A new book provides inspiration from a Kootenay adventurer

Matt Mosteller, a resident of Fernie, B.C., just released his first book, "The Adventurer's Guide to Living a Happy Life"

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Matt Mosteller is an infectiously positive guy. A resident of Fernie, B.C., Mosteller is vice-president of marketing for Resorts of the Canadian Rockies—a company that owns a number of ski resorts in the area, including Fernie Alpine Resort and Kimberley Alpine Resort. Mosteller has a passion for the outdoors and the incredible mind-blowing adventures that they can provide to an extreme enthusiast like himself. He has just released his first book, The Adventurer's Guide to Living a Happy Life, and he said he couldn't be more stoked to inspire people—just like nature and life have inspired him.

The whole idea for the book, which was released in October 2012, came from Mosteller living in his car for 63 days as a ski bum. Now a professional blogger, ski professional and outdoor enthusiast, Mosteller said when you're travelling through the mountains and sleeping in your car, you have a lot of time on your hands.

"For me, it was thinking about what are the positive things; what are the little ways that I can nudge myself," said Mosteller. "It was really about basic survival during that time—how to stay warm, how to stay happy, how to find work—basic things about enjoying a day of skiing, climbing, hiking or snowshoeing and all the mountain pursuits. So I starting writing down little tips for myself and kept a little journal."

Setting it aside for awhile

Mosteller ended up putting those tips on a shelf and it was only after he went on another excursion later in life that he thought about doing something more with them.

In 2011, he travelled to Yukon. He said he and his group did about 1,500 miles by dogsledding, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.

"When you're staying overnight outside in January in the Yukon, it's incredibly cold," he said. "Forty below was one of the warmest days in our 2½ weeks outside, and we went through some pretty crazy weather situations."

Mosteller said to survive and make it through, it's all about your mind more so than your physical abilities—and if you can keep a positive outlook, somehow you can do anything. So he started writing down more tips for himself as a way of keeping that positive outlook.

"When you're snowshoeing for 24 hours straight, it's hard to keep your feet moving in front of you," he said. "Some days it was 60 below with 70-mile-an-hour winds, where you had to keep moving or you'd freeze to death. So I had to find little inspirations and so I went back and wrote more tips."

Tips that translate to everyday life

The Adventurer's Guide to Living a Happy Life features 63 of these tips and lessons; Mosteller wants to help people add positive change to their lives and enhance the way they work, lead and teach in order to tap into the strengths they have inside.

Mosteller compares these inspirations to building a fire.

"It's basically kindling," said Mosteller. "When you build a fire, you start with small sticks and pretty soon you've got a nice, big, warm fire. Our lives each and every day need a little bit of kindling. We need a little nudge every day to move forward, either to beat back a fear we have or to reach a goal we're working on or to make positive change happen in our life—and that's what it's all about."

Mosteller has spent 40 years in the ski/outdoor industry living every day to its fullest. He has travelled to four continents, done crazy whitewater expeditions and climbing expeditions, been dropped out of helicopters to conquer a slope and so much more. He said that everybody has fear and that he probably has more fears than a lot of people—and these tips are what gave him the ability to deal with these fears and move through them.

For instance, Mosteller said, he was severely attacked by a grizzly bear years ago and that incident made him apprehensive about going outside and enjoying the outdoors.

"The mountains are my world, my passion, my everything," he said. "I had to work through that. These tips helped me overcome my fears and I think they can help others."

Inspiring people

Mosteller said the people of the Kootenays are also a huge inspiration to him.

"I know a lot of people here in the Kootenays and they are just incredible outdoor people," said Mosteller. "I'm humbled every day when I hear the stories of the mountains they've climbed, the journeys they've taken and the adventures they've had. But even the best athletes and best business leaders need a little help each day to assist them in moving forward in their lives."

The Adventurer's Guide to Living a Happy Life, published by Premier Digital Publishing, is currently available online through Amazon for the Kindle, Indigo for Kobo, Google Books and Apple iBooks. 

Karen Kornelsen

Karen Kornelsen, a writer for Kootenay Business Magazine, has a degree in jounalism. She enjoys finding and reporting the news from the business community. View all of Karen Kornelsen’s articles

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