Taxes (or lack thereof) drew the founder of the Granite Backcountry Alliance to New Hampshire, but it was the state’s adventurous magnetism that made him never want to leave.
From a young age, Tyler Ray was eager to explore New Hampshire’s many adventures waiting in the White Mountains and around the Seacoast. So, when it came time to set roots, Tyler and his family happily settled in North Conway, where the dad, husband, and lawyer also pursues his passion for backcountry skiing. In 2016, Tyler founded the Granite Backcountry Alliance in an effort to develop skiing terrain on public and private lands and create opportunities for more frequent and less expensive skiing.
First Introduction to New Hampshire
I was born in Bridgton, Maine. And as a young kid, I was drawn to New Hampshire, though I only really knew it for its taxes (or lack thereof) and the place my family would go shopping. Early on, I identified this unique character in New Hampshire, perhaps quirky in nature, and definitely one-of-a-kind. In high school, I started to come with friends and really explore the hiking, and that’s when I saw just all the state could offer.
Favorite New Hampshire Activity
Backcountry skiing. For me, it’s about the chase of the elusive untracked powder snow. There’s a certain sensation in skiing that’s very difficult to recreate once it’s been tracked up, so to me, it’s about the allure of finding that. I also just love the adventure of being out in the woods and not quite knowing the conditions, because those days when everything lines up, it’s a really great feeling.
What NH Has That Other States Don’t
New Hampshire is really a four-season adventure state, with any and every adventure sport represented. It’s amazing, from avalanches in the White Mountain’s alpine zone to surfing at the Wall in Hampton, the state is just loaded with terrain that’s almost magnetic.
What “Living Free” Means to Me
It means so many different things to me… the ability to make unencumbered choices, raising a family in small, vibrant communities, letting the kids roam the woods and build forts, and the power to take your life where you want it to go.
Other Favorite NH Pastimes
I love going to yard sales and finding the silver lining in these second-hand treasures. My family and I also are big into sugaring – we have twenty beautiful Sugar Maples, and it’s become a great family activity. We work with a local non-profit to boil and produce this amazing syrup that lasts the whole season. Last year, we collected 450 gallons of sap!