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JRAZZ

Recommend a tree board

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I've found lots of pow board threads but let's be real, I haven't seen a real pow day for three years. 

What I have seen a lot of lately is trees. I looked and couldn't really find a recommendation for a real tree board (for hardboots). Like a bona fide tree ninja. Something super maneuverable that can turn quickly. Maybe even do moguls?  

Just curious as to what works.

 

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Get a sl board for tight trees/moguls.  I use a a  99 Burton Alp asym for tight trees and moguls.  It's good up to a foot of pow. Haven't found a quicker turning board yet, use a Coiler VSR for my all mountain look into smaller radius 9ish and narrower for quicker turning, try going from a 20 waist to a 24 on a groomer  

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I've got a Donek Nomad that works well for that. 21.5cm wide. 

OES AM 23cm wide @BlueB special. I'm probably going to get one of these once they've finalised prototyping it. 

Virus has a 166 23.5cm wide revolution hardboot freeride board which I imagine would be decent for this, but every virus owner seems to be a dick, so whatever.

Oxess will have something in the mix for this also this year. Gotta wait for that one. 

I reckon a coiler bxfr 23cm-23.5cm wide would work well for this also.

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Can't speak to the trees personally, but I'm riding my Nitro Squash with hardboots and it's a really fun carver on groomers and it was super fun in about a foot of powder. Read what bumpyride has to say about it. He's been riding one for a couple of seasons...bumps, tight trees, waist deep pow...

 

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I'd assume when you say trees, we are talking some freshies in the trees? Me personally, I never venture there unless looking for stashes... From that point of view, something not too stiff, good size nose, some taper, widish... not a square tail. 

First, you need to decide what are the lowest angles you still like to ride, then decide on the board width accordingly, to have a small overhang in the back boot. 

Thanks @daveo for mentioning my "pro model". However, all I can tell you at this stage is that it carves like a beast, handles messy snow well, and is ok in bumps. We are having such a bad season here, that even our steeps are mostly not covered, never mind decent pow or trees. 

Before, I freerode the Nidecker Proto the most and it performed great in all tight situations. I really, really, liked the old narrow version of the SG Cult in trees, in the past. 

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7 hours ago, daveo said:

but every virus owner seems to be a dick, so whatever.

What do you really think? 😄

No insults please. Doesn't foster good communication. 

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Fullbag Blunt is my favorite pick for Tree runs, mogul, Floats great and carves pretty good. the best part for you guys is the price is in monopoly money A.K.A. CAD.

 

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2 hours ago, Corey said:

What do you really think? 😄

No insults please. Doesn't foster good communication. 

Bit of an inside joke... Didn't mean to hurt anyone right in the feeling. 

I wouldn't have recommended it if it wasn't looking like a good board, mate. 😉

Was considering it myself before OES AM, but Frank wasn't very communicative when I inquired. So nope, would rather give my money to someone else. 

1 hour ago, Maxlanaudiere said:

Fullbag Blunt is my favorite pick for Tree runs, mogul, Floats great and carves pretty good. the best part for you guys is the price is in monopoly money A.K.A. CAD.

 

For hardboots? 

Edited by daveo

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Well, my advice would be don't ride hardboot boards in powder, at least not in significant powder. They're not designed for the back country, in my view. 

My current favourite tree board  is the Butron Dump Truck, but other powder boards exist and will work equally well if they have the right design features. Which for me are taper, and a soft tail well balanced to my weight so I can control speed easily. The problem with this type of board is that they're wide, so whilst in heli-terrain that doesn't matter, if you ride on piste to get to your trees you need to use angles which allow you to pressure the edge. I ride the same on these boards as on my race board (45|45), but I'd need mellower angles to use my Dump Truck on piste.

My Dump Truck's in action on Vimeo video # 308223350 (intentionally not embedded).

Edited by philw

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Well, my advice would be don't ride hardboot boards in powder, at least not in significant powder. They're not designed for the back country

Depends on the design, I have been doing all mountain hardboot focused things for years....

Always,  ALWAYS, ride with a buddy.  Have a plan.  Dismiss this at your peril.

