Sadly, winter will come to an end. But that doesn’t mean the shredding will stop. Summer riding, either at a camp or on your own, fires up in June and continues through the summer in places like Oregon and British Columbia, Canada.
Because you’re more likely to encounter rain than new snow, summer riding means anything but powder or freeriding. Tune your edges for park rails, boxes, and jumps, and wax it for the predictable snow conditions of the Palmer Snowfield or Horstman Glacier: wet, dirty, old snow.
The edge part of the equation is simple-nobody rides until the snow softens, anyway, so give your board a healthy detune on the tip and tail and bevel the base and side edge at least two degrees. Once the edges are beveled, run a gummi stone over them at 45 degrees, just to knock the razor off.
Waxing for summer-type snow is more complicated. The key is an iron-on wax that has the right hardness, ability to repel water, and antistatic properties. Your challenge is wet friction; the moisture in the snow creates suction and can cause your board to feel sticky. Break the hold of the snow by using highly fluorinated wax.
The next hurdle is the impurities in the snow-basically dirt. Dirty snow can cause a lot of friction between the snow and the base of your board. A wax additive is the answer; graphite or molybdenum will do the trick.
So here it is again: detune and bevel your edges, and wax with a high-fluoro wax and a graphite or molybdenum additive.
Tip: If you can’t get your hands on the right wax, at least clean your board’s base before riding each day. The wrong wax may actually cause more static friction than no wax at all.