Chad Otterstrom is the natural stuff. He has the kind of talent that’s immune to ageism and sponsorship pressure. As a 28 year old, he’s riding better than ever, and at least he has some maturity to shield him from the bullshit. As a member of the Academy team, he’s in control of his own destiny-riding for an independent company along with a bunch of good friends. In fact, the only thing that could possibly slow this dude down is the very thing that no snowboarder is invincible to-injury. Luckily for Chad, he dodged that bullet for the first time in several years and managed to have the “funnest season yet.” We caught up with him for three days toward the end of April as he attended the yearly Academy gathering in Summit County and “tried not to snowboard.” A lot of good that did.-Jennifer Sherowski

What were you working on during this time?

I was working on trying to not snowboard. I was real sore from shredding all season, so I was just trying to chill and have a good time. It didn’t work-if I’m up on the hill, I have to chuck. It was still a good time, though. I’m just real sore now-it was like a month before I could get out of bed before ten.

What were you reading?

The Wu-Tang Manual: Enter The 36 Chambers, Volume One by The RZA and Chris Norris. “For cryin’ out loud, my style is wild-so book me.”-Ghostface Killah

Did you have any goals for this season?

My main goal was just to not get hurt. I’d been hurt for three years in a row before this season, and I knew that if I didn’t break myself, it would be a good one. Other than that, my goal was just to follow the Mack Dawg crew wherever it was good and shred at home with my bros as much as I could.

What was making you happy last season?

Well, I had the funnest season yet. I think it was because I just snowboarded and I didn’t let anything get in my way. I had fun all winter. I also got into shooting photos-that makes me happy.

What number was dialed most often from your cell phone during those three days?

My girlfriend.

Do you ever miss home during the winter?

I was home most of the winter, actually. It was sweet-I didn’t even have to leave the country, like go to Canada and sit in the rain like I always do.

What are some of your other recent obsessions besides snowboarding?

Taking photos and golfing.

What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned in life so far?

One: Don’t fall. Two: Don’t fall. And three: Don’t freak out-think things through.

What are the top five things you spend your money on?

I spent most of my money at the bar. I don’t remember where the rest went-it’s all gone now, though.

Do you have bad karma or good karma right now?

I think I’m right in the middle-I’m not into burning hippie sticks.

When was the last time you were scared to death?

Yesterday.

When was the last time you thought you were going to break under the pressure?

Right now-the snow’s all gone and I have nothing to do.

Grabbin’ the nose for a transfer at Breckenridge-it’s all in a (3) days work.

Rock-to-fakie at Copper.

A Breck McTwist, not to be confused with other places of McTwist.

The last-run frontside boardslide straight onto the sun deck.

If there was a textbook called, Snowboard Tricks, this sequence of Chad’s McTwist would go straight in.