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Colorado's Sister Shred: Legally blind and riding mountains in a nun costume

She's turned a "habit" into a whole lot of fun
Kris Nordberg.jpg
Posted at 2:53 PM, Mar 09, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-10 09:34:54-05

LAKEWOOD, Colo. — About 25 years have passed since Kris Nordberg was diagnosed with Pseudoxanthoma elasticum (P.X.E.), and she is still having plenty of thrills.

On her 40th birthday, Nordberg, a former avid skier and snowboarder, started experiencing blurry vision. A year and a half later, she was diagnosed with P.X.E., a disease that limits the body's ability to handle calcium. Since then, she has become legally blind, but has in no way lost her sense of adventure.

Now, she can be seen riding around Colorado trails on her mountain bike, occasionally in a nun costume. It's a tradition that originally started in the 1980s, and earned her the nickname "Sister Shred."

"About 1985 or so, I bought a nun costume for Halloween and, for some reason, I decided it would be a good idea to go skiing with it," Nordberg said as she stood in Forsberg Park, one of her favorite spots in Lakewood. "And so I would occasionally wear it on the slopes, and people would get such a kick out of it."

Recently, she was profiled in The New York Times for her unique lifestyle.

In the video player at the top of this page, you can hear about Nordberg's story, and how she has learned to overcome and adapt to her debilitating disease without losing her faith or enthusiasm.