SCOUT: searching for talent across the country and featuring stand out skiers one at a time. On this edition of Scout, we catch up with Kate Targett. Why she’s on our radar? Because not only has this lady been absolutely slaying snow her entire life (okay 25/27 years) but she’s also a geologist and a ski coach – talk about impressive. Without further ado, Kate Targett!
Name: Kate Targett
Hometown: Calgary, Alberta
Best Trick: Backflip or 360.
Sponsors: Liberty Skis, Smith Optics, Flylow Gear, Lange Boots, Look Bindings, Mountain Cultures, Panda Poles and SkiBig3.
Claim to Fame: Claiming the Hugo Harrison Stomp award at Wrangle the Chute at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort, Golden BC. I won a men’s XL helmet haha!
SBC: How would you describe your signature style?
KT: I like to ski fast and go big, but I also like to add grabs and tricks into my skiing. I grew up as a competitive mogul skier and like to tap into my freestyle background. In contrast, I also hang out with a lot of ski race coaches, so have absorbed a lot of that style and technique when skiing big lines.
SBC: Goals for this season?
KT: I really want to start adding more 360s and backflips into my freeskiing. I’ve started trying them off small cliffs and wind lips and want to continue getting miles on that. Stoked to keep progressing my trick game off natural features.
SBC: What progression have you seen in yourself?
KT: Well, I bought my first sled this season, after working a long summer in the field for an environmental company. The freedom machine will primarily be utilized to explore deeper into the backcountry as an access tool. I now have the ability to get into bigger terrain and really push my skiing in a way that you can’t always do when you’re at a resort. So, in general, I would say that I’ve progressed in the way that I look at and utilize the mountains.
SBC: How do you balance being a geologist, coach, and skier?
KT: I’m super lucky this season in the fact that I work for an awesome company that is willing to let me take the winter off. My boss is a big mountain guy and has been really supportive of me wanting to pursue my skiing passion, while also fostering a career. I feel incredibly lucky to be supported in that way! I also coach for Rocky Mountain Freeriders (RMF) out of Lake Louise and work with a crew of awesome coaches that help me stay flexible with my schedule. It’s super awesome that both these jobs allow me to have the freedom to ski as much as possible, while still allowing me to support myself.
SBC: What do you think is trending in ski culture that shouldn’t be?
KT: Hmmm… that’s a tough one. I see a lot of “ski influencers” these days. I’m all for “doing you”, but I think it’s super lame when the line between athlete and influencer gets blurred, especially because women in sports have always had to deal with the additional pressure of image. I feel like as a female in the ski industry, I’ve worked really hard to be respected by my peers because I’m a strong skier, and not because I can take lifestyle photos. I personally have a lot more respect for chicks that are just sending it and shredding hard because they love it, not because they’re trying to get famous from a lifestyle shot. Girls like ‘The Blondes’ and ‘Backcountry Moms’ are what’s up right now! Getting after it and shredding as hard as you can every day, I have a lot of respect for that.
“My mantra is to be the first one on the lift and leverage every day to the bitter end. ” – Kate Targett
SBC: Any thoughts for the aspiring female skiers out there?
KT: Let your skiing do the talking! In a world of “social media skiing” it’s easy to get down on yourself when you feel like your not living up to the image. Remember that Instagram is usually a highlighted version of someone’s life, so try not to focus too much on that and just enjoy skiing. My mantra is to be the first one on the lift and leverage every day to the bitter end. You never know when you are going to feel inspired by conditions, a jump, or a line and find progression in these moments.
SBC: How are you cross training these days?
KT: In the winter I try to stretch and roll as much as I can, but to be honest my gym sessions definitely diminish. I just end up skiing too much and don’t really have time for the gym. In the off-season, I spend a lot of time hiking while fly-fishing, as well as mountain biking, trail running and doing some gym sessions.
SBC: What are you crushing on your playlist?
KT: I generally crush CBC Radio 1 haha, but when I don’t have reception, I’ll definitely put on some Led Zeppelin, Tribe Called Quest, Syd Barrett… I like a real mix.
SBC: Any shout outs?
KT: Shout out to my fiancé Garrett Wilson for pushing my skiing since quitting moguls and supporting my dream of taking this winter off. My Mom and Dad for putting me on skis at the ripe age of 2 and making me ski non-stops on exhibition (Lake Louise). Finally, Liberty Skis for giving me the opportunity to go on film trips and believing in my skiing.