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Techniques for carving a Coiler in powder


jhcolman
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Hi All

My 14 year old son rides and races a Coiler, here in eastern Canada. So he's used to groomed slopes, hardpack and ice.

We're heading west (to Banff) for a New Years week family vacation and would like to ride some of the back bowls, which ofcourse will be ungroomed powder. While he can tear up a race run, he's concerned about his ability to ride the back bowls.

I've suggested that he could rent a freeride board, but he would prefer not to, as he has not a riden freeride board (in soft boots) since he was 9. Alternatively, I suppose we could borrow a Prior, for the week.

FYI, he rides a custom WC Coiler that has been designed for racing. A 173 cm with an 18.5 cm waist, 6.3 stiffness. He can flex the board quite well. He's about 5 fooot 7 inches and 125 to 130 lbs.

Can he readily adapt to riding the Coiler in deep powder?

If so, what techniques should he employ? Any video we can watch?

Or would another carver be more suitable, in which case we will cast about to locate one?

Or rent a freeride board?

We welcome your advise.

Thanks

Julian

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If you can rent or demo a Prior then definately have him try an ATV or 4WD!

In heavy powder I don't even like riding my Axis honestly. I'd just break out the softies. I'd be curious to try a powder specific shape on plates though.

I'll let the vets speak up on the technique of riding a skinny board on the pow.

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my first day on my RC was in 3 feet of fresh pow in a snowstorm (we got 3 more feet on about 6 hours). The first thing I did was move my rear binding all the way back and then reset my stance from there. That gave me about 1.5" to 2" more setback but it was still tough and the narrow waist meant that I had to keep my speed up or I would sink. The good thing was the main trails stayed fairly ski'd out and the Coiler's damp ride made dealing with crud much easier than I expected. I'd take the Coiler and look at demo-ing a powder board if the conditions warrent

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I second or third the advice of renting/demoing. Why risk what could be an epic & memorable experience with the wrong tool for the job? You can mount plates on a big mountain pow board. FWIW, when I travel out west I leave my 173PR at home. I bring along my AM for resort riding and a Burton Supermodel(w/plates) for deep powder/bc.

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I rode my RCII at Sunshine last year and had a blast. There is grooming a-plenty and the runs are wide. Occasionally, I would duck into powder stashes and as long as I kept my weight back, the Coiler handled it fine. So definitely take the Coiler with you.

I did not, however, take the Coiler into deep pow. For that, I would want something wider, for sure. If you do rent or borrow a powder board, there's no real reason not to ride it with plate bindings and hard boots. I ride my Burton Fish and Volkl Spline with plates all the time. Just don't ask the rental shop to mount them for you.

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Grab a right board, still suitable for hard boots.

4807 for deep pow, it would still carve on groom. A Tanker would do too, but harder to find and much more expensive...

Prior 4WD or Coiler AM, for not so deep.

Race board, well I rode mine 20cm waisted 170 in 18". Doable, but you have to ride it fast, press the back leg, do not load the nose. Just roll it over and let the flex work, rather then trying to feel the edge.

Or, just rent a biggest stiffest freeride board and throw your plates on it...

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Go freeride or pow! All mountain shape at the very least.

Just for yuks I took my Coiler (PR) off trail into some mid-shin/knee deep stuff and it didn't work too well (kinda anticipated that anyway). One particular SL deck that I rode in the past worked amazingly well in the pow though (20+ cm waist, wider nose). Never even TRIED it on the Burner...well except once. Never again! Too much work and too much getting tossed! Get a tool for the conditions at hand!

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a burner 197+pow=scary unless going insane fast, been there good times if you have the balls, the proper snow and wide open untracked trails

get that kid a fish or a khyber for the deep and trees, the race rocket can be ridden on the rest

4807 would work too

the AM, axis, 4wd are fine too but when in pow I like wide, maybe tapered and maybe a swallow tail depending on the place I'm riding

softboots are my preference in pow as well but thats just me

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I can get my GS decks to work in powder,but I wouldn't suggest it. I took a HS trip to Italy, and ran a Proton down the backside of Courmayeur into Chamonix. Sucked, and made me relize I was never going to ruin a world class trip by choosing foolishly. Rent a freeride the day before, and have the kid practice. He'll appreciate it. If he can rock a GS course, he can at least try a freeride board and then decide for himself.

