“The Earth is like my closest relative and my best friend in a lot of ways. The places that speak to me most are the outdoors. The biggest spiritual experiences that I’ve had have been in nature and on the mountain.”

Hunkpapa Lakota professional skier Connor Ryan hopes to break down the barriers that often keep Native people from being able to ski and snowboard with a new scholarship he helped start through the company Natives Outdoors which will gie 10 free Ikon ski passes to Indigenous people this season. Ryan’s sponsors at brands like Patagonia and Salomon skis will give the recipients free equipment:

“Skiing isn’t usually associated with Indigenous people, yet we all come from the lands where skiing happens Arapahoe Basin is named after the tribe that’s from right here. When you go there, you should think of them and they should be there skiing and riding alongside you.

Obviously the biggest one is the cost of a ski pass and the cost of skis and boots and bindings and the expensive outerwear to keep you warm and dry. For 10 people who receive this, it’s going to be something that could change their lives just like getting my first ski pass changed my life.”

If you’re interested in applying GO HERE.

images from Connor Ryan IG

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