My Summer Quest: Hyder, Alaska

This summer I opted out of getting a normal 9 to 5 job and instead found myself working in the glaciers of Hyder, Alaska and Stewart BC. By chance, I was offered a job as a medic, and without any knowledge of what I was getting into I accepted and began a 6-hour drive to Stewart, BC. Once arrived, I was picked up by my boss and taken to an extensive orientation covering everything from bear safety to how to strap a load to a heli-crane. Having worked in industry my whole adult life, I felt quite comfortable. However, once we crossed the border into Hyder and started a bumpy drive up the Granduc I started to feel nervous. I was told about how we have very limited access to internet (80 megabytes a day), and that there were only 2 satellite phones in a camp of 100 people. And, because of the remoteness of the camp, the typical shift schedule was 21 to 28 days in with 7 days off.

Having never worked in a camp setting before the schedule seemed overwhelming. For those of you not familiar with camp work, camps are usually set up so that everyone has their own private room with a shared bathroom, and all meals are prepared for workers by camp staff. There is typically a rec room that has gym equipment as well as a TV.

And, while I would love to share more of what my summer entailed, I will be saving that for a future blog post!

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