LL Bean model? Photo: Robbie Sell
Ahhh Curtis Woodman. Where could I even begin? He traveled the world as a kid. Designed pro models. Pulled last part in the coolest upcoming snow movies of the year, and at times has seemingly been dead set on destroying an amazing snowboard career all on his own. Not a bad list of accomplishments for such a young man. But IÂ don’t really care about those things. I just love the kid for the fact that when it comes to snowboarding he’ll always just do whatever he wants to do. And with so many kids willingÂ to jump through hoops, it’s pretty refreshing to see Curtis take a different path. Maybe that’s why some of you think its been a minute since you’ve seen a part from him. But he never went anywhere. He was just to busy having fun to worry about it. – Stephen Duke
Interview by Brad Oates
Brad: What does hump day mean to Curtis Woodman?
Curtis: A good time! A humping day sounds good.
Always on his own program. Photo: Robbie Sell
Who got you addicted to the shred stick?
My dad got me into snowboarding when I was 7. He just started going up to get away from work in ’92. We started riding Boreal a lot. Pops just kept taking me up, getting me lessons and renting me boards. I was riding a 135 at 7. It was pretty cool.
How did you get sponsored?
It was from a sponsor me tape I just found. It’s of me, Stephen (Duke), Scott Eulberg, Brandon Cravens, and Dan Hawkinson. Terry Campion went into Boards N Motion and saw that tape and was like, “get that kid’s info!” And that’s how I got on Santa Cruz Snowboards. That’s what started it all. I found the old VHS tape a couple weeks ago when I was moving my Mom out. It’s just all ASI – just us hitting backcountry booters, we were doing all kinds of different flips. It was all about flipping (laughing). We did backflip rodeos, every single one of us. A couple double backflips were thrown in there, some bloody faces — it was pretty funny.
You grew up in Garden Valley, right?
Yup, Garden Valley, just south of Grass Valley, on the other side of Interstate 80, down there right next to Coloma, where they discovered gold and whatnot. Wonderful tourist attraction of California right there. A bunch of rivers — The north, middle and south fork of the American river run around where I grew up, so there’s ton of rad creeks, waterfalls and rivers to hang out during the summer. A lot of good skateboarding to be done, too.
John Cardiel, Chris & Monty Roach, Noah Salasnek, all hail from the same illustrious zone of Northern California that you spawned from. Did their magical snowboard powers rub off on you?
I think it’s a super blessed area that a lot of rad people come out of that just love to snowboard, skateboard and keep it real, really. A little more roots up here I guess. It’s the air up here in the foothills and the Sierra Nevada’s. I am stoked to have grown up here because I had all those guys to look up to. Salasnek and Cardiel are some of my biggest influences for sure.
Backcountry boosting. Photo: Robbie Sell
You got sponsored pretty young, right?
Yeah, Boards N Motion sponsored me as a shop rider when I was eight. I just rode for reps pretty muchÂ from then to fourteen — Sims, then K2 and Drake. Then Santa Cruz got a hold of me and said they wanted to support me more. My Dad was always super supportive and took me to all the events back then. Raging at the Ranch (Donner Ski Ranch) was my first contest. I got third in the first contest I did in the halfpipe.
Was that halfpipe shaped by hand?
It was on the backside of Donner all hand shaped, yeah. I still have that trophy. That was in 1993.
You were delivering pizzas for awhile in Truckee, right?
It was cool and mellow there at Chicky’s Pizza. I was able to go in the backcountry all day and work at night. I was pretty amped. Got linked up with an awesome dude named, Duncan Barnes, he was doing Vaca Films and offered me to film for their video, So Much to Say.
You ever get to bang any cougars when you were dropping off a pie?
No. I wish. I wish, though. Maybe if it’s somewhere else besides Truckee.Â Girls in Truckee are like parking spaces — they’re either all taken, or the rest are handicapped.
Yeah, he jibs too. Photo: Robbie Sell
Let’s talk about the Comune video, Black Holes and Invisible Forces Bending Time Through Particle Deformation Creating Infinite Freedom in the Garden On The Moon. Whew, what a title!
There are 7 edits of this movie. I think it’s all just going to be packaged together at the end of it, though. All these rad different points of view. Pretty artsy stuff. I got involved with Comune thru Ben Rice, Eric Messier, and, of course, Corey Smith. I just kind of fell into place, really. Corey is stoked on my snowboarding and I have just really been trying to push it again and people are starting to recognize.
In 2008 shit kinda of hit the fan, huh?
Yeah, my sponsors Santa Cruz Snowboards and Planet Earth stopped making stuff. Whatever happened, happened (laughing). I was 22 at the time. Kind of got over it at the time, but I never stopped snowboarding. I never stopped skateboarding.
You got any good jail stories to share?
Yeah, I went a lot. I went to jail five times in one year just doing stupid shit. You don’t want to go there.
Photo: Robbie Sell
You’re not even 25 yet, but you’ve been sponsored for almost 15 years now. What keeps you stoked on the shred?
Just the energy that it gives me, being on top of mountains has made me feel alive for a while now. Snowboarding powder is definitely my absolute favorite thing to do. I just channel myself out when I am snowboarding. It’s like you aren’t there. I feel like I’ve done something with myself after a day in the backcountry. I feel energized. I like adrenaline and get stoked on pushing myself while I still can.
What keeps you spending your winters in Truckee?
Truckee is surrounded by amazing terrain everywhere. Not as big as some places, obviously, but if it’s going to be good, it’s going to be sunny, and you’re going to be able to ride it. Within 24 hours of a dump usually, you are going to be able to ride it in the backcountry. That’s what I like. It’s not as dangerous as other zones where you are waiting three days because it’s a little warmer zone. Makes it easier to land in for sure I think. Tons of urban stuff in Reno and you are surrounded by mountains everywhere. I am looking forward to exploring new areas this season too. And I love all the people in Truckee and Tahoe. All the locals are rad. My west has a east infection recently, though (laughing). So many East Coasters moving out here. Kids from the East Coast are piling in on top of each other. Which isn’t a problem, but most of them like to talk shit, which is a problem.
Do you have a plan for this season?
I will be filming for a new Comune movie again, going to try and do the Ultimate Boarder, maybe the North Face World Championships and I would really like to get on the North Face Tour. I feel like I could really push it and excel out there.
Photo: Robbie Sell
Message to the kids?
Go for it. Stay positive and rip. Let your riding speak for itself.
Can we expect to see you up in Alaska at the end of the season, parked in a U-haul next to Mike Basich?
That’s the sorta the plan. I have to figure some shit out and get something cracking up there by the end of the year. That’s one of my goals, then I would like to hit Chile in the summer. Those are my two destinations. Then I would like to hike the Pacific Crest Trail on foot and call it a day.
Trilogy Arts, Comune, Union Bindings and Boards N Motion.
Wicked sweet times. Photo: Robbie Sell
Be sure to check out Curtis’s part in COMUNE’s “Black Holes and Invisible Forces Bending Time Through Particle Deformation Creating Infinite Freedom in the Garden On The Moon” premiering at COMUNE HQ and right here on Yobeat.com Saturday! GO HERE for more info and your chance to win the flick on DVD.