Camper for a day with Sarah Burke and Momentum Ski Camps

Comments by Nicole Birkhold/

Every summer, hundred of kids every week descend on Whistler Village to participate in Momentum Ski Camps.

This week, session three was touted as “Girls Week” and “Freeskier week.” So, of course, I had to come up.

Part of the assignment was to immerse myself in the day-to-day operations of camp and really get the full camper experience. Hence, camper for a day.

I was given the initiation at breakfast by Momentum founder and former Olympian, John Smart. I was to cruise with the girls group, coached by Sarah Burke and get my learn on.

So after breakfast at Merlins and a three chairlift, one bus ride adventure to the Momentum lane high on the glacier with the Riddle, Vanular, Dorey and the boys, I partnered up with Sarah, Roz, Meg and the ladies for stretching. Meg serenaded everyone with the United States national anthem as it was the 4th of July. I may have been the only one to appreciate it as I was the only other American in the crew.

After stretching, Sarah, myself and five campers — Leah, Meg 1, Meg 2, Carly and Veronique — cruised out and started the day.

A strong fog was laying around making visibility rather frustrating, but we made the best of it by sessioning boxes and rails. Almost everyone learned something new and enthusiasm set in once the sleep was out of the eyes.

It was damp. It was cold. And it was hit or miss with visibility, but the day on the snow was definitely fun. I even hit some jumps and slid some bigger boxes and rails than I ever had before. Success! Sarah has great coaching techniques. She explains things well and is very patient. It’s a virtue after all. ;)

We skied through lunch and headed down the mountain around 2:00. Along the way we saw a couple of bears, a group of horseback riders and some amazing views once the fog broke.

All in all, the weather was less than cooperative, but it was a great day on the hill and we were far from done as camper activities were set to start in about an hour.

After a quick stop back at the hotel for coffee and a change of clothes, the 20-some girls at camp all met Sarah, Meg, Roz, Chelsea Henitiuk and myself in the lobby for a trip to the salon and a full girly experience of manicures. Momentum treated all the ladies in the camp to a couple hours at Get Nailed, the nail salon in Whistler. Like true females, we read trashy magazines, gossiped about boys and consulted each other on what colors suited our delicate hands the best.

It was a great time and quite a treat for summer camp.

Today, we have a girls-only photo session after the main camp so there will be more photos to come.

Thanks Whistler and Momentum for the great experience thus far!