April 29, 1934 – September 11, 2021
Karl was born in 1934 in Graz, Austria to Gertrude and Karl Jost. He spent his younger years in nearby Edelschrott, surviving the difficult war years. There he learned to ski. When his parents immigrated to Canada in 1953 with the family, he was 19 years old. While his family settled in Calgary, Karl moved to Banff where he met up with many other young Austrians, all drawn by the lure of the mountains: skiing and climbing.
In his youth, Karl worked at many jobs in Banff, all the while skiing and climbing his way around the Rockies. Eventually he became a Ski Instructor and co-managed a ski school in Banff. He also spent time operating a ski school at Paleface Ski Center in the Adirondack Mountains of New York. He was a Senior Examiner with the Canadian Ski School Alliance and was also certified in the US. Karl’s early life was thrilling, and he literally tried everything, from being an outrider in the chuckwagon races at the Calgary Stampede to flying a plane, race car rally driving, and skiing dangerous, avalanche prone slopes. He did it all and survived.
In the early 70’s Karl began working as a tour bus driver for Brewster Transport in Banff, driving thousands of passengers through the Rockies and other parts of Western Canada and the US. He loved working for Brewster. Karl researched the history and folk lore of the areas he travelled and passed his knowledge and stories on to his passengers, as well as his fellow drivers. He became quite involved with some of his destinations, and could be seen drumming with the First Nations people at Head Smashed In, or yodelling with fellow Austrians in a restaurant in Kimberley. He knew the operators at all his destinations and forged friendships that lasted for decades.
Before he retired, Karl took up painting. He only painted mountains, and his love of the mountains and colour produced some beautiful images that we will always treasure.
In 2004, Karl left his beloved mountains and moved to Nanaimo to live with Susie Youle (his schatzi). As the years went by he replaced skiing with golf and enjoyed many hours at Cottonwood Golf Course. Eventually poor health caught up with him, and he slowed down, spending time at home enjoying his patio garden, his beautiful cat, Abby, and becoming an armchair sports fan. Alpine skiing, tennis, and hockey were his favourites.
Karl passed away in Palliative Care with Susie by his side. He is predeceased by his parents, his brother, Richard, and his sister, Trudi. Karl is survived by his two brothers, Gunter (Evy) and Peter (Norma), daughter Heidi, son Karl (Brittany), and daughter Lisel (Jeff). He is also survived by grandchildren, Matthew (Mary), Peter, and Evan; as well as by many loving nieces and nephews. In Ligist, Austria he leaves extended family Gerti, Gerlinde, and Bianca. Throughout the years he developed hundreds of friendships. We are grateful for all the caring and heartfelt messages we have received.
Karl’s life was rich and full and he lived a life most can only dream of. We miss him terribly. He was small in stature but took up a huge space in our hearts.
No service by request. A family memorial will be held in Banff in May.
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