HOW TO SETUP
It's simple. All you need are a couple Phillips head screwdrivers (size #2 and #3), a tape measure, and some patience. Here's how to piece it all together.
GET THE RIGHT GEAR FOR YOU
Whether in a shop or on the Internet, sifting through the mass of new snowboarding gear can be daunting—but buying a proper setup is not. Just ask yourself what type of riding you do (or want to do), and follow this simple advice for buying your new kit.
Common Rule: Stiffer (generally more expensive) boards, boots, and bindings are very responsive and supportive—making them ideal for fast, aggressive riding or freeriding. On the other hand, softer gear is more forgiving—better suited for learning the basics, jibbing, and stretching out grabs. There's also plenty of gear that sits right in the middle and does it all.
SHAPE UP: A LITTLE LESSON ON CAMBER
Never has the snowboard been offered in so many different shapes, accompanied by so many confusing names. These new board shapes give you options and excel in specific conditions and certain riding styles. Whatever your fancy, take a minute to consider the attributes of each, right here.
TWIN: A 100-percent symmetrical snowboard. The nose and tail are the same shape. The stance, flex, and sidecut are centered, and the board rides the same regular or switch.
DIRECTIONAL: The stance, flex pattern, and sidecut are set back from the center. These boards generally have a slightly longer nose than tail. They are designed to ride best while going forward, but they also perform when riding switch.
DIRECTIONAL TWIN: This tricky term describes a deck that's either twin in shape, yet directional in flex, or vice versa. Depending on the manufacturer, it could also describe the mounting location. Research the brand for the specifics.
TAPERED: These boards have an exaggerated, directional shape that's designed to perform in powder. The stance and sidecut are generously set back, and the nose is significantly larger than the tail to provide buoyancy.
Wide (W) & Mid-Wide (MW): These boards are built wider across the waist to accommodate a bigger boot size and eliminate toe and heel drag. Wides are recommended for riders with size 11 or larger boots. Mid-wides are built slightly wider for riders with size 10 to 11 boots and riders looking for extra float and stability in a board. Look for these listed alongside the lengths.
Splitboards: MLook for this icon, it means the model is also offered as a splitboard.
REGULAR: These boards are constructed with traditional camber. Laying base down, the profile arcs up with its highest point at the middle of the board.
ROCKER: The middleman. These designs have a completely flat profile from contact point to contact point and exhibit subtle characteristics of camber and rocker.
FLAT: These boards are constructed with traditional camber. Laying base down, the profile arcs up with its highest point at the middle of the board.
COMBINATION: These boards are designed with the best attributes of camber, rocker, and flat designs. They could have rocker between the feet and camber outwards, vice versa, and any mix of the three.
The overall measure of a snowboard from nose to tail. Measured in centimeters.
Board width is the distance across your snowboard at the waist or middle point. Width is also measured in centimeters.
2012 GOOD WOOD BOARD TEST: The Go-To Board Guide For Every Rider, Style, And Budget
Thirteen years running, the TransWorld Good Wood Snowboard Test continues to be the most comprehensive snowboard review in the industry. While technology keeps transforming, our Good Wood gathering puts it to the test and delivers the best of it—judged by riders just like you. This year we stormed the Unbound Park and 3,100 vertical feet of freeriding at Mammoth Mountain, California with diverse and expert crew of eighteen testers and rode 'til we were spent. We tackled it all under a bevy of conditions during a one-week window and critiqued 450 boards on 17 characteristics from nollie pop and flex, to stability, sidecut, and more. The results are 40 best-in-class park and all-mountain boards for both women and men. It's no ultimatum, but it's a damn fine guide to finding the best board for you.
We hit the Unbound Park at Mammoth Mountain, California, with a diverse and expert crew of 18 testers and rode 'til we were spent. Jump lines, jib lines, 3,100 vertical feet of freeriding—we tackled it all under a bevy of conditions during a one-week window. Each run is an investigation into all the new tech, shapes, and flex. Every board is critiqued on 17 characteristics from nollie pop and flex, to stability, sidecut, and more. All said and done, the crew grinds about 450 boards down to 40 choice decks. After long days of hard riding, countless laps, and nearly a thousand scorecards crunched, we bring you the 2012 Good Wood results. Enjoy!