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So at the start of february I eventually got to let the Donek off the chain and ride her outdoors after a year of being trapped riding artifical snow indoors. So here's my thoughts on the board and the changes i will probably make for my next custom.

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Spec's
Donek Incline   = 162cm
Waist width      = 29.5cm
Sidecut              = 9-11m
Profile                =some camber with no rocker that i can see
flex                     =stiff non directional
edge                   =0 degree base 87degree side

Rider
height          =180cm
weight         = 92kg
Bindings      =Karakoram prime connect-ci
stance         =56cm wide 33/-3 regular
Boots           =10.5 US Modified Salomon lofi(almost no flex at the ankle)
experience = 5 years riding(10-20hours a week all year round)

So after my intial taste of carving on an ultra wide with the SG Soul 159XT I placed an order after a little discussion with Sean for a Donek Incline. The SG i always saw as a stepping stone board to something bigger stiffer and more agressive and that was exactly my intention upon specing the Donek. Ordering was fairly straight forward filling out the form, listing what i was looking for in my new ride and after about 4 weeks and a somewhat nervous wait i had her in my excited hands. After a quick wax i took her for a quick spin at my local indoor slope. Inital impressions were very positive it was significantly stiffer and exactly what i ordered. The biggest improvement over the SG was the stiff core with uniform stiffness through its length, I had spec'd this due to the SG having a directional flex which was resonable stiff in the tail medium between the feet and a soft rockered nose. The rockered soft nose led to the SG having a bad habit of occasionally wanting to fold if to heavily weighted on turn initation or if it ran into soft grabby snow/chunder if would try to deflect or climb ultimately leading to the turn becoming incredibly sharp. The donek on the other hand is stiff from tip to tail as result its very supportive if you weight heavily fore/aft whilst turning, also where the SG would try to climb when it ran into chunder the Donek will punch through which for me is much more desirable trait. The donek compared to the SG was also a harder board to ride intially but i could tell right away in terms of potential it had far far more to offer.

Edge to edge going 27.5cm to 29.5cm was pretty much identical interms of how quick it would change edges but to be honest i found no difference going 26.5 to 27.5 either. I'm now of the opinion rightly or wrongly slow edge changes on ultra wides is a technique problem vs a design problem, alot of people that try ultra wides or wides in general simply just dont have the technique down to drive a board edge to edge with any sort of speed and as result struggle.

Anyway after a year riding in captivity it was time to breakout into the wilds of bulgaria. All i can say is wow if i thought the board rode well indoors but outdoors on real snow it revolutionary. The first  2 days were best described as hard snow verging on ice and where as my friends and everyone else on there off the shelf twins were sliding around struggling for grip while I was carving having the time of my life. Part of this is in part probably due to the fact i run a very agressive edge in terms of angle and keeping it sharp but there were times i really did feel like a freak of nature for how i was able to ride given the conditions. The board proved to be very predictable and stable and just like when i rode it in doors more than cappable of punching through end of day chunder and chop.

For a board being so wide it carried speed very very well if you dont know bansko there is a green run that goes from the top gondola station to the bottom station in town that is pretty much flat at the top and bottom of the run. With some very mild edging it just kept on going even through the flat sections where almost every other snowboarder was unstrapping and skating or skiers punting the donek just kept on going along on its merry way.

The third day was powder and unsuprisingly it had all the float of a ocean liner. Big wide open pow runs were effortless in terms of banking turns, for a board this size unless you were to purposly over weight the nose its pretty much unsinkable but alegedly so was the titanic.

The remaining days of my trip were more or less a repeat of the first days but with soft almost summer like snow in the afternoon. The biggest thing i took from riding the donek was it allowed me to confirm to myself just how far i had improved as a rider since my last trip, It allowed me to carve no matter if it was a steep hard snow verging on ice black run or a soft spring like snow blue/green run. I cant say enough good things about it and how much fun i had riding it but that doesnt mean i dont plan a few tweaks to my next board.....

1 increase in length to 166
2 true hammerhead shape(flux/saber)
3 increase in sidecut radius to 15-12
4 more camber(current one only has about 3-4mm)
5 Stiffer again

Basically i just want something bigger again and even more aggressive to force me to up my game and improve as a rider even further.

For anyone considering a Donek Incline if you spec it correctly for your needs they are simply incredible boards and in my opionion very much live up to the hype.
 

 

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On 2/19/2020 at 11:57 PM, scottishsurfer said:

Thanks @Emdee406 it's that style of Asian carving that I try to emulate for the most part. Mines is a little different due to stance and that I throw some BASI style pedaling into the mix for sidecut manipulation 😅

You have a BASI background? Cool! I was one of the gang of 6 who wrote the original BASI snowboard manual. 
I was a trainer for 20yrs before I moved to Utah. 

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BASI to an extent in that was how i was intially taught to snowboard due to being in scotland where your instructor is generally going to be BASI or CASI. That and im friends with a few of BASI level 2 and 3 instructors that helped me improve alot when i was starting to take my riding more serious. Now its somewhat of a running joke that my style of riding is perfectly textbook it just happens to be every single text book i could find on different styles chucked into a blender then threw at the wall to see what sticks!😂

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Those Inclines are wild boards. I have an original fabric top sheet model, eventually replaced with the modern take. Mine is 169cm 11/13m and a 21cm waist for hardboots, but it's a very versatile and bombproof board. 

Looking good on yours. Enjoy and keep ripping.

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