Welcome to the Women Outdoors Spotlight Series: a space for women to share their stories, articulate what the outdoors means to them, and encourage other women to say yes to adventure.
This week’s series features Christina Bonnyman.
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Hi, Christina! I’m so excited to learn all about you and your adventures! Go ahead and introduce yourself and tell us a little bit about you.
Hi! My name is Christina. I live in beautiful British Columbia, Canada – just outside of Vancouver. I am an online and in-person personal trainer who loves to help people get strong and maximize their potential in everyday life, but especially in the outdoors!
I am addicted to the feeling of being deep in the mountains, and also pushing myself further than I ever thought I could.
I can relate to that addiction so much! There is something so special about being in mountains and pushing yourself past your limits. Tell us what inspired you to start getting outside.
Considering that I grew up with a “backyard” full of mountains, I never actually spent time in them as a kid. I loved to play outside, but just in my neighborhood. It wasn’t until grade 11 that I went on my first backpacking trip with my school- and honestly it wasn’t love at first sight. It crushed me!
I think somewhere deep down it did ignite a spark though because a couple of years later I attempted the same hike again… and the rest is history!
I feel most at home and at peace outside, away from the hectic cities and the noise.
I love that you went back and did the same hike, and the rest is history! What would you say is your favorite way to get outside?
I have way too many hobbies, but they keep me busy in every season!
I love hiking, backpacking, splitboard touring, trail running, rock climbing, snowmobiling, surfing, lifting in the gym, and just being active in general.
I guess the catalyst for all of that was initially hiking. Once I started to hike, everything else just kept falling into place.
Sometimes it’s hard to keep up honestly, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
I used to have pretty bad seasonal depression as winters here are long and super dark and rainy, but now that I have fallen in love with winter sports- it’s never long enough! Never thought I would say that.
Never wanting winter to end — now I can’t believe that I’m saying it — but I agree! Falling in love with winter sports changes everything. Can you describe your most memorable adventure to date?
This is such a tough question! There have been so many memorable adventures, for different reasons.
One that stands out in my mind is a trip that my friend and I took where we got stuck in the snow on top of a mountain, literally overlooking civilization, but unable to reach it. We went out for an overnight ski tour and it was a series of unfortunate events.
The biggest event was that our skins would not stay stuck to our skis due to absolutely terrible slushy conditions. There was no option to walk as we just sunk up to our waist with our overnight packs on. We were able to improvise and strap on our skins with ski straps and zap straps, but we ended up being stuck up there another night with minimal rations of food — but luckily all of our camping gear!
It was a little scary, but we ended up being blessed with the most beautiful sunset. And, luckily, we were able to find a route out the next morning with clear minds and more energy.
Wow! What an experience! Way to stay calm and improvise. That’s definitely a sunset you will never forget! Tell us about your favorite trail that you’ve hiked.
Again, so tough to choose just one!
I think my favorite trail would have to be Mt. Assiniboine Provincial Park. It’s just on the border between BC and Alberta and the landscape is just absolutely gorgeous. It has the nickname “Matterhorn of the Rockies” and for a good reason! I would love to visit this place in every season.
I can see where it got its name! Do you have any adventures to take or hobbies to learn that are still on your bucket list?
I took an intro to mountaineering course and would really like to get out and do that more!
The further I go into the mountains, the further (and higher!) I want to go into the mountains.
You and me both! And lastly, what piece of advice would you give to women who are looking to break into the outdoor space?
I think the biggest advice I have would be to just start. We all started somewhere.
Learn as you go and don’t worry about looking dumb, we all did! As long as you are being safe and respecting nature, YOU BELONG THERE.
I also really do think that physical training can give you a huge boost of confidence to get out there. Personally knowing that I can get myself out of almost any situation gives me huge peace of mind when heading outdoors — especially alone!
It’ll also just make it much more enjoyable and who doesn’t want that?
I couldn’t agree more! Tell the readers where they can connect with you further and continue to follow along with your adventures!
I’d love that! You can find me at @christinabonnyman on Instagram.
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