Steeped In Tradition Episode 11 – Re.
In celebration of International Women's Day, Alta Ski Area, Iz La Motte and Sweetgrass Productions teamed up to tell the inspiring story of Alta-based ski photographer, Re Wikstrom.
Twenty years ago, Re forged her own path in the outdoor sports community as one of the few women in her field. As an action sports photographer, she is dedicated to working with and showcasing the strength and individual personalities of female athletes. She views her work as a catalyst, fostering a social shift in the perception of women athletes in popular culture. Re has been a staple of the Alta community for two decades—inspiring her subjects and mentoring the next generation of female ski photographers.
"I want the world to know that women can be strong and capable and fast and powerful.
In a world that tells women they are 'less-than', I've met so many women that are so much 'more-than'."
– Re Wikstrom
Re Wikstrom was the first female photographer on Alta's photographer team. She landed the first cover shot of a woman for Backcountry Magazine. She also secured the first all-female cover shot for Skiing Magazine.
Rachael Burks and Re have been shooting together for 20 years | Photo: Chloe Jimenez
Rachael Burks grew up in Salt Lake City and has called Alta home for 35 years. Rachael has been skiing professionally for almost two decades and is considered one of the most influential big mountain skiers of her generation. Rachael credits a lot of her success to her work with Re.
"Twenty years ago your ticket as a skier was through a photographer, and the only female photographer that I knew of was Re. Period. She was one of the very very first people to ever go out and put a camera on me and that's because she believed in me.
It's amazing to see how much has changed in 20 years. And I can wholeheartedly say that Re played a very large part in that."
– Rachael Burks
Re and Connie back in the day | Photo: Alta Marketing Archives
Connie Marshall spent 44 years working for Alta Ski Area. She single-handedly managed Alta's marketing and public relations department for decades. Connie was an early believer in Re and gave Re her first opportunities as a ski photographer at Alta.
"Re actually became my very first female photographer. I saw the passion in her and her ability to imagine the possibilities and then make them happen."
– Connie Marshall
Iz and Re working side-by-side this winter | Photo: Chloe Jimenez
Iz La Motte is an adventure photographer and filmmaker who was raised in the Catskill Mountains of New York and educated in the Green Mountains of Vermont. Following in Re's footsteps, Iz worked at Alta Ski Area as a staff photographer for four seasons before becoming a full-time freelance photographer and videographer.
"She opened the door and since then she's been holding the door open for all of the rest of us to follow in her footsteps. I feel really lucky for myself—and for the bountiful women around me that now hold cameras in their hands—that we had Re to look up to."
– Iz La Motte
Another day at the office for Chloe Jimenez| Photo: Iz La Motte
Chloe Jimenez grew up in Lowman, Idaho before moving to Salt Lake City. After spending the 2021–22 season shadowing Iz La Motte, Chloe is now in her second year working as a staff photographer for Alta Ski Area and is pursuing a career in action sports photography.
"Re created space in the industry—paving the way for female photographers like Iz and myself."
– Chloe Jimenez
Lexi bounces through the snow on another Kitty lap | Photo: Re Wikstrom
Lexi grew up in the Salt Lake Valley and fell in love with skiing as her parents worked in Little Cottonwood Canyon. She now works as a freelance writer, content producer and artist.
"I grew up here in Little Cottonwood Canyon and I only ever had maybe one or two ladies around to ski with and when you show up at Alta today, it's almost an equal ratio, and I know that Re's been so instrumental in that process."
– Lexi Dowdall
Aspiring professional skier, Megan Dingman, has teamed up with Re in recent years | Photo: Re Wikstrom
Megan Dingman grew up in Park City before ski racing for St. Michael's College College in Vermont. Megan returned home with the goal of becoming a pro skier based out of Alta. She enlisted Rachael Burks as a mentor and has been shooting photos with Re for the past few seasons.
“Re is not only an inspiration to me but to women throughout the ski industry. In our space of freeskiing, female role models are hard to come by. Re welcomes anyone with open arms and paves the way for those who follow in her wake. I’m lucky to work with her and even luckier to call her a friend.”
– Megan Dingman