Jérémie Heitz

JÉrémie Heitz FINDS His Own Speed

Standing atop the perfect pyramid of Ober Gabelhorn, 13,330 feet above sea level, Jérémie Heitz musters a shallow breath. The face looks steep—fall-off-the-Earth steep. A 55-five-degree pitch careening toward the valley basin. One of the Alps’ most striking peaks is more a sheer triangular wall than a freeride line, but Heitz is locked in. He waves his arms to the cameras and drops. There are no hop turns, just fast and fluid GS arcs—straight down. He muscles his skis through humid spring snowpack, the only snow that will truly stick to a face like this. Where a traditional steep skier takes eight turns, Heitz makes one. Quads hammering, he pushes down the throttle, hurtling toward
the world below.

During the last decade, the 31-year-old Swiss freeskier has pioneered an impossible brand of high-speed big mountain skiing, turning some of the Alps’ most consequential faces into adrenaline-thumping racecourses. It’s skiing at its most spectacular—and its most brutal. One misplaced edge or miscalculated turn and the story suddenly reads tragic. But Heitz has found progression at speed, rewriting the history of steep skiing at more than 60 miles per hour. The former racer and Freeride World Tour competitor revolutionized big mountain skiing with his steep skiing documentary La Liste in 2016 and is on pace to do it again this year with a second high-octane film project. Forged from the cradle of steep skiing in the Swiss Alps, Heitz combines meticulous planning and preparation with a humble-yet-infallible mental strength, feverishly reimagining the lines laid down by his heroes nearly a half century ago… 

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