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Who says “it can’t be done” says Stephanie Jagger?

Stephanie Jagger is about to prove to all of us that restraining devices, and in that I mean the restraints one thinks up to put in the way of doing something you really want to do, are all in the mind… in other words, look at those restraints as a challenge to be overcome…

Advice on do's and don'ts on  a chairlift in ski resorts

On a glorious day skiing in 2008, Stephanie mused aloud that wouldn’t it be great to spend a year skiing around the world…

“We were all just joking around and I said how cool it would be to ski around the world. We laughed it off and then I saw a sign that said `raise your restraining device’.”

The sign inspired Stephanie to quite literally raise her own personal restraint and over the next two years, she postponed her career in public relations, broke off a relationship and told her parents she might be gone for a while.

On 16th July 2010 her epic voyage began. Called THE VERTICAL FEAT, her aim is to ski 1 million vertical metres… or nearly 4 million vertical feet. An extreme dream you might think, but 2 months into the challenge Steph has already skied, as of yesterday, 980,467 feet (298 800 m). Nearly one third of the way into her challenge.

Her trip began in the Southern Hemisphere in Chili, where she started in the Portillo Resort followed by Termas de Chillan. About a week in each. theverticalfeat

The whole of August was spent in Argentina in the San Carlos de Bariloche region of Argentina in the resorts of Cerro Catedral, Cerro Bayo, and Perito Moreno. The first two weeks of September, still in Argentina, were spent in the Esquel (resort: Cerro Hoya) and Ushuaia areas (resorts: Cerro Castor, Glacier Martial.)

Right at this moment she is having a fabulous time in her favourite resort in New Zealand – Lake Wanaka. “TC and the people in Wanaka are true salt of the earth. Loved it! Now, the terrain has to be mentioned as well. Fabulous unique natural halfpipes and chutes. I skied 49,980 vertical feet there and phew… I wasn’t expecting that in New Zealand. North America, Europe maybe, but not New Zealand. I was blown away!” Add to that the 40,000 vertical feet she squeezed in at Cardrona and she was “happier than a clam!”.

Then it was the turn of Ohau, followed by Broken River and Porters in Flockhill, Temple Basin,. Today she’s at Mount Hutt in Methven – still in New Zealand.

A well deserved time out will be called  on 1st November – but not necessarily a relaxing one. She’ll be in Bali for a bit of surfing therapy with friends.

24th November and it’s back onto the skis in Japan. From there to India and Pakistan, followed by France, Switzerland, Italy and Austria from 17th January to the 28th February and then back onto the American continent where she will be skiing Angel Fire, Taos, Vail, Aspen, Snowbird, Park City, Jackson Hole, Big Sky and Alaska!

In April 2011 she will finish her epic voyage on home turf… Canada, skiing the resorts of Fernie, Revelstoke, Kicking horse, Whitewater, Blackcomb and Whistler.

And what’s it all about? Besides making the rest of us incredibly envious?!

“For me this is obviously about skiing but in reality it is about communicating with people that they can ‘raise THEIR restraining devices’. If you want something. If you’ve been dreaming about something. If there is a goal that’s been kicking around in your head… I want people, particularly women, to start engaging those thoughts a little more. Hopefully, my trip will serve as a reminder that any one person can achieve what they want to and end up living their dream …”

Steph believes so strongly in this principle that she was prepared to re-mortgage her house to self-finance the trip. But ‘raising restraining devices’ also means going out there and getting what you want – and she has managed to get some rad sponsors on board to help out: Icebreaker New Zealand and Skydiving, Whistler.

Her message to us is: with a little bit of self-conviction and confidence, you too can achieve your goal whether it be skiing around the world or an enormous success in business. Be radical, be brave, be extreme…

But get off your butt and GO FOR IT !

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