10 skiers from Revelstoke history who were gnarlier than you

We dug through the Revelstoke Museum & Archives files to find 10 gnarly skiers from Revelstoke's past that skinned up in wool pants, flew through the air in leather boots, stuck their landings on wood planks, and wrote their names in the history books for accomplishments that have stood the test of time.

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Nels Nelsen is Revelstoke’s ski hero. He was a world champion ski-jumper in the 1920s, and inventer of vorlage, or the forward lean. Nelson put Revelstoke on the map as a ski-jumping destination. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives

They did it on wood skis – planks, literally – leather ski boots and leather-strap bindings.
They charged hard after climbing up the hill on every lap.

But the most impressive part is they pioneered it. Do you think a 100-foot jump is doable? I don’t know – let’s find out. How about 200 feet? Let’s find that out next.

They built jumps that scared the crap out of visiting jumpers, because, well, do you want to go big or what?

They ski toured to Jasper and Banff without a cell phone safety net. They smashed gender barriers by racing behind horses, sticking insane jumps and old-fashioned calling you out to race.

Revelstoke has a storied skiing history. The Revelstoke Mountaineer collaborated with the Revelstoke Museum & Archives to compile this list of Revelstoke skiers who were gnarlier than you. Thanks to the museum for providing photos and captions:

Came to Revelstoke from Norway in 1914. Mother of four sons, all skiers. Anna was a champion cross-country ski racer who would win races even when she gave the other racers a one-block head start, even when the other racers were teenage boys. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
Anna Gunnersen came to Revelstoke from Norway in 1914. Mother of four sons, all skiers. Anna was a champion cross-country ski racer who would win races even when she gave the other racers a one-block head start, even when the other racers were teenage boys. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
Born in Revelstoke – first women’s world champion in ski-jumping in the 1920s. She also participated in ski-joring, skiing behind a horse. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
Isabel Coursier was born in Revelstoke and was the first women’s world champion in ski-jumping in the 1920s. She also participated in ski-joring, skiing behind a horse. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
Younger brother of Nels Nelsen, he was known for his perfect form. He was the world boy champion in the 1920s, and taught skiing in Lucerne, Quebec. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
Ivind Nilsen was the younger brother of Nels Nelsen. He was known for his perfect form. He was the world boy champion in the 1920s, and taught skiing in Lucerne, Quebec. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
Was beginning to win ski-jumping tournaments and was expected to be the next Nels Nelsen. He signed up for service during World War II and was killed in action. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
Hans Gunnersen was beginning to win ski-jumping tournaments and was expected to be the next Nels Nelsen. He signed up for service during World War II and was killed in action. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
Started out with a poor showing in the boys’ jumping events one year, and was determined to improve, so next year, he was the winner in his class. He broke Nels Nelsens world record in the 1930s, and did the first solo ski ascent and descent of Mt. Begbie in one day. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
Bob Lymburne started out with a poor showing in the boys’ jumping events one year, and was determined to improve, so next year, he was the winner in his class. He broke Nels Nelsens world record in the 1930s, and did the first solo ski ascent and descent of Mt. Begbie in one day. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
On Canada’s National Ski Team in the 1960s – participated in the 1964 and 1968 winter Olympics as a ski-jumper. Made an unofficial jump of 325 feet on Mount Revelstoke. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
John McInnes was on Canada’s National Ski Team in the 1960s. He participated in the 1964 and 1968 winter Olympics as a ski-jumper. Made an unofficial jump of 325 feet on Mount Revelstoke. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
Proficient in downhill, slalom and cross-country. With his brothers, Alex, and Bill and cousin Jim McDonald, did a 310-kilometre ski trip around the Big Bend to Golden in 1939. The next year, they did a 805-kilometre trip to Jasper and Banff, taking a month to complete the ski trek. Don ran Heather Lodge on Mount Revelstoke until he enlisted in World War II. He was killed in action. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
Don McCrae was a proficient in downhill, slalom and cross-country. This image was taken was back in the 1930s. With his brothers, Alex, and Bill and cousin Jim McDonald, did a 310-kilometre ski trip around the Big Bend to Golden in 1939. The next year, they did a 805-kilometre trip to Jasper and Banff, taking a month to complete the ski trek. Don ran Heather Lodge on Mount Revelstoke until he enlisted in World War II. He was killed in action. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
 Married Alex McCrae, and spent their honeymoon at Heather Lodge on Mount McKenzie. Wrote lively ski columns for the Revelstoke Review. Brought up five children who spent all their winters on the slopes. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
Mary Burridge McCrae was Married Alex McCrae, and spent their honeymoon at Heather Lodge on Mount Revelstoke. Wrote lively ski columns for the Revelstoke Review. They brought up five children who spent all their winters on the slopes. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
originally from Austria, Paul was a ski instructor at Grouse Mountain. He opened the first ski runs on Mount Mackenzie in 1963 with a 700-foot rope tow. He organized an Austrian Ski School and gave free lessons to youth. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives
Originally from Austria, Paul Mair was a ski instructor at Grouse Mountain. He opened the first ski runs on Mount Mackenzie in 1963 with a 700-foot rope tow. He organized an Austrian Ski School and gave free lessons to youth. Photo: Revelstoke Museum & Archives

Correction: We accidentally put Heather Lodge on Mount Mackenzie not Mount Revelstoke in one of the posts, and we’ve changed that now.