Trees, specifically, are funny beasties.  The important thing to remember is that tree riding happens on a scale/gradient.  It starts out on one end (usually elevation haha!) in the subalpine with trees nicely spaced, in fine powder, with good visibility and relatively simple terrain (you can usually see ahead of you and come up with a plan, even "on the fly").  This is the classic heli-ski tree experience. Yeah Phil!  As you descend/lose elevation the trees get bigger, closer together, and the snow can get even deeper.  Terrain often gets steeper and more complex with pillows/cliffs/steep narrow forest features etc, with not as good visibility.  Still in Heli terrain, Cats, below alpine on mountains with the right aspects/elevation (Whistler Khyber comes to mind, Red Mtn, lots of places...) Further down the mountain, lower elevation, or further east in north america, or onto the other aspects out west, tree riding shifts into a much different experience.  More like an SAS/commando training environment.  The trees get way smaller (or bigger with undergrowth/deadfall), much tighter.  Sightlines are crap.  Terrain gets steep, creeks run through things, drainages screw up progress, and often progress/riding focuses as much on navigation as riding.  Snow quality can take a real dive (elevation, tree/bombing, melt-freeze)You spend a lot of time looking for a couple linked turns and a fair amount of time just looking around for where you are/your riding partners are.  Welcome to a big dump, on a smaller hill on the easern half of north america.

Different boards work better depending on where you are in the gradient/world/terrain.  Phil's points are very valid.  Match your board width to your preferred stance.  It should work/be fun on the runs to the edges of the mountain.  If you are in a Heli/Cat/sled context thank your lucky stars and add a couple centimeters.  Flex needs to accomodate the riding style you like - with the ability to induce flex either through fore aft pressure control, or turn radius. 

As we progress through the gradients:  Up high, out west, in the subalpine with lots of snow, more designs are ok.   Classic approach is to go for more surface area (traditionally through length, more recently through width...) there is lots of space and therefore time, so length can work if you want to go fast and have power at your disposal (hardboots = power) so generally you can go a little longer if you use hardboots compared to softboots.  Swallowtails are limiting manoeverability already so I would, generally, (and despite the current "flavor of the week" approach) avoid swallowtails for the trees, and even more so for moguls.  If you are blessed with being up high with lots of room and good snow, you have lots of options.

The mid mountain, mixed terrain, really fun tree riding has things getting tighter.  Boards tend to get shorter and correspondingly wider (you gotta maintain that floatation/surface area somehow...)  Get rid of that swallowtail.  Taper tends to help.  Now things get weird.  There is a massive debate/schism in powder/tree lovers centered around rearward stance biases/taper/short tails.  A real love/hate thing.  I am not going to get into that here.  Basically, the rearward biased, highly tapered, short tailed (iconic Burton Fish shape) works really well at steep, tight, deep terrain, but this comes at the cost of speed/glide.  The newer/different approach gives up some of the easy turnin', brakin', never sink yer tip living brought to you by the fish, and gives more glide and speed through wider and/or longer tails, maybe some reaward camber shift, elongated shovel rockers and maybe a little less rearward weight bias.  There are a lot of ways to skin this cat, and it really depends on how you like to ride. 

Ah, you've had the goods, but things are getting tighter.  Just gotta get over this flat spot....  If I grab that branch I can use it to turn to my toes, and scootch under that deadfall, then go heelside before that creek-hole.  Where the f$%k is Johnny?  Did you see Johnny?  Ah, gotta slide about 3 meters fakie to get around these shrubberies.  Shit I am too low.  Hang on....  Shouldn't we be in the left drainage?  Ok about 10 quick, sweet turns, but don't go right beyond those three dead cedars, or you won't make it over.  The cedars, not the maples.  F&*&*k.  Good snow, buddies, attitude, and the right board can make riding tight, wiggly, trees a terrific adventure.  Or...  Boardwise you need to focus on manoeverability.  You need to be able to at least struggle fakie.  You need to be able to turn quickly in often concave terrain.  Generally shorter.  Float isnt so important as the snow is usually not more than 30 cm (penetration wise) either due to a base, or density.  Swallowtails, though cool looking hook up in concave terrain, snap off easily, don't go fakie.  Get a cool song into your head, and enjoy the ride.

