Before she discovered her talent for ski mountaineering, Kit lived and worked in the mountains near Telluride, Colorado, where she volunteered extensively with the San Miguel County Search and Rescue Team and often served as team leader for entire rescue operations
Kit first realized she wanted to ski the big stuff while standing atop a mountain in Sikkim, India, in 1998. Looking around at the majestic Himalayan peaks where so many others had come in search of life-changing moments, Kit had her own epiphany when she couldn’t shake one thought: Why didn’t she bring her skis? It was then she decided to focus on ski mountaineering and began refining her skills so that she could ski anything, anywhere in the world. And focus she did: she now has several first descents to her name, including the first descent of the Polish Glacier on Aconcagua and the first female ski descent of Vinson Massif in Antarctica. And when she’s not skiing down the world’s tallest peaks, Kit finds the time to take first place on the World Freeskiing Tour, as she did in 2004 and 2005.
Before she discovered her talent for ski mountaineering, Kit lived and worked in the mountains near Telluride, Colorado, where she volunteered extensively with the San Miguel County Search and Rescue Team and often served as team leader for entire rescue operations. She also worked for the Telluride Ski Resort as a professional ski patroller for two seasons, during which time she became a certified EMT and highly trained in technical and helicopter rescue. In addition to being an accomplished skier and ski mountaineer, Kit is an experienced rock climber and has recently added road and mountain bike racing to her summertime endeavors. She lives year-round in Teton Village, Wyoming, with her husband, Rob.
Upon Kit’s successful return from Mt. Everest in 2006, she created a nonprofit organization called Pursue Balance whose mission is to provide information, education, and grants to help people achieve balance in their lives. For more information about this ongoing project, visit www.pursuebalance.org.
When she’s not skiing, climbing, biking, or focusing on her nonprofit, Kit continues her work as a stone mason during the short alpine summers because of the creative outlet it provides and because she believes in building beautiful outdoor spaces to encourage people in their connection with the natural world.
Favorite Destination: The top of any mountain that I can ski down.
Favorite The North Face® Product: Women's Catalyst Jacket. So compressible! I call it a down sweater. Wore it the entire Everest trip.
Proudest Moment: Completing my project to ski the seven summits.
Cause(s): Environmentally sound landscape design, Wolf Habitat, "Life in Balance". I am beginning my own nonprofit corporation called Balance Institute, which strives to offer the tools for pursuing physical, spiritual, and environmental life in balance.
Words To Live By: Challenge your perceptions of your limitations because they are mostly mental.
Favorite Book: The Loray, by Dr. Seuss
Favorite Moment In History: Whin skis got wide and light enough to drop in bigger terrain.
Most Recent Epic: Skiing from the summit of Mt. Everest.
Ambition: Inspire other people.
Inspiration Within the Sport: Watching other people push their limits no matter where those lay on the spectrum of intensity.
. First Person to Ski From All Seven Summits and First Woman to Ski From Summit of Everest, October 2006
. Polish Glacier, Aconcagua, Argentina (22,834 ft.): first complete descent direct from the summit, December 2005
. Vinson Massif, Antarctica (16,067 ft.): first female ski descent, December 2005
. Mt. Elbrus, Russia (18,540 ft., highest mountain in Europe): first female ski descent down The North FaceŽ, June 2005
. Mt. McKinley, Alaska (20,320 ft., highest mountain in North America): first American female ski descent (2nd woman ever), May 2004
. Therma Glacier, Mt. Aspiring, New Zealand (3,033 m.): first female ski descent and first descent of new route, November 2003
. Ford Couloir, Grand Teton, Wyoming (13,770 ft.), June 2003
. Other notable descents in Siberia, the French Alps, the Tetons, the Sierra Nevada and Colorado
. 2005 Freeskiing World Tour Women’s Champion
. 2005 U.S. Freeskiing Women’s Champion
. 2004 Freeskiing World Tour Women’s Champion
. Kit's accomplishment and the Everest expedition was also featured in USA Today article, "Everest Crowning Glory of Seven Peak Dream" and CBS Online/The Early Show, "First Woman Skis Mount Everest"
. Outside magazine: named one of the “Top 25 Athletes of the Year,” December 2004
. USA Today, front page article: “Daring Duo Skiing Antarctica,” November 17, 2005
. Alaskan Sea to Summit