Age: 33 | Height 5’10” | Weight: 185 lbs | Years Skiing: 31 | Current Residence: Golden, Colorado
I grew up in Seattle, and from the time I could walk through middle school, I spent most winter weekends at Crystal Mountain, WA, in ski school, with a few long weekend trips to Whistler, BC, sprinkled in.
My mom was the ski school supervisor, my dad would teach on occasion, too, and before I was born, they were both on the K2 Freestyle team back in the 70’s.
Needless to say, I grew up skiing a lot of moguls.
After high school, I left Seattle to pursue sunnier weather in Southern California. I didn’t ski much during this time, but then I moved to Denver and traded the ocean for the mountains.
I began spending more and more time skiing, and over the last 5 years, I’ve averaged about 80 days a season (from November through May).
When I ski, I seem to have a need for speed, so you won’t find me searching for stashes in tight trees very often. You will, however, find me smashing through cut up snow in more open terrain, and seeking out features to boost off. And once mid-winter is well underway, I spend a decent amount of my ski days in the local sidecountry, seeking out untracked lines in the trees, with multiple airs and cliffs.
You’ll most often find me skiing in the resort on a weekday powder day, or when it hasn’t snowed in awhile and high winds have buffed out the alpine into chalky, edgeable snow. Then as temperatures warm up in spring, I spend more time in the backcountry skiing lines that wouldn’t be smart to ski in a typical Colorado snowpack in mid-winter.
And with all that said, I still also love a good spring slush bump run at the resort.
I generally prefer damp, stiff skis with long turn radii that hold their line at higher speeds in denser snow, and tend to release out of a carve in a smooth fashion. For resort skiing, my go-to skis have been the 190 cm (metal) Volkl Katana and the 183 cm Head Monster m103. In the sidecountry or for shorter backcountry laps, I’ve been skiing the PM Gear Kusala Carbon 186cm (basically a lighter and stiffer 4FRNT Renegade). On longer days in the backcountry, an older Down Skis Countdown 4 for firm snow, and a Down 102L for powder. And when I want to get my mogul skiing on, I grab a pair of old Head Monster m82 183cm.
Outside of ski season, I’ve found that smashing through rocks and rutted trails on a mountain bike satisfies the cravings for speed and that ‘out-of-control but in-control’ feeling that I get when skiing through cut-up snow. Over the last three years, I’ve spent the majority of my summer and fall months mountain biking and camping, with an occasional backpacking or rock climbing trip thrown in. Recently, I’ve spent more time downhilling and hitting jumps and drops on my bike, but am a bit reluctant to go at it on a regular basis since rocks aren’t as soft as snow. I ride a Santa Cruz Nomad2 with a coil fork and shock (and PUSH link), and a Yeti ASR5 on more cross-country-oriented trails.