Chasing the dream with Caleb Brown: knocked the wind out of me

It was a regular summer day at Fernie Alpine Resort, I was working on the trail crew still at this time but it was my day off. During those summers I would work five days a week building and testing the trails, then spend my two days off riding the resort. I would literally spend every single day at the ski hill for 2 months, and love every minute of it.

That day I was riding with a few buddies and we went to ride this new section I had been working on. That week we had removed two massive stumps and made a gap so you could jump from one trail to another. I came in first, launching from what used to be called Power Trip onto Mister Berms which led right into a corner. I came in fast but I came up short and my bike stayed where it landed. I shot forward with all of my momentum over Mister Berms and into the inside of the corner. Unfortunately we had thrown all of the chunks of the stumps we had removed earlier in the week into the inside of this corner and I went tumbling through the debris.

When I came to rest I couldn’t breathe. I had knocked the wind out of me. I struggled to remove my helmet trying to breathe, but could not inhale even the slightest of air. I rolled on the ground as my friends gathered around me. I couldn’t breathe for so long I began to think I was going to pass out before any breath would enter my lungs.

Finally, a slight gasp of air entered and I painfully regained my composure. Everyone was asking me questions but I could not answer. After what felt like an eternity I spoke and said that I was fine, I just needed a minute and I would ride down.

I tried to stand up but could hardly move. We were close to the top of the Elk Chair so I tried to walk uphill but only made it a few metres and collapsed. Something was not right. One member of the crew jumped on their bike and ripped down to get help, soon after a patroller on a quad came to my rescue and drove me down the base area where my friend Tanner was waiting. It was an uncomfortable ride to the hospital, both for me and Tanner who had to watch me in pain all the way.

The initial impact had missed my spine by a centimetre and the doc said I had broken five or more ribs. Luckily I had not punctured my lung and had to spend only a few hours in emergency hooked up to an I.V. and oxygen mask.

These extreme sports are dangerous. It’s through tough times such as these that our greatest lessons are learned.

The Free Press does not endorse any dangerous activities that may or may not lead to injury.

Just Posted

22 teams compete in Sweetheart Curling Bonspiel

From February 9 to 11, the Sparwood Curling Club hosted it’s annual… Continue reading

Political theatre shines light on womens issues

The Vagina Monologues returned to Fernie last weekend for the second time,… Continue reading

Local rink heading to curling provincials

The Mens Masters East-West playdown took place in Sparwood from February 2-4.… Continue reading

Kootenay East MLA reacts to Throne Speech

Tom Shypitka says speech falls short of intended mark.

Specialist shortage affecting elective surgeries

East Kootenay Regional Hospital recruiting additional anesthetists

REPLAY: B.C. this week in video

In case you missed it, here’s a look at replay-worthy highlights from across the province this week

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

VIDEO: Protesters rally for affordable housing ahead of B.C. budget

Residents call on province to keep locals housed

#Metoo movement causing confusion in many men, fear of missteps with women: experts

Being painted by the same sweeping brush as those alleged to have mistreated women has angered men

Liberals to dig deeper, aim higher on gender equality in 2018 federal budget

Finance Minister Bill Morneau said the budget would include measures to boost women in the workforce

Body of missing skier found

Man’s truck found in Revelstoke Mountain Resort’s parking lot covered in ‘several days’ snow’

B.C. VIEWS: Subsidy supercluster settles in B.C.

Ottawa, Victoria add to their overlapping ‘innovation’ budgets

OLYMPIC ROUNDUP: Canada’s first ever men’s ski slopestyle medal

Men’s hockey team beats South Korea and women’s curling reverses losing streak

Most Read