Sixteen good reasons to quit your job and move to the mountains
November 11, 2008 · Updated 10:27 AM
Looking for a reason to look forward to winter?
Praying for snow, or perhaps just searching for some inspiration to quit your job and move to the mountains? In any case, here is the answer — the 59th annual snow season-heralding Warren Miller Entertainment ski/snowboard feature, “the largest action sports film on the planet,” coming to the Admiral Theatre in Bremerton, Nov. 19-20.
This year’s film, “Children of Winter ... Never Grow Old,” begins at the end, as the narrator — freestyle legend and Olympic gold medalist Jonny Moseley — says: “It’s the end of the season, the edge of North America, the apex of every skier and snowboarder’s dreams.”
The first segment takes you aboard a 98-foot boat with a helipad, in the Chugach Mountains of Cordova, Alaska, with Olympian athletes Seth Wescott (snowboarder), Marco Sullivan (downhill skier) and Kevin and Jessica Quinn, co-owners of Point North Heli Adventures, also athletes in their own right.
“We’re going to go explore some new terrain that’s never been explored before with just the boat and the heli,” Jessica Quinn prefaces the trip. “And ... we’re pretty excited for everyone to experience that.”
And I am stoked.
Cut to Wescott and Sullivan dropping in off an insanely vertical peak and cutting down the pristine-powder-draped mountain, making it look easy over the soundtrack of a song called “Sunrise” by the enigmatic band Yeasayer.
Thus begins one of 16 segments in an international tour of some of the sickest rides you could ever imagine — and more than a few things that are near completely unimaginable.
“I don’t know if you could call it an occupation, but it’s definitely a pursuit,” said director Max Bervy.
He’s talking about the pursuit of freedom, which the film’s namesake, filmmaker/entrepreneur/legend Warren Miller, has pursued and shared his entire life. The pursuit which he has made possible for countless others.
“He pioneered this whole genre,” Bervy said. “We wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for him. And a lot of other people wouldn’t either.”
Bervy said he’s never really had a real day job, unless you count his post at Warren Miller Entertainment. He’s been involved with the organization for years, making his way from skier to salesman and eventually the job of director fell into his lap.
He said, it’s probably way beyond anything he ever could’ve imagined if someone would’ve asked him to pick his dream job as a kid. Now, it’s every day.
“I literally just got off the phone with I guy that I’ve been working with since May for our first shoot of next year, in Antarctica,” Bervy said when I talked with him by phone last week.
They’d been planning to send a boat full of skiers across Drake Passage to Antarctica for one of the marquee pieces in next year’s film when an unexplained mechanical problem on the boat hindered launch for the voyage.
A boat full of skiers ready to rip the mountains of Antarctica getting put on hold is indeed a drag, and it shows just how big these guys are going these days.
In “Children of Winter,” the crew travels from Cordova, Alaska, to the Austrian Alps to a record year of snowfall with more than 700 inches in Utah onto Sun Valley, Idaho, and Steamboat, Colo., all in Reel One.
Reel Two begins in Bend, Ore., and ends in Iceland with much, much more in between.
What’s more, the viewer vicariously takes these trips with some of the best athletes in skiing and snowboarding, like Wescott and Sullivan, Jenn Berg and Jamie Pierre, Wendy Fischer, Daron Rahlves and surf legend Gerry Lopez, among others.
And even its 59th year, the annual Warren Miller film still manages to break ground, showcasing the virtually unknown sport of skijoring and sailing the fjords of Iceland to ski its remote peaks.
“Children of Winter” even boasts its own featured band — a ski-lodge supergroup made up of members of Barenaked Ladies, N.E.R.D., Dave Matthews Band and Guster.
The segments are emphatic. The scenery is amazing. The cinematography is deft. The soundtrack has something for everyone. It all supplements the essential adventure of being the mountain.
“Every turn you’re gone,” Jamie Pierre relates the experience. “You disappear into the white room, and then, out pops the next turn.”
“Whoa, look at what we get to do, look at our job ... how lucky are we?” Jenn Berg stops to take note.
‘CHILDREN OF WINTER’ the 59th annual winter-heralding Warren Miller film began touring the nation Oct. 22. It comes to the Admiral Theatre next week, showing at 8 p.m. Nov. 19 and 20, 515 Pacific Ave. in Bremerton. Tickets are $19, available through www.warrenmiller.com and the Admiral Theatre box office at (360) 373-6743. Info: www.warrenmiller.com.