Words by Jane Carswell | Posted December 8, 2016
Long-time CMH team member Lori Ayearst shares her experience on coming to a CMH lodge as a non-skier.
It is difficult to describe the look of utter disbelief that washes over people’s faces when I tell them I work for a company that provides the “World’s Greatest Skiing,” and I don’t ski. It gets even worse when I confess that a week of Heli-Skiing each year is one of the perks of the job and I DON’T EVEN GO! I quickly add, “but I LOVE hiking…you should experience one of our CMH Summer trips!” (Also one of our perks…lucky huh!?!)
This year though, my son, who spent the past two years grunting like a Neanderthal, has gone through an amazing transformation and has turned into a lovely young man; one that I actually enjoy spending time with, and that being said, he with me.
So as his 20th birthday gift I decided I would finally take one of my Heli-Ski weeks as a non-skier and I would take him along to ski the dream. Many asked; as a non-skier won’t you be bored? A whole week stuck inside? Whatever will you do while everyone is skiing?
For the sake of my son I decided to bite the bullet and “suffer” out the week by taking advantage of the morning stretch classes, an afternoon massage or two, afternoon naps, reading, visits to the steam room, sauna, amazing outdoor hot tub, and perhaps an hour daily in the exercise room on the treadmill or yoga mat. Realistically, I figured the only exercise I would get would be racing to the dining room in time for lunch (I quickly learned that NO ONE wants to miss the staff lunch at a CMH Lodge), or rushing down the two flights of stairs to the shop for a bit of retail therapy.
So with all of that in mind I packed my bag ready for a week of reading, rest and rejuvenation at CMH’s beautiful Bugaboo Lodge. I did wonder if I would be disciplined enough to use the well-appointed exercise room and would I actually get up early enough for stretch class? I knew full well with the incredible meals I would be in need of some serious exercise. As it turned out, I got much more exercise than I had bargained for.
At the lodge I met two lovely ladies, who like me, had come as non-skiers. We immediately struck up a friendship that I will treasure forever. The three of us spent the week taking advantage of the amazing trail that Kyle the maintenance guy patiently groomed for us to cross country ski or snowshoe. All of the equipment we needed was available at the lodge for the taking and each day we would head out in the morning, rush home for staff lunch (it was the only time I looked at my watch all week…haha), then out again in the afternoon for another loop. It was incredible.
We always made it back to the lodge as the guests were coming in and a delicious Tea Goodie had just been set out for all of us to enjoy. The excitement in the lodge was palpable as everyone exchanged stories from their day out. I loved seeing the ear-to-ear grin on my son’s face at the end of each day. It was great sharing this experience with him and although it may be his last Heli-Ski trip for a long, long time, it certainly won’t be mine. I think I would seriously like to perfect my “Non-Skier” Heli-Skiing skills and would highly recommend a week like this to anyone who could use a week of rest and relaxation surrounded by great friends, great food and some of the most beautiful scenery in the world.
Learn more about what you can do at CMH as a non heli-skier >