[Interview] Chemmy Alcott: Why more women should go heliskiing

Posted January 08, 2019 under Blog, Heliskiing, Italy

Chemmy Alcott is hosting a heliskiing trip for James Orr Heliski to Alagna in March 2019. In this interview she reveals her thoughts on why more women should go heliskiing:

Chemmy Alcott discusses why more women don’t go heliskiing

What do you think might be putting women off from doing something like heliskiing?

I think it’s because heliskiing is always promoted as something that’s quite dangerous, that’s out there, that’s unique because you’re charging down these faces.

In reality 90% of the heliskiing that you see in movies is not accessible to Joe Bloggs: it’s for the very elite, people who have made a living out of it and who do it day in and day out.

Heliskiing safely with guides

“We don’t promote the safe, fun side of heliskiing enough”

When I go heliskiing, it feels safe, it feels easy on my body. You’re bouncing out there on these pillows of snow with amazing guides around you.

I think we don’t promote that kind of safe, fun side enough. It’s always been “This is so gnarly. This is so extreme. Look at this face.” Not “Oh my gosh, that was so much easier than I thought!”

graham bell alagna
Having fun with Graham Bell in Alagna

This winter you’re going out to Alagna with James Orr Heliski. Are you hoping that trip will help influence more women to go heliskiing?

So many of the girls I know who charge on piste still don’t think they’re good enough to go heliskiing. And yet boys I know who have half their capabilities, they’re booking heliski trips left right and centre.

There is a lack of confidence because of a lack of understanding of what heliskiing is and I think that’s because we love watching these movies where they are winning gnar points because they’re dropping cliffs and jumping out of helicopters.

heliskiing alagna
Heliskiing in Alagna – no cliff drops required

“The beginning of Ski Sunday is not real…”

Look at the beginning of Ski Sunday: it’s epic, it’s great. Graham and Ed jump out of a helicopter, and that’s what people see.

But they don’t really jump out: it’s not even real, but they wanted to do something that shocks and excites.

So people see heliskiing as this other world and it’s not, it’s right there in their world.

There’s no jumping out of helicopters in Alagna, just great powder…

You can push yourself to your own limit. There is always a way for you to get fresh tracks down a face that you are comfortable on equipment that makes it easy.

Heliski with Chemmy, March 2019

Unfortunately our ‘Heliski with Chemmy‘ trip to Alagna is now full, as was our trip with Graham Bell in March 2018.

Watch out for more celebrity hosted trips in 2020, or simply contact James Orr to arrange your own heliski trip to Italy or Canada.

chemmy alcott black and white shot