Priscilla Levac: Easy Rider
Priscilla Levac is a special kind of awesome—she’s a professional snowboarder, clothing designer and all around lifestyle artist. In 2005, she won the US Open Slopestyle and was named the Female Snowboarder of the Year by Snoboard Magazine. In 2007, Priscilla launched Cilla, an under layer clothing company that has proven popular with outdoor adventurers of all varieties.
After more than a decade spent crisscrossing the globe for video and photo shoots, contests and sponsor events, she’s developed a very clear travel philosophy. This week the self proclaimed “Easy-Going Princess” took time out of her schedule to talk about how travel is like a river, the joys of raw food and falling in love on the road.
By far, my best trips were with the Nikita Snowboards team.
They always took us to the most amazing and interesting places for their catalog shoots. And they always treated us like Queens. They took us to Amsterdam, Croatia, Iceland, and they always made sure that we really got to experience the places. It was always full of adventure! We almost died one time in Croatia. We were on a small boat going from one island to another at 11pm at night. The wind picked up and it got crazy rocky, the water was splashing in and we were hanging on for dear life. The wind and current got so strong that we weren’t really getting anywhere, then the GPS broke—so we were totally lost. The photographer decided to step out on the front of the boat trying to read the GPS and get a sense of where we were but the boat was rocking so bad that he got a concussion!
He came back in and had to lie down. There we were lost in the middle of the ocean at 1 in the morning. I remember looking up at the stars thinking “this might be it.” I was thinking of the life I’d had and the people I loved and was basically saying goodbye. Eventually we saw an island and took the chance to ‘unload there.’ There was nothing on the island except this little tavern with a couple of drunk Croatian men. It was 4am by then, we were cold and wet so we went in for a cup of tea. We realized that this island was actually the same as the one we had left from—just the far end. So we basically had only gone that far over 5 hours. The drunk men were nice enough to drive us back to our original hotel which took about 2 hours…but we survived.
The more I travel, the smaller the world feels to me.
We’re all connected and we can really make friends everywhere we go. Traveling has also brought me to trust life. It’s like going for a ride, making some turns along the way but everything kind of unfolds and works itself out in the end anyway. So I learned to go with the flow and make the most out of any situations.
I would call myself an easy-going Princess.
I’m good at going with the flow and I’m patient when I travel, but I sure like comfort, good food, nice hotel rooms etc… How about calling me an elite vagabond?!
About 8 years ago, when I was on the RIDE Am team, I went on a road trip with filmer Caz Duffy and crazy Shane Flood.
I hesitated to go because I had a brand new husky puppy, her name was Mika and I didn’t want to leave without her. Caz didn’t care and told me to bring her which was so cool of him! We left from Seattle and drove to California then all the way to the Rockies and back. We hit a bunch of ski resorts on the way to film and shoot photos. I had to sneak Mika in hotels we stayed in, but one night we stayed in one that had a security guy guarding the elevator so it was impossible. I ended up sleeping in the van with Mika at minus 20-degrees Celsius. We got to Vail and I entered my first major contest: The Vail Session Slopestyle. I was really intimidated and scared but somehow I ended up 2nd place—I was so stoked! I remember listening to Def Leppard in the van all the way back. It really felt like the beginning of something.
Traveling has definitely opened my horizons.
It’s helped me become a lot more independent and patient. I’ve also learned to really appreciate my life especially when I go to third world countries.
I loved traveling with Natasza Zureck.
She’s really organized and good at going with the flow. My boyfriend Crispin is my favorite person to travel with because we both love adventures.
I love last minute spontaneous trips!
Those are always the best ones, maybe it’s because I don’t get the chance to imagine or expect anything…I just pack and jump in the car!
I’m really flexible on the road, I love to feel free, it makes me feel like I’m really living life.
As long as I have my comfort!
I’m gnarly about what I eat on the road.
