Every year we say the same thing, “never forget we all started out the same way floundering around on the snow trying to make sense of what it’s like to ride a snowboard” and every year we mean it. If you can’t remember what it was like to start snowboarding then you’re either really old or probably dead and not reading this. The struggle of getting beginner boards to review is very real, companies don’t seem to care. The truth is as an industry we need to push these boards, we need people to know there are boards that cater to them, and that’s why we dedicate our time to test them for you. Here’s our top five picks for 2015.
Flow Verve: We’ve ridden the Verve for years, it always does the trick when we want a softer flexing twin park board. Yes it is a freestyle focused deck and it’s for that reason that Kevin and I decided it would be a great choice as our top pick. The forgiving flex coupled with the tech inside it let you push the boundaries of your riding as you go from side slipping to linking turns to pressing. Sure you might out grow it, but that’s the inevitability of boards of this nature.
K2 Raygun: The Raygun is a board that can do it all. Honestly it’s more of an all mountain freestyle quiver of one type of deck, but it’s still beginner friendly. Hands down this board is one of my favorite boards in the K2 lineup. Whether you’re just learning or starting to charge steeper lines, hitting the park, and trying out your hand at powder this board can handle it all.
Yes Basic: There’s something to be said about a board you get on and go, “damn this is fun!”. That’s the Basic in a nutshell. It’s not overly aggressive, it still has a slight bit of camber between the feet, and it’s playful. It’s a versatile deck on par to the K2 Raygun listed above, but still forgiving enough to keep it comparable to the Flow Verve.
Arbor Formula: Reverse camber does make boards easier to learn on. That is a fact. Camber in some form will always be for a more advanced rider, but with that said Arbors System Camber does a great job of not making the rider rely too heavily on it. This board is always fun to ride and isn’t so overly aggressive it destroys the fun of learning. Softer than the Flow Verve it is just as playful.
Rossignol Circuit: A little bit of camber with a lot of rocker goes a long way. That’s what the camber profile for this board from Rossignol has. It’s the right mix for someone learning that won’t be overly demanding. This is as forgiving as the Arbor Formula listed above but not as powerful as the Yes Basics.