Colter Hinchliffe makes his Teton Gravity Research debut in their 2012 release The Dream Factory. An Alta, Utah, skier, Hinchliffe has quickly gained notoriety, helped by landing the cover of the 2011 October issue of POWDER. We caught up for a quick chat with the TGR new guy.—Mallane Dressel
Had you ever been to Alaska before?
This was my first time to Alaska, and it was about time to see that place for myself. Growing up in Colorado, I am used to the endless sea of peaks, but circling around and landing in Juneau with the emerald water to contrast the white peaks made me pretty excited about Alaska.
Who did you look forward to skiing with the most when you were signed on for the production?
I was just up there on my own dime trying to get some stuff done with Will Wissman and my friends Lexi Dupont and Leo Ahrens. The fact that I got to be a part of this film is such a major bonus. Reggie Crist was our guide, but it wasn’t a typical guide/client relationship. I learned a lot from listening to Reggie and watching him ski. Watching Lexi ski was also inspiring. She has a lot of experience up there and loads of confidence. Being there with Leo Ahrens, who I ski with at Alta all the time, was great, too. We always feed off each other and know how to help each other out.
How has this experience influenced your skiing?
It's shown me a whole new realm of skiing, which I love and want to progress in. I love so many aspect of the sport from pow skiing and jump laps at Alta, to building kickers, and ski mountaineering in the spring time. Now I know what it's like to get on that crazy AK terrain, and I love it. I honestly don’t think it will ever beat a stormy deep pow day at Alta, lapping lifts with no lines, but standing on top of a dream line under bluebird skies with helicopters flying around is pretty stellar. It just comes with a little more anxiety; as you watch the rotors turn you can see cash getting chopped to pieces. Staring down these lines that are so steep and tricky with the finish line so far away gets me stoked.
I hope to film with TGR next year, and go back to Alaska by March. I really hope that the Lower 48 has a great year. I want to shred tons of deep pow with my bros starting mid-November. Till then, I’ll be bartending and waiting tables in Aspen hoping for enough 20 percent tips to crush this heli debt.
(Ed. Note: Stay tuned over the next few weeks as we talk to the new guys from all of this year's ski movies. Check out all the trailers here. )