Snowboard Iskola

As Trollhaugen’s season comes to a close, we thought it would be a great time to look back at the lasting impact of Take the Rake.

For the past the seasons, Trollhaugen, Wisconsin has started off the season by hosting a group of women riders from all over the world for a week at the beginning of December. Most people are drawn to Troll to ride its legendary park, Valhalla, but for these women, they travel to Dresser, Wisconsin to build the park—and then ride it.

The annual summit is called Take the Rake, a concept originally brought to life by Marsha Hovey, marketing director at Trollhaugen, along with women park crew from other mountains, Jess Goucher, Chloe Butel, and Laura Rogoski. In response to the traditionally male-dominated world of resort operations, within which the terrain park sits, the women aspired to bring together women park hand crew and cat operators to collaborate, solidify working relationships and friendships, and learn from one another. Up until that point, there were relatively few women working in terrain parks and rarely had any of them worked alongside another woman on hill before. In 2021, to create more opportunity for women through collaboration, the first Take the Rake resulted in the first-ever women-built park for all humans to enjoy.

Since the first year of Take the Rake, the event has grown. The ranks of TTR alumni have grown each winter, spreading to more resorts, more countries, and more perspectives. Educational sessions have been added to the week prior to the Valhalla park build. Welding instruction is now provided, as well as park feature refurbishing, two skills that can be challenging to learn without dedicated time and mentorship. Community rake sessions have also been added, welcoming local women and girls to learn the basics of grooming a park from TTR attendees.

The resort industry has seen tangible effects of Take the Rake, too. More women are entering resort ops. The ranks of women park crew members have swelled across North America. TTR alums are operating snowcats, pursuing welding school, and managing terrain park crews. A shift is taking place.

In 2023, the Take the Rake crew reflected on the evolution of the event, how it has affected the snow industry, and where to go from here. Watch the video and follow the women of Take the Rake, who are pursuing their passion while building something for everyone.