At home I eat mainly Raw Food, which means no meat, no dairy, no wheat, nothing processed, so mainly uncooked (organic) fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds. My best advice is to travel with nuts and dried fruits. Lara Bars are good too! Yoga is definitely really good to practice on the road. It keeps the blood flow, strength and flexibility.
I have a man now but it use to be quite overwhelming traveling and being surrounded by cute boys all the time.
I use to fall in love every month!
When I leave for a trip I go pretty blind, I like adventure!
Plus I like to check out the hotel in person before I book it.
One of my favorite countries is New Zealand.
I love how green it is and the landscape is to die for! Life seems really simple there and people are so nice. It feels safe to walk around late at night or to go to sleep without locking your doors. The food is less processed in general as well.
Next I’m going on a surf/mountain biking road trip to Moab, California and Mexico with Crispin.
I love exploring while being active.
Now that I’m older and wiser, I’m a lot more patient but I’m also more demanding with what I eat and where I sleep.
I now realize how important it is to be healthy physically and mentally. Eating quality food has also helped me become more aware as a person.
Nice hotels are my favorite, I like having my own space and time.
I love camping too, but I need to be comfortable. My perfect case scenario would be a feather bed right in the middle of the forest. How romantic!
The healthier you eat, the more balanced you are and the stronger your immune system will be.
Visiting friends while traveling is always key to meet locals and going to the best places.
My trip to Bali was the most humbling experience of my life.
I did a one-month Yoga Teacher Training Program and it was the most challenging thing I’ve ever done! I went through a lot of stuff over there that brought me a totally new perspective on life.
My favorite food on the road is the raw food goodies that I make before I leave.
I’m pro at dehydrated crackers, flavored nuts and cookies.
Princesses don’t carry backpacks!
Even my backpack has wheels! Haha!
If you give me tickets to anywhere I’m going straight to Costa Rica for some surfing…
Or Indonesia for Yoga and Meditation, or Italy to get romantic.
The three things I miss the most when I’m away is my man, my dogs and my own food.
Road trips are my ultimate favorite plus I get to bring my dogs (I have 2 huskies now).
I love going with the flow and not having a schedule. I don’t feel good in airports and planes; bad food, no fresh air, uncomfortable seating, and too many germs.
The cheapest hotel I stayed in was in Bali and it was like $18.
You don’t get toilet paper or shower curtain for that price. I sure didn’t feel like a princess in there.
My best piece of travel wisdom is to think of a river.
I like to remind myself to go with the flow of the river. Whenever I try to go upstream things just get worse.
I like listening to Soul Reggae when I travel, I love Clinton Fearon.
I also love Tallest Man On Earth.
The most interesting character I met on the road was a pirate in Australia.
He was drunk on wine every day, you’d never see him without his bottle.
I get lost all the time!
I’m a very spaced-out person by nature so getting lost has always been part of my life. I’ve always been really good at handling it since I was pretty much born like this. So for me it’s like normal.
I can’t stand disorganized people, it gives me a headache…
Or girls that bring way too much shit in their suitcases, and when they open it they got make up, shoes, and underwear all mixed together.
For the past 10 years I’ve been traveling for snowboarding which was amazing.
Now I really look forward to travel for myself and really get to experience cultures and not have any schedules. Traveling for myself really opens my horizons and changes my perspective on life. It’s like popping your little bubble which you think is the world—there’s so much more!
My ideal travel partner is my man, Crispin Cannon.
I love traveling with him because we’re both easy-going and we laugh all the time.
I travel for personal growth, to open my eyes and to become a better person.
I believe that traveling is one of the best teachers in life and if everybody got the chance to travel, they would be better parents and influence the next generations.
“How I Travel” is a new BootsnAll series publishing every Tuesday in an effort to look at the unique and diverse travel habits of some of the world’s most well known and proficient road warriors. Got ideas for who we should talk to? Drop us a note.
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all photographs provided by Priscilla Levac and may not be used without permission.