The snow's swirling in Jackson Hole, and the ladies of the Jackson Hole Babe Force are out in full force. This group of local ladies get together on the slopes to push their limits, encourage one another, build confidence, and meet other women who love to ski, snowboard, and enjoy other mountain sports.
Their motto is “Strong, sexy, soulful,” and they look to get as many women as possible out enjoying the sports they love, whether it's a ski day at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort or a day touring the backcountry.
“Our main goal is to provide support for all generations of women in the ski world,” says Jackson Hole Babe Force board member Johanna Murphy. “The idea is to bring together all different abilities of skiers and snowboarders. Women account for about 40 percent of the ski community. We believe that if women have the right channels and support there is no reason why it shouldn't be 50 percent participation from women.”
She also explains the origins of the group's motto: “Strong, Sexy, and Soulful speaks to our fearless women who don't let the traditional roles of women define them."
Win a Scholarship, Learn Avalanche Safety
Venturing out into the backcountry can be a thrilling endeavor, but it can be very dangerous without the proper training, skills, and education to travel in avalanche terrain. That's why the Jackson Hole Babe Force decided to start helping local women safely navigate beyond the gates through a scholarship program.
“Throughout the year the Jackson Hole Babe Force put on various events to bring like-minded women together,” Murphy says. “Through these events we were able to raise enough money to start giving back.”
This year, the group offered a scholarship for two local women to take Level 1 Avalanche courses. Their aim was to help women get educated and feel confident while exploring in the backcountry; the next round of scholarships will be offered in 2016.
“We were so moved by all of the applicants we received,” Murphy says. “From mothers who wanted to start bringing their daughters in the backcountry to women who wanted to stop relying on men to take them to ski. First and foremost, we thought this would be a good program because whenever you are traveling in the backcountry, men and women need to be educated about snow safety. This is an important asset for local women because it gives an opportunity for all women to get the education that they need for free.”
Join a Babe Force Event
Throughout the season, the Babe Force women host a number of different events , from fun ski days to group gatherings to support the accomplishments of their members. Here, a few highlights on the calendar for 2016:
- January 21: Mahjong and the West Film Screening
Babe Force Board Member Karissa Tuthill produced this film about a girl returning to Wyoming to bury her mother. In the film, the woman meets up with an old friend and the pair must confront a traumatic past. The Babe Force is attending a screening of Tuthill's film at the Center for the Arts.
- January 22: Queen of the King
Get your lapping legs ready: This annual Snow King ski day includes a friendly competition to see who can get the most laps in 30 minutes, among other festivities.
- February 13: GALentines Day
This ski day includes the group's annual ski scavenger hunt. The babes divide into teams to race around and see who can complete their checklist of tasks first.
- March 19: Ski Tour, Location TBA
Join the ladies for a backcountry ski tour at a location TBA.