Jumbo Wild
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After a multiday approach each carrying 80-lb packs, Steve House and Vince Anderson relish a summit and a ski in the remote Purcell Wilderness of British Columbia. CHRISTIAN PONDELLA

Jumbo Wild

For decades, First Nations, conservationists, backcountry skiers and snowboarders have fought a proposed large-scale ski resort deep in the Purcell Mountains of British Columbia. After 24 years of opposition, what more will it take to keep Jumbo wild for good?

The Fight to Keep Jumbo Wild

Deep in the wilds of British Columbia lies a rugged valley – cherished alpine backcountry that deserves permanent protection. At the headwaters of the Columbia River, Jumbo Creek cascades out of deep snowpack, past crumbling glacial ice, wildflowers, and grizzly tracks. The Jumbo Valley has long been revered for its beauty, and to the Ktunaxa Nation, it is known as Qat’muk, home of the grizzly bear spirit. Part of an important international wildlife corridor, the Jumbo Valley is one of only two areas in North America where grizzly bears can freely roam between Canada and the U.S.

But, for nearly 25 years, local people - First Nations, conservationists, backcountry skiers and snowboarders - have fought a large-scale ski resort in Jumbo. As developers face environmental assessments, political roadblocks, and local outcry, many are asking: What more will it take to keep Jumbo wild for good?

We need your voice to help stop development in the Jumbo Valley and to honour the Ktunaxa Nation’s Qat’muk Declaration by creating permanent protection for the region’s cultural and ecological values.

The first time she saw it as a young girl, the vast Jumbo Valley carved itself into the heart of skier Leah Evans. Years later, she’s part of the movement to protect the valley from development. Evans carves her wish into the table of the Jumbo Hut. Central Purcell Mountains, British Columbia, Canada. GARRETT GROVE
Patagonia Skiing Ambassador Leah Evans

Leah Evans

“When I was thirteen, my parents sent me up to Jumbo for the first time. And I remember them saying, ‘One day, you’re going to have to save this place.’”

Learn More About Leah
Leah Evans scores in the Jumbo Glacier backcountry. GARRETT GROVE


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Eliel Hindert’s first depth charge of the day. Wasatch backcountry, Utah. JAY BEYER
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Pep Fujas, first in flight in deep Japanese powder. DANIEL RONNBACKE


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Carston Oliver, Wasatch Mountains, Utah. ADAM CLARK


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Leah Evans and Jasmin Caton strap in and buckle up for the bootpack. Selkirk Mountains, British Columbia, Canada. GARRETT GROVE

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Carston Oliver enjoys some of Rosa Khutor's pristine powder. Russia. CHRISTIAN PONDELLA