2016 Never Summer Proto HD Review

This years Never Summer Proto is a all mountain freestyle free-ride machine. What makes the Proto HD unique is the ability to excel at almost any terrain features with ease.

The Never Summer Proto HD just may end up replacing all the other boards in your quiver!!! Enough Said? Keep reading to find out more..

I have been testing the Proto at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, on a short trip to CB and in the backcountry surrounding the Tetons. Here is what I found :

The Proto offers a mid flex according to the Never Summer Flex Meter, It falls right in the middle to a little soft. Not to stiff, not to squirrely its actually just right.. Never Summer has been making a lot of boards that are falling into this range, personally I feel you can go top to bottom on these with ease.

Don’t worry though, the softer flex helps to create an amazing all around ride. Never Summer does makes snowboards that are stiffer for big mountain riding like the Never Summer Ripsaw and softer for park riding such as the Never Summer Evo but the Proto HD blends them together in perfect harmony.

This is a snowboard 99% of riders will truly enjoy shredding on.

Never Summer Proto HD Weight

I was out filming with Kevin Krill of Crested Butte Photography and he mentioned “this thing is really lightweight.” Kevin and I both agree the board feels like a feather when your holding it, and I have to say it becomes weightless when attached to your feet.. Best of all Krill is a skiers, so to have someone outside of snowboard notice the weight was impressive.

Never Summers Proto snowboard is extremely lightweight when compared to most every other snowboard on the market.

Riding the Proto from Never Summer was like going back in time.. It was Josh Malay (R.I.P) that had the vision that we could all ride smaller snowboards in any terrain, even deep powder snow. Half a decade later and Never Summer has the same idea, smaller boards make turning and riding so much easier.

The Proto turns on a dime, in the trees and on hard packed snow. This board can go top to bottom without batting an eye. Since getting on the Proto I have been hitting cliffs and rocks drops more then I ever had in the past. The board is solid, just lift your legs and fly.. If you like to be confident in your riding look not further.

Proto Video

Proto = Fun

Do you like to skateboard? As I feel like I’m jibbing around on a skateboard while riding around on the Proto. Eventually you’ll come to a point in your snowboarding where as you progess it will be crucial for your board to do exactly what you need, without any effort or thought. The Proto will solve this problem for you. You shouldn’t have to think too hard about where your board is going to go. This is snowboarding after all..

Only Downside to the Proto

Being in the middle of the flex meeter I feel the Proto does not offer as much pop as say the Never Summer Evo, however the board can still be loaded onto the tail for nice ollies.

Overall Impression

The Proto is a must have for any “real snowboarders”. I have had some of the most fun in years hitting park jumps in Crested Butte and zipping around backcountry lines here in Jackson. I know that whatever way I land, the board will do its part and ride out smooth. (its sort of like cheating).

Never Summer has been making boards by hand since 1991. Each year the boards have continued to revolutionize the snowboard industry. The rest of the snowboard manufactures weight patiently year after year to see what Never Summer is up to.

I am 100% confident The Proto will remain a fixture in the Never Summer line for years to come.

I may just end up riding park again just so I can take laps on the the Never Summer Proto. Well done guys!!!

Never Summer Proto
5 / 5 RATING      
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  • Steve

    I’ve been riding a Proto for about 6 weeks now. I’m a bigger guy, so I tend to bend the EVO in half. There is definitely more pop in the Proto. Think of it as an EVO with an SL flex (or an SL with EVO fun).

    Certainly a quiver killer. I normally travel with 2-3 boards. This is the only board I took to CO for a week in March. Never even occurred to me to pack another, never missed any of my other boards. It handles everything from deep pow to east coast “velocity surfaces”. I teach newbies AND hike the backcountry with it. Find one, buy it, sell all those other boards on craigslist.

  • DH

    THANKS FOR THE AWESOME REVIEW!!!!!! I just picked one up today!!!!!! PRAY FOR SNOW!!!!!