Earlier this season, longtime Pemberton local and Whistler heli skiing guide Lisa Korthals died in an avalanche while guiding a trip in the Coast Mountains outside of Pemberton. In order to continue her legacy, friend and fellow Whistler heli ski guide Vlad Lamoureux, working in conjunction with the Canadian Ski Guides Association, started a GoFundMe campaign with the hopes of creating a bursary to assist more women in getting their start in heli ski guiding.
"This fund is designed to create a living legacy to the memory of Lisa Korthals. It is intended to create a bursary to be used by women to help them get a start in their Mechanized Ski Guiding career," reads the description on the GoFundMe page. "Once the bursary is established, we are hoping to get corporations and people to commit to an annual contribution to facilitate the longterm viability of the bursary."
During the almost three decades she spent in Whistler area, Korthals kept busy not only as a heli ski guide but also a river guide, rock climber, alpinist, CSIA Level IV ski instructor, wife, and mother. Korthals' resume also included several Powder Eights World Championships as well as logging the first female descent of the infamously daunting face of University Peak in Alaska back in 2002.
In addition to the bursary, plans have also been set in motion by Whistler Blackcomb to name a heli ski run in memory of Korthals near Mount Currie, where she spent many years as a guide.
As of the time this story was published, the GoFundMe campaign has raised nearly $6,000 of its $50,000 goal in 18 days. The GoFundMe page can be found here.