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When I was in Lake Louise we had a few "bottomless" (as in, I never found the bottom) powder days.

My Coiler AM177 with 21.5 cm waist was Perfect, after I moved the bindings back. Remember, however, that I was doing a (fairly steep) bowl, not trees, so I had _speed_. I actually don't think I've ever gone so fast on a snowboard before or since.

For the flatter, couple-feet-of-powder days, bindings in normal position were fine if I didn't mind leaning back whenever I wanted to fully surface.

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I'm with D-Sub. It took me a while to get adjusted to riding a stock racing board in the pow, and I wouldn't want anyone to go through that, especially for their first real time in pow.

Also, there's no carving in pow. And in regards to technique, good technique for a first time pow rider is being able to stay upright.

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Caution - you may or may not find actual powder in Banff. Don't count on it.

That can be true as well. If he goes to Lake Louise and it hasn't snowed for a while, you'll just find ice.

I made the mistake last Xmas Eve of taking a 19cm waist into a foot of fresh at Sunshine. One of the most pointless days of my life. A week later I took my 21.5 WFO with the scoopy nose and couldn't believe the difference.

An all mountain board would be a much better choice, and then he could deal with pretty much anything he comes across. If you can get that Prior, I'd do it. Much of the rental gear out this way tends to be pretty cheap and nasty. I'd lend you the WFO, but I need it to take to Fernie...

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What Neil Said...

Bring the race board. Sunshile has LOTS of low angle, wide open terrain that is perfect for hardboots. Even if there's pow, he'll be stoked... Just open it up. The fear training of high speed, chopped up riding will be good for his racing.

If you want to go on Delerium, or go to the Lake at all, get the F/R board. Unlimited in Banff will set you up.

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Sometimes I think we're all a punch of pansies. :smashfrea

He can ride powder just fine on his board. Most important thing is to shove the bindings as far back as possible. Think about it. He'll have the equivalent of a pair of skis with 90mm waist. That's a pretty wide skis, even by today's standards. Sure, folks are out there on 100s, even 130s, but the folks on 90s do just fine in powder. Especially light people like him.

The other thing to do is leave his boots in walk mode if its a powder day.

Would it be easier on a 4807 or maybe an AWD? Sure. Will he have fun on his race board? Absolutely. We're all so spoiled by having multi-board quivers.

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Will he have fun on his race board? Absolutely. We're all so spoiled by having multi-board quivers.

Spoiled - to be sure :biggthump Will he have fun? How can you not - you're riding! I still believe that the worst day of riding is WAY better than a good day at work. BUT, being able to maximize one's enjoyment on the hill may be better achieved with a more suitable tool for the given conditions. And I think making a linear-type comparison from race decks to skis doesn't hold water. The low-profile nose, weight and flex are just not the same - NOT intended for pow. My .02.

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First off, those bowls back there can be icy and nasty: it's not always powder. If they're like that, then check out Sunshine etc as often conditions are different there.

Second, you won't get deep powder there. If you're *very* lucky in a big year you won't get more than 75cm per day, and with however-many thousand people, it'll be pisted out pretty quickly. So worst case you're going to be riding on a base which isn't that far down. Hence you can ride a race board quite well in "resort powder".

Would I recommend it? Not really - hire or borrow a Fish if you can. I think mine cost me $99; they're not expensive if you look around. Have a blast on a proper powder board, rather than making a big deal out of learning how to ride powder covered moguls on an 18cm race board.

If you do ride your piste board in powder, you don't have to adapt it. Just be careful you don't perl (go over the front), and watch out for very poor side-to-side stability. Hit the steepest slopes you can and don't screw around turning unless you have to.

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I'm with Phil on the not adjusting your bindings for conditions. Just leave them where they're comfortable, and adapt your riding. Moving the bindings around depending on how much snow is out is just plain silly.

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As an "Icecoaster", and with limited actual hardboot experience, I would have to say to rent a board out there, but bring your race board if you want to lug it with you as the chances of them having your style board to 'rent" are slim and none. Always able to get something big and fat out there that may be more enjoyable to ride in. I've got a few different boards for various conditions.

I second the "take the right tool for the job" comment.

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