Behind the Shot: Skier Cody Townsend in Alaska’s Tordillos to Film Days of My Youth

Bravo to skier Cody Townsend on winning Powder Magazine’s award for the Best Ski Line of the Year, seen in the video clip above from the new ski film Days of My Youth.

Here Cody tells a little about this shot from the making of the new ski film and schools us in the delights of Alaska’s Tordillos, the dramatic mountain feature captured in this photo, and where he will be skiing this winter.

Cody Townsend skis during the filming of Days Of Our Youth, in the Tordrillo mountains in Alaska, USA on 10 April, 2014. // Blake Jorgenson/Red Bull Content Pool // P-20141015-00123 // Usage for editorial use only // Please go to for further information. //

Cody Townsend skis during the filming of Days Of Our Youth, in the Tordrillo, Alaska; Photograph by Blake Jorgenson/Red Bull Content Pool

See more photos like this in our Extreme Photo of the Week gallery.

Adventure: What were you thinking at this moment?
Cody Townsend: I was simply thinking, get yourself over the bergschrund safe and sound.

A: Where were you within Alaska’s Tordrillo?
CT: It’s really hard to explain where this is in the Tordrillos since it’s such a rarely skied and insanely massive zone. Mainly, it was simply one of the hundreds of perfect faces the Tordrillos offer.

A: What is that crevasse-like dark crack that you are skiing above?
CT: That crevasse is actually called a bergrschrund, which translates from German into English as “mountain cleft.”  It’s different than a crevasse because it’s the point in which the moving glacier in the valley pulls away from the bottom of a stagnant face of ice on the mountain side. They are present in almost every ski run in Alaska and always provide a challenge and obstacle for your descent.  Falling into one is extremely dangerous as often the bergschrund extends down to the bed rock which can mean the hole can extend hundreds of feet deep.

A: Why did you want to ski this line?
CT: I skied this line because the snow and spines above the bergrschund were too tasty to pass up!

A: I have not yet seen Days of My Youth. What’s your storyline within it?
My storyline in Days of My Youth is centered around the life of a skier. Myself, along with all the other skiers in the movie, represent the many facets, joys, and expressions of skiing.

A: You are married to skier. How much do you two ski together?
CT: Yes, I’m married to fellow professional skier Elyse Saugstad. If we’re at the same place at the same time, we ski together every possible minute. But often our schedules have us traveling to opposite parts of the globe chasing snow. We’re lucky to share the same passion though and that’s why when we’re apart, we’re stoked for each other.

A: Where will you be skiing this winter?
CT:  I’ll primarily be skiing at Squaw Valley, California, with trips to British Columbia and Alaska.

A: Where do you live and why?
CT:  I live in Squaw Valley, California because it’s the most fun ski area I’ve ever been too.

A: Do you think the ski film genre is changing?
CT: I think the ski film genre is changing and has always been changing. From Warren Miller to Greg Stump, MSP to Sweetgrass, the ski film genre is in a constant state of evolution.