Nelson skier Sam Kuch stars in a new film, which he showed off to Trafalgar students last week. Photo: Wendy McIntyre

Nelson skier Sam Kuch stars in a new film, which he showed off to Trafalgar students last week. Photo: Wendy McIntyre

Nelson skier Sam Kuch brings Return to Send’er to Trafalgar

Kuch showed off his new movie to students at his former school

By Wendy McIntyre

When he’s flying between trees and soaring off of massive jumps, Sam Kuch makes it look easy to accomplish your dreams.

The Nelson native visited Trafalgar Middle School on Dec. 5 to show off his new ski movie Return to Send’er.

“Ever since I was little I’ve always wanted to be a professional skier and I was always in competitions when I was young,” said Kuch. “This movie was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and at first I was skeptical, but then I just hopped on it and rode it out and here I am skiing in a movie.”

Kuch has already won two awards for the film, one for Best Male Freeride at the Montreal film festival IF3 and International Athlete of the Year at the High 5 Festival in France.

I spoke to Kuch about how the movie came about, and how working hard can make for great memories.

For readers in your words, how did you get here?

Well, I’ve always wanted to be a skier ever since I could remember as a little kid, and it’s always been something I’ve pushed for and wanted. I guess essentially by the time I started getting good at skiing and into it, it was kind of the community of Nelson, and different connections and different people in the community that pushed me into where I’m at today.

Along the way, what was your biggest struggle?

I think my biggest struggle was really just the decision whether I want to pursue skiing and live that life of travelling and kind of discomfort my whole life or if I wanted to pursue something more lucrative, like a more regular career. I made that decision when I first got the opportunity to go film the movie and realized that it was something I’ve always wanted to do, so I said screw it and jumped right into it.

How did this movie affect you?

It affected me personally because it’s kind of like a hurdle that I’ve jumped over. I’ve always wanted to do this and it’s just personally an achievement of mine. On top of that it’s really boosted my career into overdrive more than anything else that I’ve done so far. From this movie I’ve gained a bunch of new sponsors and more opportunities to get further in my career.

What’s your advice for the kids of Trafalgar?

I know it sounds cliche, but follow your dreams if you have [them], especially in the Kootenays where it’s kind of hard to be noticed or seen. If you persist and keep up what you’re doing without feeling like you’re not doing enough, just continue doing it. Either you’ll get noticed or your voice will be heard.

And what’s your advice for the dreamers who live for the snow?

Basically just have fun with it. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to be the best because the moment you put too much pressure on yourself and get the idea that you have to be a certain way or level, that’s when it becomes less fun. As long as it’s fun you’ll always be going at your hardest and skiing for the fun of it.

Wendy McIntyre is a Grade 8 student at Trafalgar Middle School

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here


Sam Kuch called the movie “a once in a lifetime opportunity.” Photo: Wendy McIntyre

Sam Kuch called the movie “a once in a lifetime opportunity.” Photo: Wendy McIntyre

Just Posted

A sign indicating a COVID-19 testing site is displayed inside a parking garage in West Nyack, N.Y., Monday, Nov. 30, 2020. The site was only open to students and staff of Rockland County schools in an effort to test enough people to keep the schools open for in-person learning. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
4 more deaths, 54 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

This brings the total to 66 deaths in the region

Surrey RCMP are investigating after a pedestrian was struck and killed at 183 Street and Highway 10 Friday night. (File photo)
Wildlife biologist and educator Joanne Siderius was last year’s winner of the Suzy Hamilton Legacy Award for women environmentalists in the West Kootenay. Photo: Submitted
Hunter Jin shows off some homemade rice wraps. Donations poured into the Nelson Community Food Centre during the holidays. Photo: Submitted
Nelson Community Food Centre brings in $150k during holiday fundraising

The centre says the money will help address significant need in the city

Castlegar Sculpturewalk 2020 – 10 Year Anniversary Sand Sculpture. (Submitted/CBT)
CBT arts and culture grant program now accepting applications

Apply through the Kootenay Columbia Cultural Alliance

Dr. Penny Ballem, a former deputy health minister, discusses her role in leading B.C.’s COVID-19 vaccination program, at the B.C. legislature, Jan. 22, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C. holds steady with 407 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday

14 deaths, no new outbreaks in the health care system

This 2020 electron microscope image provided by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases - Rocky Mountain Laboratories shows SARS-CoV-2 virus particles which cause COVID-19, isolated from a patient in the U.S., emerging from the surface of cells cultured in a lab. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, NIAID-RML
B.C. ramping up screening for faster-spreading COVID-19 ‘variants of concern’

B.C. has sequenced about 11,000 COVID-positive samples since last February

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A Cessna 170 airplane similar to the one pictured above is reported to be missing off the waters between Victoria and Washington State. Twitter photo/USCG
Canadian, American rescue crews searching for missing aircraft in waters near Victoria

The search is centered around the waters northeast of Port Angeles

Interior Health reported two more COVID-19 deaths at Sunnybank Retirement Center in Oliver Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021. (File photo)
COVID-19 claims lives of two more South Okanagan care home residents

Five residents of the Oliver care home have died since the outbreak was first declared

Keygan Power with brother Quintin and mom Allison while camping the weekend before Keygan’s brain hemorrhage on Aug. 2, 2020. (Photo Allison Power)
B.C. teen ‘locked inside,’ battling to regain speech after severe brain bleed

16-year-old suffers traumatic loss of function, still plays a mean game of chess

Jonathon Muzychka and Dean Reber are wanted on Canada-wide warrants. (Courtesy of Victoria Police Department)
Convicted killer, robber at large after failing to return to facility: Victoria police

Dean Reber, 60, and Jonathon Muzychka, 43, may be together

B.C. Premier John Horgan listens during a postelection news conference in Vancouver on Sunday, Oct. 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
30% of B.C. recovery benefit applications held up in manual review

The province says 150 staff have been reassigned to help with manually reviewing applications

Adam Dergazarian, bottom center, pays his respect for Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, in front of a mural painted by artist Louie Sloe Palsino, Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Kobe Bryant’s presence remains strong a year after his death

Tuesday marks the grim anniversary of the crash that took their lives

Most Read