K2 Passport Snowboard 2022-2023
Whitelines Choice Winner: Best Unisex Freeride Snowboard
PRICE: £465 / €530 / $530
For 2023, K2 have expanded their unisex offering with the all-new Passport. This is your ticket to ride just about anything, with a lively personality and rider refined features that focus on piste and pow.
The Passport is built for deep days and steep days. It’ll be a reliable companion for specialised riding and, while it will prefer a blower day after a couple feet of fresh snowfall, you’ll still get that high-end performance on an overnight light dusting. The stiffer flex and performance oriented construction do place a bit of a barrier to entry here, so rookies might want to look toward something a bit more mellow.
Who Is The K2 Passport For?
You’re a confident rider who prioritises powder missions and days spent carving up the corduroy. Your park days are probably mostly behind you (or you have a specific freestyle quiver deck for party laps). You ride fast and hard and need a snowboard that can accompany you when you want to push your limits.
K2 Special Effects Snowboard 2022-2023
PRICE: £525 / €600 / $600
Okay, so it might not look like the most versatile board in your locker,. And while it can do more than you potentially give it credit for, there’s no denying that the Special Effects is a quiver board. One of the special ones where you wait anxiously for the best conditions to pull it out in and when you do, boy oh boy, is it worth it.
Short, shapely and extremely bodacious, the Special Effects has our pulses racing. We’d classify the Special Effects as primarily a freeride snowboard, but not in the sense that you’d ride it down Corbet’s Couloir, think less ball shrinking descents and more undulating hills covered in fluffy white gold. You’ll want to size down significantly with this one, but just trust the process!
Who Is The K2 Special Effects For?
The Special Effects is admittedly more of a special occasion board. Think surfy turns on blower pow days or party laps slush slashing in the spring sun, that sort of thing. Pretty much any rider who wants something specific to suit those occasions will find a chum here. It might be a bit much for a complete newbie, but otherwise you’re hot to trot.
K2 Manifest Snowboard 2022-2023
PRICE: £500 / $580
Totally overhauled for winter 22/23, the K2 Manifest intersects at the heart of the venn diagram for freeride and freestyle. Designed to be a true quiver of one, the Manifest takes tried and tested shaping theory and utilises some of the most premium materials at K2’s disposal to create a snowboard that’s at home across a huge range of terrain and conditions. Part of K2’s new Landscape Collection, the Manifest is responsive without being overtly stiff thanks to some clever tech internally. It’ll float like a champ in deep snow, but thanks to the slight directional outline, camber midbody and snappy core, the Manifest gobbles up groomers like nobody’s business.
K2 Antidote Snowboard 2022-2023
PRICE: £590 / $600
Let us preface this by saying novices need not apply here, the K2 Antidote is one beefy son of a gun that’ll chew you up and spit you out if you’re not careful. That said, advanced riders will find an ultra-responsive cannon that’ll devour technical backcountry descents, throw down big tricks and munch miles on the hardpack. K2 have pulled out all the stops with the internal layup of the Antidote, they’ve used a bunch of carbon to boost response in key areas, shaved weight with clever pre-cured fibreglass inserts and gone with a premium tri-blend of wood in the all-new A1 Core. Full camber isn’t usually the profile of choice for boards that excel in deeper snow, but K2 have used 3D shaping to subtly increase the float and glide, without diluting that traditional poppy camber feel.
K2 Dreamsicle Snowboard 2022-2023
PRICE: £375 / $430
Snowboarding is meant to be fun, right? And there’s not much fun about constantly eating shit, catching edges or faceplanting when you’re trying to improve your riding. Enter the K2 Dreamsicle, a super forgiving and friendly snowboard that puts the onus on progression. By using a flat / rocker profile, K2 have ensured that the Dreamsicle won’t be twitchy or likely to hook up around the contact points, but it also allows you to garner some easy float when you encounter deeper snow. It’s a pretty soft 4/10, and while this will possibly be a bit lacking for full send charging, it gives the Dreamsicle a fun and playful nature.
K2 Cold Shoulder Snowboard 2022-2023
PRICE: £425 / $480
We’d put the K2 Cold Shoulder in the all-mountain category, but erring more towards the freeride end of the spectrum. That’s not to say it won’t be fun to take a few laps round the park, but the directional nature of the board gives you the edge in deeper snow. Tapered outline, rockered nose, setback stance… these are the classic hallmarks of a pow board and the Cold Shoulder has all three. There’s still camber underfoot to drive power on the groomers, with tip to tail carbon stringers offering a lively and dynamic feel and solid hold down the edges. It’s not overly stiff and aggressive, but we’d encourage beginners to look more towards the Dreamsicle.