There are occasions in life we never forget. We always remember the big moments, such as learning to ride a bicycle or catching the first fish. These are events that shape our lives and define our character. Some "firsts" are more memorable than others. While I cannot recall the first apple pie I baked, I remember the first time I skied. It was a beginning that eventually led to who I am today.
Skiing among giants | Photo - Josef Lerch
It was at the Bald Hill in Jasper National Park. I was six and my dad got mad at me because I was slow. Apparently I found the 20 km march tiring - surprising isn't it?
Why can't I just go to hockey practice like a normal kid? | Photo - Rafal Kazmierczak
I never was a frequent resort skier and always preferred to ski off-piste. My dad and I would make our own "private" ski trails up creeks to the alpine. Finding bowls and glades to ski and camp in. During Christmas Break, while most of my classmates were at home and eating turkey at the dinning room table, we were cooking steaks over a fire, high-up in the mountains and getting ready to ski a couple laps. Even if it was -40. When winter arrives, I know little else then a life of skiing.
Looks like a good place to camp | Photo - Liam Harrap
I've skied around the world, such as the United States, Iceland, Norway, and Greenland. I've skied in 24 hours of darkness and 24 hours of sunshine. I've skied across oceans. For me, skiing was a way to get from A to B.
Skiing on the Arctic Ocean | Photo - Liam Harrap
I've even skied on no-snow at all.
Eventually we'll hit snow. We must! | Photo - Liam Harrap
Skiing always made sense. I've never understood how people could snow shoe. I mean, what's the point? Where's the pay-off? Walking is for summer time.
Skis take you to amazing sights | Photo - Liam Harrap
Although I've skied most of my life, I'm not great. I have little form, grace, or style. I just point my skis downhill, hope for the best, and enjoy the ride. And if I fall, it isn't the end of the world. It's actually one of the better places to fall, as you're surrounded by a fluffy white cushion. Sometime's it's even enjoyable.
This isn't one of those times | Photo - Liam Harrap
In my 20 years of skiing, there's one place that stands out. The coastal mountains of northern British Columbia. The snow pack is deep, yet feathery and buttery smooth. The snow in the Canadian Rockies, Iceland, Norway, and Greenland doesn't compare. There, it can be windblown, crusty, or non-existent. At Last Frontier Heliskiing, an average day is equivalent to the best-day-of-your-life in Jasper, where I grew up skiing. If you really want to experience skiing, come to Last Frontier Heliskiing. You won't be disappointed.
Pure happiness | Photo - Reuben Krabbe
In the end, I ski because I know little else. For me, it's more than a hobby. It's a lifestyle. It's me.
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