Bear Bucks:
Inspiring Employees’ Flapjack-Fueled Adventures

See how our team is able to get outside and be active between flipping flapjacks!

Kodiak Crew in Glacier National Park

Here at Kodiak Cakes, our mission is to inspire healthier eating and active living with nourishment for today’s frontier. It’s not enough for us to just encourage others to adopt a healthier diet or to be more active, it’s about setting an example by living this mission every day in the way we live and the foods we craft. One of the ways we do this is through one of our favorite company perks called Bear Bucks. Bear Bucks are an allowance that Kodiak Cakes employees get each year to spend on things that inspire us to be more active. A new pair of hiking boots, skis, travel luggage, or a doggie-backpack for our four-legged friends are all things we choose to spend our Bear Bucks on to help us get outside!

 

We asked some of our employees to share how they use Bear Bucks to get outside and be more active, all while staying nourished and ready to take on any adventure with Kodiak Cakes. Keep reading to learn more about our team’s flapjack-fueled adventures, as told by them!

The Kodiak Crew’s Great Canadian Road Trip

This past summer, a few of us from the office ventured up to Glacier and Banff National Parks. Eleven of us embarked on this great Canadian Road Trip; and, thanks to our Bear Bucks, we could make the most of our experience up North. Our days’ activities included: hiking, mountain biking, and enjoying the scenery around mountain lakes. When it came time to call it a day, we gathered around to play games and cook delicious food.

 

The best part of this trip was spending time with our friends and discovering really cool places together. If we had to name a few highlights, they would be: hiking a half marathon in the most remote part of Glacier National Park, taking more than one polar plunge in freezing glacier mountain water, seeing three bears, an early morning hike to Lake Agnes Tea House above Lake Louise, and having our favorite two-year-old kid along for the adventure.

Madison’s Trek Through Peru

This past April I traveled to Peru to embark on the Salkantay Trek, a 5-day excursion through the Andes Mountains. Before leaving, I needed to buy a few odds and ends in order to be fully prepared for the trip. Mules were set to carry most of our supplies, but I was in need of a daypack to carry my trail essentials (water, camera, rain gear, snacks, etc). Good thing I had some Bear Bucks to spend! I ended up buying an 18-liter daypack that allowed me to carry everything I needed for those long days on the trail.

 

I live in the mountains of Park City, so I am no stranger to the mountain lifestyle; however, the Andes Mountains are something else. I experienced diverse landscapes from glacier-topped mountains—with elevations above 15,000ft—to orchid-filled valleys of jungle. I ate passionfruit fresh off the vine, drank coffee that I harvested and roasted with my own two hands, and even tried some alpaca meat, which was actually pretty tasty. It was an adventure for the books, and my new backpack was a trusty companion.

Eleanor’s First Half Marathon

I ran my first half marathon! I never thought I’d ever do anything that included the word “marathon” unless it also involved the word “Netflix.” But I did it; I ran a half marathon and my awesome co-workers inspired me to do it. The Kodiak Cakes office is such an encouraging environment, and because I had some Bear Bucks to spend on some running shoes, I was able to do something I didn’t know I had in me. I always thought I wasn’t “athletic” or “a runner,” but my coworkers and friends at Kodiak Cakes helped me realize that I totally can be!

Bo’s Mount Olympus Summit Bid

This year, I used my Bear Bucks to buy some new backcountry ski gear that came in handy on a recent adventure up Mt. Olympus, which towers at about 9000’ in elevation over the Salt Lake City Valley. The route my friend and I took to the summit is a ski mountaineering route called The Memorial Couloir. It’s about 3.5 miles to the summit and we gained about 3400’ in elevation along the way. The couloir was too steep to skin up on skis, so we strapped our skis to our backs before continuing up the tiring boot pack. When we reached the top of the couloir, it was just a few quick steps to the west summit of Mount Olympus where we enjoyed a beautiful view overlooking the entire valley below. To celebrate, we enjoyed some fun skiing down a steep and narrow couloir and back to our car. I’ve now summited Mt. Olympus four different ways, but this was BY FAR my favorite ( and getting to ski down was a huge bonus).

Gabbi Goes West

This past January, I made a move like no other. I went from living in Chicago, with nothing but sky scrapers and bustling streets, to living in Utah, where the mountains are now my backyard. I was pretty nervous dropping everything I loved about Chicago to move to a region that I’ve never been to and seemed to offer nothing I was interested in. Growing up, I was never an outdoorsy kind of gal. I hated bugs (still do) and my idea of fun was never to go explore outside.

 

After about a month of living in Utah, I found myself skiing, hiking, finding new trails to explore with my dog, and just loving my new outdoor life. I dropped a lot of money fast and quickly realized that skiing and hiking in these gorgeous mountains just wasn’t going to fit my budget. Fast forward again, and I’ve landed the perfect job to fit the bill! Not only am I doing what I love and enjoying a pantry full of flapjack & waffle mix, but I am also reaping the benefits of my favorite company perk, Bear Bucks. With Bear Bucks, I can continue exploring my new hobbies that allow me to truly enjoy and experience Utah.

Brandon Sends it in Spain

Eating great food, spending time with loved ones, and cultural education are three things that make for a great vacation abroad for many. However, for me and my wife, a vacation isn’t complete without some sort of adrenaline rush and a local’s perspective on “being active.” During our recent trip to Spain, we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to cliff jump, rock climb, and do some canyoneering off the coast of Palma De Mallorca. Bear Bucks made this possible for us and makes us excited about many other adventures to come!

We are constantly sharing our adventures with each other, and here are some more pictures to prove it!

We hope our stories inspire you to get outside and get active! Share your stories with us on Facebook and Instagram by using #kodiakcakes tagging @kodiakcakes.

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By: Jeff Sorenson | May 21, 2019


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