Meet Tatum Monod, the double backflipping big-mountain ripper

Comments by Leah Fielding/

If you haven’t heard of her, listen up, because twenty-year-old Tatum Monod of Banff, Alberta, may just be freeskiing’s next “it girl.” You may have seen Orage's video of a modest, pretty brunette hitting a huge backcountry jump, with quite the lip, and sending a massive double backflip? That was Tatum, and stomping that manuever made her the first woman to land a double backflip on skis in the backcountry. It’s a good thing Tatum turned down a ski racing scholarship to the Universtiy of Anchorage and instead moved to Revelstoke, B.C. These days, you’ll find her tearing up Whistler. We recently caught up with Tatum as she was packing for an off-season getaway to Nicaragua.

Freeskier.com: How long had you been thinking about doing a double backflip?

Tatum Monod: I’d been thinking about it for quite awhile, but hadn’t found the right jump or crew to do it with. As soon as we built that kicker and the conditions were right, I knew that was my opportunity. You have to wait for it all to apply.

FS: What goes through your mind before you're about to drop in to do a double backflip?

TM: I guess just full confidence. Not one nerve or thought can be negative. Postitive frame of thought, lots of visualizing.

FS: When was the first time you threw a backflip?

TM: I think I was 14; I was pretty young. I love being inverted. I’m not much of spinner.

FS: How do you feel now about being referred to as “sexy skier babe who throws double backs?”

TM: I laugh, it’s all fun. If that’s what they think, that’s cool. Remember when Sarah posed? A lot of people didn’t agree, but I think work with what you got. And I actually think it’s awesome. It’s not like they're being negative.

FS: Any advice for ladies considering their first back or double backflip?

TM: Definitely work up to it. Be able to do it on the tramp with ease. If you can get to a foam pit or water jump, do that too. If you're going to take it to snow, conditions should be perfect. You need to be really confident with backflips and inverts and really go for it.

FS: What’s in store for next season?

TM: I want to compete in Reve (Subaru Freeskiing World Tour stop). I like competiting because it’s easy to sit around Whistler filming or shooting, but once you’re in competition mode it’s really fun because you get that extra thrill. I’m going to try to get to Reve because I think that’s the most fun stop. As for filming, there are a lot of killer girls right now, I think I have to wait my turn. 

Vitals:

Age: 20
Home Mountain: Whistler, B.C.

Sponsors: Orage, SoulPoles, Smith Optics, Rossignol, BCA, Icebreaker, Sidas, Monod Sports, Widsix.com

FWT Results: 2nd place 2011 Revelstoke, B.C., 10th 2011 Crested Butte, CO, 9th 2011 Kirkwood, Calif, 8th 2012 Revelstoke, B.C., 

For more on Tatum, follow her on Twitter—@tatummonod and Instagram—@tfreedom.

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