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Article on Stu

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
 no clue why this ended up on TGR, my guess is more people over here will like it better.

Knowing very well not to just link this story to the Ski The East page, I copied and pasted this story and thought some peeps on TGR would like to see it. 
STE has been revamped as some of you know, and with it comes weekly columns, east coast industry news, interviews, video edits, etc. This story is more about the soul of skiing than anything else and a tribute to ski journalism, enjoy!

Tuesdays with Rogge: A Ride on The Chairlift
Mike Rogge
Ski The East Columnist

In 1991, ski journalist Stu Campbell said, “The art of skiing is, ultimately, the search for sensation.” Campbell, a Vermont native, graduated from Middlebury College with a BA in American Literature and later from the University of Vermont with a master’s degree in English Literature. During his college years, he competed in four competitive ski disciplines; slalom, giant slalom, cross-country, and ski jumping. Soon after completing his higher education, Campbell went on to teach English literature and his other passion, skiing, at two high schools before embarking on a long career of ski journalism and ski schools. He was highly regarded for his “extraordinary grasp of the technical elements of skiing and ski teaching,” said Epic Ski Academy. Campbell was so well in tune with the technical aspects of the sport that he penned Ski Magazine’s technical and instructional articles from the mid-seventies until his death last year. His instructional features were enlightening, helpful, and often times, humorous. An author, journalist, teacher, husband, father, grandfather, and skier, Stu Campbell passed away December 4, 2008 after a twenty year battle with cancer. He was 65.

Stu Campbell

12/26/42 - 12/04/08

On December 9, 2009, I ventured down to Stowe with friends for early season powder skiing. Stowe received 13 inches of fresh snow and was in prime December form. Returning to Stowe rekindled many of the sensations skiers often take for granted such as the burn felt after an untracked powder run, the unspoken yet inherently understood stopping locations when waiting or chasing after friends, and the comfortably awkward descent down a flight of stairs in ski boots. These experiences resonate well when shared with good friends. One of the best indicators of our shared sensations on the mountain is the ride up the chairlift. No other place in the world offers a more unique bonding experience with total strangers than the chairlift and Stowe happens to offer one of the most diverse groups of strangers from all walks of life.

Stowe's Four Runner Quad

In the early afternoon, I found myself sitting on the Four Runner Quad with a soft-spoken middle-aged woman. We went through the rightful rituals of shared chairlift etiquette (How’s your day going?) before diving into one of the many directions these unique conversations can go. She asked where I came from and what I did for a living. “I work for an online community and clothing company called, 'Ski The East,'" I replied, “and I’m a journalist.” Upon hearing this, she lit up with pride. “My husband was a ski journalist,” she said. “He wrote for Ski Magazine for over 30 years.” Then she paused for a moment and continued, “I lost him exactly one year ago to prostate cancer.” Over the next 5-6 minutes, Carol West-Campbell and I briefly discussed the incredible life her late husband, Stu Campbell, lead and the reasons we return to the hill each year. Carol and Stu traveled the world together in search of snow while maintaining a very close connection to their home in Stowe. After his death, she spread Stu’s ashes on the mountain. One year later, Carol was making turns as a way to reconnect with her lost husband. When we arrived at the end of the lift line and began to ski away, she patted me on my back and said, “Hey, I’m proud of you guys. Have fun out there.” She smiled and I stood in silence as I watched her ski away alone.

Stowe, VT

In 1991, ski journalist Stu Campbell said, “The art of skiing is, ultimately, the search for sensation.” Those sensations come in many forms; from the burn of that first powder turn to the casual chairlift conversation that, ultimately, connects you to your core. Skiing can allow us to reconnect briefly with lost sensations and loved ones in a place we know and loved them most. When awarded the Vermont Ski Museum's first Paul Robbins Ski Journalism Award, Stu Campbell said to the crowd, "get up on the mountain and make lots and lots and lots of turns. Every turn you make is good for the soul." I agree, Stu. Have fun out there.

Stu Campbell will be inducted into the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Hall of Fame on April 9, 2010.
Doug Coombs will also be inducted this year to the Hall of Fame.
post #2 of 8
Thank you for reposting this article here for us, Bushwacker!  Hard to believe its been over a year since the sport lost one of it's icons!

Here's one for Stu!  
post #3 of 8
post #4 of 8
 Thanks Much, Super Story. 
post #5 of 8
What they said.
post #6 of 8
post #7 of 8
I remember how thrilled I was to see him at Beaver Creek one year testing next year's gear for Ski Magazine. 
post #8 of 8
One of the highlights of my so-far [comparatively] short skiing career was the chance to spend part of a morning and later, dinner with Stu at ESA Stowe in 2008.
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