Friday, March 20, 2015


Something about a Lodge makes people drink a bit. One of the other guys told me his bar bill for the five nights was $5,000. Apparently he had bought at least three bottles of $400 wine. They'd offered us a glass, but we'd turned them down not knowing. Apparently its impossible for even vintners to gauge wine over $30.
Few snaps of time at CMH Gothics Lodge in British Colombia, Middle of Nowhere. 

John Egan of Sugarbush, Vermont. He did some legendary ski vids 25 years ago  - or "back when you were alive" as Cy, 11, says.

You eat like you're never going to see food again.

There was that quaint tradition of drinking shots from the ski.

And the staff won the drinking race. They are undefeated. The lovely young women on the left is their secret weapon.

The Lodge is totally plain from the outside but inside has been newly decorated and has little touches of luxury like the huge gym with a climbing wall, the games room and bar and hot tub. 

The rooms are comfy. There are no clocks: one of the staff run up and down the hall in the morning ringing a wee bell to tell you when it's yoga at 7am ( never made it once) and brekkie at 8.

I loved the espresso machine which gave you a facial along with your latte.  

There are no locks on the room (!) and its so casual that one guest attended all meals in his bathrobe. 

This place cannot be faulted. As a journalist in real life I'm not allowed to promote stuff, so this is real life opinion. The staff are endlessly patient and work like demons. The guides turn into waiters at night. You can loan jackets and snow boots if you dont want to bring gear.

There was Byron, a 30 year old Kiwi from Auckland who used to manage The Copper Room bar. He outfits you with  skis. He's a real Magiver with all his unguents and flames and noisy bits and he bought my leather gloves back to life with a goopy cream and his flame. May as well give Byron two photos because he's Kiwi and has a great name.

Tania, also a Kiwi from Auckland was  the bartender and had the great outfits and updos. Way to Represent, Tania.

Then there's Doug, the pilot; he has 12,000 hours of flying. He flies back to the Lodge at 150 miles an hour. And even though i found the whole landing and taking off terrifying, i could still appreciate how good he was to land three ft from our crouching group. 

There was our guide Big Norm. I kept humming that old Kiwi song Our Big Norm when i was around him - do you remember that song? Tania and Byron were too young to remember it. 

The first arvo Norm taught us the terrifying skills of what to do in an avalanche. We were each equipped with radio, human body beeper- finder thing, long prongy thing for searching the snow iin a "burial" and a shovel, which we carried in the red backpack. Apparently you have half an hour to find someone. Please note: even if it's two hours, keep searching for me please!

Avalanche-preparedness with Big Norm.

Here's all of us Alta Women's group off snow shoein' and whisky sippin' and generally feelin' free to drop our G's. 

Our Alta instructors Jen and Connie came too and we gave them Chan Luu scarves for being all round awesome people. They always fit, those scarves dont they?
Jen and Connie, wild women from the Wasatch.

Lizann (left below with Jen) picked the scarves. Loved lizAnne's style. She's wearing a Madewell shirt snd she had a heirloom black pearl necklace made into this more casual one with leather. Good idea. 

Finished up with learning to ski trees in fresh but heavy snow - or "sierra snot" as one of the guides called it.

There was also extensive technical tutelage about how to pee on the side of a mountain with your skis on. That was easy peasy: there's some tricks you cant teach a 52 and 3/4 old Kiwl wahine. 


  1. Looks like an amazing place!
    Sounds a bit like going to camp...with the bell ringers signalling Yoga and breakfast!

  2. Jody this is so awesome!! Been living vicariously through the last 4 blogs!! You have the best life. I love how casual and fun this place looks. Let's meet when you aren't on an adventure!! xo Kim

  3. Looks like a fantastic vacation in my paese ! I have to confess I have a hard time to understand your language even though it is written in english ! Wonderful post.

  4. How daring you are...and quite adventurous. So glad you learned how NOT to dribble down your leg and into your shoe. I shall be headed to Italy soon, I need to learn how to pee in a really small bathroom I guess. The food and staff look fantastic, you and your friends look fabulous.

  5. Thank you for such a wonderful post Jody. Can't wait to hear even more details. See you soon!

  6. You have a real frontier woman spirit Jody and although I will never ever do anything like this I am curious about the peeing trick!.

  7. What a fabulous trip! Living vicariously although have to say I'm struggling to remember the Big Norm song. I must be so, so young…

    Go the Aucklanders! And, no yoga? Not once? Just think of the peeing positions you could've achieved.

  8. BRAVA........YOU MADE IT AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!

  9. Shot-ski! Never actually tried that. I always think I'll be the one who upsets the whole damn thing and everyone will be mad at me.

  10. I haven't peed outdoors since I was a child and was never very good at it. What's the secret?
    May just have to borrow the black pearls revamp idea.

  11. That looks amazing! Even with the sierra snot. One for the bucket list i think.

  12. It all looks great, I think my sister vinogirl may disagree about the wine though, when in Napa you should look her up.

  13. Sounds like a fantastic trip, so jealous :) I could do the drinking, not sure about peeing outside with skis on...


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