Olympic medallist makes golden return to Alberta ski hill he grew up on

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WATCH: Olympic ski cross gold medallist Brady Leman paid a visit to Nakiska Ski Area on Friday. Hundreds of young skiers were inspired to meet Leman, who learned to ski at the hill. Kevin Smith has more – Mar 9, 2018

Brady Leman grew up skiing the slopes of the Calgary area and he returned to Nakiska Friday as an Olympic champion in ski cross. Hundreds of young skiers were thrilled to meet him, get their helmets signed and touch his gold medal.

READ MORE: Canada’s Brady Leman wins ski cross gold at 2018 Winter Olympics

“That’s always been one of the coolest things for me is to hang out with the kids— seeing a kid ski by with your signature on their helmet is a pretty cool feeling,” said Leman.

“Now they’re that much more excited after the Olympic gold. It’s pretty special.”

Olympic medallist Brady Leman flanked by young skiers at Nakiska Ski Area on March 9, 2018. Kevin Smith / Global News

Some of the best teenaged skiers in Canada were excited to see Leman.

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The national alpine training centre is based at Nakiska and the team members hope to be in his shoes one day.

“We all want to be like him,” said 16-year-old elite skier Aaron Puskas. “Obviously it’s inspirational to look at the figure of excellence. It was amazing to meet him and he did perfect representing Canada.”

Hundreds of young skiers flocked around Brady Leman March 9, 2018 at Nakiska. Kevin Smith / Global News

Nellie Muldrew, 17, is one of Puskas’ teammates.

“It’s really cool because anyone can do it — even if you’re from Calgary or Edmonton — you can go out and win a gold medal at the Olympics,” Muldrew said. “So it’s very inspiring.”

READ MORE: ‘It’s a no-brainer’ – Canadian Olympians weigh in on possible Calgary bid for 2026

It’s been a whirlwind this week for Leman, who flew back on Tuesday from Europe, spent the week touring, talking to kids and showing off his medal. But next week it’s back to France for the last World Cup event of the season.