Pakistani Woman Skier Plans to Compete in 2010 Winter Olympics

via www.npr.org

Anmaar Habib, an 18-year old Pakistani girl trained in California, plans to represent Pakistan in the 2010 Winter Olympic games. In 2002, Anmaar Habib was the first female skier to represent Pakistan in any international ski event. Skiing in Pakistan is not for the faint hearted. AJ describes her voyage to the Karakoram mountain range, a rugged 700-mile stretch of peaks on the border of Pakistan and China. She now has her sights set on an even bigger goal: The Winter Olympics. Anmaar lives and trains in the mountains of Northern California, at Sugar Bowl, an exclusive ski academy that some say is the best in the U.S. But it’s approximately 8,000 miles away, in the mountains of her native country of Pakistan, where AJ intends to make her mark. Anmaar Habib , who prefers to be called AJ, is an 18-year-old high school senior and competitive skier. Arduous journeys and men with guns aren’t the only things that make it complicated for women skiers in Pakistan – it’s also the clothing. “A lot of women cover their head. But I don’t,” she says. “I want to be the first person, as well as the first woman,” responding to those she encounters who wonder about a Pakistani skier – let alone a female Pakistani skier.