Never Summer Chairman Snowboard Review

2020 Never Summer Chairman Snowboard Review

The Never Summer Chairman Snowboard is a combination of the Never Summer Raptor and the Premier F1 that incorporates key elements of each board for the ultimate in backcountry destruction. This tapered directional freeride powerhouse is in a league of its own. Stiff and aggressive, it may not be suitable for most riders.

Power Grip Sidecut

I tested the Never Summer Chairman Snowboard in boot-deep to chest-deep snow. It floats great through deep powder without a hitch. The tapered directional shape and low profile nose prevent it from submerging on even the deepest days. We never had a problem with the nose of the Chairman digging into the snow.

Featuring a slightly wider construction (even on the normal, non-wide sizes), the Chairman gives aggressive riders the extra stability needed to hold down huge backcountry lines without fail.

Super-stiff and ultra-damp, the Never Summer Chairman is the kind of board that aggressive freeriders dream about.

The Never Summer Chairman rails into turns

Mike Hardaker Turning Never Summer Chairman Snowboard | Photo Mountain Weekly News

The new Chairman Power Grip Sidecut improves upon the traditional five-point design by adding two extra sidecut radii for a total of seven contact points. This translates into superior carving performance and great edge hold, even when you’re laying the board all the way over for some extreme Euro-style carving action.

It is worth noting, however, that the aggressive setup of the Never Summer Chairman takes a lot of muscle to control. The board locks into lines like a champ but requires a lot of input to power down the mountain.

The Chairman is not a beginner’s board. Experienced riders will understand how aggressive it really is at the end of a long day of riding. This aggressiveness penalizes you instantly for your mistakes. However, it is easy to recover your edge in turns.

Playfulness is difficult to judge on the Never Summer Chairman. With its extremely aggressive and ultra-stiff design, it’s definitely not the board for a park rider looking for a buttery jib machine. For someone that likes to jib and hit pow check out Mike’s Never Summer Type Two review.

Never Summer RDS Damping

However, the Chairman is able to take a beating in the backcountry and soak up nearly anything you can throw in its path. We took it through a veritable obstacle course of logs, jumps, cliffs, deep powder, and hardpack ice. Thanks to the RDS 1+ Damping System – RDS 1+ chatter was virtually eliminated from this snowboard.

It took each like a champ and landed flat and straight every time we aired it out.

Like all Never Summer snowboards, the Chairman comes with a 3-year limited warranty. Also like all Never Summer snowboards, the Chairman is virtually bulletproof.

With over 20 years in the game, Never Summer Industries knows what it takes to build a tough and durable snowboard. We were pleasantly surprised that the board showed almost no damage after use, even after riding over a fair amount of buried rocks.

Overall Impression

Mountain Weekly News editor Mike Hardaker testing the 2014/2015 Never Summer Chairman at Copper Mountain

Mike Hardaker on Never Summer Chairman at Copper Mountain | Photo Mountain Weekly News

It kills it on big backcountry lines: If you like to charge hard right out of the gates, and have the experience to back it up, then this Never Summer creation was built just for you. The Never Summer Chairman is a technical snowboard suited only for experienced riders that have the skill to handle an extremely aggressive board. It absorbs a ton of shock and vibration, allowing you to hit the high speeds that dreams are made of. Its tapered directional shape allows you to stay on top of deep powder and its brand new seven-point Chairman Power Grip Sidecut gives you all the control in the world.

For an experienced snowboarder who wants to comfortably straight-line at high speeds all over the mountain, then the Never Summer Chairman ($619.99) is the stick for you.

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About the Author

Jake Walnuts
Jake enjoys being outside hiking & snowboarding in the PNW.

4 Comments on "Never Summer Chairman Snowboard Review"

  1. Demo’d the Chairman X (wide) today at Bogus Basin. At 230lbs, 6’2″, this board was perfect. Not a park rider at all so take that into consideration.

    -High speed on groomers is no joke; the board absorbs basically everything and refuses to lose an edge or become unstable.
    -Rough terrain in gnarlier tree runs can essentially be ignored. Pick a line and go.
    -Powder float was ridiculous. At my weight I’ll normally submarine, but I never got buried with it.

    Compared to the Ripsaw X which I also demo’d today, the Chairman X was far superior for my weight. The Ripsaw liked to flex and pop out an edge if I threw too much weight into it. If you’re lighter than 200, I’m sure the Ripsaw would feel to you as the Chairman felt to me.

  2. I demoed the 157 and 160 today at Sugarbowl. Awesome boards. Very stable at speed.

    • Jeff,

      Nice how’s the snow at Sugarbowl? Did you have a chance to ride the board in pow, groomers, park? I found it really excelled across the entire mountain. Really hoping to put one of these in my quiver this season.


      • I ended up buying the 160. It’s so freaking rowdy. I really like it after about 8 days on the snow. The center rocker is weird on groomers but I’m getting used to it. Conditions at SugarBowl are poor but speed runs top to bottom are faster and smoother then ever. This board is not for the feint of heart.

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