Hey, everyone! My name is Scott Berkley, and I’m the new VHCB-Americorps member working with the Catamount Trail Association for 2017-2018. I know I’ve got some big shoes to fill with Justin Geibel departing, and let’s face it, I can’t kick a soccer ball like he can! I’m beyond excited to be joining the CTA staff this year — I might call this my “dream job.”
You see, like those of you out there crossing your fingers and doing snow dances and other rituals, I’m a skier. You could say I’m a nordic skier, telemark skier, backcountry skier, skimo racer, all the above — or just a skier. I might go so far as to say I’m an obsessed skier — obsessed with kicking and gliding through northern New England’s deep dark forests, obsessed with twisting and turning through steep moguls, even (sometimes) obsessed with skiing uphill as hard as I can for an hour without barfing on someone else’s skins during a transition.
I started skiing as a two year-old in the woods of Wayland, MA, and my childhood was full of snow days spent playing on skis, afternoons at the ski track with the Bill Koch League, and tours in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. After taking a break from nordic racing and learning to telemark during high school, I moved up to Vermont for school at Middlebury College, where I majored in English and minored in Mad River Glen glade skiing (an unofficial, but very important, academic plaudit). I also got my introduction to the Catamount Trail on a sparkling March day skiing along the base of Bread Loaf Mountain and skating back on Natural Turnpike!
I’m beyond excited for everything that this winter has in store, both on and off the trail. In the fall you can find me at many of the Catamount Trail work days, getting busy with a pair of loppers and a hand saw; once snow arrives I’ll be out at Bolton Valley for our Ski Cubs program. We might also cross paths at a glade-cutting event hosted by one of our chapters — DHASH, NEKBC or RASTA — or at the annual meeting on November 4th in Rochester. Please say hello! I’m hoping to get to know more CTA members and the amazing community involved with the snowy backcountry here in Vermont.