Mountain man, river rat, adventure guide – jetboating with Eric Pehota
If you’re going to take a boat up a waterfall like Nairn Falls, where the Green, Soo and Rutherford Rivers combine and carve cataract out of granite, you want it to be piloted by someone with 17 years experience paddling, rafting and jetboating the river systems of Whistler and Pemberton.
It’s an added bonus that he’s a legendary ski mountaineer, the first man to have skied Mt Currie, and an avid outdoorsman with an eagle eye for spotting bear, osprey and even cougar from the boat. The truth is, you’ll find it hard to wipe the cheek-splitting grin from your face, as Eric Pehota shows you his playground.
Widely considered one of the most accomplished adventure skiers in North America, Pehota has made more than 40 first descents from peaks across the world, including Mt Currie on New Years Day in 1987 with fellow adventurer, the late Trevor Peterson. “There’s nothing like being first,” Pehota says. “In this day and age, you’ve gotta push further to be the first. I love that feeling of doing something that nobody else has done before.”
But you’ll have to stay focused if you’re going to extract these kind of stories out of Pehota… he’ll be busy distracting you with 360s and identifying the best spots to bring in a picnic table for a spontaneous sand-bar party.