Growing Up With A Mountain Guide Dad

In an article by Morgan Dinsdale called “Growing up CMH,” Hannah Sawyer talks about what it’s like to have a mountain guide for a dad.

Chances are you may not have heard of Bob Sawyer. He’s a quiet man with a wide, engaging smile and Popeye forearms who prefers spending his days in the mountains or dangling from rock faces than schmoozing at dinner parties. But the fact is the Rossland resident is one of the most prolific mountaineering, skiing and rock climbing guides in the Kootenay region. He’s worked for Canadian Mountain Holidays as a guide for the past 36 years; he was instrumental in helping save Kinnaird Bluffs from development last year; he has innumerable first ascents under his belt; and he helps organize the Kootenay Climbing Festival every year and mans the kid’s zip-line for the entire five-hour event.

Oh, and he’s a great Dad. At least that’s what his only child Hannah says. In an article called “Growing up CMH” by Morgan Dinsdale, Hannah is quoted as saying, “Our relationship in the mountains and guiding me around was what I thought most kids did with their dad.”

Bob Sawyer mans the kid’s zip-line at the Kootenay Climbing Festival, an event he helps organize every year. Photo by Khaled Benrabha. Top photo by David Lussier.

The article goes on to describe what it was like for Hannah to grow up in the mountains of British Columbia and how she came to work with her father at CMH’s Bugaboos Lodge. She then went on to work at the company’s Bobbie Burns Lodge but this year is taking a break from that lifestyle to study nursing. She still plans to get into the mountains with her dad though. In the article she says, “Out in the mountains we like to participate in sports that have high risks, so I try to remind myself that no matter how uncomfortable, how hot or cold or how tired we get it won’t last forever. It’s important for me to savour those moments together.”

To read the article about Hannah and her dad Bob, log on to

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