The AT50: BC Snowboarder Jeremy Jones (#10)
Sport: Backcountry Snowboarding
Highlights: Launched Jones Snowboards, which are tailored to big mountain and backcountry riding; nine-time Snowboarder Best Big Mountain Snowboarder of the Year; dozens of first descents, from Svalbard to Antarctica
Quote: "There is no longer anywhere in the world that I consider too hard to get to."
Fact: In 2007, Jones founded Protect Our Winters (POW) to unite the winter sports community and focus its collective efforts towards reversing climate change.
AT50 Point Total: 46
Anyone who's watched a snowboarding movie in the past 20 years is familiar with Jeremy Jones. He's been featured in literally dozens of them, helicoptering into remote mountains, charging down steep backcountry terrain and carving lines in virgin powder that most of us can only dream about. What sets his latest films—Teton Gravity Research-produced Deeper and Further—apart, though, is that he and his team access every foot of vertical on their own power. No helicopter, no lifts, no snow cats. The films mark a change that began for Jones in 2009, when he committed himself to backcountry snowboarding and signaled the jump by launching Jones Snowboards, a company that makes big-mountain and backcountry boards. In doing so, he risked alienating his longtime industry sponsors and being dropped from the snow porn films that, for years, had allowed him ride some of world's best backcountry terrain.
The gamble paid off, though, and the filming of Further alone took him to Japan’s Alps, Austria’s Karwendelgebirge Range, Svalbard (a mountainous Norwegian archipelago just 600 miles from the North Pole) and Alaska’s Wrangell-St. Elias. Along the way, he's evolved from a big-mountain pioneer into a high-profile advocate for low-impact backcountry travel whose work has helped spark a positive movement in snowboarding towards pure, hard-earned turns.