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Ambassador Sammy Olsen is out to get the most out of her last ski season before the "real world," traveling North America with her best friends ambassador Becky Fuys and Christine McCormick in a Ford Econoline Van they've remodeled!
Who are the Vanablondes?
We are three best friends who met our freshman year of college. Christine and I (Sammy) were paired randomly as dorm roommates. I was immediately stoked when I found out that she came to Utah for the snow. Once winter hit and the temps dropped so did our grades! Kidding, well only in part, Christine and I now spent every day up at Beaver Mountain, our local ski resort. Through the shredding community we ran into the third of our trio, Becky who also moved out from Chicago for the snow. Through our college career we became inseparable,as well as roommates all thanks to our passion for the snow, mountains, and outdoors! We began to
talk about having a last “hurrah” before we have to grow up and start our careers. It wasn’t even a question that it would be based around our passion for skiing/snowboarding. At first, we thought we would get a truck tent and live out of Becky’s Dodge Dakota. As we dove further into the planning process and details we realized it would be more realistic to buy a van for the trip.
What was one thing that you did not expect or one challenge of the
As we began the hunt for our dream van we started our search on KSL and Craigslist. We would find the perfect van and call on it only to find out it was a scam. And this definitely was a common re-occurrence…the scam to real ad ratio was about 70 percent fake and 30 percent real.
What is a typical day for you in the van?
A typical day in the van for us right now consists of slivers from any range on the spectrum of materials; wood, metal, fiberglass, you name it and it’s probably been under our skin. We also spent way too much time on what you think would be the easier parts of building out a van, say buying materials at Home Depot. The employees there definitely were getting sick of our explanations when we don’t know the names of what we were actually looking for! We are stoked for the 9am-2am days building the van to come to an end so we can hit the road and shred every day instead!
Tell me your most memorable moment so far?
After a week’s worth of workdays from sun up to sun down van building, we decided we needed a break. So we packed up our skis and boards and took our half-built van up to Park City to spend the day shredding instead. It was your perfect bluebird day! We learned how to park our 22-foot long Ford Chinook Econoline, grilled brats out of the back of the van, and rode until we couldn’t walk. We also came to the great realization that we will never forget where we parked considering you can see the top of our van from any point in the parking lot! Although we almost ripped out our incomplete windows on the drive home, it was worth every moment!