American made products seem to be diminishing more and more by the day. But that’s just the price we pay for the globalization of the world along with the fact outsourcing is just cheaper. But low and behold the East Coast has a resurgence of micro snowboard manufacturers that still keep it real by producing in this country. Blak Sheep is one of those companies and they were kind enough to send me their park stick to ride and review here’s what I had to say about it.
Board: Blak Sheep Gnarly State Park Stik
Size: 155 regular width (there’s a wide in that size as well)
Camber Option: Micrognarockamber which is a mild center reverse into minuet camber zones just past the insert pattern.
Bindings: K2 Formulas
Angles: 18 negative 15 goofy
Boots: K2 T1 DB size 10
My Weight: 165
Conditions: Sunny blue skies, fresh corduroy, and a pristine park.
Preconceived Notions: Doug the owner just kept hyping this to me that it’s the best board he’s ever ridden and better than the cambered version he had when he was out here in April or May. Having ridden a lot of boards with this type of camber I knew exactly what to expect.
Flex: That familiar middle of the road twin flex where you get on a board and you know right away how it’s going to ride. Tips were softer slightly stiffer in the middle with good torsional give.
Stability: Not an insanely damp ride but still really smooth when charging through push mounds and chunder.
Ollies/Pop: The snap on this board was amazing off jumps, rollers, or popping off my toes on edge. Over all one of the more poppy independent company boards I’ve ridden.
Butterability: The tip ship is a lower bend and more flat almost oldschool in shape. Mixing that with a center reverse you could just spin around in circles and revert around effortlessly.
Cruising: Edge to edge transitioning came at rapid paces and allowed you to do fast set up carves when going into a jump or if you were on a wide open run to really lay it over and go to town.
Jibbing: Locking into presses this board was super solid which I attribute to the flatter surface area of the tips due to the shape profile. The flex let you snap out of nose and tail presses to do mid jib taps then locked back in.
Rider in Mind: Someone that supports American made craftsmanship who wants a board that is a reverse/camber combo. It’d be ideal for the guy that spends his day riding the mountain as a terrain park with a very skatey influence to their riding.
Personal Thoughts: Sometimes you get duds from first year companies especially when they send a product sample to you. This board had a few minor quirks to it that were sample issues and not manufacturing related but over all it reminded me of riding the Never Summer Circuit but with more snap out of the edges due to the bamboo sidewalls. My impression for a first year companies deck is that this thing nailed it head on with making a board that rides predictable for what its built for.
What They Say: Designed to meet the demands of todays jumps and rails. However, these boards are capable of anything the Ice Coast can throw at them. A perfect “Daily Driver” for freestyle and general ripping.