Variable consistency Cascade “powder”
I started the day off lapping the slack country in Private Reserve with a few trips down Yoda, God`s Wall and Lord`s Chute. The snow had gotten dense from a period of above freezing temperatures. In the trees and on the steeps, everything was tracked out and rutted up. The board once again impressed me with it`s agility and ability to make tight, aggressive turns in the tight trees in any of the variable snow conditions toady. I am definitely feeling this camber under foot when I use edging movements and have to ride this a lot like a more conventional cambered board in these conditions. The rocker is quite effective if you remember to utilize it and have the timing down. I was late in shifting back a few times and the nose dug in and flipped me.
Where this board really shined was plowing through untracked wet heavy snow with a slight sun crust on top. Once I shifted aft a tad to use the rocker to lift the nose, it was smooth sailing. Again, with this heavy wet Cascade snow, edging movements need to be subtle or you will auger the nose in deep. This board, when I used it correctly, made riding these conditions much easier and I found myself riding through these trees on the 45 degree pitch of Private Reserve at a much faster speed than I normally do.
With the nearly 1 mile long flat runout of Heather Canyon, I got to really get a feel for flat riding. One thing is that the “pivoty” feeling is very present if you ride centered. The best stability was achieved with a forward shift of my weight. Once I did this, the “teeter totter” effect of the rocker kicked in and it was like riding just the front half of the board which has camber under foot. The one footed riding is also quite stable if you ride the front half of the board and keep the rear foot forward of center.
The board does feel more “catchy” as a result of the 0 degree bevel although a competent rider will be able to work with this no problem. On packed powder or firm groomers, the rider needs to have some decent edge awareness as the camber really kicks in.
I had the opportunity to teach tonight and I got the chance to do some basic carving since the groomed runs were firm and even a bit icy from the wind. I was very impressed with the board`s ability to hold a carved turn in a medium radius turn and the edge change was solid and fluid. The edginess is not a factor in the carved turn if good technique is used. By the end of the night, I was making short radius dynamic carved turns without fear.
Took a few runs through the park to get a feel for how it handles intermediate jumps. The camber sections make this board feel as poppy as a conventional camber board. The Ollie felt strong and springy when I did a few on the rollers. The board`s landing ability is solid and the dampness of the board really absorbs impact force on landing.
Tomorrow will be another full day of riding and putting this board through its paces.