Boondockers often pay tribute to friends and family. We shout out to them on camera, and every set of film “credits” acknowledge their contribution and support. We often speak of them when we enjoy a home packed lunch on the trail, and the narrations in the latest Boondockers movie pay homage to “Relationship Capital” and all the good it implies. There’s no doubt we love them and everything they do for us.

Boondockers are especially thankful for the “Now” and the opportunity to create memories that will last more than a lifetime – for these are stories that will be told for generations to come. We therefore choose to express our gratitude when it counts, when we need it the most; when they are still with us.

Though we experience sadness in times of loss – the passing of our loved ones truly becomes a celebration of life for those who lived it well. We gather with those they held dear. We break bread, drink, mingle, and talk, and talk, and talk.

Today we’re sharing great conversations about Deborah Gardiner and the amazing influence she’s had on the world of back country snowmobiling.  

I can’t rightly remember the first time I saw Debbie, but I want to think it was a cameo appearance in an early ‘Sled Necks’ film when she hosted their entire riding team in her home. I can perfectly visualize her scrambling to provide sleeping space for all and preparing enough home cooked meals to keep everyone on the snow and out from underfoot. Her generosity was endless, and you simply wanted to be a part of the world she created.

When we finally had an opportunity to visit Utah, she welcomed us as we imagined; always smiling, forever mindful, and never tiring. We soon discovered that Deb loved the mountains as much as we did, and she truly appreciated our passion and dedication to the sport. She listened attentively while we milled about her kitchen, sharing our joys and helping us muddle through the challenges that a professional rider must face. From financial strains to relationship difficulties – she heard our laments, deflecting them with personal anecdotes and the hope of a better tomorrow.

Deb left this world, peacefully and with dignity. Passing in her sleep – no doubt dreaming of us and the many times we’ll think of her in our future endeavours.