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Bruno Engler

(1915- 2001) Swiss born, Bruno Engler had become a ski racing champion and experienced mountaineer as well as a trained photographer by the time he first came to Canada in 1939. He began working as a ski instructor for Jim Brewster at Sunshine where he lived the quintessential ski instructor’s life, teaching the skill during the day and entertaining his clients with his antics after hours. The following summer he began work as a guide at the Chateau Lake Louise with such veterans as Edward Feuz jr. and Rudolph Aemmer. During the war Bruno taught survival and mountain warfare as a member of the Canadian Army. During these years he completed many first ski-mountaineering ascents in the Canadian Rockies. Following the war he became interested in film-making. After an unfortunate financial failure involving a trip to northern Canada, he moved to the Crowsnest Pass area where he helped design and build a ski area. In 1952 he was hired by the Province of Alberta as a photographer and moved to Edmonton. Soon after, he began a forty year career as a freelance cinematographer and film consultant. His outstanding collection of black and white photos taken in the Rockies is a treasured possession of the Whyte Museum and archives in Banff. One of his greatest talents was that of a storyteller. At this he is said to have been one of the best who ever practiced the art in the Canadian Rockies. During his 35 years of guiding he climbed with mountaineers Frank Smythe, Tony Cromwell, and Georgia Engelhard; politicians including Peter Lougheed, Roland Michener, and Pierre Trudeau; and as a cinematographer worked with movie stars such as Paul Newman, Jimmy Stewart, and Dustin Hoffman. [See Seven Sisters Mountain; Mount Gass; Mount Michener] [Additional information: “A Mountain Life” edited by Robert W. Sanford]