Team Vertical Bill Karman, George Robbi, Tammy McMinn, Jennifer Hughes, Bernhard Kriner
"What a day, we couldn't have done it without the crew!"
-- Tammy McMinn, after breaking the World Record
Team Vertical couldn't have been better if they were specifically interviewed for Operation Heli. I was highly impressed with the whole crew. The team was tuned into our needs. The game plan, preparation and moral support were all essential to our success. To quote Brian Boyle of CBC Radio-Canada, "It's like watching an Indianapolis pit crew in action." Thanks guyz!
I had three snowboards in constant rotation. Each time I reached the top of the mountain, a board was ready to go. The team worked hard.
George, lead guide and mind master, was helping us out at the bottom of the mountain. Upon our arrival in Canada, he was tuned into what it would take to hit our target. He knew we already built up our physical strength over the past several months and now it was time for the mental strength to take over. As a result, he made sure the whole operation ran smoothly so we would not be mentally drained. For example, at one point when the snow was really fast, I freaked out about my bindings possibly coming loose. I radioed to George, and a few runs later he told me all of the screws had been checked. Since he knew this was a concern of mine, every so often he'd tell me they were checked again, which kept me from exerting my energy worrying about it.
Bernie, guide and technical wizard, was helping us out at the top of the mountain. As the helicopter came in, he would hold my snowboard down since it didn't have breaks on it like the skis did. Unfortunately, I never spoke to Bernie because the helicopter was too loud, but his smile and clapping were a sure sign he was cheering us on and keeping us motivated.
Bill, pilot, has a smile that tells you he's up to something. Apparently, he was telling the guys dirty jokes on the radio all day. We heard a few of them after we went back to Atlin. Unfortunately I don't think I can repeat any of them here. In addition to his good sense of humor, I'm told Bill is one of the best pilots around, and I believe it.
Leo, main man - owner of Klondike Heliskiing, coordinated the event. I talked to him via e-mail and by phone for several months regarding the event details. In addition, he also did the video and still photography for us.