey-Crowned Rosy Finch courtesy of

Tags: Speaker Series, Bugaboo Lodge

Plein Air Painting and Photography Workshops with CMH

Posted by Jane Carswell on Thu, Apr 25, 2013

A picture tells a thousand words and whether that picture is created with pixels or a paintbrush, CMH Summer Adventures guests in the Bugaboos will have no shortage of subject matter.
brianirwin Banff Bugaboos 2012 1715 Edit MCMH offers these themed trips at CMH Bugaboo Lodge in 2013:
Photography Workshop with John E. Marriott | Aug 5-8, 2013
Professional landscape photographer and easy-going instructor John E. Marriott joins CMH for his fourth annual Bugaboo Photography Workshop. With an instructor to participant ratio of 1:10, this three-day workshop allows photographers to develop skills on close-up, mid-range and long-range landscape photography with as much instruction as desired. For a sample of the participants photography from last year's workshop, view this online photo gallery »
Painting Workshop with Robert Genn | Aug 23-26, 2013
Acclaimed Canadian artist Robert Genn joins us again in the Bugaboos with his daughter, artist Sarah Genn and CMH's own artist/guide Liz Wiltzen. This is a wonderful opportunity for plein air painters to learn and discuss with one of Canada's finest painters.
Canadian Geographic's Photo Club | Sep 7-10, 2013
Canadian Geographic's Photo Club comes together this fall in the Bugaboo mountain range to hike and photograph with like-minded photographers. Participants need not be a Photo Club member to join. This program provides no instructor, just a chance to explore the mountains at a pace conducive to landscape photography.
Non-artists are welcome to join any of these departures as well and join our classic Heli-Hiking and walking program each day, while sharing evenings together back at the lodge.
For more information on these workshops or any other CMH Summer Adventures, give CMH Reservations a call (1-800-661-0252), or email us.

Photo: Bugaboo Spires, 
Best Trophy Shot - Photographer Brian Irwin

Tags: Bugaboo Lodge, Painting & Photo Workshops

Wade Davis: The worldwide web of belief and ritual on TED Talks

Posted by Jane Carswell on Mon, Apr 15, 2013

In July of 2012 forty-four CMH Summer Adventures guests had the opportunity to  hike and walk in the Bugaboo mountains of British Columbia with National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence, Wade Davis.  We have invited Wade to come back again in July of 2013 to share his wisdom, his humour, his passion and his knowledge.

In the following TED Talk Wade Davis speaks about the facinating variety of beliefs and rituals held by cultures around the world.  At the Bugaboo Lodge Wade will speak on this topic, as well as his two most recent books, River Notes and Into the Silence.

A few spaces still remain on this trip with CMH and Wade Davis in the Bugaboos, July 21-24, 2013.  To learn more, visit our website or contact CMH Reservations at 1.800.661.0252.

Tags: Speaker Series, Bugaboo Lodge

CMH Announces Guest Speaker Lineup for Summer Trips

Posted by Sarah Pearson on Fri, Mar 08, 2013

CMH is pleased to announce an outstanding lineup of guest speakers, including renowned anthropologists, ornithologists, botanists, chefs and photographers, to host CMH Summer Adventure trips at both the Bugaboo and Bobbie Burns Lodges this summer. 

The exciting roster of guest speakers scheduled for July and August 2013 will include:

Wade DavisWade Davis – National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence and R.C.G.S. Fellow (July 21–24, 2013 at the Bugaboo Lodge) Davis, an anthropologist, botanist, photographer, author and poet and a “passionate defender of all life’s diversity,” is a wonderful storyteller and will pique CMH guests’ curiosity as they ramble amid the majestic Rockies.  Back at the Bugaboo Lodge, Davis will entertain guests with his acclaimed Massey Lectures presentation, “The Wayfinders: Why Ancient Wisdom Matters in the Modern World.”

Peter Potterfield – Outdoor Adventure Journalist and Photographer (August 11–17, 2013 at the Bobbie Burns and Bugaboo Lodges (Lodge-to-Lodge) A contributor to magazines such as Conde Nast Traveler and Outside, Potterfield may be even more well-known as the author of In the Zone, Himalayan Quest, and Classic Hikes of the World.  In August of 2012, he released his newest book, Classic Hikes of North America.  Potterfield leads guests on a Lodge-to-Lodge adventure between the Bobbie Burns and Bugaboo lodges.  Each evening, he will share stories and photos from his journeys around the world.

