Alex Giesbrecht was the last ski patroller standing in the mountain safety team’s competition to determine who would represent them at Wrangle the Chute, and is excited to compete in the local big mountain competition later this month.
The Calgary native has worked as a patroller at Kicking Horse for six years now, meaning his experience should pay off at Wrangle, despite the fact that he hasn’t been able to practice on the chutes of late because of poor conditions.
“Day one goes on T1 south and that’s pretty much my favourite run on the hill,” Giesbrecht said.
Giesbrecht spends his summers in Canmore running a landscape business but spends the bulk of his winter on skis in Golden and area, whether it’s for work or for pleasure.
The idea of working at Kicking Horse as a patroller is what brought him to Golden in the first place.
“I decided I wanted to ski patrol and I asked around and talked to a bunch of friends and this sounded like the best place to be a patroller, and it is,” he said.
He grew up strapped into skis and recalls getting his start in racing at Fortress Mountain.
His goals heading into Wrangle, which will be his first competitive free ski competition in what he estimates to be eight or nine years, are fairly simple.
“I’m really just looking to represent Kicking Horse Mountain Safety and the Stinger Crew,” Giesbrecht said of his colleagues at work and the group of friends he skies the backcountry with on his days off.
Naturally, Giesbrecht has felt some friendly pressure from his fellow patrollers as he gets ready to represent them.
“For sure (there’s some pressure),” he laughed. “There’s an expectation of going for it anyway.”
Wrangle the Chute will get underway on Mar. 26 and will feature skiers and riders battling for IFSA and FWQ points from across Western Canada.