How did you discover your talent? What got you started?
I got my first snowboard when I was 4 years old and was on a skateboard as soon as I could walk so I guess you could say I was born boarding :) I was given a splitboard two years ago by one of my idols and to this day it is one of the most amazing gifts I have ever received! It has contributed to my love for guiding and leading myself through the outdoors :)
As a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
As a kid I always wanted to be a professional snowboarder in the olympics :) Which soon changed to a professional snowboard in the backcountry when I watched Fullmoon Film for the first time!
Who was your biggest inspiration?
My biggest inspirations were all those girls in the Fullmoon film such as Marie France, Robyn Van Gyn, Leanne Pelosi, Hanna Beaman, Jamie Anderson, as well as Spencer Obrien who wasn’t in the film but was killing it in the olympic games!
What makes you keep innovating and pushing your craft to new heights? What’s the intrinsic driver or motivation?
I realized pretty quick that competition wasn’t for me so splitboarding was a new way to combine my love for snowboarding and exploring to come together full force. I want to be a mountain guide one day and touring is a huge part of that; being able to share the incredible things nature has to offer with people who would otherwise not get to see it is something that pushes me everyday to perfect my techniques for guiding :)
So far, what has been your favourite highlight of your career? An achievement? A collaboration?
The number one highlight of my splitboarding career has definitely got to be the day my younger brother got a splitboard :) I don’t think I have ever been more proud than I was the day he set up his split skies and said “Come on Irie, let’s go already!”. Dreams came true that day! As well, getting to ride and participate in the OurFabrics film series which brought me to mountains and POW I had never experienced before and will never forget!! Rode my first chutes this year for that film and I have never felt more alive :)
In regards to your craft, where do you want to be in 5 or 10 years?
In 5 to 10 years I would love to be guiding people into the mountains, searching for the best POW, scoping the best lines, and sending full force! More chutes please!
Switching gears a bit… what do you think about the existing grab-and-go drink options out there? Are people ready for healthier alternatives? or will “Big Sugar” continue to dominate the landscape? (I.e. Energy Drinks, high caffeine, high sugar drinks)
It is really hard to find a product that is low in sugar or without sugar at all which is super frustrating especially for someone like myself whose body doesn’t perform well on sugar. I think so many people are looking for healthier alternatives though and it is just a matter of having them accessible :)
How does Wize iced tea fit into your current lifestyle? And why do you choose Wize?
Wize tea has become my pre-ride, during work, at the beach, any activity, anytime drink! It is so refreshing but doesn’t leave you feeling like you have to go take a nap after; it is perfect for energizing the rest of your day or next activity which I really appreciate because I like to go go go :)
What are your next projects coming down the pipeline?
My next project to come out is the OurFabrics mini film which will be showcasing some of my riding and my jar of garbage! As well as my move to Iceland to pursue an adventure guiding program so some really cool pictures and videos will be coming your way soon!
What’s your favourite flavour of Wize? When do you typically drink it?
My favourite Wize tea flavour would have to be the mango :) I am a huge mango fanatic and love anything to do with mango! I normally bring one on my bike rides as a gatorade replacement as it gives me more energy without the shaky buzz I get from sugar :) Boosts me to the top of all the mountains!
Thanks for the interview! Where can our audience find out more about you?
My instagram is @smith_irie where you can keep up with all my wacky adventures and the trailer to OurFAbrics!