If you ever wonder how I got into the world of skiing and sports, it all goes back to my own education and the great teachers and coaches that inspired me.

Pine Cobble School: Sue Wells, now head of school, taught me the game of lacrosse and field hockey

CVA my hometown ski academy, got my first real taste of alpine competition here. Surely a great family. We had 9 in my 9th grade class and I was the only girl. Hometown school to Bode Miller and many others!

Holderness School– Simply an amazing place to live and learn. It was here that I discovered my passsion for the outdoors and furthered my passion for sports and adventuring around the world. Under the teaching and coaching of current Head of School, Phil Peck, I discovered nordic skiing, hiking and camping, as well as my interest in Asian Studies and my first adventures to the other side of the world, China. It was Phil who inspired me, along with my dad, to go to Dartmouth College and pursue my nordic skiing further. This place is very special to me and the enviroment it creates for a student. It is not many places in this world where you can have top academics, an amazing community of teachers and students and sports with a top notch ski program. Also at Holderness I discovered my passion for the arts and my own love of art. The Art program at Holdernes allowed my to grow and explore , express and experiement in multi media art forms.

Dartmouth College– For me, a perfect choice for University. I often say how much I would love to go back there  Ah…university, you don’t know you have it so good when you are there. At Dartmouth, the community of friends I made was amazing. Each and every person there is amazing in their own way. The Ski team, under the coaching of Cami Thompson and Ruff Patterson (still there today) was a huge family for me and certainly gave me the inspiration to take it to another level later in life.   Also I Dartmouth, I discovered climbing with the Mountaineerin Club DMC. Here, was also a family away from home, we shared and learned the ropes together taking trips all over the country. The DMC and the Dartmouth Outing Club is an amazing part of this college. Surely I would not have taken certain paths if it was not for the DMC. A recent book, titled, A Passion For Skiing- The History of Skiing at Dartmouth, speaks about the spirit and history of skiing and Dartmouth. You can find this book here. You will also find many sections on me in the book . It speaks about the passion I had for skiing and mountaineering and how it led to, my ski mountaineering passion later in life. Art and expressing myself though art was important to me. At Darmouth the art program allowed me to learn and love new types of media. I immediately took to sculpture, wood sculpture first, under the teaching of Fumyo Yoshimura and John Lee, and then not long after I discovered metal sculpture. I was attracted to the concept of making something beautiful out of something hard and strong. This is similar to my approach to sports. I love sports but it is important to keep the beautiful, feminine side while doing the sports.

Also at Dartmouth, I nurtured my love of teaching. There I received my teaching degree in elementary education, but I was also cvery involving in teaching wilderness first aid and climbing. This led naturally to my next step.

National Outdoor Leadership School:  For me my passion for climbing and mountaineering was too strong to go straight to teaching in the indoor classroom. I wanted to work in the mountains, and climb and push myself to new challenges. My natural strength in climbing and my desire to learn more allowed my to become involved in NOLS. The community at NOLS became my next family in life .There I met a world of amazing people and also had many adventures world wide. It was at NOLS that I became an experienced climber and mountaineer, participating on expeditions around the world. Here I learned about challenge of the body and the mind, natural elements of weather and the tough condiditions to get through mentally. Here has only enhanced my experience bag to combine all these for my career in ski mountaineering. I worked at NOLS full time in the field, living sometimes in the field, in a tent for 30 days and then between doing expeditions climbing and scaling new heights. Soon my draw of being in one place came back and I found myself teaching young children in the indoor classroom.  Surely NOLS has enabled me to have a global perspective, continuing to take the path not travelled by so oftern.

I think of my 6 year old, who learned to recite the Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening. I think of another poem by Frost,  The Road Not Taken, surely this poem speaks to our life and how we live it.

Robert Frost (1874–1963). Mountain Interval.  1920.
1. The Road Not Taken
TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
     

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