Just because Europe has started to close its slopes, it does not mean that the snow season is over. In 1994, Snow+Rock supplied author and journalist Arnie Wilson with clothing and equipment for his ambitious and inspiring project: to prove that it is possible to ski 365 days per year. Covering a minimum of 10 miles every day across 13 countries, Arnie and his late French partner Lucy Dicker skied 3,678 miles in total, which is the equivalent of skiing down Mount Everest 140 times. Here is how Arnie and Lucy achieved their incredible adventure, skied in every USA state and how you can do it too.
Mike and Arnie (right) in Meribel, France, in 1994.
“I felt a great warmth to Snow+Rock because I was always treated very well by them. I’ve always felt that they were great friends and supporters of mine, starting with my relationship with their founder, Mike Browne. I first met Mike at a ski show before he started Snow+Rock and we got on tremendously well. Mike knew in mid-1993 that we were seriously planning our trip in 1994 and he was anxious that we were fully-covered for equipment.
“In-between Mike promising Lucy and me all of the equipment that we wanted he had a terrible accident. He was working on a brochure shoot and said that he was wearing sunglasses that were a bit too dark without a clear image of where he was skiing. He skied over the edge and fell a long way.
Arnie, Mike and Lucy.
“One of the things that inspired Mike to get going again in life after that awful accident was that he made us this promise to come out and give us new skis and anything else that we needed. It was a moving moment when he came out to Meribel, which was very early on in his recovery process. He was just beginning to learn how to sit-ski. Because he was already a brilliant skier, he adapted so quickly that we could hardly keep up with him, even though he was only beginning to recover from his injuries.”
One of our top-line ski suits with embroided sponsors in 1994.
“I’ve never thrown anything away from that trip. The fundamental kit Snow+Rock supplied were skis, poles and the wonderful ski suits, which Lucy got embroidered with all of our sponsors. The ski suits would be as good now as they were then. In these photographs we were wearing the very latest offerings from Snow+Rock. We had three or four each, so we didn’t wear any of them out.
“We got given some little gadgets that we fixed to our skis – a wheel that counted the miles. The problem was that you had to ignore them if you caught a Poma lift because they kept counting even when we were being dragged uphill. So we cross referenced them with Avocet watches which Mike also gave us. In those days they were state of the art and told you how many vertical feet you had skied. We worked out that on average 1,100 vertical feet was about a mile, so in the end we abandoned these little gadgets on the back of our skis and just used the Avocet watches.