“Unbound: A Story of Snow and Self-Discovery,” 2/12

“Unbound: A Story of Snow and Self-Discovery,” 2/12

Telluride’s Between the Covers Bookstore welcomes Steph Jagger, author of  “Unbound: A Story of Snow and Self-Discovery,” to town for a talk at the Telluride Library, on Sunday, February 12, 6 p.m.




Have you ever wondered what it would be like if you lived another kind of life? For Steph Jagger, after a lifetime of checking all the right boxes, she had a moment of clarity that forced her to answer that very question. In “Unbound: A Story of Snow and Self-Discovery,” Steph finds herself dissatisfied after having worked her way up the corporate ladder. With the passive, limited roles she saw for women as she was growing up, Steph had always emulated the men in her life—chasing success, ticking the boxes, playing by the rules. She was accomplished. She was living “The Dream.”

But was it her dream?

Then, in 2010, Steph’s life changed. An avid skier, she had seen the ski lift sign thousands of times before –“Raise Restraining Device”— but one day she takes it personally: a rallying cry to shake off the life she had in order to search for the life she wanted. In a flash, the sign on the ski lift becomes her mantra, and she knows what she has to do.

Steph quits her job, takes a second mortgage on her house, sells everything except her ski equipment and her laptop, and buys a plane ticket. For the next year, she will follow winter across five continents on a mission to break the world record for most vertical feet skied in a year. From the mountains of North and South America to Asia, Europe, and New Zealand, Steph stretches herself to the physical – and emotional – limit in some of the most beautiful places on Earth and winds up breaking a world record in the midst of it all.

Steph Jagger, by Melissa Skoda

Steph Jagger, by Melissa Skoda


What hiking was for Cheryl Strayed, skiing became for Steph: a crucible in which to crack open her life, melt it to its core, and get to the very center of herself. In “Unbound,” Steph learns she has to break herself down in order to rebuild a life based on the woman she really is – as opposed to the one she was supposed to become.

“Unbound” is an inspiring journey of learning how to reassess and reassemble the pieces of your life in order to better understand how to live and love authentically. Steph’s powerful voice on the page mixes humor with the lyricism of a poet, and her emotional story of courage and self-discovery will inspire readers to remove their own restraining devices, whatever they may be, and set out to find their best selves.


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