Wendy Woodley, Our Mountain Star
Despite the fact that everyone tells me she knows absolutely everything about Mount Washington, I decided it was time to try to stump Wendy Woodley. Surely there was a question or two she couldn't answer. Right? We shared dinner in a cozy restaurant and I spent two hours picking her brain. Darned if she didn't answer every single question I asked.
She knows who the mountain is named after. Not George Washington, she's quick to point out. She actually remembers Bernie's Sing-a-longs in the Alpine Lodge. Do you? She knows who bought the first lot on Mount Washington and where to get lemons on the mountain in August when the store is closed. She has skied the mountain since opening day, which, she informed me, was long before a single chalet was built. She has watched the resort grow from dream to reality and she has loved the mountain every step of the way. And frankly, the mountain loves her. She has volunteered as a snow hostess, run one of the nicest Bed and Breakfasts, started one of the most successful rental companies on the mountain and worked in a variety of capacities all over the mountain. And she's the best-kept secret up here.
Just try defaming any aspect of the mountain and she will politely and eloquently remind you of its innumerable virtues. Gush a little too much about it's greatness and she will gently remind you of it's flaws. Her honesty and integrity are a special gift to be treasured.
With husband Gary and her trusty Balinese sidekick the estimable Snowball (who incidentally has written from time to time for The Marmot), by her side, Wendy Woodley has become a veritable feast of information about not only Mount Washington but the Comox Valley as well. Just ask anyone who has taken a flight into town. Wendy also volunteers as an Ambassador at the airport. Need a gift on your way out of town? She works in the gift shop too. Need to know anything about tourism in the Comox Valley? Wendy volunteers there too. Sports minded? You'll find Wendy at the Royal LePage Snow to Surf Race and the Brian McLean Chevrolet Tri-K Triathlon. Need to know where a trail goes in Strathcona Park? She's been a BC Parks trail volunteer too! And that's the short list of her accomplishments!
It's no wonder she's won awards for her community service. Wendy is everywhere! So, next time you see Wendy on the mountain, whether she's busy filling The Marmot newspaper racks or whizzing down the slopes (and man, can she ski fast!), take a moment to thank her for all the time and effort she has offered simply from the goodness of her heart. Hats off to Wendy Woodley one of the unsung heroes of the hill.