I have to confess to being somewhat of a technophobe; I can get by but don’t ask me how something works, it just does! The same used to be the case with snowboards; I didn’t put any thought into how my board was working, I just worked it! I’ve ridden many boards and have always had a good time on them, so I guess I figured all the tech talk was just that… talk! I recently got to sit in a few tech sessions on Nonstop’s instructor courses in Canada and it got me thinking of my favorite boards and asking why they were so much fun!?My first ever board was a Burton Dominant. I’d been on crappy rentals before on holidays but I’ve banished them to the darkest depths of my memory. I bought the Dominant in preparation for my first season in Banff and she served me well. I was a park rat back then and I remember the board having lots of pop and being super soft which made buttering and jibbing a breeze. Back in the day I didn’t give any thought to why my board was so fun in the park, but the fact the Dominant is designed like a skate board and has zero camber between the feet with a super flexy core probably had a lot to do with it!
Skipping over a couple of other Burton models, I then rebelled against the Burton machine and got myself a Bataleon Riot. Bataleon have pioneered Triple Base Technology (TBT); a TBT snowboard is flat between the bindings with angled side bases that are lifted with gradually increasing angles. The uplift starts from flat in the binding area to a maximum increase at the widest point of the board. The effect of this is super smooth carving turns and a very playful and forgiving board because the uplifted edges mean it’s way less likely to catch an edge and do a scorpion! The Riot was a little stiffer than the Dominant which made it super stable charging down steeps, yet there was still enough pop to go big in the parks in Whistler Blackcomb . After the Riot I got myself a Bataleon Goliath and I swore I would never get another board.
But boards die and boards are expensive. So when my mate that works with Burton offered me a pro deal on a Burton Custom Flying V (with squeezebox technology) I quickly forgot my new found loyalty to Bataleon and rejoined the Burton army! I’m not gonna lie, I have no idea what ‘squeezebox technology’ is but it’s lots of fun! She handles well at speed, has heaps of pop and was an absolute dream to ride in Fernie’s deep pow. If you look at the board side on you’d be forgiven for thinking there was something wrong; it resembles a curly moustache with it’s odd shape, but the camber seems to be in the right places because it was a joy to ride!
Snowboard technology keeps evolving so who knows what the next big thing will be. In the meantime, I’d quite like to jump back on one of those crappy rental boards I learned on, maybe then I’ll truly be able to appreciate what this technological revolution has done to our sport! If you want to know more about what snowboard equipment to buy for your instructor course or if you ski and want to hear some advice from a man that know EVERYTHING there is to know about skis then give us a call in the office and we can have a chat about what board or ski is right for you.