Advice from the local groms

Maybe you’ve seen the local kids on skis or snowboards, breezing down the mountain like pros. Here we meet a few mighty mini-shredders who are dedicated to bringing their best game to what they do—on snow and off.

Story By Katherine Nettles

Cormack and Sidra Anderson 

“Mac” and “Sid” are a brother sister snowboarding duo who are both competitive in their sport, to say the least. Mac made it to nationals at four years old, and Sid came in third place at boardercross nationals in 2017. You may have seen them in a Patagonia commercial riding hard. Last year they took a two-month international road trip sponsored by big outdoor industry names and Crested Butte snack maker Jackson’s Honest to get some snowboarding experience outside of competition (Sid still managed to place first in the For Girls Who Ride event at Sunshine Village in Banff, though). 

Cormac Anderson

Age: 6  

Best thing you should definitely do while in Crested Butte? Snowboarding backcountry.  

Favorite trail? The park because you can hit rails and you can hit jumps.  

What advice would you give someone just learning? Keep trying, don’t be a kook.  

What have you learned about yourself from skiing? To not go fast down runs with a bump on it. My mom says take your time and then I send it.

Sidra Anderson

Age: 9  

Best thing you should definitely do while in Crested Butte? Respect the natural beauty of where we live and go eat at all the yummy restaurants. Sunflower is my favorite!  

Favorite trail? The High Lift and International because if you go the right way there are a bunch of jumps and it can get super steep.  

What advice would you give someone just learning?  

Never give up and be yourself. Don’t just go straight to the big jumps. Start with the small jumps. 

What have you learned about yourself from skiing? Sometimes you have to be patient before you can get things you wanna get. The road trip last year I met new kids and new people at different mountains that were better than me and it helped me learn. Traveling to all those mountains helped me learn because they were all different kinds of rails, runs and boxes.

Ben Larson
Ben Larson 

Ben loves Nordic racing and hopes to add in some downhill comps this year. Last winter he found himself on the podium at all of the local U14 Kids Nordic Race Series races and took fourth place in the Alley Loop 3k. He also swims for the Gunnison Stingrays swim team, recently placed at the state swim meet, and he plays on the local WESA soccer team. Ben loves third grade, especially math and writing.  

Age: 8

Best thing you should definitely do while in Crested Butte?

Go to Third Bowl and order cookie dough ice cream, but make sure to also get a fresh, homemade waffle cone—it is the best!

Favorite trail?

Downhill skiing: Tower 11 Chutes to Bakery Trees, especially on a powder day because both these runs have cool terrain features, and you never end up skiing the same line twice! 

Nordic skiing: Ruthie’s Run because of all the hills, corners, and rollers. Going fast on Nordic skis can be so fun especially if you can catch a little air but be careful!

What advice would you give someone just learning?

Have FUN, enjoy the experience, don’t forget to smile 🙂 and don’t give up as it only gets better and better… 

What have you learned about yourself from skiing? 

I have learned winter is my favorite season because I am able to enjoy all my favorite activities! Also, skiing with family, friends, and my Mountain Sports Team and Nordic Team coaches are some of my favorite memories. I can’t wait to see what this year brings!

Connor Brown
Connor Brown 

Connor loves all things winter and snow. He has been a national qualifier in Skiercross for the last three years, and enjoys pushing himself and training with the older kids on the comp team as well as participating in Nordic competitions like the Alley Loop. He has also spent the last two years on the Youth Film Screening Committee for the local Crested Butte Film Festival. 

Age: 13

Best thing you should definitely do while in Crested Butte?

Get up on the mountain and do some winter sport of some kind, but if you truly want to do something new, get to know the people here. There are a varity of different people here, they all love doing different things. Some people here like backcountry skiing and some people love Nordic.

Favorite trail?

I would say my favorite trail for Nordic is the Big Mine Loop because you can ski how you like there whether that’s skiing as hard as you can or like you’re taking a stroll through the woods. You can ski fast because there are long straights and small hills. You can also ski with friends while having a conversation because there are not that many hard sections but just long calm sections.

What advice would you give someone just learning? 

Just go for it and get outside your comfort zone. I would have never started skier cross and Nordic if I hadn’t just gone for it. Yes, I was scared, but eventually I got comfortable and even good at the sport, so just go for it and you will be happy that you just did it.

What have you learned about yourself from skiing? 

I’ve learned that I don’t really have any limitations if I just go for it. I might fall or screw it up but I can get good at that thing whether it’s skiing or school, I can learn to do it and do it well.

Sarah Bivens
Sarah Bivens

Sarah is a skier and two-time Junior National qualifier who placed 15th overall nationally in her division last year, and she will attend Senior Nationals for the first time this winter. She also rides for the CB Devo high school mountain bike team and runs track during the other seasons of the year, where she regularly places in state and regional comps.  

Age: 16

Favorite winter sport?

Nordic skiing

Best thing you should definitely do while in Crested Butte?

Go to Third Bowl Homemade Ice Cream. Whether it’s scorching hot or a raging blizzard outside, their honey lavender with hot fudge and cone bits always hits the spot.

Favorite trail?

I have so many favorite trails! I’m very passionate about Nordic skiing so the Big Mine trailhead is always my go to when I need to grind out a workout, but for a leisurely tour I love Magic Meadows and its beautiful views. I also enjoy downhill skiing on the mountain and ripping down the Headwall slope.

What advice would you give someone just learning?

Take it slow and enjoy the ride. Progression in sports comes from practice and consistency. Starting with the basics and working your way up makes for a rewarding experience and even if you don’t enjoy the sport, try enjoying the view.

What have you learned about yourself from skiing?

Skiing has taught me a lot about balance. From trying not to fall over on one leg, to keeping up with school, I’ve learned how to balance pressure, homework, and a teenage life with things I love. Skiing is a great way for me to clear my head and reflect on who I am and who I want to become.