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NAME: Carter McMillan
NICKNAME: Carter Mak
BIRTHDAY: 29 November 1990
HOME: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
DISCIPLINES: Big Mountain/Backcountry
CAREER HIGHLIGHTS

  • Winner - Candide Thovex’s One Of Your Days video contest
  • Cover of Explore Magazine - Winter 2018 issue
  • Cover of Ski Canada Magazine - Issue #44
  • The North Face Young Gun Award - Freeskiing World Tour 2013
  • Sickbird Award - Freeskiing World Qualifier Lake Louise 2010
  • 1st Place - Wrangle The Chute 4* Freeride World Tour 2016
  • 1st Descent - Loud and Proud Couloir - Sol Mountian Lodge 2017
  • CMH Heliskiing - Athlete Ambassador 2017- present

  

ABOUT ME
I grew up skiing in the Canadian Rockies at Lake Louise, and moved into competitive freeskiing at a young age. When I turned 18 I qualified for the Freeskiing World Tour. After 5 years on the Tour I retired with many podium finishes, and held an World Tour top 10 position for my entire competitive career. I then gravitated toward the backcountry, and currently spend much of my winter chasing the steepest deepest powder I can find, and working with photographers, magazines, and backcountry lodges to produce awesome skiing content.

  • What MOMENT do you ski for?

I ski for that special moment of breathless anticipation, when you’re pushing off into an amazing looking line filled with perfect snow and a few big cliff hucks, and you know the next few seconds might just be to some of the most exhilarating moments of your life!

MORE

  • How do you recharge your batteries for the next challenge? 

My favourite place to recharge is at some local backcountry hot springs, where I can clear my mind and soak my aches muscles in the waters. That always get me ready for a competition or a big trip.

  • What’s your favorite quote? Why does this quote resonate with you? 

“There’s nothing better in life than sliding down snow and flying through the air” - Shane McConkey.
Although it’s almost cliche for a skier to quote McConkey, I believe these words ring true to the core of why my friends and I all pursue this sport with such energy and commitment. The type of skiing we do has got to be the coolest feeling on earth!

  • What sacrifices have you had to make to get to where you are today and were they worth it? 

I made many sacrifices to end up where I am today. Early on, I managed my competitive ski career while completing a Bachelor of Biological Sciences degree at the University of Calgary. Upon attaining my degree, I chose to continue skiing professionally over going back to school to pursue a veterinary medicine degree. This was probably the best decision I’ve ever made, and I’ve had some amazing experiences since that fateful choice, but it was a major sacrifice in my life to chase my dream.

  • What do you do when you aren’t skiing? 

When I’m not skiing you’ll likely find me hiking up a mountain, collecting fossils and crystals, flying my paraglider, mountain biking, river surfing, petting other peoples dogs (see Adam McCraw), or running the service department of an lawn sprinkler company!

  • What strategy do you use to overcome pressure and stress for optimum performance? 

Competing on the Freeskiing World Tour taught me many valuable lessons on how to manage stress in a productive way. If I let the stress overwhelm me, then I could lose focus on the important details of a run, which could be dangerous. Before competition run or dropping into a big line, I always mentally visualize myself stomping a perfect entire run from the skier’s perspective, then when I dropped into my line it would feel like I’d done it before. This allowed me to have confidence to hit cliffs that I had never jumped before, or not get lost during a run. Mindful mediation in the start gate would also help me block out the stressors of the noise and excitement happening all around me, and focus on what I needed to do.