U.S. Olympian and Bozeman native Heather McPhie has become a household name in mogul competitions and made a stop in Bozeman this week to rest up before she competes in four Olympic qualifiers.
"I was just in Finland for my first Olympic qualifier which went fairly well," said McPhie. "I was just so excited to come back to Montana for a few days to refuel my soul before I take off for Calgary. Then we have two Olympic qualifiers in Deer Valley and one in Lake Placid, so it's about to ramp up."
McPhie was named the World Cup rookie of the year in 2007, followed by winning numerous World Cups in the following years.
In 2010 McPhie competed with the U.S. Olympic team in Vancouver. But even with Big Sky and Bridger Bowl in her backyard since childhood, her dream of becoming an Olympic medalist hasn't always been her dream.
"My Olympic moment was watching Johnny Moseley in 1998," said McPhie. "He won gold and I was sitting in my parents bedroom watching and I didn't even know that mogul skiing was an Olympic sport until then. I just cried when he won. He was this really emotional and inspiring champion who laid it all out on the line."
Though she has accomplished many things in her career, she now hopes to become the inspiration for other Olympic hopefuls.
"As I've gotten older in my sport and gained experience I realize that one of my biggest goals is to touch peoples lives in a passionate way and to light that spark," she said. "I really believe that if people do what they're passionate about and really follow their dreams the world will be a better place."