A couple of weeks ago I participated in a ski retreat in Jackson Wyoming called SummitX, which brought together professionals at the convergence of tech, leadership, entrepreneurship, and adventure. The event focused on a whole lot of skiing powder (priorities straight right) and leadership development, and through intense workshops and in-depth conversations, I think it’s safe to say everyone involved walked away a stronger leader and human being. As part of the event, I got the opportunity to host a live recording of this podcast where I interviewed Dirk Collins and Caroline Gleich.
When I was conceptualizing this conversation and the event as a whole, I knew we would have something special with these two guests and thoughtful live audience, but I have to say - what we ended up with exceeded my expectations.
A couple of quick notes to listeners and then a little more about my guests.
So obviously doing an interview in front of a live audience is a little different then doing a 1 on 1 conversation in my living room. The first cool thing about a live show is the participation from the audience, so be sure to stay tuned in for the Q&A towards the end of the conversation. You’ll also probably pick up on the fact that I showed some video clips of cool projects that Caroline and Dirk have done, and needless to say that doesn’t translate too well into an audio only podcast, but I at least tried to keep in some of the sound bites so you could get a taste of the experience. If you want to check out the video clips, all the links are in the show resources section for this episode in your podcast platform or at my website. Lastly, I apologize in advance for a little bit of feedback noise from the microphones being passed around - nature of the beast guys.
Okay so, a little bit about Caroline and Dirk.
Caroline Gleich is a professional ski mountaineer and environmental advocate based in Salt Lake City, UT. If you ski in the Wasatch, you’ve either seen her on the skin track or in the magazines. She is passionate about a wide-range of climate and social issues, and is often working with advocacy non-profits like Protect Our Winters, Heal Utah, Winter Wildlands Alliance, and Tree Utah. She is also the founder of Big Mountain Dreams Foundation, which is dedicated to protecting big mountain environments, while also advocating for the people who live and play there. The film clip we saw from Caroline is called Follow Through, and it documents her journey to ski all 90 ski lines in Andrew McLeans book on steep skiing called the Chuting Gallery.
Dirk Collins is a mountain athlete, producer, director, filmmaker and brand strategist based in Jackson, Wyoming. He is the founder and president of One Eyed Bird, a boutique creative marketing and entertainment house with a passion for meaningful storytelling. Dirk also co-founded Teton Gravity Research, which is arguably one of the most well-known outdoor film and media production companies out there. Dirk is renowned for taking on complex and technically challenging projects, where his ability to create compelling stories for his clients defies traditional boundaries, no matter the athletic challenge, remote location, or harsh environment. The live audience saw a few different film clips from Dirk, the first was a segment from a series of shorts he did with author and flow expert Steven Kotler for his book Rise of Superman. The second was an insane action sports commercial he did for Pirelli Tires, and the third documented a ski mountaineering trip he took with Jimmy Chin and Kit DesLauriers in Greenland.
I want to give special thanks to my friends Eric Shutt (who founded SummitX) and Joseph Abrahams for bringing me onto the staff, and also to the rest of the crew Josh Cogan, Matt Adkins, and Todd Hanna.
And the last thing before we get into the live interview… Some of you know about Outwild, which is a company I started with my friends Courtney Sanford and Sanni McCandless. Outwild is an event series and resource hub for people who want to create more outdoor and value-driven lifestyles, and I wanted to let you all know we have a few events coming up. This June, we are hosting a women’s only retreat in the mountains of New Hampshire focused on following and creating more of what makes you feel alive into your daily life. I’ll be doing a workshop of harnessing flow states on top of a lot of other cool workshops and outdoor activities. As of this morning, March 21st there is actually only one ticket left to that event. However, we do have our larger annual festival coming up in September in Lotus California as well. Tickets will be going on sale soon, so stay tuned or go to Outwild.co to find out more. Also want to give a quick shout out to all the Outwild 2018 alumni who threw a pretty banging ski trip reunion in Salt Lake City a few weeks ago - had an awesome time with you guys!
Founder - One-Eyed Bird
Cofounder - Teton Gravity Research
Founder - Big Mountain Dreams Foundation
Film clip from live recording - Follow Through
Other show resources and mentions:
Photos by Joshua Cogan