Jonas Carlson hit the U.S. shred scene a few years back carrying nothing but snowboard talent and smiles. He’s been dipping further into the backcountry every year since, building out that trick repertoire. A trail of laughter seems to follow him wherever he goes and it infiltrates anyone within earshot. Positivity is his thing, no matter what the situation. I caught up with him and Kazu [Kokubo] on a windy day of park laps and laughter at Northstar. Here’s what he had to say:
You had a couple injuries this year, what happened?
Yeah, I had some bad luck earlier this season. I busted up my ankle in the summer. I laid around and got better, and then right before the first Dew Tour I popped my collarbone out and tore up my shoulder. Then I went home to Sweden for a bit to rehab. I started riding again there and I broke my arm. Let’s start from there!
How have you been since?
My season kicked off after that… and here we are in Tahoe and the wind is ripping! Back from AK, just started boardin’ again. This is pretty much my first day out shredding park and I’m just here filming with the Standard crew and lapping the park at Northstar. I think we’re headed to Sonora with Kazu [Kokubo] and Torstein [Horgmo]. We’ll go out there and do some radical snowboarding, downhill. Ha-ha!
What are your rehab remedies? Do you eat lots of Swedish fish?
Oh man, I just try to be healthy in general. Eat well. Do some physical therapy, some push-ups, hah! I’m working for the beach 2010 man!
You spent some time in Alaska this year, was that your first time there?
Yep, first time in Alaska.
What’s the first word that pops into your head when you get there?
BIG. It’s hard to go around that word. I’m mean the place is frickin’ huge in every way.
Even as a pro, does AK make you feel like a beginner all over again?
It does, yeah. I haven’t ridden stuff like that before. I’d compare it to sledding in the backcountry, looking for stuff to hit–but it’s ten times bigger!
You’re starting from the top, looking from the heli; there might be something there. Then you’re standing on top, it looks totally different….and you just have to imprint the image in your head of how it looks over that roller. You keep telling yourself how it looks, you look into the camera, you remember that photo-that spine goes there, landing there. Then you toss a snowball and check with the filmer that that’s the landing.
Man, everything about it is gnarly. I learned so much when I was up there. I want to go back with better weather.
This is your first year filming with Standard, how are things?
Well, all the injuries and blah, blah, blah. I got a late start. I went straight to Alaska for almost month though, got a blue day and a half.
Out of the whole month?
Yep, and then one gray day in the trees.
Where were you?
In Haines. Such a sick experience. I definitely want to go back… but then you have to gamble with the weather. And it’s definitely worth sitting around for a few bluebird days.
Those two days were the best snowboarding days of my life–deep powder, sick, long runs, heli-boarding. I mean, what else do you want?
What made you pick Utah when you made the move from Sweden to the States?
It’s a good spot to be based out of. Colorado is around the corner, it’s a day drive up to Baker, California is a day drive-it’s in the middle of everywhere. Then the Mountain Lab is in Utah, so it’s good to be there with the DC crew. I think it worked out well; I like Salt Lake. It’s a little hot in the summer and we didn’t get a very good early season this year though.
How long have you been there?
Off and on for three years, but more seriously this past year.
'Cause you have a lady friend there now, huh.
Ha-ha! Well, yeah, true that.
Who supports your snowboarding?
DC head to toe, Airblaster on my face, Unions on my board, and junkyard.se; it’s a sick snowboard site. Yeah, they all have my back. Good people, lots of love.
Do you still design an Airblaster Pro Model goggle?
Yep, my new ones have two thumbs up on the strap, one on each side. Stay positive you know!