Pawel Kunachowicz: “Kuna”

 

Nationality: Polish

 

Qualifications: IFMGA Alpine Guide, Alpine Ski Instructor, Polish Mountain Guides Association member

 

Languages: Polish, English, Russian

 

Ski guided: Austria, Bulgaria, France, Italy, Norway – Spitsbergen, Poland, Slovakia, Switzerland, United States - Alaska, China - Pamir, India – Himalaya

 

Most memorable ski trip: Two weeks ski traverse of Spitsbergen.  We were accompanied only by animals: white bears, seals and reindeers. They were watching us with curiosity. I wonder whether they considered us a good dinner. We travelled on skis, dragging sleds with our tents, food and personal gear. We were surrounded by long glaciers, beautiful white mountains and deep blue sea. Never before or after have I been in such a virgin nature.

 

Most memorable ski line: Ski down from the summit of Muztagh Ata 7546m in Pamir, China. The reward for a three-week expedition. We started last climb on the summit at night in very cold conditions, strong wind and we were demolished by high altitude. The descent though was with perfect weather and powder. We were in high mountains with the spectacular view of Pamir. We skied down all afternoon!

 

Reason for guiding: Being in nature, meeting people from different peers and nationalities, learning the world, staying active.

 


Philip Poole: Phil

Nationality: British

Qualifications: IFMGA Mountain Guide, BASI Grade 3 Ski Instructor

Languages: German

Countries ski guided: France, Switzerland, Italy, Austria, Greenland

Most memorable ski trip: I guided a group of 3 clients to climb the 3 highest mountains in the Arctic. We accessed the mountains of East Greenland by air on a Twin Otter to base camp for this two week trip. Several camp moves with pulk sledges enabled us to climb all peaks as well as some first ascents and first ski descents. Not without incident, one team member got an appendicitis, which we managed throughout the trip until he was able to access a hospital in Iceland. He’s a tough lad our Nigel!


Most memorable ski line:I could write about great lines in Greenland, Antarctica or the Alps, but my most memorable line was here in my home patch of South Cumbria. Winter conditions come and go rapidly in the English Lake District, so you have to be on the spot and quick to get conditions when they come. This line was on the NE face of the Old Man of Coniston, 45 degrees at the top and normally full of rocks and boulders. A few metres down, I realised I should have climbed the line first! The top gully was icy and so narrow, that only the tips and tails of my skis were in contact with the snow. An ugly thin blade of rock barred the exit of the gully 50 metres below. A few careful jump turns with heart in mouth, I was below it and whooping down though boulders and rare powder to the lake below. I don’t think the line has ever been skied before or since.

 

Reason for guiding: Helping people realise their ambitions.

 


Stephane Gagnon

 

Nationality: Canadian

 

Qualifications and Memberships: Ski Guide (Canadian Mountain Guides Association), Canadian Avalanche Association professional member, Canadian Ski Instructors’ Alliance Lv.2

 

Languages: English, French

 

Countries ski guided: Canada

 

Most memorable ski trip: A six-week traverse in Argentina’s Glacier National Park to climb the west face of Cerro Torre in Patagonia (Ferrari Route). The Patagonia winter weather is very unpredictable and made for a remote approach on the western glacier with limited amounts of food.

 

Most memorable ski line: Still searching for it. Too hard to answer…

 

Reason for guiding: To teach and learn from people in the mountains.           

                      


Charles Olbery: Chuck

 

Nationality: Australian

 

Qualifications and Memberships: Ski Guide (New Zealand Mountain Guides Association), Canada Avalanche Association member, Japan Avalanche Network member


Languages: Japanese


Countries ski guided: Canada, New Zealand, America/ Alaska, Norway


Most memorable ski trip: A two week traverse in the South Coast Mountains in British Columbia to climb Mt Waddington. The weather didn’t cooperate for Waddington but the combination of accessing the area by float plane and then sea kiaking for another week out the Bute Inlet made it a great trip.


Most memorable ski line: Mt Francais on the Antarctic Penninsula. A 3,000 meter ski descent to the ocean in boot top powder. Weather was bluebird. The stars were aligned.


Reason for guiding: Enjoying great experiences in the mountains and meeting new people.

 


Alistair Moore: Al

 

Nationality: Kiwi

 

Qualifications: NZMGA Ski guide, NZSIA ski instructor

 

Countries Ski guided: New Zealand, Canada, Antarctica

 

Most Memorable Ski trip: Into the head of the Franz Josef Glacier with a group of friends, had the Centennial Hut to ourselves for 4 bluebird days, dry snow in the shade, corn on the sunny aspects, a 1500m ski down the Fox glacier for a night in the historic Chancellor hut then heli out to Fox Glacier township in the early am for breakfast. Classic

 

Most Memorable ski line: Hard one that. Skiing off Mount Rolleston into the head of the Waimak or was it the day a low level snowfall enabled me and my wife to skin from the back door where we live in Canterbury

 

Reason for Guiding: Sharing my love and some knowledge of the mountain environment with other folk