As a pioneer of big mountain snowboarding, professional snowboarder Jeremy Jones has climbed treacherous backcountry peaks all over the world just for the thrill of the free ride down. Beyond his extreme mountain adventures, Jones is also the founder of Jones Snowboards and leader of Protect Our Winters, a nonprofit focused on combating the effects of climate change. In 2012, National Geographic magazine nominated Jones for Adventurer of the Year based on his achievements in exploration, conservation, humanitarianism, and adventure sports.
As a Truckee resident, Jones is always trying to solve his “wonderful problem” of deciding which peak to climb, mountain to ride, or lake to paddle in in the Sierra Nevada mountains.
Where do you live? Truckee, California.
Why there? It’s the combination of incredible winters with amazing mountains and awesome summers filled with lake time. It’s the best of both worlds! The coast is just a few hours away so I can surf too. Having mountains for snowboarding and waves for surfing in a condensed area makes California one of the most unique places in the world—and that’s why I ended up here!
Who or what is your greatest California love? The Sierra Nevada mountain range. The more time I spend in those mountains, the more special it becomes to me. I’ve been snowboarding for 20 years in the Sierras and I can ride a different mountain every day. I call it the “wonderful problem”—every time I climb a peak I’ve wanted to climb, I look out and see 20 more that I want to climb. It seems like there is an infinite amount of backcountry to explore in the Sierras!
What is the biggest misperception about Californians? That it’s really crowded and that there is this “Cali cool” attitude. It’s really easy to get into some beautiful remote wilderness areas and experience nature or explore some backwoods towns with a cool old vibe.
What is the stereotype that most holds true? That the weather is amazing. There is no mud season or off-season, we go for months without clouds, and come winter it is either snowing or sunny.
What is your favorite Golden State splurge? Going to the farmers’ market. Every time I go I end up with five times more food than I need just because of how amazing everything is. California has the best farmers’ markets. I leave with bags of fruits, nuts, veggies, salmon…you name it.
Time for a road trip—where are you going? My ideal road trip is spending plenty of time in the eastern Sierras, camping in Yosemite, and then camping on the coast somewhere. The key is getting that incredible California diversity all in on one trip!
If you could decree an official state culinary experience, what would it be? My favorite California food is definitely wild-caught salmon. I love fish and I’ve had it all over the world, but Cali-caught salmon is still my favorite!
Best California song? Jerry Garcia sums up the vibe of California—at least the California that I’m into. His music embodies the freedom and beauty that surrounds you. It makes the perfect soundtrack on my road trips. A close second is Neil Young. Especially “The Old Laughing Lady.”
How would your California dream day unfold? Recently my friends and family and I have been getting into linking up a bunch of different sports. I’ve done like eight different sports in one day! But the ultimate would be to wake up before the sun rises, snowboard some remote peak and then end my day paddleboarding on a lake or even surfing on the coast. It all comes down to the best of both worlds all in one day. This is what makes California so unique, and why I’ve ended up calling this place home…and I have no plans to leave!
Snow-covered peaks in winter, gushing waterfalls in spring, wildflower meadows and glistening lakes in summer, vibrant colors in fall—this is a land of dramatic and wild beauty. World-class mountain resorts circling turquoise-blue Lake Tahoe, and at Mammoth Lakes cater to all, with scenic ski trails in winter and trails and vistas in summer.
Yosemite Valley…is always a sunrise, a glitter of green and gold and wonder in a vast edifice of stone and space.” --photographer Ansel Adams
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