In the first of our new women in skiing features, written by Hannah Engelkamp, we speak with the incredible Beanie De Le Rue.

In the past few years more and more female riders and skiers have made their mark on the world of snowsports. A world that was previously dominated by influential male figures. Just look at the likes of Katie Ormerod, Jenny Jones and Lindsey Vonn and it is clear that the tide is changing. In this series, written and compiled by Hannah Engelkamp, we speak to some of the original pioneers of this movement, starting with the incredibly talented Beanie De Le Rue, former pro-skier and the other half of Xavier De Le Rue.

In the mid-noughties I got a job editing Fall-Line Skiing magazine, and although I might be biased, it seemed to me to coincide with a bit of a golden age in freeskiing. Snowboarding had been cool for long enough that it seemed to be suffering from a bad case of one-upmanship ('Think this is cool? Nah - you should have been here fifteen years ago'), compounded by a tiresome attack of the cliques. But skiing seemed refreshed - a young generation had taken over the reigns of a sport that, after all, was already hundreds of years old.

Not yet as mainstream as the Olympics, and yet supported and nurtured on a local level at dry and indoor slopes around the UK, freeskiing was having its moment. There was energy, fun, and a great sense of DIY about it, and all around people were pushing the boundaries, not to mention the speed, altitude, and degrees of rotation.

One of the "Original" Freeskiing Women

Beanie De Le Rue knows snowsports. One-time fearless pro-skier for Nikita and Oakley, she's skied and lived all over the globe. She was marketing and team manager for Faction skis for five years, managing ski superstar Candide Thovex and others. More recently she's married pro big mountain snowboarder Xavier De Le Rue, and embarked on a new project, filming and producing a series of high quality but handmade DIY snowboard films from a campervan called Bob.

Scottish skier Beanie (then Milne Home) was in her mid-twenties, and I first met her hobbling about on a mountain in Laax during the BRITS - the British Championships - wincing and swearing blind that she wasn't in pain. Clearly as tough as they come, she seemed like a good place to start exploring the noughties ski women.

For an idea of what Beanie now gets up to, check out episode one of the DIY series she shot last winter with Xavier -

For an idea of what Beanie now gets up to, check out episode one of the DIY series she shot last winter with Xavier -

DIY - Do It Yourself - Chapter One

"DIY is a new project by Xavier De Le Rue, featuring of course the lovely Beanie. The goal is to leave behind the large teams and logistics of expeditions and get back to the roots of snowboarding, travelling in a camper van with two additional elements: the Hexo+ [a flying film camera] and his wife. In attempt to self-document the winter and go where the snow."