freeskier chris benchetler makes powder moves
posted: February 24, 2014
For a guy who has helped to define the modern era of freeskiing, big mountain and backcountry skier Chris Benchetler is really into surfing. Just ask him. In fact, you don’t need to dig too far beneath the surface to discover that the Mammoth, California-based, 27-year-old pro skier and lululemon elite ambassador is super far from being a one-trick pony. A passionate artist and dedicated husband (his wife is pro snowboarder Kimmy Fasani), he also loves to mountain bike, road cycle and rock climb and co-owns an organic bakery. Has he piqued your interest yet? He did ours, so we asked him a few more questions.
What’s the song most played on your iPod?
Led Zeppelin’s “When The Levee Breaks.”
Where’s your dream vacation or trip?
Definitely a boat trip in Indonesia. Surf the Mentawais with a crew of friends and good people, hopefully score waves and get barreled often.
Beer or scotch? Favourite brand?
Hmmm. I’d say beer to due to the diversity. I’m actually a big fan of darker beers, stouts and things. [I’m] a bit of a beer snob in terms of the quality, but no particular brand has me hooked.
What are your must have apps?
Instagram. GoPro. Snapseed. Sudoku.
What do you eat the night before competition / big day ahead?
A lot of healthy food. Nothing changes from day to day in my eating habits (other than being forced on the road). I just like good healthy food.
Best book you ever read?
Actually, midway through right now and am super hooked: Welcome To Paradise, Now Go To Hell.
What was your favourite class at school?
Art. I’ve just always been drawn—pun intended—to the more creative classes with less structure.
All-time favourite memory?
Wow. So many… Probably have to go with my wedding day.
Worst injury ever?
Also so many… ha. I guess femur.
All-time favourite place to ski?
For resort, definitely Mammoth. For backcountry, definitely B.C.
You’d never leave home without…
Some Clif Bars to get me through whatever adventure lies ahead.
Your art is inspired by your travels. Where does art show up in your life?
Art is all around me. Tree formations, mountains, waves, rocks, skiing, etc.…
Can you tell us about the top sheet you’re doing for Atomic skis?
Certainly. It’s the sixth generation. Quite possibly my favourite one yet. It’s a mountain full of spine lines dripping into a barreling wave, and flipped back to a wave into mountains, followed by some nebula hits in the tip and tail; totem pole trees surrounding an eyeball and logo. And all the line drawings are laid over a matte black wood grain look.
If you weren’t a freestyle skier, you’d be…
Hard telling. Hopefully the same person, maximizing life’s journey, activities, and travel.
Freestyle mogul skier Heather McPhie, another of our elite ambassadors, came late to moguls skiing, but she’s seriously made up for lost time. Read her story.