Born and raised in Richmond, Massachusetts, Nate Haust has been snowboarding ever since he switched from skiing at the age of 11. It has been just about 20 years since then, and after a pit stop in Burlington, VT, the goofy footer currently resides in Truckee, CA and is a staple on the Rome Snowboard team. A long way from his home hill, (Bousquet in Western Massachusetts) when Nate isn’t filming in the streets, he is a favorite to win just about any rail jam he shows up to. Topping the podium at two of the larger prize purse stops this year, we checked in with Haust as he made his way to The Bomb Hole Cup in Brighton, UT to see if he can complete the trifecta.
How many rail jams have you won this year?
Just the two that I had participated in. The Grit and Dew Tour.
A perfect season then?
So far so good. I had quite an interesting start to the season. Kicked it off in Innsbruck for the DIYX Street Jam in November. I ended up taking a fall on the second day which ultimately put me out for 2 months. It took two doctors and a surgeon to successfully diagnose my injury. At a certain point, I thought this season was going to be a wash.
What was the injury?
I received a sweet stair massage and left with some serious bruising, a torn abdomen and some heavily strained tendons. The 36 hour travel home was horrendous.
Hurt to poop?
Haha without question. It was pretty painful to do basically anything.
Sounds like DIYX got you.
I just got caught up front boarding that DFD ledge. Amateur move on my part. Besides my misfortune, that event is the best thing to ever happen in snowboarding.
Did you have to get surgery on the abdomen?
Funny story in regard to that. I went to go see a surgeon. First time meeting this guy, we sit down and I mentioned that right now would not be the ideal time for me to go under the knife. He goes, “Yeah I can understand that, I googled you right before our meeting.” I didn’t get surgery yet but will probably need it down the road.
How many rail jams do you think you’ve won in your career?
I honestly don’t know, probably around 30?
Do you like competing?
Yeah, I honestly really do. I’ve always been a pretty competitive kid. Something about the pressure and the need to preform at your highest level. It’s like a drug
Do you take steroids?
My personal trainer says I should dodge this question
You think you would have won Red Bull’s Heavy Metal as well?
I can’t speak on Heavy Metal. The set up looked insane and all the riders were on point.
So what was your favorite rail jam of the year?
Excluding Street Jam, which my take is more of just a multi day session. I’d say both the Grit and Dew each have their own special attributes.
Dew Tour weekend is always such a good time, connecting with friends and being able to cruise the resort with a big posse is hard to beat. Plus I had been chasing that top spot for years, taking the win there was the most gratifying.
The Grit Jam was pure insanity. It took place at the Gateway, right outside the arena during the All-Star weekend. There were multiple thousands of spectators, many of which didn’t know a whole lot about snowboarding. The cheering at times was deafening. Gotta say, big ups to Jeremy Jones, Grit Marketing and all others who made that event possible.
Was dew tour your biggest payout win ever? $15k isn’t bad.
Hands down the most I’ve made during one single event.
What are you going to do with your winnings?
Invest it all. My end goal is to put it into real estate. I’ve had a lot of fun with winnings in the past but I think it’s about time I use it solely for long term gain.
You got any stock tips for the people?
My portfolios have seen better days. However, with the current financial crisis that some of these banks have been seeing, I’d put my money on certain cryptocurrencies to make a run in the near future. Don’t take my word for it though haha. That’s pure speculation.
Didn’t it already crash?
Yeah crypto is in the gutter right now. Although, if you find the patience and have the determination to study some of the charts, it still looks like it’ll bounce back.
I think it’s safer to probably just keep winning rail jams. Was this the most you have won in one year from those contests?
The year before I moved out to California I went on a streak and took down a dozen or so competitions. I can’t put a number on it but I think it was around 50k. That following summer I spend 4 months traveling around Europe then jumped in my car and zigzagged across the US until I landed in Tahoe. The day I arrive a buddy told me he had a room open and the rest is history. It may sound glorious but the way they tax winning is outrageous.
