When Rodney competes, he goes big, to the extreme | SummitDaily.com

When Rodney competes, he goes big, to the extreme

Jason Blevins
The Denver Post

DENVER — George Rodney could see crowds gathered at the bottom of the 3,500-vertical-foot wall in Alaska’s Chilkat Range but couldn’t see over the snowy roll a few feet in front of him. He was trying to remember the contours of the biggest venue in the history of the Freeride World Tour, an international melee of big-mountain skiers and snowboarders who are judged by their aggressive descents down the world’s steepest faces.

The flags on top of the mountain were flapping in the wind. The hovering helicopter had cameras pointed at him.

“I knew exactly where I wanted to go, but when it comes down to it, it was pretty much a guess,” said the Freeride World Tour rookie, a 21-year-old native of Colorado.

Rodney skied a pair of tight cliffs, his ski tails grabbing just a bit of snow between rock bands at the top of the venue. As he gathered speed above another cliff, suddenly he was on one ski. His back was rotating down the hill. A spectacular crash seemed certain.

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