Thursday, November 19, 2009

Vernon MorningStar Fall 2009 article: Sayers descends on Pantagonia

Sayers descends on Patagonia
       
Outdoor adventurer Chad Sayers climbs a slope to do some extreme back country skiing.



Pro skier, Paddler, Rock and ice climber, Snowboarder, Surfer...pick a sport and pick a country, and former Vernon resident Chad Sayers has been there and done that to the extreme.  In his ninth winter of skiing and living at Whistler, the 31-year-old VSS grad had gone around the world for the past 10 years working on his photography and enjoying outdoor challenges. He has been on the cover of ski magazines, he plans to publish a gallery book of his photos, and his chilling Patagonia trek five years ago will, sometime this fall, be featured on a TV documentary.  Life, as a fun-seeker on pretty much his own terms, is a blast for the 5-foot-7, 147-pounder who nearly perished in a ski crash in Utah five years ago, and has suffered numerous injuries tackling the mountains and streams.
Sayers, who each summer visits his parents at their home in Honduras to heal his body, is stoked about the documentary.  “I travelled back to Patagonia with Pioneer TV to document a ski expedition that I did with friends Mark Tinholt and Steve Ogle five years ago for the Discovery Channel’s new epic series called Raging Planet. You can look for this documentary sometime this fall. A dream for us to be able to share and inspire.”Located in the southernmost portion of South America in Argentina and Chile, Patagonia is known for its windswept lands, glaciers, low bush, bleakness and danger. It is scattered with dinosaur bones and living relics. Sayers and company endured several near-death calls on the journey.
“The Patagonia documentary that I was a part of this past April was a dream-come true for my two friends and I. It was a 30-day expedition that took place five years ago on the Southern Icecap in Argentina, which proved itself to be the moment when at 25, I became a man. We experienced a two-week storm once we made it on the icecap which repeatedly buried us and nearly ended our lives. Somehow, five years after the trip, the adventure was researched and chosen to be part of the Raging Planet series.”
In the past five years, Sayers has been to India, South America five times, Central America 15 times, all through the U.S., Canada, New Zealand, Australia, Greece and all over Europe seven times.
“I have experienced so many beautiful moments of stillness in solitude where I can truly feel the simplicity of life. The travelling lifestyle is not always easy especially when you are in countries that have such poverty and crime.  “There are moments when you find yourself sitting on a dirty old curb in some far off country asking God how one self will find their way back home. I have been so very fortunate to have seen most everything in the past five years moving through the mountains, and surfing oceans wandering far off countries. The lowlights in my travels have given me the chance to truly embrace life for what it is and open myself to grow as an individual.”
Sayers figures this unique lifestyle was definitely something that just manifested as he became more passionate about seeing the world and taking his own photos.  “When my folks moved to Honduras nine years ago, it gave me a great opportunity to be in the tropics and find a passion for surfing and being by the sea. As time went on, and my ski career blossomed, it also gave me a chance to travel year round and be in the mountains in the most stunning landscapes, so I like to think that it was meant to be.”  He hopes his book will inspire and motivate people to follow their hearts and make the most of the gift of life.  “It’s a big bright world out there and for someone that wants to see it, it’s there waiting. The book will be hardcore coffee table with my 100 best (photos).”
Sayers carries sponsorship from Arc’teryx, Adidas, Kastle, G3, Hestra, Leki, Suunto, Peak Performance Physio and Silver Star Mountain Resort.
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