Ethan Morgan is one of the few riders around today that has the ability to ride anything that he puts his mind to. From his street rail beginnings as a young grom, we have watched Ethan ride pipe contests, hit huge backcountry kickers and annihilate parks across the globe. Ethan’s character is certainly unique and his obscure sense of humour reflects on his riding and the consequent edits that his imagination conjures up. Last season Ethan put down one of the most explosive parts of the year in The Method Mag movie and this season he has been keeping us well entertained the most impressive top to bottom run ever put down on film and his intergalactic webisodes. We caught up with Ethan at Snowboard Spring Break to find out more about his sponsor’s obligations, competing, his new project DIYX, his thoughts on UK Snowboarding and much more.
You started out doing the contest circuit and at one point were trying to make it into pipe at the Olympics, what made you step away from contests?
I loved the contest scene, but at one point, the comps got a bit too serious for me, and I found myself having way more fun filming and cruising, not training and sending it on icy jumps in shit weather. I also didn’t like having a coach telling me what to do.
Do your sponsors ever pressure you to ride more contests and is it tougher to find sponsors without doing contests?
No my sponsors let me do what I want, and I really appreciate that but every once in a while I like to drop into a rail jam, it may be a contest, but it just seems more like a session with the homies at rail jams. I am not sure if it is harder to find sponsors without riding comps, I feel like a lot of things have to come into place these days to find a good sponsor. You will see many contest riders with no or little sponsors, and same with people who are good that just film, and don’t have sponsors. I just think there has to be relevance in yourself for the audience, and the companies will see that if you have it.
You have been putting out loads of unique videos the past few years, from your sponsor me tape, to your top to bottom run. Where do you get your ideas?
Pretty easy, I needed a sponsor so I made the sponsor me tape, and when I moved last year to my new crib at Nordkette, I knew right away I had to make a run happen to my apartment, there was no way I wasn’t going to do it.
Your sense of humour can be quite random at times, have you ever been told to tone it down a bit?
No, not that I know of but I wouldn’t change that anyway. I can’t just change who I am. haha
You can ride pipe, park, streetrails and backcountry kickers, what do you like to ride the most?
Hard to say, I think I like to ride everything the same amount, but I have to say, stomping a trick on a big ass pow jump or just popping a slash and getting that brain freeze face shot can be the best feeling ever.
You recently held your first contest, the Do It Yourself Xtreme or DIYX for short, what exactly was it and how did the concept develop?
Last year the sane! Gang and I went out to Kühtai late season and decided to just reshape some hits in the pipe for fun and it was fun. So I came up with the idea to make an event out of it. So the concept was to invite a bunch of riders who were motivated, and then we would reshape the pipe up at Kühtai to the way we wanted to, the Kühtai park guys helped us out a lot with the cat and everyone just made anything they wanted, which made it a DIY event. the X stands for X-treme. Then the next day the lifts were turned on for us and we just had a dope session all day long.
We saw you at Snowboard Spring Break earlier this year– the UK snowboard test – what did you make of the UK snowboard scene?
I love the UK scene, everybody is a diehard snowboarder! You guys all send it all night to some crazy jungle/garage or heavy metal until the bar closes, but everybody shows up on top of the hill right away in the morning and shreds all day. Loved it!
Which UK riders do you look up to?
I really enjoy watching will smith ride, super tech and good style, creative too. Ollie Dutton is a G as always and Billy Morgan (my dad) is just insane.
What are your plans for the coming season?
No idea, maybe film for a full project again, but if there is snow I definitely want to do another top to bottom run, there are so many insane runs up there.