Originally published in the 30th Anniversary Issue of SNOWBOARDER Magazine, Mountain GOATS celebrates the most influential snowboarders of the last thirty years (1987-2017), otherwise known as the Greatest Of All Time list. With over 70 men and women riding into the ranks of the Mountain GOATS, check back as we release their bios and celebrated accolades over the course of the next few weeks!
Mountain Goat: Jussi Oksanen
At the turn of the new millennium and precisely at the moment before snowboarding completely exploded like a powderkeg in the eyes of the mainstream, a few young kids from Finland relocated across the Atlantic and landed stateside. Coupled with their incredible natural talent and the fact that snowboarding was about to become one of the fastest-growing sports in the world, it was a perfect storm, as these kids started accumulating footage by the reel, showing the entire snowboard world just how good they were. At the forefront of this Finnish invasion was a young kid by the name of Jussi Oksanen, an integral member of the famed Finnish phenoms who descended upon our culture like thick clouds enveloping the mountains.
Jussi would dabble in the competitive scene here and there, securing notable finishes when he did, but where he shined was in front of the camera. After his sponsors began to land him in big ticket movies is when Jussi's skillset was truly revealed. When Standard's Optigrab hit shop shelves, riders around the world witnessed Jussi linking and landing over a dozen switch tricks in a row and everyone knew he was the real deal. His stint with Absinthe garnered him a spot on the Mack Dawg roster and Jussi proceeded to put out unreal parts in films like Double Decade and others.
While JP Walker and Jeremy Jones took street snowboarding in a new direction, Jussi decided to focus his efforts on backcountry jumping and year after year, he would be featured in films stomping NBDs left and right—in turn, gaining a spot on this publication's Top Ten Rider of the Year list consistently. In fact, Jussi was so influential in regard to airtime that he is arguably considered the greatest jumper the world of snowboarding has seen to date. Toward the end of his tenure as a professional snowboarder, Jussi gracefully bowed out of the spotlight and focused his time, energy and influence on his eco-friendly water bottle company, Mizu, ensuring that beyond his impact as one of the best snowboarders on earth, his influence continues to be felt and his legacy remains rooted in our culture. So we raise our Mizu and cheers you, Juice!