Krystin Norman
Age: 28
Hometown: South Lake Tahoe, CA
Occupation: Senior Scientist and Microbiologist at Fremont Brewing, Seattle, WA


PHOTO: Philip Schneider

Growing up skiing at Heavenly, California, Krystin Norman always envisioned herself getting a PhD in cancer research. Instead, she found her calling in brewing beer. Last year, Norman handcrafted the Snowpack Pale Ale, a limited-edition brewski for Fremont Brewing that became the Seattle-based brewery's most successful beer release to date.

They sold out of 2,000 tall boys and 14 kegs in two days and donated $3,000 from proceeds to support avalanche education scholarships through SheJumps, an organization Norman has worked with for three years.

When she's not in the lab monitoring fermentation levels to improve beer quality (the Lord's work), Norman can be found leading freeride courses with SheJumps or coaching youth ski clinics at Crystal Mountain Resort.

Early ski memories:
We were at Mammoth for vacation. It was super windy and snowing really hard. All I wanted was hot chocolate.

First Job:
I worked in a fossilized plant lab at the Desert Research Institute in Reno right after high school.

How I got into brewing:
I had been home brewing for fun and I was really interested in the microbiology of beer. At the time, I was working at a cancer research center, but found an opening at a beer lab. I liked it so much that I went to full time.

What I do at work:
I basically move very precise amounts of liquid (beer) and cells (yeast) around with fancy instruments and glassware.

Why I sold a beer to benefit SheJumps:
A lot of women in the Pacific Northwest are in the backcountry, which is awesome, but many can't afford avy courses. I wanted to help provide affordable avy education for my peers.

Advice I'd give my 15-year-old self:
Learn how to do backflips.

Hobbies other than skiing: 

I love climbing and mountain biking.

Pump up song: 

"Don't Move" by Phantogram. I love listening to that song when I'm driving to the mountains.

What I wanted to be when I was 10: 

A marine biologist. I got certified to scuba dive when I was 10 and I was obsessed with the ocean.

One myth about growing up in a ski town:

I guess it's that all you do is ski and that everyone has goggle tans. In reality, I had plenty of friends who lived in Tahoe and never skied.

On my to-do list:

I want to ski off of the top of Mount Rainier. I don't just want to summit it to summit it; I want to be able to ski off the top.

This story originally appeared in the October 2018 (47.2) issue of POWDER. To have great stories like this delivered right to your door, in print, subscribe here.