Over the course of the past year I've had the privilege to get to know and hang out with pro skier Rebecca Selig. Exchanging stories with Rebecca on world travels and ski excursions is nothing short of inspirational. Discussions range from "the industry," epic pow days, life struggles, and the ultimate high that is brought on by being in the mountains and taking in all that surrounds you.
As a skier, these are the types of conversations that get you amped in the middle of July for snow.
Just shortly before the Inspired Media Tour Rebecca made mention that her and the Icey Ladies were getting stoked on the opportunity to go back to Chile to compete in the Eye of the Condor III (EOTC). The EOTC is an invite-only event in Chile that, a year ago, offered up life-changing experiences for a group of female skiers including Annelise Loevlie, Alex Taran, Kaylin Richardson and Rebecca Selig.
Hearing of this opportunity I wanted to know more. Rebecca explained to me that they setup a Kickstarter Fund to obtain the additional coin needed to make the trek. But this post isn't just about getting funding… no, it's about the sport, the mountains and positive experiences. A couple of recent discussions sparked ideas about getting female atheletes more involved in actionsports and really getting out there and doing your thing. Consider this the first post in a series of more to come on female athletes. Those pushing themselves to the next level and the experiences that come out of it.
What does this trip mean to you and the girls involved?
The trip is an invite-only comp that includes the best skiers in the world. A life changing event for me and all of us on so many different levels. Since we won last year, it's an honor to go back to represent ourselves and our sponsors. I'm excited to reconnect with the team again and witness the beautiful Chilean culture – especially to ski in the Andes in August. We've been given an opportunity to go down there and win again!
Explain to us the the type of environment, vibe and experience it is to go, in August and shred in Chile?
Where do I begin? An overnight flight usually doesn't seem like a good way to start the trip. The first year I went down for a FWT event my luggage didn't even arrive. Given that and learning you had been robbed by a taxi driver, I say it was a scary feeling. Being alone and in another country is a scary feeling… Once you make it up to the mountains, I can honestly say it's the most welcoming experience with or without your friends. La Parva and the EOTC organizers will be meeting us at the airport and providing transportation for us – really rolling out the red carpet and honoring us with another safe, and great experience. A short stop at the market in Santiago to purchase what we will need for the next 5-days, it's all smiles and laughs up the bumpy dirt road to Valle Nevado to our perfect ski condo right beside the La Parva ski hill.
Once the first sunset hits, the mood of the athletes change. The excitement escalates and the reassurance that we all made the right decision to be together for such a fun event starts to set in! Again, the opportunity to ski with some of the best female skiers in the world, in the Andes in August is far to special to describe in words!
How can more women become involved in actionsports and show their aggressive side. Really take it to the next level and not be afraid?
For me, I had to make a decision and start competing. Ask yourself what you want. What are your goals? Are you willing to travel? Determine if you're more of a Big-mountain skier or a Park skier, then look up certain events or comps to get involved with. Reach out to anyone and everyone doing things you like or inspire to do and let them know because maybe they can help you do similar things.
When I decided to try and make this my profession a friend in the industry explained to me that skiing is the easy part.
Another words, getting referrals and getting involved any and every way will only help you. Spending time on taking great photos, working with videographers and channeling them properly will increase your chances of being seen and getting companies to look at you if you are interested in sponsorship opportunities. My first sponsor was a free pair of goggles that I wore so proudly! That's how it begins – unless you are good enough to take the podium at a highly exposed contest like X-Games or the Freeride World Tour, and having an invite which would be incredible. The grassroots events are great and will usually get you points towards making it to bigger events if you win! Keep showing up if you don't place well after the first event. They can be emotionally draining and your skills won't shine until you can get more comfortable or lucky enough to share your talents so practice with different terrain, different features, and in different places with different people. Stay positive and ski because you want to!
Video Credits: Sprout Films