We don’t need to tell you who the infamous Jackson Hole Air Force was. But in case you have either been trapped in a cave for the last 40 years or are a Millennial, which is pretty much the same thing, it’s a group of rope-ducking desperados who led the charge for out-of- bounds skiing in the ’80s and ’90s.
They conferred coveted Marines-style patches that read “Swift, Silent, Deep” to skiers they deemed worthy of inclusion— and it was a boys’ club, to be sure. But thanks to Crystal Wright and her Jackson Hole Babe Force, the bro-centric culture that created this ski fraternity is getting a contemporary injection of estrogen. The Babe Force aims to encourage women of all ages and abilities to push their limits and build relationships with like-minded women. They even give out patches of their own—“Strong, Sexy, Soulful”—and hold positions like Chief Happiness Officer and Executive of Enthusiasm.
On a more serious side, the Babe Force also founded a scholarship program for women to take backcountry safety courses. “We have been wanting to offer scholarships since starting the Babe Force,” Wright says. “We just weren’t sure how to go about raising the money.” Fundraisers, donations, and even a co-branded beer (Snake River Brewing’s Babe Force Red Ale) all help bankroll the program. Girls of every skill level are welcome to be part of the group—a far cry from the old Air Force mentality.
Scholarship deadlines are December 5th, 2016 for the 2016/2017 season. You can apply on their website here.