Should Professional Skiers Be Climate Lobbyists?

Amie Engerbretson, 31, began snowboarding for the digital camera on the age of 4, scoring the quilt of a Squaw Valley brochure. Her father, photographer Jeff Engerbretson, had Amie at age 20, deep into his professional snowboarding profession. He taught her a love of teamwork, communication, and how you can create one thing from snowboarding she will be able to share. Amie raced on the Squaw Valley ski crew close to her residence in Truckee, California, till she determined to cease racing to pursue ballet.

After a 12 months and a half on the College of Arizona, Engerbretson moved to Chicago at age 20 to earn a level in media administration at Columbia School. Taking time far-off from snowboarding gave her possession over the selection to come back again to the mountains.

After the trauma of two avalanche incidents, a full burial within the Alta backcountry in 2013 and one other incident only a month later in Crystal (she was not buried, however injured her knee), Engerbretson centered on regaining management, improved her backcountry information, and landed components in 4 Warren Miller movies, together with this season’s 70th anniversary movie Timeless. Amie says she turned a nook final season, readying herself to ski greater, badder terrain, and promote the ladies who ski it along with her. —Interview by Jake Stern

Amie Engerbretson. Donner Summit, California. Photograph: Courtesy of Jeff Engerbretson/POWDER Journal

I’ve a humorous relationship with targets. In highschool they have been tremendous particular, I’d get in trenches and burrow towards that purpose, get tunnel imaginative and prescient and miss different alternatives.

A part of the persona of being knowledgeable athlete is being insatiable. You ought to be doing extra, must be going tougher. The tradition promotes that perspective.

I’ve been coping with the trauma of these two massive avalanches for 4 or 5 years. I went to remedy and trauma counseling. I labored exhausting to determine what was essentially the most traumatic component of the occasion—the lack of management. Final 12 months I used to be in a position to eat breakfast on ski mornings once more, which was an enormous victory.

My dad and I used to go to conventions and train seminars on swing dancing aerials. I used to be as soon as ejected from the Cowboy bar in Jackson for doing aerials.

Concerning gender, the ski trade has come leaps and bounds; girls are getting forged in ski options, we’re designing gear and gear that’s actually women-specific. In the end, it’s an trade that’s nonetheless pushed by males. It’s gotten so a lot better, although. We’re on a very good part of the wave.

I don’t assume knowledgeable athlete has a duty to be an activist. I’m one factor; I’m not a thinker, nutritionist, a politician. Each single particular person on the planet has the duty to work for his or her neighborhood. But it surely’s bizarre to anticipate athletes to be activists simply due to their variety of followers.

After I went to Washington, D.C. to advocate on behalf of POW, it wasn’t as a pro-skier, it was as a neighborhood member of Truckee. Politicians aren’t untouchable, they’ve ears. With the monetary energy of the outside trade, they should pay attention.

Snickers bars have roughly the identical dietary worth as power bars, however style means higher. I maintain one tucked into my lengthy johns whereas skinning. A heat Snickers bar earlier than you drop in is the perfect feeling on this planet.

Murren, Switzerland. Photograph: Courtesy of Jeff Engerbretson/POWDER Journal


This story initially appeared within the November 2019 (48.2) problem of POWDER Magazine and was republished with permission.

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