By Grant Johnson
Photo courtesy Jon Casson
Steamboat Springs, CO - Jon Casson is Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club’s snowboard program director and is also the personal coach for Australian boardercross athlete Jarryd Hughes.
Q. What are some of your
favorite runs in Steamboat?
A. I love rider’s left of 2:30 trees on a powder day. Stays untouched since most everyone else hits Shadows or Closets first thing.
Q. Is there anywhere you
consider to be your second home?
A. On my bike, in the summer.
Q. What’s the best piece of
advice you’ve ever received?
A. It’s not really from someone specific or a specific piece of advice, but several people in my life have taught me: (1) to trust myself and follow my instincts; (2) to not be afraid to take a leap of faith to accomplish something meaningful; (3) that falling is just a good excuse to practice picking yourself up again.
Q. How did you get into
A. Somewhat by accident. When I moved to Steamboat, terrain parks were just getting going. So, I carved out a niche in snowboard school as the park instructor. Being in the park every day, I met some of the SSWSC coaches and they invited me to help out periodically. Later that season, they brought me to USASA Nationals to be a helper. The first day of competition, one of our kids won boardercross in the 10-11-year-old division. I figured it was all my coaching that won it for him. Eventually (pretty much the next day), I realized that I had nothing to do with it, but I stuck with it anyway.
Q. How do you like to relax?
A. During the season, my favorite relax time is tuning boards in the wax room at events. I put in my headphones and just focus on the task in front of me. Wax, scrape, brush, repeat x 20. In the off-season and between travels, I relax by spending time with my amazing (and patient) wife, Shannon.
Q. Describe your perfect
A. Summers on Mt. Hood are pretty awesome. Snowboard in the morning. Mountain bike in Post Canyon in the afternoon. Pizza and beer at Double Mountain Brewery in the evening.
Q. What book are you reading
A. Just finished the first two books in Hillary Mantel’s historical fiction about Thomas Cromwell and Henry VIII.
Q. What is your favorite
A. Anywhere with great mountain bike trails and a choice of local craft breweries after riding.
Q. What are some of your
favorite mountain bike trails in Steamboat?
A. Beall and Ridge trails on the backside of Emerald.
Q. Do you prefer small towns
or big cities?
A. Small cities.
Q. Which song do you know
all the lyrics to?
A. “Ball and Chain,” by Social Distortion.
Q. Where do you see yourself
in 10 years?
A. Top of a mountain, on my snowboard or my bike, with my wife. Hopefully still working in the snowboard world and sharing my passion for the mountains with others.
Q. Who is the most important
person in your life?
A. My amazing, funny, cute, encouraging, smart and patient wife, Shannon.