Featured Athlete: JT Holmes
Name a person who inspires you to be a better skier?
Shane McConkey (deceased) Timy Dutton (deceased) Jeff Engergretson (alive and working for WME)
Buy an airplane, payoff my families debts, then helicopter ski, or maybe purchase my own ski resort.
Breakfast sandwich from Wildflour Baking Company in Squaw Valley's Olympic House
KT-22 at Squaw Valley
Blitzed by Norman Ohler
James Bond because he uses clever pieces of gear to outwit his opponents with a confident swagger.
Highlight memory from filming with WME for this year's film?
Speedriding at Solitude right off the chairlift as well as in their nearly endless lift acccessed backcountry.
Gear you are loving right now, on or off the ski slopes, and why?
Alps & Meters Patrol knit sweater and their Alpine WInter Trouser. Both are warm, breathable and very stylish. I like their stuff because of it's comfort and because I look different than anyone else on the mountain. I get compliments on my attire all day!
Red Bull's Wings For Life. They raise money for spinal cord injury research.
It was nice to stay at home and ski Squaw Valley rather than travel a bunch. COVID travel bans definitely had their silver linings.What is your vision for the future of skiing?
What is your vision for the future of skiing & snowboarding?
I would like to see North American skiers and riders skiing with parachutes inbounds just like they do throughout Europe and Scandinavia. I have seen families of four with kids 11 and 14 speedriding like it is no big deal. In fact, it is not a difficult activity and it should not have the stigma of an extreme sport.
What do you do to calm your butterflies before a big line/moment?
Take slow deep breaths, then exhale with my lips softly closed but relaxed. This makes that horse like sound and flappy lip movement. If you are too tense to flap your lips, you should take a moment to calm down and push the fear aside.
That is a tough one but it is hard to beat Hot Dog: The Movie. It is hilarious and captures the vibe of early days Squaw Valley freestyle skiing.
What makes the Warren Miller films different than other films you have done?
The cool thing about the Warren Miller program is the tours. Just the fact that it’s still based around having everybody in one room and you feel that energy and pre-season ski stoke, and that just really fires me up, to go and shoot stuff that I know is going to get people off their seats and just stoked.
So you have spent some time speed riding. Is it one of your favorite ways to ski?
Speed riding is adding a fourth dimension to skiing. Suddenly you're able to ski all sorts of places that otherwise aren't available, and you do that by flying over the sections that are un-skiable or even just undesirable to ski, and what that does is it allows you to just ski the highest quality ski experience, and then you're using the wind as transportation to the next high quality ski experience. It's almost gluttonous with the amount of fresh tracks we're able to get and the amount of fun we're able to have.
It's a pretty innovative way to ski, what motivates you to keep innovating?
First of all, it's just fun. Second, doing something new that is really uncommonly done or never done before, that adds kind of an exploration element to it where you feel like you're figuring something out and conquering new territory and it really kind of triggers a new type of motivation. You brainstorm something interesting to do and then you figure out what toys you need to bring or develop in order to make it possible and then when you do complete it, it's not only fun but also an accomplishment feeling. That's really what motivates me.
Anything you would say to someone looking to give speed riding a go?
Everybody needs to try speed riding. Put it on the bucket list and then scratch it off the bucket list and put it on the now list, because it’s just so dang fun. I know a lot about having fun - I'm an expert at having fun, and this is really fun. And it’s not that hard.