After three attempts, Veronica Paulsen successfully completed a backflip into Corbet’s Couloir, a famously narrow ski run in Jackson Hole

Skiier about to land flip into narrow ski run next to rock walls
Jackson Hole Mountain Resort
Veronica Paulsen about to stick the landing of her backflip into Corbet's Couloir. Photo courtesy of Jackson Hole Mountain Resort.

Corbet’s Couloir is no amateur ski run. Entering this run means throwing yourself off a crest and free-falling 25 feet (give or take a few depending on snow height and where skiers land) into a steep and narrow path between towering rock walls. At Jackson Hole’s Kings and Queens of Corbet’s invitational event this past week, Veronica Paulsen became the first woman to stick a backflip into the iconic shute. 

The feat took place on Feb. 11, 2020, and video alone can barely do the difficulty of this trick justice. The California native has been working toward her perfect landing for three years. Having first attempted the flip back in 2018 with minimal experience throwing a backflip off of a flat takeoff, Paulsen continued preparing for the feat at any similar setup she could find. Despite skiing since her early teens, beginning with freestyle moguls, Paulsen only transitioned to big mountain skiing three seasons ago. By the end of her first season she was ranked eighth on the American Freeride World Qualifier Tour. 

Event-goers will have to wait until Saturday’s athlete judging party to find out whether Paulsen will be crowned this year’s Queen of Corbet’s, but either way, she’s already made history. “It’s a little emotional for me because I’ve been trying it for so long,” Paulsen explains, “I’ve been training for it and it’s been on my mind for the last three years so it felt really good to finally get it done.”