Flow isn’t always a brand that people give respect to or praise for that matter but they do know what they’re doing. You don’t survive as a company for 14 years by having an inferior product. With a solid design team in place for what they call Triple Threat Technology ( board, boots, bindings) I’ve been pleasantly surprised with the performance I’ve gotten from their products over the last few years.
Board: Flow Era
Camber Option: I Rock, center reverse camber with a convex base, micro cambered zone under foot then flat in the tips. Basically everything that you could think of being put in a snowboard that’s on the R.C. Train.
Bindings: Flow M11
Angles: 18 negative 15 goofy
Boots: K2 T1 DB size 10
My Weight: 165
Resort: Winter Park
Conditions: Sunny blue skies with a bit of push mounds roaming around the runs.
Preconceived Notions: I rode the Era the year before and felt it was a solid ride don’t see why this wouldn’t be one as well.
Flex: Just past a mid flexing park deck something more in the realm of being equal to a K2 Jibpan.
Stability: While not a damp ride for having so much going on in the reverse and camber department it was actually a real solid ride when pointing it in to jumps.
Ollies/Pop: This is where the deck really excelled. With pop that let you boost hard and a looser feel to it because of the I Rock you had yourself a skateboard of destruction under foot.
Butterability: For being a slightly stiffer park deck this board did well in this department which could easily be attributed to the alternate camber.
Cruising: Edge to edge it just rolled right through the transitions and ripped turns really well.
Jibbing: Wouldn’t say it was its strong suit but for what I was doing it did the trick and locked into presses pretty well.
Rider in Mind: The all mountain park rider that’s more prone to hitting jumps than jibs.
Personal Thoughts: This boards a lot of fun and with the addition of more carbon to it for this year the pop was doubled. Although I will say the Iron Maiden graphic from last year was better but that’s just me.
What They Say: The all-new Era with added carbon is modified this year for more pop and aggressive park and all-mountain riding, and we ain’t kidding. The Era will allow you to charge cliff lines, blast off park kickers and attack the rails with little effort, thanks to the technology dripping from this stick. I-ROCK allows you to carve hard without slipping out, while Whiskey Royale technology keeps the board stable at high speeds and EZTraditional sidecut makes turn initiation easier than ever. The Era is here, and it’s here to stay.
Binding Compatibility: Was a great match up for this deck as it wasn’t under powered by being too soft or too over powering by being designed as a more freeride specific binding.
Binding Adjustability: Flows do take a bit longer to adjust and at a demo it’s probably one of my least favorite bindings in terms of time consumption, but once it’s dialed you’re set.
Straps: The PowerStrap was solid and kept the pressure off the top of my foot but still had enough hold to keep me locked in place.
Highbacks: Did its job and I should have spent more time setting the forward lean that was my one gripe about it. The big thing to note is that this is a rear entry binding and it’s not for everyone and sometimes you will have some initial issues getting in and out of it till you get that dialed in.
Binding Flex: Just like the deck, just past a mid flexing park binding and more towards a all mountain freestyle design.
Ratchets: When Flow came out with these locking mini ratchets they put themselves into a better spot for micro managing adjustments they did their job well.
Rider in Mind: The guy that’s going to charge the park or a pow line and use just one binding.
Personal Thoughts: Now some would assume I’m a hater of this technology based on the fact I hate a lot of the crap that hits the market like those fucking suspension bindings. Flow has come a long ways since I first tried some back in the late 90’s. Every year they get better and better, while they aren’t for everyone if you actually do try them and spend the time to give them a fair shot you might be surprised. The PowerStrap has always mystified me at how well it locks me in but doesn’t cause any pressure points.
What They Say: The M11 aters to the needs of the everyday rider looking for more superior support, maximum comfort, and an affordable price tag. The M-Series baseplate and Ventilated hiback are reinforced with our 30% Long-Strain Nylon for a supportive and responsive feel, while the anatomically correct asymmetrical A-Flex PowerStrap adjusts to any boot for a perfect fit and the EVA cushioning pads keep the bottoms of your feet pain free when the slopes get firm. The M11 is the perfect fit if you’re looking all over the mountain for terrain to conquer and lines to drop.