Over the course of five weeks, OutThere Colorado’s “Girls that Shred” series will profile five women who have made a lifestyle out of outdoor adventure. OutThere Colorado is so excited to showcase women who make strong beautiful everyday and who are beautiful in their strength.
There’s a certain freedom found above tree line—freedom in wide-open space, lack of cell coverage, and untouched landscape. From climbing to snowboarding, mountain biking to big mountain skiing, the women of the “Girls that Shred” series have each found themselves drawn to the sport that gives them the most freedom.
Sydney Paez Duncan, ski patroller and mountaineer of the fourth “Girls that Shred” profile, has followed her high alpine dreams from Colorado to Lake Tahoe to Chilean volcanic summits. This week, OutThere Colorado is profiling professional mountain biker Becky Gardner, a Kona Super Grassroots team member, aspiring fashion designer, and Telluride Ski Resort snowboard instructor.
Girls that Shred, Part 5 — Meet Becky Gardner
Hometown: Marlboro, NY
Currently Live: Summers in Salida, CO and winters in Telluride, CO
Occupation: Kona Super Grassroots professional mountain biker, snowboard instructor, and fashion designer.
For New York native Becky Gardner, mountain biking has always been a family affair. “My older brother Ryan [also a Kona Super Grassroots team member] set the pace for me growing up,” explains Gardner, “He would always show me pictures of him out with his friends jumping off roofs and doing ridiculous things. Trying to constantly keep up with him and his friends really made me push myself outside my comfort zone.” Trail riding with her brother fostered Gardner’s interest in downhill, and the siblings’ competitive drive pushed her to enter her first professional race after only a year of training. She has since won three collegiate national downhill championships.
For the past eight years, Gardner has had to balance her professional mountain biking career with school. She also found time to share her love for snowboarding as an instructor at Telluride Ski Resort in the mountain biking off-season. But after graduating from Fort Lewis College in Durango with a degree in marketing in the spring of 2016, she’s ready to take her experience beyond the trail. She’s putting her marketing know-how, fashion design experience, and knowledge of the pro mountain biking world together to develop a line of biking apparel for girls that shred hard on their mountain bikes.
Like most professional athletes who are really passionate about their sport, Gardner is most drawn to the community of like-minded riders. “I think [my love for the sport] is less about the races I have won and more about the people I have met. I love going to new places and new events. To me, those places and people are the highlights of my career. Winning a race only lasts moments and I rarely think back to those wins, but I often think back to how much fun I had while I was there.”
Do you know any girls that shred? Tag them on our Instagram with #girlsthatshred.
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