The Whistler backcountry is a bitch of a place until the sun breaks through the clouds. But when it does, Mikey Rencz is ready. The 24-year old Canadian has been exploring the far reaches of B.C.’s Coast, Monashee, and Kootenay mountain ranges since he was just a wee lad. They put him on the Burton team when he was just 9 years old; a few years later he moved with his family from his home in Golden to live the dream in Whistler. This powder-hunting, pillow dropping, jump shoveling kid came of age in the hotbed of Whistler’s pro scene, brought up under the watchful eyes of the legendary Wildcats crew. But unlike the generation before him, Rencz has spent more time out scoping fresh terrain than he has at the bar, resulting in a sharpening of his backcountry skills to a degree that belies his age. He’s among the most respected riders in Canada—a versatile, natural freestyler with incredible knowledge and awareness of the backcountry game. As a founder of the legendary 8 Mile crew, Mikey has kept it grimy while at the same time pushing it—over the years, his filming for Burton movies, Whiteout Films, TransWorld Productions, and his own homegrown 8 Mile movies, have made Rencz into a household name not just in Canada, but all over the world.