Current Residence: Alta, Utah|
Place of Birth: Hartford, CT
Date of Birth: December 16, 1966
AltaCam: When did you first show up in Alta and how did you know about this place?
I first visited alta in 1987, my sister was working for the Alf Engen ski school, it took only two days to be hooked for life. I moved here permanently in 1988 for Alta's 50th anniversary.
AltaCam: What was your first job in the canyon?
I started off as a ski tech at the Alta Peruvian Lodge and was managing the ski shop within two years. It is probably the smallest ski shop in the world, but the quality of our work attracts a lot of people.
AltaCam: You've taken some classic Avalanche photos in Alta over the years. What controlled Avalanche (that you witnessed/photographed) stands out in your mind the most? What natural slide stands out??
The most memorable controlled avalanche occurred in the mid-1990s when I witnessed the Peruvian being hit. At first we thought there was a helicopter landing on the building, but then we saw snow and old Watsons’ snow cats bouncing off the lodge and flying into the back yard. I spent the rest of the day shoveling out the five rooms that got filled with snow. The most memorable natural slide has to be when Scotties Bowl slid in 2005. Standing on top of the hundreds of trees that were uprooted and broken in the slide really made me feel small and vulnerable. My touring decisions are more cautious these days.
AltaCam: We've seen you walking around with a Ski Patrol jacket lately. What's that all about?
I am on call for Avy control. It is an awesome opportunity for hands on snow safety experience, learning from the most respected ski patrol in the industry.
AltaCam: There's a hot topic circulating around several ski forums including AltaCam now about Heli Skiing in the Wasatch. What's your opinion on that? And how about WPG throwing bombs in the backcountry?
I am Pro-Heli. They are often the first responders assisting in back country search and rescues, and also get called to assist with control work during major snow events to help protect the road, town of Alta, and Snowbird. As far as bombs in the back country, I have not read the forums, but I am sure it is not their intent to harm anyone or ruin the slopes. If R.E.I. sold hand charges in addition to avalanche transceivers, would they still be complaining? Or would they be stuffing their pockets!
AltaCam: Describe your all-time most memorable Alta experience. Just pick one!
I would have to say the last ten years living in the round house has been memorable. From hanging out with the moose family in the summer to skiing Patsey Marley to the deck in the winter. Many good times!