Arc’teryx invited us to their film festival in Zurich and showed us five wonderful and inspiring movies that got us even more hooked for winter. With that, we had the chance to talk with Maude Besse and Coline Ballet Baz, about their passion, how it is to be a Freeride Ski Pro, and much more… Enjoy the Interview and make sure to watch their movies!
What does it mean to both of you, to be a female Pro Freeride Skier?
[Maude] It is just a dream to live off my passion in Winter — pretty simple![Coline] I consider it as a big chance, I try to enjoy the most out of it — especially because some years ago, there were not many many female freeskiers and freeriders.
Maude Besse & Coline Ballet Baz
Would you say there is an important difference between female and male riders in this sport? Like talking about cycle but as well the metabolism or performance…
[Maude] Yes, everybody is different and we just need to accept this difference and enjoy it. We all have our personalities and I think that is very important. [Coline] …True, yes — there is a difference for sure because we are women and there are for sure more men in this industry. Like you said with the cycle and the fact that our bodies are different, we for sure feel that in the sport. In the mountains, it feels like we all push in the same direction, we all love to ski, freeriding, ski touring, or whatever and we do it for the same purpose and motivation. I think it is an issue of society and in that case super important for us to show young women that they absolutely can enjoy that field.
As soon as we all sit in a cinema or on our couch at home and get to watch those sick movies, we often forget about all that hard work that was put into this production. What is in your opinion, the hardest part for the riders, in producing a Backcountry Movie?
[Coline] I would say — dealing with the conditions! It is part of the game, so I don’t complain but some days you have organized a full day to film, and then the wheater is getting shitty. It’s a lot of work to get the right people, the right setting, and conditions till you have that perfect line filmed. We do a sport that is very related to the weather, which for me is sometimes difficult in filming. Because it takes so much and you can sometimes travel somewhere and don’t get a shot at all. [Maude] …and to still respect nature with all of it, to have a clean and stylish ride, even if we sometimes just have one try! What you don’t see as well, is that we train all year for those moments and there is a lot of work to get the budgets and to produce a full film, so I guess it is a full commitment.
Arc’teryx Presents: LEXICON — TRAILER
LEXICON will be online to watch on January 22nd and MOONLINES on February 15th, 2024. Make sure to check out the Arc’teryx YouTube channel to see their full versions.
So what is the most fun part about it?
SHARING! And we love all the work we have to put into, maybe the computer works a little less — but that’s part of the game too.
Coline, you even mix two extreme sports with Freeriding and Highlining! What freaks you out more?
Both are scary, but on a Highline, I can be pretty rational and tell myself “ok, this is scary but I am secured on the rope” so there is nothing really bad that could happen. But of course, my first tries on Highline needed a lot of confidence to overcome. But in skiing, you always have to be so focused, because you can get insured easily in the smallest things. But Highlining you get some feelings that are mindblowing in a super safe surrounding. So for your answer, I am more scared of skiing!
And do you get the same feeling of adrenaline or is it completely different?
It is my goal that two sports give me those sensations! But I just started Highlining two years ago, so it is all pretty new and I am still really excited about it. So maybe at one point, there is even more adrenaline than in skiing but I have skied for so many years, that I am more used zo the skiing-excitements. All in all, skiing is still my absolute biggest passion, but it is fun to get myself pushed in other sports as well.
Maude, you live in Valais, a dream spot for the backcountry terrain. What are your favorite freeride spots that you can share and would you say freeriding at home is still the best?
Valais is exceptional for skiing and for freeriding, but for me, my favorite spot is Bruson. The terrain is just so cool in the forest and I can go to the other side to Verbier and get everything from tree-riding to big mountains. There is such an amazing community in all generations, so it is awesome to share that passion with everyone. I can go skiing alone and I will always find some good friends on the mountain.
What does home mean to both of you?
[Coline] For me home has a lot to do with the people, which is a really big part of me to feel comfortable. And of course four walls where I have my stuff and being able to reset and connect. [Maude] …I feel related to that! Home means a feeling of security and a good time with my family, for me extremely important!
To end this lovely interview, we did some QUICK ANSWER questions, find that video on our Instagram channel bellow. Thanks so much to Arc’teryx for that chance and thank you Maude and Coline for your time!
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