Powder People - Angel Collinson

By Yeti \ November 11 2015

As part of Ski Utah's never-ending quest to tell the stories of Utah's colorful characters who's lives revolve around the snow, in this latest Powder People installment, Ski Utah sits down with Angel Collinson. Her name hardly needs an introduction, she's an A-lister big mountain skier who is leading the ski world in a male-dominated industry. She graces Powder Magazine's most recent cover, stars in the latest TGR movie Paradise Waits, is a Protect our Winters Riders Alliance ambassador, yet, she is one of the most approachable, down-to-earth people you'll ever meet. 

 

Ski Utah Q: This interview is part of an ongoing series dubbed Powder People. Would you say you fit that title?

Angel Collinson A: (Chuckles) I sure hope so, if not, we’re in trouble.

 

Ski Utah Q: What are your earliest skiing memories?

Angel Collinson A: I have no memories of not skiing. I don’t know what life was like not skiing. My dad was the Assistant Director of Snow Safety at Snowbird, so we literally grew up on the mountain. By the time I was five we (Angel and her brother Johnny Collinson) were cruising around the mountain solo. For me, Snowbird and the mountains have always been my place of freedom. Oh yeah, I remember eating dry hot chocolate by the spoonful. Did I mention that the mountain was our playground? John and I shared a 5x12 closet until I was 20. Growing up in such small quarters was no big deal, as we had the mountain on the other side of that door, our playground. 

 

Ski Utah Q: Pretty incredible segment you had in this year's TGR film Paradise Waits. How did you get your first TGR invite?

Angel Collinson A: Thanks so much. I was standing in the Snowbird Tram line in 2012 on a big pow day when I got the call from TGR. I'll never forget that call. 

 

Ski Utah Q: What's your favorite piece of gear?

Angel Collinson A: Never underestimate the power of a Buff. I feel better prepared if I have a buff and never leave home without one.

 

Ski Utah Q: What's the greatest piece of advice you've ever received? 

Angel Collinson A: My dad told me to never limit yourself because other people will try and do that for you. Also, we were never allowed to say "can't" in our house. It was like a swear word. 

 

Ski Utah Q: Who has most impacted you in your career?

Angel Collinson A: I'd have to say Sage Cattabriga Alosa who has taught me to always be myself. He leads by example and is always authentically himself. And of course, Ingrid Backstrom and my brother John Collinson. 

 

Ski Utah Q: What food fuels you best for a big day in the mountains?

Angel Collinson A: Before a big day I try to eat a good breakfast with protein. An egg-breakfast burrito is my go-to. The best part is that it travels well too, I can throw it in my pocket and tear off one bite at a time while on the skin track.  I prefer salsa over hot sauce. One bite at a time. 

 

Ski Utah Q: What advice would you give to aspiring athletes?

Angel Collinson A: Telling yourself you can do it goes a long, long, ways. Don't be afraid to listen to your gut and know when to step back. Fear is am normal thing, when you overcome that fear it makes feel more accomplished. Undoubtedly, fear does make you sharper.  

 

Ski Utah Q: Do you have any advice for young girls?

Angel Collinson A: Women are lot more capable than we’re given credit. Believe in yourself and push your comfort zone.

 

Ski Utah Q: What do you do for fun?

Angel Collinson A: I love buying cheap sling shots at gas stations. I have quite the collection of broken ones:) I also eat a lot of candy but I'm trying to cut back. My weakness is anything Willy Wonka. And of course, anything outdoors, climbing, mountain biking and kayaking.

 

Ski Utah Q: What's your go-to social media channel? 

Angel Collinson A: Uhhh, social media is not my strong suit. Instagram is my preferred channel. Trying to get better at it.  Check it out @angelcollinson

 

Ski Utah Q: Where would you like to be in your career five years from now?

Angel Collinson A: Wouldn’t I love to know that. Honestly, I’d like to use whatever name I’m creating for myself (if I am, joking) to help rally the troops around climate change. Would like to do this through expeditions where data can be gathered in places like Greenland where the impacts of climate change are obvious and profound. I feel that people in cities don’t often have the same drive to be connected to the environment. With that said, through these expeditions I hope to provide inspiration, both locally and globally, showing people the things we impact. . . and just maybe people will feel motivated to enact change. 

 

Ski Utah Q: Tell me about your proudest achievement?

Angel Collinson A: My number one goal all the time, is to be a better person. Be a better sister, better daughter. I haven’t lost sight of who I am. Skiing is cool, it’s my ticket to a lot of things, but if I quit skiing tomorrow I’m still Angel Collinson.

 

Ski Utah Q: It seems like you can do no wrong right now, in the peak of your career what does it mean to be involved with Protect Our Winters (POW)?

Angel Collinson A: It’s awesome. I’m really grateful that Jeremy Jones started POW. The missing link is finally in place to help bridge the gap between passionate mountain people and the environment. This collective voice is empowering. 

 

Ski Utah Q: In your opinion what's the most important thing we can do to positively impact climate change?

Angel Collinson A: Speak up. And i'm especially talking about young people. Now is the time for young people to speak up and make their voices heard. Hot Planet Cool Athletes is a great program to check out. 

 

Ski Utah Q: What do you plan on doing after your ski career?

Angel Collinson A: My life dream is to travel around the world and spend time with vanishing cultures. After spending some time with these cultures, I’d like to work towards representing their alternative views in our political views and systems. I'd particularly like to spend time with vanishing cultures in the Amazon and High Andes. 

 

Unfortunately, our cup of chai dried up at SugarHouse Coffee in Salt Lake and that was all the time we had for questions. Hi-fives to this impressive lady and hopefully you learned something new about one of the world's most accomplished skier. In case you missed it, last month's Powder People segment featured Snowbird's Ski Patrol, the people behind the powder days. 

 

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