Jul 13, 2018

Going the Extra Mile

Our building supplies are in lots of places. Homes, schools, offices, from the halls of Parliament to art galleries and sports stadiums, delivered by a mighty fleet of trucks and cranes.

Or sometimes, by an overweight horse named Homer.

Rocky Mountain Sundeck and Roof Ltd, a long-time Convoy Supply customer, got an unusual call one Monday in May. The Sundance Lodge, near Banff, Alberta, had suffered a chimney fire. The roof was in need of repair, and could they do the job? The repair itself wasn’t anything that would tax their skills, but the cabin location… you could say it didn’t have easy access to major routes. Or, alternatively, you could say it was on a heavily-forested mountain on a route that involved switchback roads, gondolas, chair lifts, and a horseback ride over bridges and through creeks. 

But Shane, from Rocky Mountain Sundeck and Roof, was up for the job. He knew roofing. He knew his tools. However, he’d never ridden a horse in his life. So he checked the weather, packed his wet-weather gear, and met his guide, an Australian named Mitch, who introduced him to Homer. 

Shane and Homer

Now, Homer had packed on a few extra pounds over the years, but he was ready to go. So Shane, Mitch, and Homer, along with a few spare horses and two laden pack mules, started out. 

Horseback 1

It rained. 

Horseback 2

It hailed.

Horseback 3

They crossed bridges. They forded creeks.

Cabin 1

Finally, they reached the Lodge, just in time for lunch!  Homer was a fan of that part. They had a great meal, and then Shane got to work. It turns out the damage was minimal; some old shakes had ignited due to sparks from the chimney, so Shane replaced them and installed a steel mesh to act as a temporary spark arrest. 

Cabin Roof 2

Cabin Roof

The owner already had a new chimney with a spark arrest on order, and Shane recommended a new roof as well. They headed back home and it poured rain the entire way, but they told jokes and laughed the whole trip, plus Shane learned how to ride a horse properly. It was a fifteen and a half hour day for about 90 minutes on the roof, but he loved the entire experience, bringing Rocky Mountain Roofing’s expertise to a place pretty far off the beaten track.

Shane will be back; he’s taking his fiancée there for a trip soon. Plus, they’ll be installing a new metal roof on the cabin in the fall, a roof they expect to get in there by helicopter. Homer approves.