Maddie Jones is in Mammoth, California. Probably. Or Death Valley. Or some other place with an equally badass name, it’s difficult to keep up. Maddie’s life is spent chasing snow around the world with the intention of sliding down it on skis very quickly, while doing mad tricks. She’s probably digging her van out from under a few feet of snow right this second, so she can shoot off to the next crazy slope full of bumps and jumps and humps and chumps. DSM caught up with Maddie this week to see how this ace lil Aussie, who grew up on the hottest and flattest continent on earth, came to be killin’ it in the coldest and steepest places on the planet.
All images shot by the very rad Rachel Bock.
DSM: How did you originally get into skiing and why do you love it so much?
MJ: My parents took me as a kid for family holidays, but no one else in the family took to it like I did! 20 years on, I’m still in love with it! I love it because of the people; we’re all cut from the same cloth, super passionate about the same thing, it’s really amazing!
DSM: For most people what you do is like a sporty-hobby kind of dealio. How did it go from a fun pastime you do like, once a year, to being something you pursue as a lifestyle and full-on passion?
“I really struggle with monotony! Since the start of 2009, I haven’t stayed in the same place for more than, like 5 months I think? I just chase the winters!”
I hate the idea of a lease, and a long term job and things like that. I love the freedom skiing gives me. I knew I wanted to do this since I was like, 13 or something, and I did it straight out of school, so I’ve never really known anything different!
DSM: There isn’t much snow in you home country of Australia most the time. Do you watch “Cool Runnings” on repeat for some epic inspiration? What’s the scene like for your sport in the worlds hottest driest nation?
MJ: Haha I do love that movie! The scene there is pretty unique.
“Each year I get to ski world class resorts all over America, but the Aussie winter is ALWAYS my favourite time of year.”
Perisher in Australia has an amazing park for freestyle skiers and snowboarders so the scene there is usually filled with pros who come to train in their summer. The Aussies that comprise our industry aren’t many, but they’re an awesome crew for sure!
DSM: In 2016 you caused a bit of a stir whipping out a naked backflip at Breckenridge. What would you say is the key to (a) being brave enough to whip out casual backflips like it aint no thing, and (b) giving no fucks about being naked in public?
MJ: Yeah that was a lot of fun! Well, it was originally done by a pioneer in the ski industry, Shane McConkey. So it was a bit of a homage to the man himself. But it was spring, so it wasn’t too cold, and it was my last day at Breckenridge for the season and it seemed like a good way to end the season! I don’t really care about being naked generally, so that wasn’t much of an issue, and I have a friend who carries my clothes and meets me in the trees, so I’m only naked for about 60 seconds! As for a key to how to be brave?
“Do whatever you want. You wanna do a naked backie? Fuckin’ send it. You don’t want to? That’s fuckin’ cool too. Do whatever you want and whatever makes you happy.”
My naked backflip made a lot of people laugh and smile (including myself) so I was so happy I did it.”
DSM: What would you say to people who want their life to contain more of the shit they love?
“You’re literally the creator of your own universe. If your life isn’t what you want it to be, then do something about it!”
Even something as small as treating yourself to your favourite coffee place each morning, or as big as quitting your job and travelling the world, just do SOMETHING. The easiest way is to surround yourself with people who support, love and encourage you. But end of the day, it’s completely up to you!
For more of Maddie follow on Instagram @madelineelizabeth
Know someone else who does the shit they <3? let us know about it at firstname.lastname@example.org