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Christina Bruno

Age: 29 / Vitals: 5’7”, 135 lbs. / Years Boarding: 17 years / Years Skiing: 7 / Current Residence: Taos, New Mexico

Background

Living and playing in the mountains has always been the main focus of my life.

I was born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah where the Wasatch range was literally my backyard. I learned to ski when I was very young, but after a broken patella, I switched to snowboarding at the age of 12.

At 15, I joined Snowbird’s and Brighton’s competitive snowboard teams and began competing in half pipe, slope style, and boardercross events. Through high school I was very focused on competing, and I managed to medal at every competition I entered. I competed in both USASA and USSA events, and qualified for nationals (but lacked the funds to actually go).

At 17, I started working in the rental shop at Snowbird, and discovered how much fun working at a resort could be and that it allowed me to ride every day, which definitely influenced my career path—I went to Western State University in Gunnison, Colorado and majored in Ski & Resort Management and Outdoor Leadership.

Christina Bruno, snowboard reviewer for Blister Gear Review

Christina Bruno, West Basin, Taos Ski Valley.

In college I discovered the backcountry, became an avid split boarder, and earned my level 2 avalanche certification and my wilderness first responder. I spent my free time doing anything outdoors—mountaineering, rock climbing, ice climbing, rafting, camping, backpacking, or mountain biking.

I continued to compete through college till I took a bad fall in the terrain park and shattering my pelvis, breaking both wrists, and undergoing two wrist surgeries all at the same time. It took a while for me to recover, but I was eager to get back on snow but took a break from competing.

After College I did a year of AmeriCorps in Park City, Utah, at the National Ability Center, a large non-profit that has a variety of recreation program for people with disabilities. I became a ski and snowboard instructor, as well as a therapeutic horseback riding instructor. I fell in love with the rewards and challenges I found when teaching people with disabilities, and stayed in Park City for five years as a ski and snowboard instructor, and eventually as the snowboard training manager. I re-learned how to ski, and I am certified to teach skiing and snowboarding with a variety of adaptive equipment.

I also started working for the Utah Avalanche Center in their schoolwide “Know Before You Go” program, teaching students about the dangers and precautions of traveling in avalanche terrain. And I started competing again, but this time in big mountain competitions.

Christina Bruno, snowboard reviewer for Blister Gear Review

Christina Bruno at the Taos Freeride Championships.

In between my winters as an instructor, I have led multi-sport trips for teenagers for around 30 days at a time throughout the Pacific Northwest and Moab area. I have taken teens rafting, mountaineering, rock climbing, backpacking, camping, rock climbing, and mountain biking. I’ve spent two months in Nepal, mountaineering and receiving my international mountaineering guide certification.

In 2012 I made a trip to Taos during a three-foot storm, which made it easy for me to decide to make the move and check out a new ski town. I currently live in Taos, and am the adult snowboard supervisor and the adaptive program supervisor at Taos Ski Valley. I love the culture and uniqueness of living in Taos, and the plethora of outdoor activities that are available.

Riding at Taos Ski Valley is an amazing experience—the mountain is steep, the snow holds really well, and there is hardly ever a lift line. This year I competed in the Taos Freeride World Qualifiers, made the finals, and placed 9th overall.

Some Favorite Snowboard Equipment:

Never Summer Raven; Gnu Park Pickle; Never Summer Summit Split; K2 Spotlight; Spark R&D Bindings; Burton Felix Boots

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