In the Alps, history runs deep. Seventy-year-old men who pioneered classic lines still sleep in their cars to get first tracks. Four hundred year old stone buildings serve as temporary dwellings for visiting pros and dirtbags alike in search of a stripped-down ski experience in the vast mountains that dominate the skyline. Glacial vistas and twisting couloirs are accessed with a simple understanding that you are responsible for your own fate in these mountains. It is skiing without the training wheels–and with a strong understanding and respect for the mountains, the Alps can yield spectacular results.

I come from BFE, Ontario. When I feasted my eyes on the Swiss Alps for the first time, I was so blown away that I stayed. That was almost 40 years ago. All this time I’ve never stopped looking at them.

From Verbier, where I live, I can look up and see the Mt. Blanc massif every day from the middle of town. It’s a tightly knit section of peaks, side by side, forever changing in appearance depending on the day of the year, the time of day, and of course, the weather…

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