The Start of Something Big

Hut-to-hut touring in Whistler’s Spearhead Range just got a lot closer to reality. Six years after a group of backcountry skiers and mountain climbers from Whistler and Vancouver first approached B.C. Parks with its vision of a high-alpine hut system, Parks has finally given its blessing to the Spearhead Huts Committee that will allow the … More »

Drone On

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Like newbies clogging the fall line, drones are seemingly everywhere these days. From real estate agents to biologists, the remote-control helicopters equipped with a video camera are making light work of heavy jobs in just about every profession, capturing a wicked bird’s-eye view. They’re a staple of ski films and now you can be the … More »

Whistler: A New Era

“We’re not as well known as we think we are.” When the Epic Pass was first introduced in 2008 offering unlimited skiing at five Vail resorts, I was on a powdery press trip there with a bunch of other ski hacks and briefly met Vail Resorts Inc. CEO Rob Katz at après-ski. Rather than bring … More »

A Facelift for Louise

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North America’s larger ski resorts are often thought of as cash-generating mechanisms for bloodless corporate interests, but in many cases they’re operated by individuals for whom the mountain is something deeply personal. by GEORGE KOCH in Winter 2016 issue Lake Louise, owned by Calgary entrepreneur and former mountain guide Charlie Locke and his family, is … More »

Larisa Yurkiw

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[edit. note: On May 11, 2016 Larisa Yurkiw announced her retirement from ski racing due to concerns about her surgically repaired knee.]   Any World Cup podium result is impressive, but for Canadian skier Larisa Yurkiw, two podium finishes so far this season have particular significance given her decision to ski as an independent athlete. … More »

Hucking for Gold

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How does one get to ski places like Vallnord-Arcalis (Andorra), Chamonix, Fieberbrunn (Austria), Haines and Verbier all in one season? Start by hucking yourself off a cliff a few thousand times, and then do it while smiling for the judges. Logan Pehota of Whistler (Pemberton actually and son of one of Canada’s first freeskiing stars, … More »

Terrain and Turn Shape

Turn Shape

Tip and Photos by John Schwirtlich Often when skiers drop into the deep, they make the same old turn regardless of the terrain steepness or snow conditions. But the pitch of a particular run as well as the conditions (whether it’s deep powder, hardpack or ice) should dictate your turn shape. Here, Mike Wiegele heli-ski guide … More »

Why Skis Turn

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You may find that I constantly harp on the idea of edging the ski to turn when it seems more intuitive to “turn” the skis to turn, but there is good reason for this. Modern skis for groomed slopes have a pronounced hourglass shape compared to skis of a few decades ago. Even backcountry skis … More »

Marie-Michèle Gagnon

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The Canadian members of the ladies’ ski team are inspiring role models and a marketer’s dream. Racking up podiums and top-10 results on the World Cup circuit this year, the girls are stepping out of the well-branded Americans’ and Europeans’ shadows. Alpine Canada’s Communications Manager Ashley Shantz said the team is making extra PR efforts … More »

A Celebration of Groomers

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Everyone knows it but few like to admit it: the largest group of skiers is also the least sexy—the on-piste gang. I had a pretty typical teenage skier bedroom growing up, with walls adorned in heroic posters of The Kaiser and Stenmark in between the Crazy Canucks. The inspiration racing had on all skiers back then … More »