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Bindings

Union Atlas 2019-2020 Snowboard Bindings Review

  • Sizes: M, L
  • Flex: 7
  • Entry System: Classic
  • Price: £260/€280
  • BUY ONLINE

The Union Atlas has gone under the knife for some nip-tuck for this season, and now coming to the table is the new and improved take on what is fast becoming a classic binder. Carbon additions, new straps and baseplate are what’s in store if you grab a pair of these lil demons.

Union are notorious for making hard wearing and hard-working pieces of kit, and the Atlas lives up to that this year. Union are so sure they’ve created sturdy equipment that they’ve slapped a lifetime guarantee on the baseplate and heelcup.

“The straps are pre-curved and honeycombed so they mould round your boot snug as a bug”

If you’re a fan of fast and hard riding you probably know how important it is to have a supportive highback, and the Atlas has an asymmetric one designed to fit round your boot better. It also has cut-outs throughout, so it mimics a more natural flex pattern.

The straps are pre-curved and honeycombed so they mould round your boot snug as a bug. No pressure points, no extra weight- it’s a win-win.

Foam runs underfoot to give you a little helping hand when you’re bracing for impact, and to keep you riding a bit smoother when the snow gets cruddy and choppy.

The baseplate and the highback both are infused with carbon fibre, because what’s a high-end snowboard product these days without a smidge of carbon? It keeps them light, and retains the strength and stiffness of years gone by.

Tester’s Verdict

Rob McCreathWhitelines

“Being the binding of choice for two of my favourite riders – Kazu Kokubo and Arthur Longo – I had mixed feelings about strapping into the Union Atlas. I’d hoped these would be the missing link in my riding and help me channel those boy’s hard-charging backcountry style. In reality, it was a bit like being handed Jimi Hendrix’s guitar only to bust out a very ropey rendition of Kumbaya.

That was to be expected I suppose. What did happen though, was that I immediately felt myself attacking the mountain with far more aggression and accuracy than I had earlier in the day.

The Atlas bindings have had a bit of an upgrade for this season, which is really apparent when you’re riding them. The redesigned asymmetric highbacks work in perfect unison with the canted footbeds. Being a taller rider, I often find that flat footbeds and straight highbacks offer me limited connectivity, but the Atlas bindings had the feeling of being locked in and super responsive. That flex is definitely on the stiffer side, so not the best for lazy riding – you’ve got to step up to the plate and ride with a bit of panache to get them working.

“The Atlas bindings have had a bit of an upgrade for this season, which is really apparent when you’re riding them”

The all-new heel strap is great. There’s no stitching to come loose or material to pad out, yet it still delivers full 3D comfort and instant response. Apparently the materials in the toe strap have been upgraded to stays soft and supple right down to the coldest sub zeros, too.

The Atlas bindings are another quality addition to Union’s already stacked range. They have something to cater to every rider out there. If you’re going more down the freestyle route, maybe consider something like the Strata. If you’re on more of a budget then the Force bindings will suffice. If you’re wanting aggression, response, and comfort in equal measure then the Atlas is your best bet.”

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