Born in Montreal, Maude Raymond grew up surrounded by sports and the great outdoors. From dirtbikes to gymnastics, and ski racing to competitive diving, Maude had the benefit of trying it all before finding her true calling at the age of eighteen - freeskiing. Following in the footsteps of her older brother, Maude put all her energy into her newfound passion and lifestyle once she moved to Whistler, British Columbia, where she quickly turned heads and made a name for herself.
At the age of twenty Maude launched her professional career, and has been inspiring girls around the world ever since. After spending a few years on the competitive circuit, Maude switched gears and focused on what really made her happy - traveling and making video edits that inspire.
It didn’t take long for Maude to grow her raw talent and smooth style into her own brand, MAAD Maude, which now includes a web series, a clothing line, a pro model jacket and goggles, and her own North American progression camp. And best of all? She’s only just getting started.
- Jason Mousseau
Article for Maude's "Skier of the year" winner title for Freeskier Magazine Dave Pires — Cream Magazine
How did you meet Maude and what was your first impression of her?
I met Maude in Whistler when she moved into a house I was living in, and we quickly became close friends. Maude had traveled out West, and was temporarily crashing at her brother Frank’s. She decided to stay for a while and we needed a roommate, so she moved in. There were some issues in the house, and before long she moved out of the room she was sharing and began living on the floor of my small room. Sharing that kind of space would immediately drive most people insane, but somehow it just made us stronger.
My very first impression was of a Quebecois girl with an infectious energy… Maude can be very chill, but when she connects her passion and joy are uncontainable, and its magic.
She says she fell in love with skiing on that trip to Whistler. Did you notice how much she loved skiing?
Maude had grown up skiing with a solid crew back home at Mont Saint-Sauveur, but Whistler was definitely where she fell in love with freestyle skiing. Frank was living with a dedicated crew of excellent freeskiers from Quebec, and being immersed in a group of people who breathed skiing every second of the day must have made an impact. I think that passion and connection, as well as becoming a part a community where everyone she was surrounded with loved skiing, was key.
One of our first real conversations was about love. Maude’s English was rough at the time, and she really wanted to understand the difference between like, love and in love, because in French you just say Je t’aime. After I explained it she started using the word love on pretty much everything, and initially I thought she was mixing them up, but quickly realized, no, that’s who Maude is. At the end of that conversation I remember she said, “I’m in love with skiing.” And it was true.
How would you describe Maude's personality?
"Maude runs on love. To love anything as much as she does requires immense strength, because life can get dark, and you need strength equal to your love for it to survive those times."
Are you surprised she's found so much success in skiing?
The only surprise for me is that she hasn’t found more success. I believed she was going to be the best female park skier in the world. Unfortunately, she’s had to battle through constant serious injuries, which have made her path unimaginably difficult. The obstacles she’s had to overcome would make anybody give up, but what I admire most about Maude is that she never gives up on what she loves. Whatever she does, no amount of success would surprise me.
Maude has a rare combination of focus, determination, ability and style. When we first met, the female side of our sport wasn’t at the level it’s at now, and unfortunately girls would often get knocked for their style. Maude has always had unbelievable style. She’s the realest because her style is her own, there’s no separation between who she is and how she skis, which is so rare. With all due respect, I still don’t think anybody skis park with as much style as Maude.
I’m sure her intense training as a teenage Olympic-track diver honed her focus and control, but I think the real credit is due to her brother Frank. Frank was the style master. His standard for what was stylish on skis was always very, very high, and he had a work ethic to match. Maude absorbed both of those things from him, and they played a big part in shaping who she is.