Pro of the Month: Ryan Lachapelle
Our Pro of the Month column celebrates the remarkable individuals within The Pro Collective. Enjoy inspirational stories shared by your fellow mountain professionals and see how Faction Skis allow them to thrive on the front lines. To be featured as a Pro of the Month, or to nominate someone you know, fill out the form linked at the bottom of this page.
Dropping in to become our April Pro of the Month is Ryan Lachapelle, coach for the Red Mountain Freeski Team in BC, Canada. Ryan’s life motto is GIVE’R, meaning “give it all you got, 100%, full commitment”, and he ploughs this philosophy into everything he does.
Whether as a coach or through The Team GIVE’R Foundation, which gives direct support to young adults to pursue their passions and chase after their dreams, Ryan loves working with the younger generation and being a role model for them. Keep reading to find out more about Ryan, what makes him tick and the skis he uses to GIVE’R on the slopes!
What's your job on the mountain? And what does your job entail?
R: I’m a coach for the Red Mountain Freeski Team. It entails shredding with the kids and inspiring them to be the best possible versions of themselves, working on all aspects of skiing and mentally preparing for what’s to come and how to approach a line. Before this season, I ran the events at Red Mountain for 5 years.
How did you get into this profession?
R: Skiing is my biggest passion. My life has revolved around skiing and it has taken me around the world. I moved out west when I was 18 and bounced around for a number of years working at different resorts; from Banff, to Nelson, Revelstoke, Castle Mountain and now here at RED... it’s been a wild ride! I studied Ski Resort Operations and Management in college and couldn’t think of a better industry to be in, especially working with such amazing, link-minded individuals over the years. This year, with COVID going on, I just wanted to be on snow as much as possible. Coaching seemed to be the best way to do that and I love working with the younger generation and being a role model for them.
What are the aspects of your job that make you feel proud to work in this role, and in this industry?
R: Seeing the kids happy and watching their progression throughout the season. I love filming their runs and reviewing footage with them. I’ve been using my gimbal, drone and Sony camera this season to catch all the action!
Photo by Andrew Chad
Do you have one or two short stories to demonstrate happy or noteworthy moments on the job?
R: Yesterday actually was one of the best days on snow with the team. Every lap we absolutely smashed it and the kids were on point. I was shooting some photos, and everyone was just stoked, wanting more at the end of each run. Also filming the kids’ runs a week ago on the famous Links Line, right underneath the Motherlode chairlift at RED. With no travel or competitions this season, RED made a virtual freeride comp, and it was so rewarding watching my kids shred down my all-time favorite run at a ski resort. To see their skills shine through top to bottom was very rewarding.
What do you ski on at work?
What do you ski on "at play"?
What kind of skiing do you do in your free time?
R: I love all aspects of skiing. I’ve been exploring our slack country as much as possible these days, especially up on Mt. Roberts. A north-facing slope that has it all: steeps, chutes, pillows, spines, you name it. It’s been unreal laying down lines there and feeling the best I ever have on skis... especially with the CT 5.0s under my feet.
What kind of programs do you organize during the year?
R: I’ve been organizing a number of programs since creating The Team GIVE’R Foundation in honour of my best friend that tragically passed away in the mountains. The foundation provides direct support to youth and young adults to pursue their passions and chase after their dreams. We have equipped youth this season with lift tickets, season passes and gear. We have donated 3 pairs of Faction skis to the Youth Action Network locally here in Rossland, BC for kids that need help and support getting up to the resort to have fun and embrace life. Find out more at: @teamgiver.
Photo by Ashley Voykin
Lastly, what summer sports are you passionate about?
R: Mountain biking, surfing, tennis, volleyball, baseball. I’ve always been huge into sports and I can’t wait to travel the world again once the pandemic is under control. Cheers and GIVE’R!
Have your own story to share with The Pro Collective? Apply to be featured as our next Pro of the Month via this link. TPC - The Pro Collective is now taking applications for the 20|21 season. Apply today.