Home Sweet Home: Words from Girdwood Local & Alyeska Athlete Elyse Saugstad

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Two weeks ago I found myself looking for a ticket up to AK- Girdwood was getting pounded by snow and the weather forecast indicated that blue, sunny skies were right around the corner. The anticipation of making a trip to Alaska in the spring is electrifying, just about every ski bum-enthusiast-pow seeker-mountain lover in the universe hopes to have the experience at least once in their life. And once that experience happens you’re hooked. If you grow up in Alaska the experience is truly no different. I consider myself a lucky person to have grown up in the Chugach Mountains calling Alyeska my home resort. As I have grown older with a catalogue of travels around the world seeking out new adventures in the mountains under my belt, I have only grown more enamored with a heightened sense of respect and awe for the mountains in AK, especially the ones that in my youth I fondly called my backyard.

 

The weather did indeed produce sunny skies with fresh snow. Unfortunately I was a day late in my arrival to Girdwood to get in on the preeminent 1-day only opening of Headwall. Bummer! Skiers understandably shredded the resort to pieces, leaving me in search of fresh snow in the backcountry. My purpose in Alaska this go around was more than to just enjoy my time at Alyeska, I came to town with the intentions of meeting up with Lynsey Dyer and JGS Concepts to film for the all-female ski movie, Pretty Faces. The blue skies held as well as the cold temperatures and thus good snow, making it possible to ski and film day after day. On one occasion we were able to get in the heli with CPG to work with Outside TV. What a glorious afternoon for Lynsey and I that was! It’s now ten days later, the weather has finally turned, and I am making my way back to the Lower 48. This April trip will be fondly remembered. Thanks Alyeska for the great times! I’ll see you next winter.

Spring Skiing at Alyeska with friends and family is one of my most favorite things to do in the world.

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A line up on West Crystal filming for Pretty Faces. photo cred: JGS Concepts

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Watching the heli fly away as I prep for my line in the Velvet Curtain. photo cred: Lynsey Dyer

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