Should I buy a powder board?
This is a question every snowboarder will find themselves asking and in this blog post we're going to cover a few key points that you should think about before making this decision. It normally comes about once you've ridden a few deep powder days and had a blast despite the constant back leg muscle burn, head first falls into powder and repeatedly digging yourself out. Now you're wondering whether you should take the plunge further into this world and truly immerse yourself in the white room.
So, should you buy a powder snowboard?
This is a tricky question, there are a lot of things to consider and at the end of the day, it’s up to you. There is no doubt that a pow board will really boost your riding in the deep stuff. As Transworld Snowboarding’s Eddie Wall said during this year's Good Wood Test, “Riding powder is always fun but getting on a board that is specifically designed for it is gonna elevate the experience to a whole other level.”
Now, I can’t emphasise Eddie’s point enough, sure you can move your bindings back a few inserts and ride your everyday twin tipped board on a pow day, but should you? Riding a fully directional board in deep pow is completely different and it’s hard to explain exactly how much it helps - it's just something you need to experience for yourself to truly appreciate.
Why are powder boards better in deep snow?
In anything deeper than 10cm of fresh snow, a powder board is really going to help. The main reason a powder board floats is that there is more surface area in the nose than in the tail, this is achieved through a setback stance (bindings closer to the tail means a longer nose) and taper (the nose is wider than the tail). This is why a twin tip doesn't quite cut it in pow, since the board doesn't float naturally you have to put in a lot of effort to artificially lift the nose above the snow. What this means is you are leaning back on your board, which will tire your back leg and lose turning control.
So you know a pow board floats, but is it really worth all the hype? Well, yes. When your board has more surface area in the nose than tail you are able to put more weight over your front foot without sinking the board into powder and diving head first into the snow. Being able to put weight over your front foot in powder is awesome, it allows you to ride aggressively, initiate turns with more control and keep your speed up on flat sections - oh, and you'll also get less of that dreaded back-leg muscle burn that's so familiar on a powder day with the wrong gear.
Although the benefits of a powder board are clear there are still many barriers that prevent most snowboarders from picking one up.
Why wouldn't you buy a powder board?
To start, powder boards are even more expensive than your everyday snowboard; they frequently cost upwards of £500. Following on from that, most of us don't see more than a handful of powder days each year - it's just not really worth buying an expensive powder board for these few days.
Another issue is that a lot of us travel for snow. You can't guarantee powder on your trip when booking nearly a year in advance and it is too inconvenient to always lug two boards with you on every trip in the hope for an epic pow day.
What other options do you have?
If you really want to ride better in powder but can't quite justify picking up a second board for it, then we've got your back - at ALLWINTER Snowboarding we are bringing powder to the people!
We've developed the PowDaze to make epic powder riding accessible to everyone. The PowDaze is a universal attachment for your everyday twin tipped board that will provide a significant performance boost in powder. It increases the surface area in the nose of your snowboard, effectively creating a tapered nose and setback stance - two very important features of a powder board that make them float!
So now you can get more float from your regular board with a product that's easy to keep in the bottom of your snowboard bag in the off chance of an awesome pow day on your next trip. On your next pow day, you simply take off your front binding, add the PowDaze removable grip pads to your snowboard, slip the PowDaze over your snowboard nose and clamp it down with the front binding using the longer screws we provide. Now you've got a pow board for the day and you're ready to get out there and hunt the white room to your heart's content!
Learn more about the PowDaze here.
I hope that has cleared up some of the mysteries about powder boards & please comment anymore questions below!