www.georgeouzounis.com


Date of birth:
1987.03.15
Hometown:
Athens, Greece
Sponsors:
Rip Curl,
Hobbies:
Snowboarding, Surfing, Skateboarding, Hiking
Favourite athletes:
Jamie Lynn, Terje Haakonsen, Travis Rice, Jeremy Jones, Xavier Delerue, Nicolas Muller, JP Auclair, Dimitris ‘Frits’ Papakonstantinou, Vassilis ‘Fasolias’ Karageorgiou, George Felekis, Mike Styllas, Jo Manta and many more that inspire me.

BIO

I was born in a big City. As an active and curious kid of adventuring and exploration I heard of snowboarding and got stuck with it at the age of 10. After trying it I fell in love with it. Mount Parnassos became my home mountain. As a big fan of jumps it drove me into the backcountry world. Nowadays I am more into hiking, freeriding the backcountry and exploring new mountains. Today I still live in Athens and I am in the search of all the Greek unexplored Mountains.


CAREER HIGHLIGHTS

  • 2011: Ouzo Gap | Raw footage from mount Parnassos Greece
  • 2010: Going back at Tahoe and filming the second video part
  • 2009: Visiting Lake Tahoe and filming the first video part

INTERVIEW 2014.12.08

What are you looking for to accomplish?

Exposing the beauty of the Greek Mountains and Greece’s winter season.

"Mount Parnassos, Into the pistes - photo Maria Boucaouri"

What would be your greatest achievement?

Knowing every time how far we can take it according team’s limitations and unforeseen factors.

In other words: Coming back home safe- as JP Auclair had said.

What kind of difficulties does your sport’s performance involve?

Listening, Seeing, Feeling. Mountains don’t belong to us. We belong to the mountains.

Weather change and snow conditions are some of the factors that we have to be careful of. Mountains speak to us in many ways. We can’t change the rules, we have to go with it.

"On the way up - photo Themistocles Labridis"

Working on our skills is hard and it can’t be done on our own. We need the right time and the right people. I also believe that every single Greek mountain has the Gods within. We have to listen to the messages they send us for protection. So, going with it snowboarding becomes an unbelievable game of confronting, of challenging and of life.

What makes you feel satisfied when performing your sport?

The Journey. A hike can be a lifetime’s journey compressed in smaller timeframes. Obstacles are on our way. Will we stop? Weather can change. Will we fall back? Snow looks different from a closer look. Will we change our route?

"Mount Olympus and the Throne of Zeus at the back - photo Alex Vainas"

This is the satisfaction of it. Waking up our ingenuity, being creative, facing our insecurities, breaking through our fears and many more. The riding is just the result of the journey.

A mix of all the emotions and feelings together, makes us satisfied on that journey-

Where do you practice your techniques when being alone?

Snowboarding is not just a sport it is a way of life and can be practiced from everyday living. Everything connects with each other when we are on the mountains and life can give us similar situations for snowboarding.

What do you do during your training which is key to your success?

Visualizing – Something that has already been seen before we have ever done it. Everything is possible.

As a big fan of building jumps and finding new spots, for the built of “ouzo gap” (more info here) step down with friends, it has taken us a little longer than any other jump to start building. I was standing still for 40 minutes, at the edge of the rock, watching the gap and the landing. It was the time I needed to visualize it since I had no past experience on going that big and that fast.

In Greece, the riding level is low as we do not benefit from any major infrastructure such as big snow parks, half pipes, etc. and it makes it a little bit more difficult. There are great tools to use to improve but we don’t. We can make it a lot easier. 40 minutes of time can help someone visualize things.

"Rodeoing Vassilitsa's Valley - photo Maria Boucaouri"

I saw it before I had done it. Our mind is the greatest, the most powerful and the most incredible tool we have but we still have to be careful with it. It can easily fool us. Once we start learning how to use it, we can start believing, much bigger, much faster.

What are you most nervous about when competing?

I am not into competitions. I join for the people and the fun.

"Vassilitsa, Road to Heaven - photo Maria Boucarouri"

Who would you say is your biggest fan and why?

The ones giving love. The more we give, the more we receive. It is a vice versa human communication that keeps us strong and alive.

What is the best piece of advice you have been ever given?

-It is better to be over equipped than under equipped- when I first heard this, having the wrong mentality for mountaineering, it was by Costis Gortzis and I didn’t really realize what he really meant…

Mount Olympus was a unique experience when I went for the first time (more info here). Taking “ski resort’s“ mentality out there was a huge mistake. Everything in my mind about the mountains changed after that trip.

"Mount Parnassos, spinning over Liakoura Peak - photo Maria Boucaouri"

Moving out of the ski resorts and taking higher risks needs a different mentality. Realizing that the mountains are the real leaders and they lead our path. Predicting the unpredictable makes us want to take more than less with us.

What are your future plans?

Olympus and Timfi are the most beautiful mountains I‘ve been so far in my life. There are many other on the list. Vardousia and Crete are few of the next ones.

What are your tips for those who begin now?

Listen, watch and learn from the ones who have already done it.

Last but not least – Be Grateful for every single moment (good or bad) of your journey, anything, anyone and any situation.

Thank you All!

"Happy faces, end of a session - photo Nancy"