What do you mean? How much is the tax?
It’s dependent on which tax bracket you fall into but it’s usually like 35-40%. Straight up robbery. Ive always enjoyed learning about financial literacy and how to make the most out of your money. Reading and researching a lot. I always remember getting screwed during tax season due to winnings and thought about how ridiculous that was and what I can do to lessen the blow.
Hahahah, you won so many rail jams it forced you to be good at taxes.
Haha I mean shit, it definitely helped.
You think the east coast upbringing is responsible for all your success at these?
No doubt. The north east isn’t generally known for their jumps and half pipes. Most of the resorts where I grew up riding were pretty rail heavy. Plus during that era, east coast rail jams were everywhere
Why are rail jams important to snowboarding?
With the current progression in regard to other forms of snowboard competitions, I feel like rail jams are a bit more inclusive. There’s usually multiple categories depending on one’s skill set. Plus not everyone has the means to perfect their craft when it comes to pipe riding or jumping.
I’d love to see more jams in the future, especially for the younger generation. In the mid 2010s you could pretty much find an event every weekend. They’ve sort of fallen off since. Although, within the past year or so it seems like they’ve been making a strong comeback.
What board have you been winning these on?
The Rome Agent and Agent Pro has been my go to for the past handful of seasons.
How long have you been on Rome?
This is actually only my 4th year with them. huge shoutout to the boys at Rome for all the support over the years.
How did you get put on and all that?
I did the whole Burton thing for a bunch of years. Due to my time in Burlington, and since Rome is based in VT, I had made some really great connections with a bunch of Rome riders and in-house staff. The switch just seemed natural at that point.
How was Seance, fun to hang with the whole Rome crew?
The Seance was insane as always. Always a special treat having the whole Rome team together. Was honestly hoping that I was going to see you there, but on the other hand it was awesome meeting Mike Basher. Dude is a legend. Needless to say, the snowboy events on their own are some of the best around. The Seance is a collaboration between Rome and Snowboy, which this year was the second annual. Truly nothing but good times with a handful of close friends.
Do you have a different mindset when you compete in a rail jam and when you film?
I try to have as much fun on board no matter what the situation is. Bottom line is, I’ve dedicated my life to this sport because of the passion I have for it. Although I’d be remiss if I didn’t say that my mindset drastically changes when I compete. I tend to preform the best when I’m under pressure.
Why do you think they seem to be popping up more this season?
Time is just a flat circle. Trends come and go but they always seem to make their way back around. Rail jams were everything in the early 2000s. Maybe it’s just their time to come back into the spotlight.
Any tips/strategy to winning rail jams?
Chuck carc haha. Nah, but actually I see this a lot. Consistency is key, don’t go all out on the hardest trick, do what you know and what you can land. Toss a banger in there every once in a while but don’t get hung up trying one trick during the entire event.
How many parts you have floating out there?
Truly not as many as I wish I had. I think there’s around 5 or 6 flowing around somewhere on the web.
You work at all in the off season to help with snowboarding in the winter full time?
Yeah, I work a bit during the summer. The past couple years I’ve been bartending from snow melt to snow fall. During the pandemic shutdown I started creating wooden wall art which has actually been pretty lucrative. By no means do I create art full time, but it’s a really enjoyable and fulfilling hobby.
What are you up to right now/where you headed?
Currently cruising to Utah for a bit of shred and to hit the Bomb Hole Cup.
Should we bet on you to win the whole thing?
I wouldn’t put your money on it, but we’ll give it the ol’ college try.
Seems like you are having a pretty good season then!
From how it started to where it’s at right now, I couldn’t be more hyped on how everything has played out. I had plans to create a solo movie with a few friends this season but due to the uncertainty earlier this season I decided to push it off. Maybe next year I’ll get it back up and running. But on top of that, Tahoe is having an all time record of a season. If all goes well, I should be boarding locally up until August.
Cool, I think we are good.