“Best view comes after the hardest climb”- Author Unknown
Growing up in a mountain biking mecca as a backyard and a four-season playground, it is easy to see how youngsters in Rossland are seriously good at sports.
This alpine community that we call home is minutes away from Red Mountain Ski Resort, Blackjack Nordic Centre, Redstone Golf Resort, with over 200 kilomegtres of single track mountain bike trails, and many other outdoor adventures. The terrain is immense, intense, and accessible year-round.
If someone learns to do a sport in Rossland, it goes without saying they will be able to conquer that sport anywhere in the world.
“Trails can be edgy and difficult, but the access to those trails makes us better,” said Blaise Swain, a Seven Summits Centre For Learning senior set to graduate this year.
“Growing up with Monte Cristo in my backyard, we just rode every day and pushed ourselves to improve.
“As a result, Rossland has a higher degree of difficulty regardless of the sport, contributing to the higher than average skill level of talented riders, skiers, boarders, golfers, etc.”
Swain’s work hard to play hard ideology directed his choice to attend high school in Rossland.
“I started at Seven Summits Centre in Grade 10 mainly because I didn’t see myself wasting so much time riding a bus. I spent more time at the ski hill and bike park by staying in Rossland for high school. The four-day school week is also really suited for outdoor adventure pursuits.”
Moving from sport to sport, Rossland’s youth have many reasons to participate in activities and they usually migrate from one disciple to the next for ongoing adventure.
Fresh air, endless opportunities, and adventurous spirit abound; Rossland youth stay busy keeping up and pushing one another to improve their abilities. “I used to enjoy the vistas and scenery the most. It was the reward for a long hard climb, but so was the ride down the gnarly descent going off jumps, cliffs, and flowing steep single tracks.
“So after a while, I decided to switch to BMX so I wouldn’t have the long climbs and could do technical tricks and have fun with friends.”
Taking his adventure on the road, Swain is attending the Selkirk College Youth Train in Trades Program to finish his Grade 12 year. The credits from this program will complete the high school diploma requirements while providing a skill set that will allow his entry into a trades career upon completion.
“I chose the electrical trade because I didn’t see myself working a desk job,” said Swain. “The program is a four-day school week, like 7S, which better fits my lifestyle.
“I can make my own schedule and turn work off when the day is over in the electrical trade. That will leave more time for adventurous activities, so I can work hard and play harder.”