Freestyle radness has entered into the backcountry with the new Never Summer SL Splitboard. The graphics on the SL haven’t changed much over the years but the board sure has. Never Summer worked with their R&D guys, their team riders and in house employees to create a splitboard that is perfect for your next backcountry adventure.
Find out how to SL did in the bottomless Tetons snow :
The 2014 Never Summer SL splitboard was designed to float effortless through deep snow. With a setback stance it is virtually impossible to dig the nose in. This board has a nice blend of RC technology (rocker-camber).
Never Summer SL Splitboard Review
Riding Never Summer snowboards gives you the best of both worlds in terms of rocker and camber profiles. When the two are combined, “utopic nirvana ensues”. Where I thought this board really excelled was in the heavier wetter snow found out in the Pacific Northwest. Obviously the board worked really well in light density powder too, it was able to hold edge in chunder snow, steeps and even icy conditions which can be found routinely while touring in Colorado.
How Playful is the Never Summer SL Splitboard?
Touring was a breeze on the Never Summer SL Splitboard as well, the board sliced through fresh snow like nobody’s business. In my wildest dreams I never thought I would be buttering a splitboard or trying to pop off every little hit like I was riding the resort, the Never Summer SL changed the way I think about riding a split.
If your not ready for a full split NS makes this board in a solid version too. Checkout my Never Summer SL Review to see how that board rides.
Never Summer SL Splitboard Durability
Never Summer snowboards are virtually bullet proof and come with a 3 year limited warranty. I really liked having a traditional P-Tex sidewall when doing kick turns and for trying to grip into steep slopes on the ascent. Plus the boards are hand made in Denver, Colorado by snowboarders!
Going up on the Never Summer SL Splitboard was as much fun as going down. I setup the board using Voile pucks and Spark R&D Bindings.
If you like to throw a bit of freestyle into your riding and are the type of rider that seeks out untracked slopes, the Never Summer SL Splitboard will make for a great addition to your quiver.2012 Never Summer SL Splitboard Review (click to expand)
The NS Superlight wood core is incredibly lightweight under your feet while on long split tours, without sacrificing the durability that you would expect to find from Never Summer snowboards. When fully mounted the split weight will be heavier then your average snowboard yet will allow you to travel to places you had only dreamed of, away from all the crowds to untouched snow… The only time you feel the extra weight is pulling the board in and out of your car. 7.55 lbs, on a 161 SL split with hooks and clips to be exact.
According to Vince Sanders Never Summer Product Development Manager Never Summer’s patented R.C Technology’s allows you to keep the “nose planning off the contours of the snow, instead of constantly pushing against the snow”. We agree 100%, the SL Split magically keeps you from auguring into the snow. I would try my hardest to bury the nose while touring with no luck, this allowed me to focus all my energy on skinning up the hill and not digging out my skis. Flex Rating of 5.5 out of 10
Mike Hardaker Product Testing Never Summer SL Split Photo: Justin McCarty
The Never Summer SL is incredibly responsive especially for a splitboard. With the CDS Dampening System and lightweight wood core you can really move the board around with ease. 7 out of 10 on the Damp Meeter equals a smooth stable ride at higher speeds. In split touring mode the board “skied” really well, I was able to turn on a dime and brought back memories of skiing many moons ago. Remember pizza – pie…
Trust Your Gear
I trust my life to my equipment in the backountry and am proud to be using Never Summer boards for my adventures. I always felt in control while riding the Never Summer SL split. As mentioned above the board was responsive in all snow conditions I threw its way. In touring mode with the extra set of medal edges on the inside rail you can really dig in to slopes while climbing uphill. This is heaven compared to the old splitboards that lacked the metal edge. There is nothing worse then sliding out backwards while trying to skin a peak in the backcountry, with the Never Summer SL Split you can forget all about those problems.
The the only feature I felt the board was lacking, was pop Sure I was able to get some fun airs, but the board did not load up like my Proto, SL or even the EVO. Granted I wanted the Never Summer SL Split for access long tours in the backcountry and to bag some big peaks around the state of Colorado, not so much for hitting kickers into the pow. The Never Summer SL still has freestyle flavor and makes for an amazing ride, however the weight and fact the board is split into 2 pieces makes me want to keep it on the ground and rip big turns..
Buy one now before they sell out, period! Never Summer is the most well known snowboard brands in the state of Colorado and is gaining major popularity worldwide. These boards as we used to say at the Other Side Snowboard Shop are – “Bullet Proof”. With a 3 year warranty, a customer service and sales staff that is always available and real snowboarders why would you consider spending your money to have your board made by some corporate gorillas oversees?
I have been riding Never Summer boards on and off for the past 10 years and have yet to break a board, have one delam or have any problems what so ever.. Maybe it’s time to see why all the hardcore riders are rocking Never Summer snowboards.