In a sea of choices, it can be challenging, if not impossible, to determine which snowboard is the right one for you strap into. That is why SNOWBOARDER Magazine created The Blackboard Experiment, to shine a light on some of the season’s best freestyle snowboards in hopes that when you head to your local shop, you can find a deck that fits your riding, regardless of whether you’re sending 50-footers or hotlapping the old guys’ line.
This year, strap in with Scotty James as he puts nine blackboards through the ringer and decides which ones come out on top.
SCOTTY’S FIRST IMPRESSION:
It’s actually really fun. It’s pretty soft and a buttery, but still impressively responsive out of turns. There’s still quite a lot of energy generated, which is good.
JIB SCORE: 8
Really fun and easy to press. I enjoyed it. Locks into rails really easily. It felt comfortable right off the bat. Smooth on the in run and out run.
JUMP SCORE: 7
Good. Yeah, a little soft, but it can still hold a good line into the jumps. Very tweakable. It feels pretty good through the soft snow, kind of hovers on top of the chowder.
TRANNY SCORE: 7
With the reverse camber it doesn’t quite hold an edge quite as well for the transition. It’s a little bit soft and a little damp for popping in the halfpipe. The reverse camber is not great at the bottom of the transition. It gives too much. Same deal in the minipipe.
CARVE SCORE: 9
I give it a nine because I enjoyed it. From regular to switch, it’s easy to maneuver for turns. Surprisingly really responsive out of turns especially with the reverse camber in the middle and the camber under the feet. I really enjoyed riding it down just a regular, groomed run. I had a lot of fun. You can really make the most out of the board and its shape.
OVERALL SCORE: 31