Saturday, February 9, 2008


I was looking for something to do tonight and remembered a movie that I read about in some local magazine or newspaper. It was called "Steep" and is a documentary that traces the legacy of extreme skiing from its early pioneers to the daredevils of today. The tagline of the movie, which I really like, is "Without risk... There is no adventure." Once I remembered the name of the movie I checked out their official website and saw that the only place it was being shown in Ohio besides Cincinnati was the Solon Cinemas. So, I called up my friend Steve to see if he wanted to go and after he agreed we decided to meet up for the 10:20 pm show.

From the start of the film I could tell this was going to be a good one. It started off with a discussion of the sport from one of the country's greatest adventure skiiers, Bill Briggs. He was the first to ever ski the Grand Teton on June 16, 1971. In the film he is older now and it was very interesting to hear him speak about his desire and passion for adventure. There are a ton of good motivating quotes throughout this film.

As the movie went on more first hand stories were offered by other top adventure skiiers. This is a great film to see in the theatre if you get a chance to see it, with all the terrific scenery and jaw dropping views. I was really amazed at the enormous mountains that these guys went down. They even showed one guy towards the end of the movie that wears a parchuate on his back so that when he comes to a section that is a sheer dropoff he can just jump off the mountain, do flips in the air, and then release his chute to land.

Being a trail runner I can really appreciate the ambition that these guys have to do what they love to do. Even if this sport does come close to being suicidal, at least they are enjoying themselves and living life to the fullest because you never know what day might be your last. One guy says it best - "Some people die in car accidents and others die falling down mountains. I'd like to think that dying in a car accident is more painful." The amazing thing is that these people are willing to exchange that immediate thrill for the high chance of losing their life.

Ironically, after leaving the movie theatre there was a major snow squall passing through the area along with much colder temperatures. The closer I got home the worse the roads were getting and I was surprised how fast the roads went from being clear and wet, to being completely snow covered and near white-out conditions. The snow was coming down so hard that there was even a flash of lightening followed by some thunder. After seeing this movie though, I thought to myself... hey, it's not that bad. At least I'm not at the top of a 14,000 ft. mountain in Alaska waiting to fly downhill on a pair of skis!

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