From the slopes of Squaw to Warren Miller’s new film Line of Descent

By Cathy Claesson

Amie, where is “home”? Truckee, CA in summer; Salt Lake City, UT in winter.

What brought you to Salt Lake City? Do you get any ski days in California still? I have started basing in Salt Lake City in the winters mainly for convenience of travel. The city is very central and it is easy to drive and fly many places. Also, a lot of the ski industry is based in Utah which is helpful as a professional skier. Often I will drive back to Tahoe for a storm, ski the storm and then drive with the storm to Utah and ski it there!

How about your favorite ski run? KT-22 at Squaw Valley will forever hold a precious place in my heart and will be the place where I have had some of the most fun imaginable on my skis.

How long have you been skiing? I was on skis for the first time when I was 10 months old. I had little plastic skis that strapped on to my little snow boots. I would lap the rope tow at Squaw or just cruise laps on my driveway with my dad towing me to the top. I loved it and just grew from there. Been skiing ever since!

Were you hooked on skiing right away? Yes. Skiing is in my blood and has been a huge part of my life. I did step away from skiing a bit in high school to pursue dance and ballet, but I always came back to it.

Do you have other sports/hobbies? Yes, I kinda love it all! Dancing, mountain biking, running, hiking, surfing (at least trying), paddle boarding, camping, cooking and watching cat videos.

We had an incredible year of snow in CA last year. Do you know how many days you got in? I am lucky enough that I get in so many days a year, I lose count.

Any predictions for snow accumulation for this year? I am always banking on it being a good year. Positive thinking right?

Best post ski session reward? I am a traditional-cold-beer-after-a-great-day kinda gal. I am also usually starving so any food does me great!

You do some work with High Fives Foundation. Do you have any projects planned with them in the year ahead? I have worked closely with High Fives for years and truly love the foundation and the people behind it. I do everything from volunteer, attend fundraisers and teach classes in their healing center. No big plans yet for this winter but they are always working on something new and I am always doing my part to help out.

How many Warren Miller films have you been in so far? This will be my second. I have always dreamed of being in a Warren Miller movie so the first was surreal, being in a second film just makes it feel like a reality.

What do you love most about being a part of Warren Miller? It is really cool to be part of a major legacy and something that so many people look to for inspiration and stoke for the winter ahead. Skiing to me is about the collective stoke and Warren Miller films really embody that.

Any fun highlights from filming Line of Descent you can share with our readers? We had a great time in Val d’Isere this past year. Skiing wasn’t the best but we had a great time anyways. On the last day of the trip we took to the skies and went paragliding. It was so cool to soar through the massive French Alps and feel like a bird.

Who are your sponsors? K2 Skis, Spyder, Leki, HiBall Energy, Ojai Energetics, Backcountry Access and Discrete.

What is your goal for this season? To keep the joy alive. I ski because it’s fun and I am blessed with an amazing lifestyle. I always want bigger cliffs, steeper lines, and better kick-turns but more than anything I want to continue to grow my gratitude for our amazing planet and this amazing life!

Photo: Christophe Hassel