We know that summer has already well and truly made its presence known, and most of us are now dusting off our surfboards and excitedly planning our surf trips for the year. But if you look carefully, there is still snow to be had, and with the Easter holidays coming up, it’s the last chance to get some final shredding in and say your farewells to the mountains for the year.
To accompany this, we have a final winter snow feature for you coming right up. Presenting Geraldine Fasnacht, who has never said goodbye to the mountains or the snow and probably never will. Enjoy her story and get inspired.
Words by Anna Langer
We all know her as one of the great women freeride snowboarders in Europe, but the Swiss charger has even more in store for us than epic lines. Besides passing on her knowledge of the mountains and the backcountry to the next generation, she has also found another passion parallel to snowboarding in basejumping.
Growing up in the small village of Poliez-le-Grand in Switzerland, she basically learnt how to slide on snow the day she started walking. Her mum used to take her skiing in Verbier every weekend, until she discovered snowboarding in the 90s. And the rest, as they say, is history. “It’s snowboarding that really makes me want to discover the mountain. It’s like surfing on a never ending wave. For me, happiness is designing ‘lines’ on the mountains I am drawn to, the vast spaces, the freedom….”
The big mountain shredder from Poliez-le-Grand has certainly made her mark on the snowboarding world in her 12 years of competing, eight of which have been on the international freeride circuit. To date, she has notched up 11 victories in international freeride contests, three of them at the Nissan Verbier Xtreme.
This extensive experience is something she is sharing with the Juniors at the Freeride World Tour now. Her goal is to help them understand everything they need to know to be a pro freerider, from technique and finding their line on the mountain, to safety and security in the backcountry.
10 years ago, she found another passion, which for her is the perfect accompaniment to snow: basejumping. Soaring through the sky with her wingsuit, “it’s like designing lines in the air.” And she is living it with the same dedication as snowboarding, currently working on the film project 52 Minutes Holtanna. With three years of fund raising, planning, and preparing for two months in isolation, more than 200 km away from the next base, it documents her achievement of the first base jump on the Antarctic continent and gave her the chance to realise a dream she has had since she was a child.
During the winter she is shooting for another documentary which combines her two great passions, the “crossed destinies” that have pretty much dominated her life. 26 Minutes: Portrait of Geraldine Fasnacht by French director Sebastien Montaz presents her career as a female freerider snowboarder and basejumper. “It’s my vision as a woman and especially highlights the people I have encountered who have made my life what it is today.”
Check the trailer and learn even more about this exceptional athlete on lineprod.ch