Maria Thomsen is a pioneer in Women snowboarding. In her mid-thirties, Maria has been pushing the envelope for years and brought Street snowboarding to new levels with creativity, skills and style. We got in touch with Maria to catch up with her, hear about her story, her Burton setup and her family life outside of snowboarding. Enjoy!
Photos: Jay Gallant - @jaysson_gallant
Let’s get the basics out of the way first. How old are you, where are you from and when did you start snowboarding? I’m 34 years old, from Denmark and I started snowboarding when I was 19 during a two weeks trip to British Colombia. That trip was the first time I set foot on a snowboard and I became obsessed with it. I moved to BC 2 years later. Was snowboarding the reason why you decided to move to Canada? In a way, yes. It will sound cheesy, but I truly fell in love with snowboarding from the first time I stepped on a board on that first trip to BC. After that trip, all I could think about was snowboarding so I saved up money and two years later, I was back in Canada. For the first few years, I was going back and forth between Canada and Denmark due to Visa issues and injuries, but after a while, I was finally able to move to BC for good.
Were you snowboarding in Denmark at all? No. As opposite to what a lot of people are thinking, there is no snowboarding happening in Denmark. Some people get confused because there’s a lot of snowboarding in neighbor Scandinavian countries like Norway or Sweden, but Denmark is pretty flat and there’s not much snow. It’s mostly just windy and rainy in the Winter. That being said, there is a new green snowboarding facility out in Copenhagen, but I never went there. It is the only boardable place in Denmark. Why Canada? It’s pretty random. Some of my friends who were in business school went to BC for a few months and I came to meet with them during my school break. I knew that my friends were all snowboarding over there, so I bought a snowboard and flew to Canada. I remember buying all my gear at Showcase in Whistler and picking a Burton jacket with a watch in it. I thought it was so cool! I had no idea about anything snowboarding related at the time, but I had the best time on that trip. I was definitely hooked.
How did you first get noticed? I started to get free gear around 2012, a few years after moving to BC. My first hookup was Westbeach. It kinda snowballed from there as I started riding and filming with the Too Hard crew and putting out video parts. As I was riding a lot and getting more and more confident, I just kept putting out more video parts and still do to this day. Judging by your massive video parts history, you are a true street snowboarder. What type of obstacle do you like to shred the most out there? The type of obstacle I like to ride the most are rails, which are a big part of street snowboarding. I like to get creative and to find spots within the urban landscape. I also really like spots where you can do lines. Lines are a bit harder to find, but these are the best clips to do and to look at in my opinion.
Do you hit the park, jumps and the pipe? I like to ride the snowparks for sure. I’ll hit the park a lot to warm up early season and in between filming trips. I also ride the park a lot in the Spring. That being said, I don’t mess with jumps too much anymore and mostly ride the rails when I’m in the snowpark. I use to compete a lot more and do the whole slopestyle thing, but I don’t enjoy it as much as rails and street spots. I don't really mess with the pipe at all. You’ve been riding in and around the city of Montreal a lot over the past few years. What do you like about this city and its surroundings? I’ve been filming on the East Coast of Canada and coming on trips to Montreal for a long time. You can see Montreal and Quebec clips in almost all my parts. I guess it stems from the fact that when I first started filming street, I was looking for smaller rails. Down flat downs, flat rails. mellow down rails, etc. Montreal and Quebec seem to have a lot of these and offered a terrain that I was able to ride and develop my skills on. The scene is also great here, lots of good snowboarders and people.
You have been on Burton for a moment now. What’s your all-time favorite setup? I ride the Burton Yeasayer Flying V for rails. This is my favorite board because it has a lot of flex and is extremely playful. I like how soft it is. As for the bindings, I ride the Escapade which is really light and also playful. I also like the Lexa a lot, so I switch between those two. We have lots of Pow days here and for that, the Pow Wrench is my personal favorite because this board just floats.