Ryan Mooney, GMVS Class of 2014, grew up in western Massachusetts along the
Deerfield River where his parents own Crab Apple Whitewater, a rafting company
that runs trips along the Deerfield. That’s where Ryan learned to kayak.
Whitewater kayaking is not for the faint of heart. There are
reality-smacking moments when you’re floating upside down in a class V rapid
trying desperately to snap your roll and get upright.
It’s nerve wracking but good training for a ski racer. Mooney transferred his fast reaction river timing to good use on the ski hill. As a first year J3, he won the 2010 Junior Olympic Super G skiing for Eaglebrook School and Berkshire East Ski Area. He qualified for the International Competition of J3 skiers, or the Whistler (BC) Cup, where he went on to finish in the top 15 in the Super-G. This past season, his first at GMVS, Mooney won the overall at the J3 Eastern Regional Series by taking first in the GS and third in the slalom. He earned a spot on the US team selected to compete in the Pokal Loka International Children’s Race held in 2011 in Slovenia. Building off that steam, Mooney went on to win the 2011 Whistler Cup in GS.
What’s next for the 6 foot, 170 lb sophomore? “I just love to ski and kayak. There’s nothing better than kayaking because it is done at the opposite time of skiing, and it’s great cross training for skiing,” Mooney said. “Looking ahead is essential in both sports, whether it’s reading the water on the river or looking ahead at the subtle terrain changes in a Super-G course. You have to be focused in both at just about all times.”