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kottke.org posts about Trevor Kennison

Sit-Skier Trevor Kennison Drops Into Corbet’s Couloir

posted by Jason Kottke   Mar 03, 2020

With a mandatory steep drop into a narrow chute with rock walls on two sides,
Corbet’s Couloir at Jackson Hole in Wyoming is one of America’s most challenging ski runs. During the annual Kings & Queens of Corbet’s event, skiers from all over converge to huck themselves over the cornice, doing backflips, spins, and grabs of all kinds.

I’d heard that sit-skier Trevor Kennison, who has been paralyzed from the waist down since a snowboarding accident in 2014, had dropped into Corbet’s during the 2019 Kings & Queens event but I’d never sat down to watch the video. Do yourself a favor and check this out:

From an REI blog post about Kennison:

Trevor Kennison imagined skiing Corbet’s Couloir — Jackson Hole, Wyoming’s iconic and nearly vertical chute with a dicey, dramatic entrance — six times in his head while waiting at the top. He closed his eyes, took three fast breaths, then visualized it: Ride the ramp at just the right speed, hit the takeoff, hug the rocks on skier’s left, then stick the landing into the chute. If he could picture it going perfectly in his head, he knew he could pull it off.

He’d wanted to ski this line for years and finally, the day had come. Kennison, who’s paralyzed from the waist down, says he wasn’t scared. “I knew what I had to do. I was ready,” Kennison, 26, said. “Everything I do is calculated risk. I think, where is it going to go wrong? I learn so much from the people around me.”

So great. I finally went down this rabbit hole because Kennison skied at our local ski area yesterday here in VT and dropped a couple of cliffs. I didn’t get over there to hang out, but I did see a friend of my son’s skiing with him in his Insta Stories.