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Christina Lustenberger: Old Friends and New Experiences

Christina Lustenberger might be the new face on the TGR roster this year, but she is far from a rookie in the ski world. Hailing from the woods of British Columbia, her friends call her Lusti. Taking her skills from World Cup ski racing, Lusti went on to focus her career on climbing and skiing big mountains as not just a pro skier, but as a mountain guide. She has made appearances in films from Black Crows and Sherpa Cinemas, and this winter, she took her highly-refined mountain skills to Lofoten, Norway to join the TGR crew on a spring mission unlike any other.

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Christina Lustenberger living her best life. Ming T. Poon photo.

You're an unfamiliar face around here, tell us a little bit about yourself as a skier and athlete. What are some of your greatest hits?

This winter was my first time filming with TGR. The crew was epic, but the ski conditions were truly challenging. Right now, I live in Revelstoke and spend most of my time ski touring and ski mountaineering. I filmed with the Sherpas my previous season and had a blast, but more than anything I like exploring new lines in BC. Skiing fast and steep lines are on top of my list.

How did the Norway trip come to be and what role did you play out there?

Sometime during the winter, TGR asked if I wanted to join Ian and Sage on a human-powered ski trip. I was pretty happy about joining the two on a TGR adventure. The fact that it was human powered was an extra bonus. The conditions in Norway were challenging, to say the least. We arrived during the transition from winter to spring, so solar aspects had started to melt-freeze with most lines having frozen avalanche debris at the bottom. That definitely made it hard to film and even harder to make the skiing actually look good. 

Chasing friends old and new up some big mountains. Ming T. Poon photo.

Have you skied much with Sage and Mac before? How was that dynamic this season in Norway?

I actually grew up with Ian so I’ve skied with him many times before! Getting to Norway was my first time meeting Sage, though he’s definitely a legend around the ski world. The dynamic up there was awesome≥ I really enjoy and look up to both of the boys as athletes and it’s always hard to stop laughing when around the two. Looking forward, I’d be lucky to get out with the two boys again.

What about with the production crew as a whole?

The team was epic! All good times and many laughs.

Can you talk about the Lofoten Ski Lodge? What was it like staying there?

Like much of Norway, it’s a nice place to stay. They have this beautiful lodge right on the water in this little fishing town called Kabelvåg. There’s a great staff to help with local beta, which certainly helped while we were there.

She might be quick on the way up, but Lusti sure knows how to rip it on the way down. Ming T. Poon photo.

You dinged yourself up a bit on the trip, how is the recovery going and how did it affect the rest of your season?

Yes. Unfortunately, I had to fly home early with a knee injury from the trip. I was lucky enough to get surgery one day after arriving back in Canada. It was a minor scope that still kept me off my skis for seven weeks. It was definitely unfortunate timing but I’m all good now and looking forward to next season.

What does the future hold?

I’m looking at possibly a trip to Nepal in the next few weeks, which would be very exciting. For next winter, I’m hoping to link up with Ian for some big line hunting in BC this year, and will probably put some attention towards ice climbing 

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