What was it like growing up in Jackson Hole?
I can't imagine growing up anywhere else. Instead of shopping malls and movie theaters, I grew up playing in the mountains. I feel incredibly lucky to have had the childhood that I did.
Your brother Max Hammer is also a JHMR athlete. How do you push each other on the hill? Do you ski together a lot?
I think my younger brother is simply the best skier around. Every chance I get to ski with him, I tend to besiege him with a million questions about skiing technique. Beyond just Max, our whole family has been involved with the Resort. Our older brother is the best kids ski coach around (even for a snowboarder) and my parents have also volunteered as Mountain Hosts for many winters.
It seemed like you worked pretty hard on the competitive freeskiing circuit last season, and your success has led to an official spot on the Freeride World Tour. Congrats. Tell us about the journey.
Thanks!...it has been such an incredible journey. My approach has always been to just put my head down and work hard...otherwise, I think I would be lost and frustrated with the scene. My first year was a lot of learning how to compete and then last year it seemed like all the pieces: the physical and mental training, the experience, and the confidence came together. I was really happy with all my lines and felt like I was pushing what could be done. I'm really excited (and really nervous) for this coming year's tour!
What does your travel schedule have in store this winter for the Freeride World Tour?
This will be my first winter competing in Europe. We start off in Revelstoke, Canada, then head to Chamonix, France, Fieberbrunn, Austria back to Kirkwood, California, and then if all goes well Verbier to finish!
Tell us about your off-season ski training.
I've been putting in a good amount of hours training this summer. Most of my training occurs at Mountain Athlete here in Jackson, Wyoming. We start the summer with basic "fitness" and lifting and then move into sport specific training in the fall. The rest of my training comes from playing in Jackson Hole: hiking, biking, climbing etc.
One run in Jackson Hole. What's your favorite?
I'll probably get a lot of slack for this but, the Grand off Thunder, perfectly groomed with two inches of cowboy powder.
How did growing up ski racing shape your skiing?
My parents let us try all the sports we wanted. I got to be a figure skater, nordic skier, alpine racer, and was the first girl in Jackson Ski Club's freeride program. I've been able to draw something from every sport I did growing up.
Favorite old school ski trick?
Favorite place for après in Jackson Hole:
Spicy Margaritas at the Spur, but now that Elevated Grounds coffee shop has cocktails, I might have a new favorite spot!
Can you remember the most fun day you've had on snow?
Somewhat of an impossible question! From building snow forts with my brothers, to learning 360's to surprise powder days...it's too hard to choose. Not to be a total cheeseball...but I think one of the reasons I love skiing is that every day has the potential to be "the most fun day on snow".
Sponsors: Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, The North Face, Line Skis, Smith Optics, Mountain Athlete, Backcountry.com, Lange Boots