Hit the Slopes With Eagle Mount

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by Anya Bean

Imagine carving down your favorite ski run—but without using your lower body. Picture sitting in a sled gripping two poles, with only your upper body to support you on the trail down the mountain. As I crawled down a green run in a sit-ski, my abs burned and my arms shook uncontrollably as I tried with all my effort to navigate the relatively flat course. An hour later, I breathed a sigh of relief when I could return to my regular skis, my quads and calves feeling the familiar burn on the ski slope. Quadriplegics and paraplegics don't have the option of returning to standing skis, and testing out the sit-ski is one of many eye-opening experiences Eagle Mount volunteers have throughout the program.

Eagle Mount Bozeman provides recreational opportunities for young people with cancer and those with physical disabilities. The expansive ski program is one of their most popular. Eagle Mount is currently recruiting volunteers for the upcoming season, which begins mid-January and continues into mid-March.

"Volunteering with Eagle Mount was the most life-changing experience I've had in the Gallatin Valley," says former Eagle Mount intern Bernadette Nelson. "It's so rewarding to spend a day with the participants and feel they have expanded your horizons and opened your eyes to something entirely new.” 


Volunteers spend 2.5 hours each week to ski/snowboard with an Eagle Mount participant. Adaptive ski training is provided by the organization. While the volunteer work is rewarding in of itself, for each day spent working with the program, volunteers receive a ski pass and rental equipment.

The alpine ski programs take place at Bridger Bowl, and the cross-country ski progam explores the Bohart Ranch trails.

Eagle Mount also takes adaptive destination skiers to Big Sky Resort and the Yellowstone Club. Those lesson dates and times vary throughout the winter, and volunteers are contacted as needed.

None of Eagle Mount’s programs would be possible without the generosity of volunteers who love to ski, ride, swim, fish, kayak, climb, cycle, and more. Many of them are experts at the sports they love, and they are happy to take time out of their week to share their passion with those who need help getting out there.

 

Interested in volunteering? All you have to do is fill out the volunteer application and attend a training session. Check out eaglemount.org or give them a call at 586-1781. The 2013 Eagle Mount Gala fundraiser is sold out, but you can view the program and auction items here.

For more information, contact:

Diana Proemm, Bridger Bowl Program Coordinator: [email protected]
Chad Biggerstaff, Big Sky Program Coordinator: [email protected]
Leslie Dominick, Cross-Country Coordinator: [email protected]

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