When we say ‘park boards’, we don’t just mean ones that have been precision-engineered for slopestyle courses; for example, there’s a pro model in here for a guy that couldn’t give a monkey’s about sticking a triple cork. Whatever tricks you like to do, be they ground level jibs or lofty halfpipe airs, looking at specific freestyle decks is a good place to start.
"Powerful boards for getting serious airtime still tend to feature classic camber, while a flat-based board will be less catchy on rails"
Park boards tend to be more flexible than freeride-specific ones, especially torsionally (meaning from one edge to the other) to make them easier to manoeuvre. There’s usually some high-tech additives laid from end to end as well, as these increase pop without adding too much weight.
Profiles can vary dramatically. Powerful boards for getting serious airtime still tend to feature classic camber, while a flat-based board will be less catchy on rails but can still get airborne without too much trouble. Shape-wise, however, you're pretty much guaranteed a true twin (or, in some cases, and asymmetric twin).
Of course, some of these boards will perform better than you might expect in the powder, and should work just fine on the piste too – but if it’s not something that you’d be happy to spend all day lapping features, then it doesn’t get in this list.
All boards are in alphabetical order. All photographs by Sami Tuoriniemi - click any image to enlarge
Production: Tom Copsey / Andrew Duthie / Arian Schlichenmayer / Sami Tuoriniemi
Bataleon Global Warmer
High end park boards don’t have to be unforgiving. The Global Warmer is as techy as they come, but has a mellow flex and camber that makes it perfect for ground-level jibbing.
Carbon under the feet increases edge-to-edge response, so you won’t feel sketchy when hooning it towards bigger features.
Burton’s best-loved true twin is back again for 2016/17, with the same combination of light weight and heavy performance.
The Process is equally at home on the XL line as it is on smaller rails and boxes, and whatever you do it’s been built to take a beating.
CAPiTA Scott Stevens Pro
If you like your freestyle boards flat, then Sleepy Stevens’ own design is a great shout.
Pressing on features and groomers alike doesn’t get easier than on this, while basalt stringers give it a pop boost. There’s also tons of cork at work in the core, cushioning you from big impacts and keeping you riding longer.
Ozzy Henning + Toni Kerkelä = The Rome Buckshot. These two heavy hitters combined to make a board that’s ideal for the park and the streets.
This thing boasts serious ollie power, as well as plenty of speed thanks to the sintered base. No matter how gnarly the feature, this can handle it.
Another flattie, the Slash Spectrum (as the name suggests) is for seeing freestyle potential wherever you go.
With a medium stiffness end-to-end and a little bit more torsional flex than average, nothing is ruled out when you’re on this one. Take it to the park, the streets, and beyond.
The YES boys are still UnInc, and with this latest graphic you can feel like you are too.
Asymmetrical in both shape and flex, the Greats is a park board like no other. It’s perfect for the bolder park riders out there, who want something capable of slaying the biggest booters.