John Ash – Chef and Father of Wine Country Cuisine (August 26–29, 2013 at the Bugaboo Lodge) John Ash & Company in Santa Rosa, CA was the first restaurant in Northern California wine country to focus on local, seasonal ingredients that complemented the wines being made in the region – earning him the moniker of the “Father of Wine Country Cuisine.”  Today, Chef Ash travels the world teaching cooking classes to home cooks and professionals and is passionate about sustainable and ethical food issues, which he will discuss, along with his latest cookbook, Culinary Birds.

 Cam Gillies – Ornithologist and Photographer (July 12–15, 2013 at the Bugaboo Lodge) A new addition to the CMH Speaker Series, Dr. Gillies is a keen birder and photographer and is excited to share his passion and entertaining stories with others.  Over the years, he has traveled and birded his way through Jamaica, Guatemala, Mexico, Costa Rica, Peru, Bolivia, Chile and, now, the remote wilderness areas of eastern British Columbia with CMH Summer Adventures.

Brian Keating – Adventurer, Explorer and Global Environmentalist (July 21–24, 2013 at the Bobbie Burns Lodge - Family Adventure) Adventurer and world traveler Brian Keating has led some 80 expeditions to the planet’s most wildlife-rich corners.  The host of the Discovery Channel’s Going Wild with Brian Keating joins his wife Dee to lead an entertaining (and sometimes hilarious) Family Adventure out of the Bobbie Burns Lodge for kids of all ages.  Brian and Dee are superb storytellers -- and their tall, but true, tales and evening video presentations are perennial CMH highlights. 

For more than 35 years, CMH Summer Adventures has been guiding guests on extraordinary lodge-based mountain holidays – offering unique summer vacations for individuals of all ages, abilities and interests.  Together with these brilliant speakers, guests spend each day walking, hiking and exploring the peaks of some of North America’s most spectacular mountains. Each evening, guests return to the comforts of the lodge where they will settle back and to listen to powerful, intimate presentations.

To book your space on one of these exclusive trips hosted by these amazing Speakers, call us today at 1-800-661-0252 or email


Tags: Adventure Travel, Bobbie Burns Lodge, Canadian Rockies, Speaker Series, CMH Summer Adventures, Bugaboo Lodge, Announcements, Educational Travel

Never Say No: One woman's account of climbing in the Bugaboos

Posted by Jane Carswell on Thu, Jan 31, 2013

This is a guest post by Toronto-based Family Physician, Dr. Jean Marmoreo

The words were out of my mouth before I had a chance to think.

”Yes, I want to do some climbing.”

We were on our second day of Heli-Hiking in the Canadian Rockies with CMH Summer Adventures.  Hiking and walkilng mountaintop to mountaintop is their summer venture - a truly unique and greatly under-appreciated bit of Canadiana. But they don’t stop with helicopter drop-off day hikes rounded off with great meals. Guests can opt for unexpected, challenging and rewarding adventures like mountaineering, rock climbing, or scrambling up hammered vertical routes on sheer mountain faces.

Women Climbing in the BugaboosI thought I had done it all two years ago with a mountain ascent up Pigeon Peak, a granite spire at 11,000 feet that towers over Bugaboo Glacier. It was a fantasy brought to life with an intrepid alpine guide whose instructions I followed to the letter. But my response surprised me. After all, I’ve climbed on rock walls twice in my life -- thrilled with the accomplishment of getting to the ceiling, but oh so safe and oh so short.

This summer, it was another guide who said: “Well then, we’ll get your harness and shoes right after breakfast”. Those would be rock-climbing shoes, affirmed Geoff, the better to grip the tiny ripples in the rock face while you clamber upward. The helicopter would drop us near the start of the mountain face so we wouldn’t even lose time getting there. “Us” in this case was myself and another woman from Toronto.

“How long will we be out? “ I ventured much more timidly.

“Oh, about three hours,” Geoff replied. “Five pitches and some neat traverses, a few scrambles and some repelling.” Geoff had actually constructed this route five years ago but his words flew over my head. Pitches, I figured were ascents up rock faces. Five meant five ascents over three hours. Repelling would be welcome, I thought.

So, kitted out the next morning with ropes, helmets, harness, and of course the ‘ballet’ shoes, the three of us climbed into the helicopter and were off.

The heli landed and after a short scamper over remaining snow, sliding down its trough, we were smack on a mountain face. Roped in, but not yet in our slippers, Geoff reviewed our knots, carabineers, etiquette and safety. Then he climbed to secure the first level.

“Gosh, this is so amazing ”, enthused Anne, my climbing buddy. ”I haven’t done this in 25 years. I never thought I’d get to do it again.” She is 48 years old.

