After making New Zealand alpine history as the first person to ski the length of the Southern Alps, Erik was in touch regarding clothing. He had a lot of ideas about what would make the ideal back-country ski outfit. This was our first introduction to Erik. It would be hard to find someone with more energy, entrepreneurial ideas and commitment to making these ideas reality. The first visit was a full afternoon where most items from the range were examined, fabric samples were viewed and discussion about styles and fabric combination was intense.
A long standing success of this intial meeting was Erik discovering and testing our Merino Boxers. He had been afflicted with a painful rash on his ski traverse which he had remedied at the time with ash from the fire. He found the Merino Boxers prevent this being an issue and has worn them ever since. Erik relates the story here.
Our relationship with Erik grew when we agreed to sponsor the Erik led, Back Country Ski Clinic in The Remarkable’s Ice & Mix Festival
In 2016 Erik attended the Sustainable Summits meet at Aoraki Mount Cook. He was stunned to learn of the time and expense required to get a hut constructed and into place in the mountains. His entrepreneurial brain yet again went to work and the idea of using a plastic farm water tank was born. By August 2017 the first Turk was installed and our Back Country Ski Clinic headed into the Crown Range to celebrate.
Since then the Turk story has continued. First an order from Antarctic Heritage Trust where Erik and his friend Richard prepared Turks to be shipped to the Cape Adare, Antarctica where they were installed as a base for hut restoration work.
Then the idea of the Haute Ski Touring Route was born. Erik talked enthusiastically about this in August 2019. Where most ideas would have still been talked about, Erik swung into action forming a club and underwriting the project with his wife Christine. By 2021 the five Turks were installed and the Manu Whenua Traverse was in operation. The story about the Turks including the traverse is here. We were delighted to support the making of a documentary made about Erik, the Turks and the traverse. The film won best documentary at the 2023 Mounain Film Festival.
Erik’s Earth Sea Sky wardrobe includes: