[Team Opus] Meet Annika. Skier, Firefighter, Alpine Rescue, Medic and all round good human!

Team Opus member Annika Heatley in the snow on Mt Ruapehu, New Zealand







Name: Annika 

Age: 30

Currently Reside: Ohakune 

Profession/Sport: Skier / Firefighter / Alpine Rescue / Medic 

 Team Opus Member Annika Heatley Skiing on Mt Ruapehu New Zealand supported by Opus Fresh Apparel Co

Annika in action on her skis at Turoa, Mt Ruapehu.

Annika is someone we have been very proud to support for a number of years, for many a reason you are about to find out about. Where do we even start. She used to patrol Mt Ruapehu on her skis and is now a member of the local volunteer fire brigade in Ohakune. Annika is also a member of RARO, the Ruapehu Alpine Rescue Organisation however this is not all that she does...

Despite all this you can probably call her "day job" something extraordinary too. Annika can be found working as a medic day to day around the Ruapehu region with the local St John Ambulance.

When we asked her what she was all about, her answer says all you need to know. She clearly just loves doing what she does!

Let's get into it...


Hi Annika, can you give us a quick overview of what you’re all about?

I love the mountains, skiing, yoga and passionate about wilderness medicine.

Wilderness medicine, some people might think it's making medicine out of plants. But its far from it! Can you explain how it is from your point of view?

Wilderness medicine is providing emergency medical care in backcountry environments...mountains, forests etc.

What hooked you into the wilderness medicine scene?

Working up on the ski field in patrol, being out in the wild weather all the time alongside a close knit team was awesome.

 Team Opus member Annika Heatley practicing Wilderness Medicene in the Tongariro National Park, New Zealand supported by Opus Fresh Apparel Co

Wilderness medicine in action with Annika!

You certainly cover a wide range of activities with that, I’ve seen you up the mountain, in a fire truck and in an ambulance, is there one area/discipline you like the most?

They all have positives but my passion will always be being up on the mountain. Skiing and exploring up there with friends is my favourite thing!

What is something about your profession many people don’t realise is difficult?

Shift work makes knowing what day of the week it is impossible!

Favourite part of doing what you do?

Working alongside amazing humans and getting to give back to the community.

Team Opus member Annika Heatley working as a firefighter in Ohakune New Zealand for Ohakune Fire Rescue. Proudly supported by Opus Fresh Apparel Co.

Annika is also a valued member of the Ohakune Volunteer Fire Brigade.

I can’t leave the house without…. My OG opus wallet, hunter merino beanie and sunglasses.

I reach into my wardrobe, my favourite piece of Opus clothing is…. The Travel Wrap. It’s a game changer for comfort/travel. My pop top thermal I wear most days under my uniform and when trail running as it’s super lightweight, breathable and form fitting!

Annika Heatley from Team Opus wearing the Opus Fresh Apparel Co Travel Wrap out in the snow in Ohakune New Zealand.

Looking good in your Opus Fresh travel wrap Annika!

Queen of the world for a day, one thing I would change is… shift the focus to creating a more sustainable world.

My favourite thing about Opus Fresh is... the company values of being as eco conscious as possible, as well as being a locally owned and operated business that gives back to the community. The products are also high performance in all environments from blizzards to fires and look awesome with a sleek minimalist aesthetic.

My ultimate goal life is... helicopter or expedition medic, would also love to open a yoga studio one day. 

…and I wouldn’t be able to achieve it without my Ohakune friends, family, co-workers and the support of Janelle from Opus Fresh keeping me clothed and caffeinated for many a rescue xx.

 Annika Heatley from Team Opus, Opus Fresh Apparel Co enjoying the sunset from Mt Ruapehu, New Zealand.

Put very humbly but also a very important member of the community here in Ohakune. Thank you for your time Annika and we are super stoked to be a part of your journey! ~ Opus Fresh.


1 comment

  • susan smith

    Received the most beautiful travel wrap from Annika and Olly for Christmas and haven’t stopped wearing it since it arrived. It’s sooo soft and warm and I now can’t imagine leaving the house without it. Just gorgeous. I now know what to buy all my friends for presents this year.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published