National Geographic Daily News

Skier Dan Treadway Whistler, British Columbia

Photograph by Reuben Krabbe

“I love skiing for the adrenaline rush as well as the exploration that skis provide,” says skier Dan Treadway, a regular on the pages of ski magazines and seen here hitting a 20-foot cliff in his home turf, Whistler, British Columbia. It had not snowed in a week or so, but Treadway and photographer Reuben Krabbe found creative playgrounds like this one to showcase in the seventh annual ARC’TERYX Deep Winter Challenge, a photography contest where six photographers have 72 hours to shoot in-bounds at Whistler Blackcomb Ski Resort.

“Whistler has North America’s best lift-accessed terrain, and many of the world’s best athletes come here to push their limits,” says Treadway. “I moved to Whistler 18 years ago. The biggest change is that back then you knew everyone, and if you didn't, they didn't live here.“

Getting the Shot

“I had seen other photographs with the idea of shooting action sports from an angle below a cliff but wanted to try a slightly different variation,” says photographer Reuben Krabbe.

Facing mediocre snow conditions, Krabbe focused on the challenging terrain and set up underneath a cliff. “This photograph was the second time Dan hit the cliff. The first time, I asked him to kick a lot of slough off the cliff, so he would be in the air with the falling snow. However, there was so much snow falling that you couldn't see him. The second time we opted for as little snow as possible, and it worked out perfectly,” says Krabbe.

“I love using color to add to the emotion of the shot, so the blue coloring is partially a postproduction technique. We were also shooting on the shadow side of Whistler Mountain and looking up into blue skies,” says Krabbe.

Krabbe finished the competition in second place and walked away knowing Whistler’s terrain better. “I learned a lot from working with both Dave and Dan Treadway. Together they catch a huge number of magazine pages every year, so they know light, terrain, and photography almost as well as many photographers.”

Krabbe photographed with a Nikon D700 and a 17mm f/2.8 lens.

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