MENTOR SPOTLIGHT: CHRISTINE FELEKI
MENTOR SPOTLIGHT: CHRISTINE FELEKI
Curious about all of the awesome ladies involved in our program?
Mountain Mentors are passionate and experience women who are interested in sharing their expertise with other aspiring female mountain athletes. Mentors are local shredders, moms, guides, outdoor educators, professional athletes, students, brand reps, and everything in between, each with a unique story to share.
We caught up with splitboard mentor, Christine Feleki, over tacos after her guiding shift. Read on to find out a little bit more about the first Canadian female to become an ACMG certified Apprentice Splitboard Guide and her favourite homemade granola bar recipe:
Tell us a little bit about you and what led you to splitboarding?
My parents had me on downhill skis at the age of two, I cross-country ski raced until I was 16, and at 12 I started snowboarding when my dad picked it up. He went back to skiing but I fell in love with the turning on a board. I stayed with snowboarding and went any chance I had. I grew up in the Rocky mountains around Canmore AB, throughout middle and high school I had the opportunity to be involved in an amazing Outdoor Ed program where I was exposed to mountaineering, ski touring and rock climbing.
I was never cut out for an inside job. After a few years snow bumming around I read about Scott Newsome becoming the first snowboarder to pass the ACMG Ski Guide exam on a splitboard. That lead to me taking the TRU adventure guide program at 26, and building up my resume to pursue the ACMG Apprentice Ski Guide exams. During these programs I went back to areas from my teens to do guide training courses and realized looking at it from a guide perspective, with so much more knowledge, how much learning had taken place.
What do you know now that you wished someone had taught you when you were starting out?
Flow. I wish someone had laid the backcountry planning process out for me as it is taught now in the AST setting. Or maybe it is something I needed to learn on my own, but I can see now as I teach these courses how useful that can be.
What career accomplishment makes you most proud?
Passing the ACMG Ski Guide exam – apprentice guide. I was the first woman to do it and in the first dozen to complete it at all! I’m proud to say I’m changing the name from ‘ski guide’ to ‘snowboard guide,’ one conversation at a time.
How did you hear about Mountain Mentors?
A friend told me about it, I Googled it, and applied. I thought it would be a cool way to be involved with women throughout the Sea to Sky.
What are your personal goals for this season?
Work more on streamlining my own decision making process. I’d like to do get out on a bigger traverse. I want to ride some bigger lines and learn local lines in the Sea to Sky because a lot of my experience has been elsewhere.
What is your favourite piece of gear?
I am not a big gear junkie, but i won’t make it far without food and water. I usually make some sort of yam wrap and homemade granola bars for touring (link to recipe: http://ohsheglows.com/ 2014/05/20/feel-good-hearty-granola-bars/).
Also, you will save yourself some struggle if you regularly wax your board. People don’t wax their shit.
Favourite sound to holler when sending?
Don’t be silly, I’m still gonna send it...
We are stoked and thankful to have Christine back for her second consecutive season of mentoring with Mountain Mentors. A heartfelt thanks for your volunteered time, and for all you do for our mountain community, Christine!
Article by Carolyn Klassen - April 5