The pro freeskier first fell in love with the lift-accessed extremes of Engelberg in 2002, and has returned from his home in Sweden for every winter season since.

My dad was a coach for a ski club in Sweden, though he never raced himself. He’s the one who got me into skiing. I raced until I was 19, but I wasn’t very serious about skiing back then. My father would like to think I was on my way to the World Cup, but I really wasn’t. It wasn’t just lack of talent, but laziness on my part. After leaving the ski academy, I crashed my dad’s car on a slippery road when I was out having fun. I figured he would obviously be pissed.

My 20-year-old brain didn’t want to deal with it, so I took a train down to Stockholm with a friend from the academy to book a ticket to the States and leave town before my dad got home from work that day. My friend and I had been talking about trying this whole freeskiing thing. So, we just went into a travel agency and asked for a cheap ticket to the States—we didn’t know where, we just wanted to go somewhere on the west side of the country on a cheap ticket. 

We flew to San Francisco and bought a Volvo 240 from this shady pizza joint guy for $2,000. We toured around the West Coast, up to Whistler, to Tahoe and Snowbird for about three months. That was the first time I went freeskiing. After that trip I figured I would not be getting into a speedsuit again. This was way more fun.

When I first went to Engelberg in 2002, I was just supposed to stay for a week. But Switzerland and I clicked, and I ended up staying for the season. Then I went back the next year. After a few years, I thought I should probably try another place, but the more places I saw, the more I really liked Engelberg. It’s a great place to work for professional skiers and photographers.

The extremely good lift-accessed skiing, with big runs that are between 3,000 and 6,000 vertical feet, is what Engelberg is famous for. The ski touring is also amazing, but it ended up in the shadow of the lift-accessed skiing because the runs off the lift are so special in comparison to what’s at other resorts.

Read more: The Show Must Go On - Anna Segal

Originally published in the November 2018 issue of SKI Magazine.

Related

Marcus Caston and Johan Jonsson in Switzerland for Face of Winter

The Show Must Go On

With "Face of Winter," Warren Miller Entertainment keeps a beloved tradition alive and continues to spread Warren's Gospel of Skiing.

Jess McMillan

The Show Must Go On: Jess McMillan

The Freeride World Tour Champion has won more freeskiing comps than any other skier, and has been a regular fixture in WME films since 2011.

Kim Schneider

The Show Must Go On: Kim Schneider

For 10 years Schneider and Warren worked side by side during long, grueling editing days to deliver the next WME film to the masses.

Jonny Moseley for Face of Winter

The Show Must Go On: Jonny Moseley

For the past decade, Jonny Moseley has been the voice of WME’s annual ski movies.

Mike Wiegele

The Show Must Go On: Mike Wiegele

Mike Wiegele Helicopter Skiing has been featured in countless WME films over the years, and Mike himself also skied for Warren’s camera back in the day.

Anna Segal for Face of Winter

The Show Must Go On: Anna Segal

When the Aussie native and former slopestyle Olympian was invited to join the WME crew in Iceland to shoot for this year’s film, she ditched her day job and hopped on a plane.

Marcus Caston in Switzerland for Face of Winter

The Making Of "Face of Winter" | Switzerland

Marcus Caston and Johan Jonsson experience the pure skiing bliss of Engelberg and Crans-Montana.

Warren Miller's Face of Winter in Alaska

The Making of "Face of Winter" | Denali National Park & The Tordrillo Mountains

Jess McMillan and Forrest Jillson explore the empty, massive slopes of Alaska for the upcoming Warren Miller Entertainment film.