“Gosh, what was I thinking” was the play-by-play in my head. I’m turning 70 this month.

The hardest foothold is always the first and that first ascent wasn’t very pretty by my estimate. I quickly went into what I call doctor mode. When doctors are under stress they learn very fast to clear head clutter and focus on the task. Concentrating only on the rock and the footholds, feeling with my outstretched hands for the perch of rock edge, I soon began moving slowly up.

At the first stop, we put on our rock shoes, packed our boots in our backpacks and began the first of the five pitches. Thirty metre rope lengths defined the distance up the rock face. After ascending two pitches, we exchanged our shoes for our boots, then traversed the slope and rappelled down – twice – before lunch took us to a high overhang looking deep into the valley below.

Three more ascents- at times I felt and I looked more like a spider climbing a wall- pointing more downhill than up, pushing as much with my upper body as I was with my legs.

A bit of self–rappelling, a slab of traversing, and a final scramble up the slate finished the day and we were atop the cliff. Valleys fell away on both sides of our perch. There was no wind as we drank in the mountaintops that stretched into the horizons surrounding us.  It had taken an hour and a half longer than Geoff estimated but who was in a hurry to finish? Certainly not us and certainly not me once I got my mojo.

Will I ever go back for more climbing?

You bet!

Fancy trying your hand at a bit of Bugaboo climbing yourself?  Give CMH Summer Adventures a call at 1.800.661.0252 or learn more about their High Flying Adventures online.

Tags: Adventure Travel, Canadian Rockies, Bugaboo Lodge


Posted by Jane Carswell on Thu, Jan 24, 2013


CMH Bodacious in the Bugaboos

Bodacious = audacious, gutsy, remarkable, sexy, outstanding -- the synonyms are numerous.  CMH Summer Adventures offers women nothing less with its aptly named Bodacious Trips.  These inspirational and awe-inspiring ladies-only trips, geared toward all fitness levels – from strolling amid wildflowers to invigorating hiking to challenging mountain adventures and everything in between -- are a celebration of all ages and stages and have become one of CMH’s most popular offerings.  Four trips are on offer in 2013 and all include thrilling helicopter flights to breathtaking mountaintop locations surrounded by glaciers, mountain lakes and meadows ablaze with wildflowers; guided alpine hiking; luxury lodge accommodation; and great food and wine (not to mention a healthy dose of laughter). 

As a bonus this year, CMH is offering an early booking incentive of a special Bodacious lululemon Run: Swiftly Tech ½ zip pullover (retail value CAD $88) to those who sign up before February 28. 

Travellers can choose from the following trips in 2013:

The Classic: This annual women’s retreat in the Bugaboos is a tried and true combination of Heli-Hiking with professional mountain guides and invigorating yoga.  Join host Ellen Slaughter and yoga instructor Angie Smith from August 17 – 20, or host Mimi Harris and yoga instructor Lindsey Anderson from August 20 – 23.  Come and see what started the Bodacious phenomenon.

Stretch ’n Stir: Yoga instructor Julie Sagan, owner of Bikram Yoga West Edmonton, and her sister Chef Sandra Davis, owner of The Saucy Gourmet catering business in Edmonton, are back to host this vivacious trip comprised of yoga and hands-on culinary fun in the Bobbie Burns mountain range from August 17 – 20.  The perfect trip for those who enjoy a little more “flexibility” – and even more food -- with their getaway.

Cork and Core:  This program, hosted by friends Margo Sutter and Cindy Pocza, who have worked in the fitness industry for more than 20 years and both participated in the 2007 Ironman Canada, offers opportunities to take on some of the adventure elements available at the Bobbie Burns, followed by core strength training and wine tasting each evening – another passion Margo and Cindy share and love to impart to others.  Taking place at the Bobbie Burns from August 23 – 26.

Speaking from CMH’s headquarters in Banff, Alberta, Ellen Slaughter, the vision behind the first Bodacious trip and still one of its leaders, said “Watching women come together with girlfriends or female relatives and experience fun, mountain adventures and camaraderie, while strengthening friendships and making meaningful connections, is inspirational. These women support and encourage one another, while forming bonds that last for year and years, and it never ceases to amaze me and speaks to the majesty – and perhaps magic – of these spectacular mountains.”

For a sneak preview of what to expect on a Bodacious trip, watch this Bodacious video. To learn more or secure your space, call 800-661-0252 or email to reserve a Bodacious Getaway for 2013!

Photo: Three Bodacious Babes in the Bugaboos by Topher Donahue.

Tags: Bodacious in the Bugaboos, Adventure Travel, CMH Summer Adventures