Keefer Lake Catskiing snowcat operator Mike Gostlin helps introduce a line of Skevik Skis that will be adorned with work from Vernon artist Andy Stein this season.

Keefer Lake Catskiing snowcat operator Mike Gostlin helps introduce a line of Skevik Skis that will be adorned with work from Vernon artist Andy Stein this season.

Colourful skis hit the powder

Keefer Lake Catskiing is a homegrown operation, located in the central Monashees

Dudley Coulter

Special To The Morning Star

The snowcats at Cherryville’s Keefer Lake Lodge might be taking skiers from around the world up the mountain this winter, but local art and craftsmanship will be taking them down.

Keefer Lake Catskiing is a homegrown operation, located in the central Monashees, just east of the Okanagan Valley. Keefer inquired about a fleet of Skevik Skis for this season and was interested in adorning them with a custom graphic.

To keep that local vibe going, it was only natural to bring in local artist Andy Stein.

Both companies share the same values in that they look to incorporate as much locally purchased materials and talent into their business as possible, so to be able to support a local artist like Stein is true to their roots.

“Andy has been responsible for some of our most popular graphics over the past few years, so when we hooked him up with Keefer’s Jeff Gostlin, we were confident that something great would emerge,” said Skevik Skis co-founder Glenn Anderson of the custom ski graphic.

Gostlin, owner at the recently opened Keefer Lake Lodge, was looking for artwork that represents the terrain that the skis are used in, but also with the moniker Keefer Madness, playing off the old anti-marijuana propaganda film.

“I didn’t know what I was expecting it to be, so I just started telling Andy some of my thoughts,” said Gostlin.

“This place has the nickname Keefer Madness, so I thought this would be a good name for the design. With that in mind, I thought something psychedelic would be a good place to start.”

The artwork on the ski depicts a snow cat (tracked vehicle for snow), northern lights and the newly built timber frame lodge.

The two companies aren’t the only ones excited about this collaboration.

“I have had the opportunity to go cat-skiing a number of times and really wanted to make sure that the graphic showed off the key elements of what an epic cat-ski adventure at Keefer would involve: big mountains, beautiful skyline, a powerful cat in the winter woods and a lodge that is high energy,” said Stein of his artwork for Skevik Skis and Keefer Lake Lodge.

“They (Skevik) have found their way into a market that is typically dominated by the big names, and I am beyond excited to be given the opportunity to showcase my craft.”

As a contributor in the past, and an avid skier himself, Stein also noted that he doesn’t tire of seeing his artwork on the skis of people he doesn’t know.

“It’s a humbling feeling,” he said.

The brothers, Glenn and Gregg Anderson, who started Skevik Skis more than a decade ago, have been quietly disrupting the ski industry with their unique maple wood cores and distinctive graphics that are the epitome of B.C. terrain and culture.

“Ski graphics are easily noticeable and we’re certainly excited that ours have succeeded in making a statement,” said Anderson.

“However, there are other aspects of our handmade skis that set us apart, and a good place to look is the sidewalls. All of our skis’ sidewalls expose the natural beauty of our vertically laminated, maple wood cores.”

Each core is CNC-machined (Computer Numerical Control) to define a precise flex pattern.

Triaxial fiberglass is then layered above and below (the core), with strips of unidirectional carbon on the bottom layer. A process that Anderson said “adds pop and increases the strength to weight ratio.”

To bond everything together, Skevik uses Super Sap resin. Entropy Resins exchanges petroleum for renewable plant-based carbon with no compromises.

This not only produces a more solid ski, but lower’s the company’s environmental impact, something that most skiers care deeply about.

Starting out of their parent’s garage in 2005, Glenn and Gregg Anderson began testing and building skis just for their friends.

The company has since grown internationally.

It offers its five models to skiers direct and to dealers in Norway, Germany and Western Canada.

“The growth in Skevik Skis has been organic,” said Anderson.

“We originally wanted to focus locally before expanding, but retailers in Europe somehow found out about our skis and wanted to import them.”