MOUNTAIN LIFE - Coast Mountains | Winter / Spring 2021

21 Braving the storm is something we all must do sometimes. In the midst of this extended pandemic era, I recommend a few key survival techniques: laughter, exercise, and social distance. They say laughter is the best medicine, but does that apply to something as serious as a global pandemic? Most psychologists would say yes—humour helps instill a sense of control in a powerless situation, and forges connection with others... two things we have lost recently. Laughter also increases the number of antibody- producing cells and enhances our T cells (which are at the core of adaptive immunity). A chuckle here or there can help strengthen our immune system, and it’s easy—anyone can do it! (Just remember to respect the bacteria, it's the only culture some people have.) Exercise is also crucial. I don't know about you, but I'm getting a tan from the light inside my refrigerator. Every time I try to eat healthy, along comes Christmas, or Easter, or summer, or a Friday... or a two-week indoor quarantine! You have to be very careful because chocolate ice cream shrinks Gore-Tex! I need to social distance from my fridge... and the best way to do that is to go shredding. Speaking of social distancing, it's a wise and essential thing to do. It’s recommended to stay six feet apart... but that’s generally not enough, because most guys who stand 5 feet 8 inches will say they’re 6 feet. Err on the side of get-the-hell- away-from-me. And you definitely need more than a six-foot buffer if you're looking to rip powder turns. I prefer and recommend staying 600 feet from anyone just so you can get those fresh, untracked turns all to yourself. Don't get me wrong, I love people... it's just that I love pow turns more! Margus Riga, the photographer/backcountry maniac with three lungs, who took this shot of me usually prefers the six-mile social distancing style to ensure he never crosses a track. How you weather these crazy times is all up to you, but if you follow these guidelines, the only thing you'll catch is some healthy mountain air! –Brett Tippie I prefer and recommend staying 600 feet from anyone just so you can get those fresh, untracked turns all to yourself.

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