Every year we test and review a plethora of snowboards from what will be available on the market. This year we were able to ride 129 decks from a magnitude of companies. These decks are ridden on various conditions and through various styles. Some are good and some are bad, but there are always those select few that are the complete standouts to us that need special mention. These are the boards we would personally build our quiver around.
The Rossignol XV: What can be said about this testament to big mountain riding that hasn’t already been said? Yes it’s true Rossignol is a snowboard brand that’s really good at selling skis. Yes it’s true none of us will ever ride down a frozen face like Xav does, but with this board we can pretend to. Nothing has changed in this board and that’s why it sticks out as being a stalwart to big powder excellence. It’s consistent, it’s smooth, and it’s still a fun ride.
The Amplid Pillow Talk: Yes it’s true Amplid is still a relatively unknown name to most people reading this. It’s even a relatively new brand, but Peter Bauer the man behind it has a long history in snowboarding. He’s designed many boards from various brands, some you’ve even probably ridden. In a world that is leaning more towards twin dominance even in powder riding the Pillow Talk sticks out as a board with that “Wow” factor we always look for. It butters, spins, and yes even jibs logs with ease. With the wider chassis you can downsize on it and still get the same amount of float. Add that to the softer flex and you have a recipe for awesomeness.
The Rome Mod Rocker: Would I be biased in saying I’ve loved this board for the last few seasons? Perhaps, but this is my website and who cares. What makes this board stand out is the ability to utilize the whole mountain as a skatepark. That is the true essence of the all mountain freestyle movement. That is also why this board shines, it’s just as home on a 12 inch powder day as it is doing spring park laps with friends. It’s a jack of all trade and master to none type of deck. If you’re the type of guy that couldn’t afford a quiver and can only have one board, this is truly it.
The Interior Plain Project Harrow: The Interior Plain Project is a company you should not sleep on. If you do, you are blowing it. Aside from awesome marketing and being team driven, their boards are superb. The Harrow is the type of park board you can get on and instantly feel like this was the board you have been on a hundred days already. It’s a smooth blend of traditional camber, park flex, and a fun sidecut. If you’re a risk taker and someone that likes to try new things, then this is the brand to be looking at. The product speaks volumes, the marketing gives you something to believe in.
The Flow Verve: We’ve all started somewhere and we should never forget that. We’ve all caught an edge, knocked the wind out of ourselves, and experienced that first joy of snowboarding. That is why we always try to ride beginner boards. Sure we’ve moved on past that ability level, but we can’t forget that without new people coming into snowboarding we can’t keep doing what we do. This year Flow takes the honor of having a board you can learn and progress on with the Verve. While some might say it’s more a soft entry to mid level park board, we would like to believe it’s a progression style board for everyone.
The Marhar Katana: To be honest we slacked on the ladies reviews this year. That’s our bad and we know it. But with that said we do know a good board when it sticks out. The Katana from Marhar is new for this year and it’s a solid deck that blends elements of all mountain with the freestyle genres creating a ride that the vast majority of the female population could utilize.