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What We're Made Of, Winter

What We’re Made Of: Pro Athlete Extraordinaire – Rebecca Rusch

The Sun Valley area has always been known for its athletes from Olympic skiers to world-renowned rock climbers. Rebecca Rusch, originally from Chicago, has called Sun Valley her home and training grounds for the last 15 years. The ultra endurance pro athlete and world champion’s career has included numerous adventure sports including rock climbing, expedition racing, whitewater rafting, cross-country skiing and most recently, mountain biking. Though other towns may have better gyms or access to elite training facilities, Rusch chooses to call Sun Valley home. “It’s the people and the place that initially attracted me to Sun Valley and that keeps me here,” Rusch said. “I travel all over the world and I still always want to come back here; it feels like home. I appreciate that it’s off the beaten path, it keeps it special.” A story similar to many who put down roots in Sun Valley, Rusch was a self-described “outdoor sports nomad” in her mid-30s, looking for a place to call home while living out of her car. One of her adventure racing teammates, Patrick Harper, was born and raised in Ketchum (his dad, Butch Harper worked for the Forest Service for 30 years; Harper’s Trail is …