Photographer Jeff Cricco is based in Vail, Colorado, but he snapped the cover shot for Mountain‘s Winter 2012 issue far from home near Haines, Alaska. Cricco was on assignment with Denver, Colorado-based Level 1 Productions, shooting stills for their 2009 release, Refresh. To get this shot, Cricco set up on a ridge opposite an area known as Sexy Spines, and caught Wiley Miller in action.
That was my second Alaska trip with Level 1 and our first time to Haines. It was an amazing trip.
Wiley is a super confident kid, really comfortable doing tricks in the park and at the same time he really gets out there on the big mountains.
Sexy Spines has been published so many different times from different angles. It’s one of the areas that made Haines become so popular. As you can see in the photo, the spines are stacked up so you just pick and choose which one you want to ski.
The terrain is often defined by rollovers. You can’t see the run from the top. You have to study your line from the helicopter or from the bottom and memorize it. I can only imagine how nerve-wracking it is to ski the line confidently and know exactly where you’re going.
I enjoy Alaska, but at the same time it’s always a high gamble. That trip was the best I ever had but I still didn’t make my money back as far as paying for the helicopter. It’s something you almost have to do to compete—you have to have your Alaska shots. —Olivia Dwyer
See more of Cricco’s work at jeffcricco.com.
In the Winter 2012 issue, the skier in the cover photograph is incorrectly identified as Sage Cattabriga-Alosa. It is Wiley Miller.