While Smokin’ is still relatively new to these shores, the brand is this year celebrating twenty years in the industry. To this day, founder Smokin’ Jay has never had to drum up investor interest, or answer to shareholders – it’s still strictly a private, rider-owned company.
The Smokin’ Vixen has been around almost as long as Smokin’ itself. While a favourite of up-and-coming streetrail slayer Kalea Opal Driscoll, it’s actually aimed at all-rounders who like a true twin shape but don’t limit themselves to the park. The ‘Clash rocker’ profile is basically rockered in the middle with camber towards each end, but the bend is quite subtle compared to similar versions offered by other brands. The full Aspen core scores sustainability points, and is augmented with hemp fibres – appropriately enough, given the history of Smokin’ and its founder! – that allegedly deliver all the snap of carbon with less weight and cost. Additional edge bite comes from a mellow version of Mervin’s Magne Traction (Smokin’ were actually the first to secure the licence for the technology, beating Jones to the punch), and the extra-thick 6K sintered base makes it go like a rocket. Smokin’ doesn’t make a huge range of women’s boards, the Vixen suggests that perhaps it doesn’t need to.
“This felt a bit bigger than a 148, but maybe I’ve shrunk. It was nice, light and bouncy but still felt like it would support beginner legs, and the mellow Magne-traction made it easy to turn and cut through the snow. A good all round, no hassle board that I’d say would be equally enjoyable for an indoor shred as out on the big mountain. I think it be perfect for beginner who is looking to take it to the next level of shred” – Hannah Bailey