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Ski-Bum Hunting

By Ben Wannamaker

Photo by Stewart Medford

Objectively of course: the OutdoorTech wireless headphones work well. The sound is quite good, they’re stylish and sit nicely over my toque. Plus, the music in my ear, in it’s own small way blocks out the shame I feel from all of the eyes on me at this frequently occurring – albeit somewhat embarrassing – moment.

The gall that these people have to stare.


I’m hunting and require the utmost privacy – if possible – because my work is done best in stealth and no attention is good attention. But at times the most obvious can be veiled as the least obvious.

I think.

I’m sure though, at 2480m of elevation, and from inside a ski chalet full of nearly a thousand people, privacy may be a tough request. But I’m a ski-bum hunting and all conditions must be accounted for.

I’m not hunting to thump a ski bunny, nope. The real ski-bum version of hunting wild game is going on here and I’m looking for my moose, venison, boar or cougar; aka cold poutine, wet lettuce on a barely eaten burger, unrecognizable assortments of chili or time-dried pizza crusts to dip into the free condiment buffet that I’ve created out of ketchup, mustard, mayo, relish – I will do anything I can to keep my weight up. Think: Mazlow’s hierarchy of ski-bumming.

The most obvious is the least obvious. So I still hunt, because it works. And nobody really cares. Sure, they may whisper to their significant others; they may shake their heads.


Some good techniques I’ve learned for successfully eating off the plates of others are as follows.

1) Follow rich old folk to the rack like you were an ambulance, and eat the road-kill whence they’re off to do more slow-dancing with gravity. Suckers.

2) Hover about and constantly comb your un-eaten crop like a u.f.o, only dropping in on half-chewed trays – like a fully-starved varmint or a raven – when the time is right.

3) Big-eye kids with small stomachs, and when Dennis or Denise the Menace get antsy for more skiing – and could give two-bits about those final few fries – sling shot your backside in for the kill (or some other germ-free fodder.)

4) Try your own method! Get out there sport! The world is wasteful and this means bounty for your broke ass.

It’s a fun, sustainable and victimless crime. Plus, foraging from the careless rich, boycotting big food industries and actively hunting like a real live ski-bum will actually put food in your starving and potentially underpaid stomach

Photo by Stewart Medford

A discretionary notice would obviously read that: eating off of other people’s plates could and probably will cause (especially in Whistler): herpes, hepetitis, menegitis, the mumps, death etc. So do it at your own risk, eh?

But really: how many hunter’s have we lost in the heat of battle? You’d be in good company.

Really. It’s noble.

And to all of you critics: mine-sweeping the rolling racks in the ski chalet could be worse. It’s certainly not robbing from the homeless like those full-bags-of-day-old-nabbing, dumpster-diving, suburban-born university students do. Those senseless spoon-fed kids – who claim to ‘take back the streets’ every time they raid a grocery stores garbage bin before Jeff the schizophrenic can – sometimes even have the nerve
to brag about it.

The nerve, eh?

Ben Wannamaker

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