Inside Eye of the Condor with La Parva's Rodrigo Medina

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Eye of the Condor, a unique ski film and photo contest hosted by the Chilean resort, Ski La Parva, heads into its third and final year August 2 through August 9. We reached out to Rodrigo Medina, the event's visionary and leader extraordinaire, for insight into what to expect.

Take it away Rodweiler!

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What makes you the head honcho at La Parva?

Currently I work as the Director of Sales and Marketing. My role is to lead our team in order to come up with all these crazy ideas that we have, and make them a reality, and along the way increase sales and accomplish the goals that the General Manager sets, which are some very high goals. Our idea is to always be innovating. It doesn’t matter that we’re a small ski resort in a distant corner of the world. We’re small, but we have big dreams.

How long have you been with La Parva?

Six years, with a one-and-a-half year break while I was living in Salt Lake City.

Tell us about Eye of the Condor—what is it all about?

It started when I got back from living in the USA. I had the idea of doing an event that would be different from typical ski events. After talking with Adam Clark, he gave me the idea of doing a photography event. I took it to the team, we proposed a bunch of crazy ideas and voilà, Eye of the Condor was born, though we didn’t 100% know what lay ahead of us. After three years now we know that Eye of the Condor is a great celebration of the sport, and that what it does through a contest is show the world, through videos and photos, the experiences and the creativity of the teams in one of the most wonderful places for skiing of the planet, the Chilean Andes, and more specifically, La Parva.

What teams are coming to EOTC 3?

I am not at liberty to say just yet, as we are still in the process of finalizing the teams. I can say, however, that we this is the best group of competitors that we’ve ever hosted and will undoubtedly be the best EOTC yet.

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Walk us through a day in life of a team at EOTC?

There’s never really a standard day at Eye of the Condor. Sometimes competitors get up super early to get the morning light against a backdrop of Santiago, other times they stay up really late shooting with lights and flashes—it all really depends on what sort of vision the team has for their film and portfolio.

What are the teams competing for?

We have cash prizes for the winning teams in both the photo and video categories. While judging is based on overall impression, judges consider style, creativity and action in their decision. The winning entries have always had a great mix of all three.

Now in it's third year, what will make this the best EOTC yet?

Each EOTC has been special and unique, but I think that this year will be the best since the event has already grown, and the teams that come will want to win. That will make each team do its best to produce the best material. That, and all the love that we are putting into the event, will make it the best.

What are you personally looking forward to at EOTC 3?

I always have the opportunity to be the first to see the videos, even before the judges (don't tell anyone) and that moment is incredible for me. I really get excited to see the work and passion that the teams put into showing La Parva to the world.

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We hear you are a wicked good karaoke singer, what's your favorite song to sing?

What you guys don’t know is that Elvis is my wingman, so anything by Elvis is my favorite.

How did you get the nickname "Rodweiler"?

Hahahaha. It was in law school, when the teacher asked questions and I didn’t really know the answer, I fought like a Rottweiler dog until he got tired and gave in. Since then the nickname has taken on new meanings, but you have to come to La Parva to find out what they are.

If you could pick a favorite moment from EOTC 1 and EOTC 2 what would be it?

From EOTC1, definitely the opening event when I saw that some really big industry names were present, like Seth Morrison, JT Holmes, Sean Petit, Pep Fujas, Andy Mahre, Julian Carr, Rachael Burks, Ingrid Backstrom, Tanner Rainville, Sherry McConkey and Adam Clark—I realized that we’d pulled it off.

And from EOTC2, it would have to be seeing the faces of the competitors as they came up out of the floor on a lift with lights and smoke for the ceremony on the final night. They really were rock stars.

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What makes EOTC so unique?

At EOTC all we want to do is share our passion for skiing with the world! The event is the best in the universe because everyone there shares a unique spirit, a friendship and camaraderie that remind us why we love to travel the world with a pair of skis beneath our feet.

Anything else you'd like to add?

Yes, that all this is only possible because of a team effort and everyone that’s believed in us and works or has worked for the event. So, thanks to Mike Reff, Griffin Post, Oso Herreros, Fenner, Johanna Fernandez, Dani and Tom Winter.

And my pro friends who have always believed in me: JT Holmes, Julian Carr, Ingrid Bäckström, Drew Stoecklein, Sherry McConkey, Adam Clark, Rachael Burks, Alex Taran, and all those who live and enjoy La Parva.

All you need to know and more about EOTC 3:

EYE OF THE CONDOR 3 -IF3 from La Parva on Vimeo

Photos courtesy of Ski La Parva

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