For the last 20 years, Power To Be has offered outdoor programs to support people with barriers to get out into nature, with the belief that physical activity promotes health and happiness, fosters connection and a sense of belonging, and offers opportunities to examine, and re-examine, what we believe we are capable of.  This year’s 9th annual Power To Ski event was no exception.  In early April, a cat-ski adventure with over 40 of our supporters was held at Mustang Powder in the Monashee mountains near Revelstoke, B.C., with proceeds going to programs. This event is a chance for supporters of Power To Be to deepen their understanding of what we do, while pushing their own limits out in nature.

It was Paula Hesje’s second time on the trip, and she described it as a great way to really connect with Power To Be’s unique mission to support people who would not otherwise have the opportunity to break through barriers and experience the benefits of being out in the wilderness.  For her, it was a wonderful way to connect with nature and people, and create great memories while doing something fun, different, and exciting.  “The experience sticks with you.  The skiing, eating, relaxing and camaraderie, with everyone there in support of Power To Be, create a neat vibe that translates to the whole experience.  Everyone is really present to it.”

“Power To Ski offers an opportunity for our supporters to challenge themselves to push their limits in the wilderness, with no groomed runs or lifts,” according to Jason Cole, Director of Programs.  “They get to experience the anticipation of going down, the weightless feeling in the fresh powder, knowing the other skiers are there because you can hear them but not see them, and that makes for an exhilarating ride.”  Paula agrees: “Seeing the other women ski inspired me to push a little harder, knowing that the whole vibe was supportive, casual and encouraging.  I knew they would say, ‘good for you for going for it’.”

As participants gain more appreciation for the wilderness out on program, Power To Ski offers the opportunity for supporters to do the same.  “Up high in the mountains, people become more tuned in to their connection to the natural world.  With the quick changes in weather, wind and temperature, folks on this adventure gain more appreciation for the natural cycles in the wilderness.  People end up seeing themselves differently, connecting to themselves and the world in a way they never would otherwise, and they bring that awareness back to their communities,” says Jason.

Along with several others, Paula plans to return for next year’s trip: “Nick and his staff at Mustang Powder are a great crew.  They look forward to the weekend every year, and they are amazing hosts.  And being up in the mountains, with the sheen of glistening snow in the alpine bowls sparkling and twinkling in the sunlight, is just magic.  At night, you can see the Milky Way, stars and snow lit up by the moonlight.  It is awe-inspiring.”  Jason describes the experience this way: “In that expanse of untouched wilderness, I feel humble in existence, honoured to be in the cathedral of the mountains.”

No matter what activity you pursue, whether it is kayaking for the first time, or cat skiing down a freshly powdered mountain, the Power To Be experience is all about feeling part of the group, facing and conquering your personal limits, having fun, and being supported every step of the way.  Thank you so much to Mustang Powder for partnering with us to create an adventure that helped us deliver even more unimagined possibilities!