Basically, due to greater power/typically forward stance angles you can go a little longer/narrower than your softboot buddies.  But shorter helps as things get lower/tighter.  Exotics (pintails, extreme fish shapes, reverse sidecuts/extreme rocker) will limit you to a quiver board that really rewards particular snow/terrain at the cost of others. 

The shotgun board:  typical all mountain shape, 5 cm shorter that a true all mountain board, about the same length as your regular terrain/average day carver, with less sidecut than you think.  A little decamber/early rise/tail.  3/4 cm of setback.1-1.5 cm of taper.  Width:  whatever you are comfortable with depending on your angles where you can easily slide turns and go fakie some.  Mileage may vary

The sniper rifle:  I'll try to attach a photo of one....  extremes are allowed as you are focusing on one thing.  Be careful what you wish for.

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4 minutes ago, carlito said:

Boardwise you need to focus on manoeverability.  You need to be able to at least struggle fakie.  You need to be able to turn quickly in often concave terrain.  Generally shorter.  Float isnt so important as the snow is usually not more than 30 cm (penetration wise) either due to a base, or density.

This.

Not looking for pow board. Looking for crappy moguly tree board. 

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Sniper rifle:  178 pintail.  Extremely floaty.   Fast.  Crazy nimble.  Barely stable on groomed.  Be careful what you wish for. 

 

20181219_150643.jpg

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Wait a minute ! I've seen this board in a shed 20 ish minute off of golden while an "artiste" rebuilt my buddy's ski edge ! 

Carlito you are THE Carl 🙂

Hi Carl ! we were talking aobut you 30 minutes ago haha

Edited by Maxlanaudiere
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3 hours ago, JRAZZ said:

This.

Not looking for pow board. Looking for crappy moguly tree board. 

Prior 4WD, Coiler AM, Donek AX.

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I had a great time in the trees (very steep) last season in Utah on this set-up:

OSIN 3800  ,length 168/169,  Catek OS1 Intec step-in, Head Stratos Pro in walk mode.

I got the board from contributor Pius and had ridden it with softboots and I  liked it enough.  However, when I put plates on it I think it got the Ninja quality that you are looking for.  It was awesome and I only had the experience because on that particular day I did not have access to the boards and gear that I'd have preferred to use.

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50 minutes ago, davekempmeister said:

OSIN 3800  ,length 168/169,

What is the sidecut on that Osin Dave?

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4 hours ago, Lurch said:

What is the sidecut on that Osin Dave?

GtGNhwcRUO-dwNtE39y7AyVcrfrhk3qtRjkk6kNt

Edited by lonbordin
sorry the previous image went away for a short bit... guess they don't like hotlinking.
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7 hours ago, philw said:

Well, my advice would be don't ride hardboot boards in powder, at least not in significant powder. They're not designed for the back country, in my view.

This is not correct. My custom 21.5cm wide Donek Nomad is unsinkable in powder. And is very manoeuvrable in trees.

2 hours ago, Jack M said:

Prior 4WD, Coiler AM, Donek AX.

Always found my AM to be too stiff and carvey for this purpose.

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1 minute ago, daveo said:

This is not correct. My custom 21.5cm wide Donek Nomad is unsinkable in powder. And is very maneuverable in trees.

What angles do you ride in the pow?

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@Pythmere

45/30 or 45/35.

I use a heavily modified RC10 with titanflex bindings. Not that heavily, but it sounds cool. 

nNEGSsh.jpg

IXkztRAr.jpg

 

Edited by daveo

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@BlueB recommended 45/30 to me but I think I prefer 45/35. Might try inward cant for these angles also, not sure yet. 

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4 hours ago, davekempmeister said:

I had a great time in the trees (very steep) last season in Utah on this set-up:

OSIN 3800  ,length 168/169,  Catek OS1 Intec step-in, Head Stratos Pro in walk mode.

I got the board from contributor Pius and had ridden it with softboots and I  liked it enough.  However, when I put plates on it I think it got the Ninja quality that you are looking for.  It was awesome and I only had the experience because on that particular day I did not have access to the boards and gear that I'd have preferred to use.

Very nice board! I often ride this in pow. 

9.5m radius. 

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