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Luke Koppa

Age: 21 | Vitals: 5’8,” ~155 lbs. | Years Skiing: 9 | Current Residence: Fort Collins, Colorado

 

Skiing Background
Luke Koppa - Profile
I am one of many Midwest transplants currently residing in Colorado. I grew up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and my early years were dominated by soccer, rugby, and climbing. During the summers, I’d spend as much time as possible exploring Wisconsin’s lakes, rivers, and forests in pursuit of fish and an escape from the city.

My first experience on skis came in the form of a family trip to Granite Peak in central Wisconsin. Although my younger-self didn’t love the frigid chairlifts and short, icy runs, I instantly fell in love with the feeling of sliding on snow. Afterwards, my brothers and I would grab our parent’s XC skis and try and find any sort of hill where we could again experience that sensation. However, my time on skis back home was limited by other sports, so it wasn’t until I moved to Fort Collins that I was able to really give skiing my full attention.

Luke Koppa - Profile

Luke Koppa, Rocky Mountain National Park. (photo by Chris Fuller)

My first season was spent attempting to follow my more-experienced friends around the mountains of Colorado. Although it was filled with plenty of yard-sales and sore muscles, that season quickly taught me how to keep up with those who’d been skiing since they could walk.

My skiing style tends to revolve around finding anything to jump off, but I’m happy challenging myself in any terrain, from riding at the edge of control in open bowls to my never-ending quest to truly figure out moguls.

In the past few years I’ve been drawn more into the backcountry, and love touring’s combination of exploration, wild places, and (hopefully) fresh snow. I have a particular attraction to lines that involve a lot of walking, and as a result, love extending the ski season far into the summer (and often the fall).

Luke Koppa - Profile

Luke Koppa, Mt Wilcox, CO. (photo by Chris Fuller)

Although I will happily hike all year to find snow, I also like exploring the trails around Fort Collins, and have started to enjoy logging some longer runs. Along with trail running, I also love throwing flies at fish and getting out to climb when I can.

Running Background, Style, and General Preferences

I grew up with running being a way to stay in shape for sports like soccer and rugby, and now that I’m a few years separated from those sports, I’ve transitioned to running mostly for fun. However, those sports did leave me with an appreciation for shoes with more neutral heel / toe drops, and I prefer shoes in the 0-6 mm range to accommodate a mid-to-forefoot strike.

I mostly run on the rocky, sandy trails surrounding my house in Fort Collins, Colorado, and love the challenge of more technical trails. Most of my runs tend to be between 5-7 miles, but I enjoy increasing that distance when I have the time.

Finally, I tend to prefer shoes with thicker, more-cushioned midsoles, since I’ve had issues with foot numbness with more minimal shoes in the past.

Luke Koppa - Profile

Luke Koppa, Torrey’s Peak, CO. (photo by Eric Mills)

Apart from getting outside as much as possible, I’m also currently pursuing a degree in Product Development at Colorado State University, and have always been a bit obsessed with product design. I get excited about things like ski rocker profiles, bike-frame geometries, intricate seam patterning, and, of course, chest pockets.

Some of My Favorite Gear:

Strafe Recon Jacket & Pants; FITS socks; Topo Designs Global Shorts; Arc’teryx Atom LT Hoody; Patagonia Alpine Guide Pants.

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