For the last two years pro skier Rachael Burks, one of free skiing’s most visible female personalities, has been laying relatively low. Burks has not been resting, however, instead she has been busy creating a new action sports website, femalewolfpack.com.
The website will feature video content of female action sports athletes, ranging from dirt-biking, surfing, slack-lining, to BASE and mountaineering. The goal, according to an announcement from the website, is to “specifically increase female visibility in action sports.”
A soft launch, which will have about ten videos on it, will be followed by an official launch on January 1, 2013, and a video of the week moving forward.
Burks’ ability to out-ski, and out-party, and out-backflip many men in the industry has earned her magazine appearances, profiles, and film segments ranging from Warren Miller Films, TGR, and the Levitation Project, and Powder Magazine reader’s polls, among others.
Burks says she decided to create the website after recognizing that to gain recognition in action sports is tough, but it is often even tougher for females.
“I got to a point in my ski career where it felt like my progress depended on how much money I could get together, which didn’t make sense to me. So I decided to give women a platform where they can get visibility without being reliant on financial alliances,” Burks said.
“In action sports, it is difficult to have progression for anyone. Hopefully this will give girls from all over the world an opportunity to showcase their skills, maybe pick up a sponsor, and pursue being a pro athlete,” she said.
One of the website’s goals is to collect female content in one easy-to-find viewing location. Burks also hopes that a consolidated arena where female athletes are showcased pushing the limits will influence women’s action sports as a whole.
“The best way is to lead by example. Sometimes all it takes is one person showing everyone else what is possible,” she said. “The idea is to let women be inspired once they are able to see what other women are doing, what is possible, and to up the ante.”
The target audience of the site is everyone ranging for sponsors looking for new talent, to people sitting at a desk looking for a cool way to kill some time.
“I don’t want this to be only for women, either. I think guys are interested in what the girls are doing, too,” Burks said.
Burks will personally select the videos chosen to go up on the site. Edits sent for submission can be new or existing video, pro or amateur, and should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org for the rest of the month. After the January launch, videos submitted for consideration can be uploaded directly to the site. According to Burks, there will be no commentary, no editorials, no thumbs up or thumbs down, just visual content.
Athletes are already getting on board with the project.
“I think it is awesome! It’ll be a cool place to express ourselves, have fun, and put up rad content,” said Nat Segal, a Jackson Hole-based pro skier and competitor on the Freeride World Tour. “It’s going to give up and comers a place to showcase their abilities and get exposure, which sometimes girls really have to fight for. And it will give younger girls a place to see what other women are doing. I’m stoked. I already sent her some edits.”