It definitely goes back to my ski lessons when I was younger. The reward of the class was going to the glades. So automatically, I always associated "getting off the slopes" as the exciting part of the day. Props to the instructors for dragging us around the mountain and getting us out of the snow no matter what position we were in. After that, naturally, I started following the snowstorms to hunt for the best ski conditions and when touring became available, I equipped myself to be able to discover even more new terrain. I did a little freeskiing, and a little coaching with Team OFR through it all.
The great place of creativity in "choosing your line", the magical effect that the weather can have, the feeling of freedom on your skis, the social :)In the end, no matter what the conditions are (except for a few extreme cases haha), there are ways to have fun in the mountains. But especially when there is a lot of snow...
Don't minimize the importance of mastering basic skills - you're never too old to take ski/snow lessons. And the importance of having a good buddy-buddy: someone you have fun riding with, someone who makes you feel comfortable with your pace and makes sure you are always there (safety).
I was in grade 4 when I started snowboarding, then as a teenager the sport took up a lot of space in my life. At 19 I did a season in the west and that's where I had the chance to push freeride mostly. I competed, taught and coached in different events and with many different clientele, but mostly for the female community.
Make the powder rise!
Go for the edges of the trail, don't be afraid to go outside the "limits" while staying safe! The fun often happens outside the corduroy on a mountain.
I've been going into the glades and off-piste at ski resorts since I was in high school, but I started touring about 10 years ago. It's my friend Antoine who made me try it and it was love at first sight as they say. I bought my first splitboard and started to ride at Mont Orford. I didn't know anyone who had one yet, so during my first seasons, I was alone. Also, I've always been terrible at managing my equipment so I learned the hard way. Especially since there was little equipment back then (old news here).
I became more comfortable. I discovered new trails. I toured the mountainous terrain in the Eastern Townships. I wanted to do more and be more challenged. I did some trips to Western Canada, a season in Japan, and then I got pregnant the first time. Then a second time. I had less time to do it, but when the opportunity presents itself, it is happiness! Rain or shine, if it's my time, I'm in!
Honestly, I love everything about freeriding, but I have to admit that I have a soft spot for fresh snow. I love having to work to win the run, having to look for the path, having to study the terrain. I like the challenge that each outing represents. I love the scenery. It's an adrenaline sport, but I like to get lost in my thoughts and contemplate the horizon. I love stumbling upon someone (or a moose) in the middle of the woods. I like the silence. I like it when my heart beats fast before I start. This sport makes me feel alive and I like that.
To respect its rhythm.
I love to venture between the trees to find the "fresh" snow. It's been 6 years since I stopped racing to focus on mountain travel. Freeriding brings together my passion for travel and skiing.
Freedom of expression. In my opinion, it is possible to identify a rider by his style. The line you choose and the passion you have for the sport is definitely evident during a run.
Ski with people who are passionate about this discipline. They will be able to help you discover some hidden corners of the mountain, but above all, make it much less intimidating :)
Since I started skiing, I have always loved the glades and the little jumps on the slopes, but it was at the age of 14-15 that I fell in love with freeriding! At the time, it was mostly freestyle that got me excited: the jumps, the rails, and even the competitions, I loved the adrenaline it gave me and the whole lifestyle surrounding the sport ;)
Skiing with friends 🤍 For me, the phrase: "no friends on powder days" doesn't make sense, it's more like: "Only best friends on powder days" 🤍. There's nothing better than "shredding powder" side by side with your best riding partners (except maybe "shredding powder" with your friends... ON TRAVEL!).
Go gradually: one small jump, one hike, one storm, one trip at a time.
I started getting interested in rails and jumps as soon as I could master my slalom. I was 14 or 15 years old. Before that I had skied a few times with my dad and the transition to snowboarding was not a question for me. The transition to freeride came naturally with travel, time and the arrival of touring.
I was motivated by a secret dream to be sponsored by Illusion Boardshop. This is special for me because much later I became one of their Freeride ambassadors.
Another of my motivations was the TEAM OFR group that was formed. This is the Freestyle and Freeride team of Mont Orford. I became a coach and then when I graduated as a chiropractor my new role was to become the leader and instigator of their health support program for athletes. I love following them in the snowpark and in the woods!
What I really like is the friendly and creative aspect. You can really incorporate your own style and desires into your run. Plus, it requires just enough concentration to not think about anything else. Of course, I won't deny that my adrenaline-seeking side has always found something to do with it.
That's a great question. Join a women's group that does it and gradually try it. It's interesting to take a freestyle course to start. Rails and jumps are scary, but once you get to the mountains, the knowledge you gain in freestyle allows you to be more agile in freeride and ultimately have less fear and more fun!