The first time we saw Rob Aseltine he was wearing all black and ripping Snowbird solo. Occasionally, you would catch a glimpse of him hitting a huge air or throwing some massive trick – we knew right away this kid was something special. As his career progressed, so did his style and focus. Nowadays you can spot Rob from a mile away sporting brighter colors and accompanied by a filmer or photographer anywhere up in the Cottonwoods! Rob’s career is now evolving once again as he’s starting to take on the business world as well as being a professional skier. We caught up with him to see how it’s all been going. Take a look!
PC: Eric Balken
Q: Hey Rob! How’s the Winter been so far?
A: This winter has been the epitome of a classic Wasatch season. The snow keeps on coming and the snowpack is deep and has been for the most part, very stable. It’s possible I’ve doubled more blower pow days this season than any other and it’s only the beginning of March. So yeah, it’s pretty good.
Q: Last year you had your hands full working on the Peregrine Project. Any new projects for this year?
A: Peregrine actually ended up taking 2 years to go from concept to completion due to the warm weather and getting shut down by rain in 2015. This year, I’m a little more focused on my home turf and am working on an edit this week that really captures what it means to get the “green light” with conditions in the Wasatch. This was supposed to be the closer segment to Peregrine, but last two years were awful here so it’ll be nice to actually put something out. A little redemption I suppose.
Q: We see you have been skiing Big Cottonwood (Brighton, Solitude), what makes you prefer these mountains over Little Cottonwood?
Q: I’ve always loved Brighton and Alta has provided me a home base to grow my career. I guess as I’ve gotten more notice from the resorts as I tend to hop around a lot. Generally, I just follow the snow. Sometimes storms will bring 18 or 20 inches to the Big Cottonwood side and leave Little Cottonwood with a foot or so and that can happen visa versa. It’s pretty fun to watch how the storms come in and how the winds blow to see where the snow deposits. Nonetheless you can’t beat waking up at 7:30, not dealing with road closures, and getting first tracks until after lunch. So for that reason Big Cottonwood still has a slightly larger piece of my heart.
Q: The snow has been awesome in the Wasatch, but have you taken any trips yet this Season?
A: So far, I’ve stuck pretty close to home. Quick trip to Jackson and a second trip to Targhee. There hasn’t been much reason to leave. I’ll be hitting the road in a week though. Should be some great trips. My instagram will cover it @robaseltine.
Q: Have you been getting out in the Backcountry much? How have the conditions been?
A: Some are saying it’s the best Utah has been in the last few decades. You still have to get high up but yea, this is really the month to get after it. Legs are stronger and the snowpack is in.
PC: Carston Oliver
Q: Let’s talk bucket list, what’s still on it? What are some big ones you’ve checked off?
A: I just discovered I’d never done a bow and arrow grab in the backcountry and checked that off. I don’t even know if people still do that grab but I’ve always liked it when executed right. On a broader scale, I’ve still never skied in the three big classic ski destinations, Alaska, Europe, and Japan. I’ve been all over in North America and South America but I’m thinking next year is my year to check those big ones off.
Q: You recently started your own business, Blueberry Island! What do you offer and what motivated you to start it?
A: Yes, so I created this social media marketing company about 18 months ago. I was engaged with some brands like 4FRNT Skis, Goalzero, and Discrete Clothing and started picking up on what is making outdoor industry brands grow particularly on the Instagram platform. I discovered a set of trends and strategies that could be offered to other brands that were sort of “missing it” on social media and decided to start piecing that together as a service. Today, I have killer people that handle everything from content creation, posts, ambassador management, and community engagement.
Q: Has becoming a business owner slowed down your skiing at all?
Q: Why? Have you noticed? Kidding. No, I don’t think so. Working for myself has enabled me to do more of what I want and so when it’s dumping, I go skiing.
Q: What do you think about the recent turmoil between the Outdoor Industry and the Utah Government? Do you think it will have an effect on the local industry?
A: The industry is here because the people are here and the people are here because of the geography. Utah will continue to draw in outdoor enthusiasts purely because it’s the epicenter of skiing, snowboarding, climbing, running and biking in the Western States. Jackson, Moab, Aspen, Steamboat, St. George, Sun Valley are all so close.. And frankly, I’ve been to Denver a lot and it sucks. It’s hard to get anywhere. These people will continue to migrate to the area, strengthen their stance on the protection of public lands and eventually change the political climate of the state. I was very proud of the brands that stood up for what they believe in to protect Bears Ears and other federal and public lands. While the Utah government is slow and opposes these views, I don’t think it has much effect on the Outdoor Industry. People will still recreate in Utah and buy products in Utah and have outdoor companies in Utah. What will obviously be affected is the rest of the economy that booms during the Outdoor Retailer shows. The booth construction companies, the hotels, the restaurants, and the transportation companies will all miss out on some serious business. With lack of dollars into this part of the economy and the growing outdoor population, I feel, in time, the government will change it’s stance on how vital and important the outdoor industry is to all Utahns, not just the people that recreate outside.
Q: We know you have a great ski style, but how bout your music taste? Give us your favorite songs to listen to on the slopes!