Profile: Parker White talks childhood, Level 1 and cooking skills
As posted in the October 2011 issue of FREESKIER. Interview by Nate Abbott.
“P White.” That was the emphatic and consistent answer last winter when I asked filmers and pros who the next big time skier would be. It was quickly apparent when shooting with Parker White that he was going to ski smoother, go bigger and be more creative than most other athletes on any feature. But that’s not the story.
The more salient point is that Parker is a rare blend: humble and confident, driven and carefree, astute and innocent. Uncertainty is inherent in the ski industry and I cannot say Parker will be a hugestar. But somehow when you talk to him the importance of stardom fades away and you’re left engaged and, most likely, laughing.
WHAT THE HECK ARE YOU DOIN’ TODAY? I got kind of a slow start. I mailed my rent and a package. I don’t have any tickets so I’m getting ready to hike up to the Windells lane to shred today.
IS THAT NORMAL FOR YOU TO HAVE NO TICKET? ARE YOU DIRTBAGGING THIS SUMMER? I wouldn’t say I’m dirtbaggin’ it, but I’m not living the most plush lifestyle right now. We’ve got a whole tent city set up. It’s in back of the ARK. Living there right now it’s Brady Perron, Luke Tanaka, Mike Hornbeck, Matt Walker, Wybel McChesney, Dylan Ferguson and me.
WHERE DID YOU GROW UP SKIING? Bromley, Vermont. When I was real little kid I skied at Bromley and then when I got a little older I started shredding Mount Snow. When I was 16 I moved to Mammoth. I started doing online school, but I never really did any of that shit. I just got to move out and my parents were down with me skiing and living out there, which was pretty sick. I’ve been out there ever since.
DID YOU FINISH HIGH SCHOOL? Kind of a funny story with that: I showed up to my senior year of high school without having done any of my junior year’s work online. And I was just hoping no one was going notice—just like it would be all good. And then my guidance counselor, first day, was like, “Hey, where are those credits?” And I just said, “Yeah. I never did any of that.” You know? She freaked out. But my friends helped me out and I got it done eventually. So I graduated. Not the most efficient way, but I was skiing so it’s all good.
WHAT WERE YOUR PARENTS LIKE WHEN YOU WERE GROWING UP? My parents are rad. They’re like, well, my dad was an Olympic kayaker and still coaches ski racing so he’s super into skiing. Then my mom, I think she wants me to go to college—I don’t think I’m ever gonna go—but she’s still really into everything I’m doing. They were divorced when I was pretty young so if one was mad at me I could just go hang out at the other one’s house. And it was pretty mellow. They were way down for my brother and me to do whatever we wanted. We didn’t really have any rules or anything like that.
WHAT WAS YOUR BEST TRIP WITH LEVEL 1 THIS YEAR? YOUR BEST SINGLE SHOT OF THE WINTER? My best trip was hanging out in Cooke City. I don’t even want to tell anyone that ‘cause then everyone’s gonna go. Cooke City is the sickest place on earth. It’s a tiny town. We got to know all the locals really quick, everyone there is real cool. There’s no cell phone service, you can sled right out of your backyard. There was just zero hassle. We had a sick ass spot we were staying, and the backcountry is just amazing, dude. Some of the sickest shit I’ve ever shredded. I can’t think of one shot, it’s just one day that was the best of my whole season. Delorme and I hit this one zone, I think it was called like Goose or Buffalo or something. Delorme and I just fucking shredded the fuck out of this zone. And it was awesome.
CAN YOU SUM UP YOUR PHILOSOPHY ON LIFE IN 30 SECONDS OR LESS? Um, ah—that’s a pretty heavy one to get put on the spot, but I would say just do whatever you want to do as long as you’re not hurting anyone else.
WHO DO YOU LOOK UP TO IN THE WORLD? Everything I do is dedicated to George Deets. That’s it.
DO YOU HAVE BIG PLANS FOR FALL? Yeah I’m gonna go hang out in Bozeman for a while, so not really any big plans. Just gonna hang out, hopefully cook a bunch of good food, party and do whatever until premiere season.
DO YOU COOK? No dude, I don’t cook. But I’m moving to this house with some friends and all of them are gonna be in school so I’m not gonna really have anything to do. So I think I’m gonna start trying to cook good meals. I’m gonna get a bunch of recipes from my mom ‘cause she’s the best cook I know. I’m gonna cook anything and everything. That’s one thing I want to do is try to
keep my house clean and be a good cook—that’s all I want to do.
WHAT DO YOU WANT TO DO TODAY? Today? I just want to go skiing.
HOMETOWN: Dorset, VT
SPONSORS: Rossignol, Tomahawk, Mammoth Mountain,
Monster Energy, Cooter Brown, Electric, Skullcandy
FILMS: After Dark_ Level 1 Productions, Weight_ Stept,
Refresh_ Level 1 Productions
RESULTS: 1st, High Fives Foundation Trains, Tahoe, CA
About the author:
Henrik Lampert loves hot dogs, backflips, the Boston Bruins and Norway. Twenty-seven years old and a Massachusetts native, he's the Editor of Freeskier Magazine and Freeskier.com—a proud staffer since 2010.