Current favorite piece of gear? Why?
When it comes to gear I am all about versatility. I never want to lug around more than is necessary. That is why Helly Hansen’s ULLR Midlayer and Volkl’s Confession have quickly become my favorites! I wear the ULLR Midlayer all the time- it’s perfect for layering regardless of weather or activity because its LIFA baselayer technology keeps me dry and warm no matter the temperature. Plus it's designed as a cute hoody so it transitions seamlessly from the mountains to the city- no need for a change of clothes, which has bailed me out more than once! The Confession puts together all the things I want in a ski- playful, powerful, and stable. With a 117mm waist it is deemed a big mountain powder ski, but with the rockered tip and tail with a little camber underfoot and a part metal construction, this ski carves on the groomers and plows through the crud on the days when we aren't blessed with freshies! A full quiver in one ski.
How do you like spending your down days?
Eating a great meal followed by reading a great book.
Fondest memory from learning to ski or ride?
Goofy (yes, the beloved Disney character- he must have been the ski school mascot) tried to carry my skis after my first lesson. I vividly remember twisting away and vehemently telling him, “I can do it MYSELF!” Poor guy. I was probably four, maybe five and he was just trying to help. But I recall feeling so tough. A super empowered skier chick before I could even turn!
Do you have any hidden talents?
I can talk. A lot. But I fear that isn't very hidden.
What would your superpower be?
To be absolutely fluent in every language across the universe (reserving the right to speak with aliens). Think how amazing it would be to intimately communicate with every person, every culture in the world! I could be a part of so much growth and so much progress. It would be magnificent.
What career accomplishment are you most proud of?
I'm so lucky that I've been able to share my love of skiing with so many over the years via ski racing, the Olympics, and freeriding. What I believe I am most proud of though is inspiring people to be 100% themselves. Too often people try to be something they're not or are told to be someone different than who they are. My proudest moments are when I'm told I encouraged a person to be their authentic self. It's just the best.
Any pre-riding or skiing rituals or superstitions?
My only superstition is not to have a superstition. For example, if I start to notice that my best performances/results have been happening when I wear one pair of socks, I deliberately switch it up immediately. The power is only in your perception and I choose not to partake. Preparation, on the other hand, is not a ritual or superstition - it is a requirement and mandatory when it comes to skiing, especially in the backcountry.
Do you have any pets? What are their names?
Unfortunately, no - too much travel. However, I dream of having a silly looking dog someday that I shall name Dignan.
Can you speak any other languages? What other languages would you like to learn?
Ha- to reference my earlier answer, I would LOVE to speak multiple languages, but alas, I only am proficient in English. I can get by in German, but it is pretty rough and never fails to get a lot of laughs from locals when I employ it! I am working on my multi-lingual pipe dreams though- I can say, "Hi, How are you?" in nine different languages currently and hope to learn more.
What is your biggest goal/something you hope to achieve in your ski career?
To continue skiing, for the rest of my days. I want to be a super eccentric, quick to cackle, often times inappropriate old lady that still skis at 95, cloaked in interesting anecdotes and tall tales- whether they are true or not is all part of the wrinkly mystique. I really hope to achieve that.