Jamie Lynn, currently snowboarding’s best representation of late-career gnar. Photo: Matt Georges
About two years ago, as I was approaching my 40th birthday, I gave myself a set of rules to live by as a middle-aged shred. Don’t wear garish gear, steer clear of rails, don’t wear a beanie indoors, stretch and don’t be grumpy, amongst other things.
I’d given myself those rules, because I was fully anticipating that by 40 I would have a near total shutdown of all my physical and mental faculties, and my snowboarding would rapidly descend to the depths of a two-week beginner who has set his bindings up with the toes pointing inwards.
“I was fully anticipating that by 40 I would have a near total shutdown of all my physical and mental faculties”
If anyone can remember the scene in X-Men when Senator Kelly goes all fishy and then dissolves into an amorphous puddle of water, that was pretty much what I was anticipating the moment I blew out the candles on my birthday cake (it played out slightly differently, but suffice to say it felt like that was actually happening the next morning).
I thus became a study in monochrome on the slopes, my new board was devoid of any stickers, my glossy slap head would gleam “en plein air” even if I was in the Bec Jaune drinking craft ale, and for the most part I avoided rails (apart from the one time I didn’t and then smashed up my shoulder – which firmly re-enforced the importance of the “no rails” rule).