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Bataleon Surfer 2020-2021 Snowboard Review

  • Price: £690 / $800
  • Category: Freeride/Powder
  • Ability Level: Intermediate, Advanced
  • Size: 138, 149, 154, 159, 162
  • Flex: 4/10
  • Shape: Directional
  • Profile: 3BT Camber
  • Base: Sintered

Why we chose the Bataleon Surfer Snowboard: One of the all time powder classics gets a new core and unisex sizing.

Anybody in the market for an ultra-fun powder gun has surely bookmarked the Bataleon Surfer on their internet browser countless times. But with three additional sizes and an upgraded core for the 2021 season, there’s never been so many reasons for so many riders to add this iconic snowboard to their quiver.

The Surfer’s chip-fork outline will always be the main talking point. Bataleon aren’t ones to shy away from creative freeride shapes, probably best exemplified here. Thanks to that oversize spoon nose and a swallow tail so deep you could park your bike in it, the Surfer is virtually unsinkable. It also means you can ride it substantially shorter than a traditional deck and, this year, the three new sizes make the Surfer available to female shredders and larger guys, too.

“With three additional sizes and an upgraded core for the 2021 season, there’s never been so many reasons for so many riders to add this iconic snowboard to their quiver”

However, it’s Bataleon’s trademarked Triple Base Technology with Sidekick that helps to (literally) elevate this snowboard above its pow-specific rivals. The POW 3BT profile is their most pronounced, featuring a drastic uplift in the side bases of the nose, but just a sliver in the tail. This enables the Surfer to plane along the surface while still limiting your chances of washing out on the exit of a turn.

And yet, despite the Surfer’s obvious calling, it manages to deliver back on the corduroy. With its extra-wide waist there’s little danger of boot drag, even at near-vertical edge angles. Additionally, the full-length mellow camber generates impressive grip and rebound between turns. Granted, it won’t turn like the Carver, but when you’re railing an arc and sitting over your back binding you’ll find yourself forgetting there’s a traffic cone sized portion of the tail missing.

That’s also thanks to the top-shelf tech going on under the hood. Carbon stringers run from the inserts out to the contact points along with hollow carbon tubes positioned parallel to the snowboard’s sidecut. Because of this – and despite its relatively soft flex in between the feet – the Surfer feels lively and agile on edge, and powerful enough at either end to handle more than just bottomless powder.

“The shape alone makes the Bataleon Surfer one of the all-time greats for those ‘bring-your-snorkel’ kind of days”

Finally, for 2021, Bataleon have unveiled their latest innovation, AirRide, on select models. This flexible, composite material, incorporated along the 3BT crease points, substantially dampens the overall ride and makes the Surfer increasingly adept at riding in choppy waters, not just when the waves are pumping.

Is it indulgent? Of course it is, look at it. Is it worth it? Honestly? Yes. The shape alone makes the Bataleon Surfer one of the all-time greats for those ‘bring-your-snorkel’ kind of days, but its increasing capabilities on piste make it a genuinely viable option to ride right through to closing day.

Tester Verdict 2020/21

Stella Pentti – Whitelines

“I finally got a whirl out on this beast earlier this season and it made me tingle in ways I’d all but forgotten about. We didn’t have feet of fresh snow so this was more of a point and shoot, slice it up mission. I racked my brains to think of any other snowboard that has been such a delight to have on its edges and came up blank.

Rolling onto your edges is super smooth, but once you get up there, you’re absolutely locked in. Throw away the key because you’re holding that carve no matter what. Obviously, switch isn’t really on the cards, but if you’re riding the Surfer anything but head on you’re probably a massive weirdo.

I expected it to be stiffer throughout, but the nose felt pretty soft and playful, stiffening up to the tail so you can really drive through slashes and pump turns. Definitely not the kind of board I’d usually go for, but hats off to you Bataleon, you’ve done it again.”

Tester’s Verdict 2019/20

Rob McCreathWhitelines

“Is it wrong to be sexually attracted to an inanimate object? Of course it is. What’s the matter with you?  Even so, the Bataleon Surfer has to be the best looking snowboard I’ve ever seen.

I’d only briefly tested it once before. In a dome, no less. Needless to say, when we woke up in La Clusaz, to the first proper snowfall of the year, I made a B-line for the Surfer.

It’s sublime. The Muhammad Ali of snowboards – floats, stings, and will completely knock you off your feet. It’s every bit as good as you want it to be, and then some.

When you look down you get a sense of what you’re in for. That bulbous, hull shaped nose looks like some kind of futuristic device for collecting rainwater, while your back-foot sits right at the start of that huge swallowtail.

It’s actually a pretty dab hand on the piste. Anyone who’s ridden triple base before will recognise that really intuitive edge-to-edge motion that gives Bataleon’s boards such a unique feel. It’s also one of the few powder boards to essentially still feature a full-length camber, meaning you can commit to putting it over on edge and trust it will hold on.

“It’s every bit as good as you want it to be, and then some”

Regardless of how well it handles the pistes, you’ll constantly find yourself drawn towards the deep stuff with the Surfer. As soon as that base hits those cold freshies, the board completely transforms. With such an exaggerated shape, you expect to feel every inch of the board through the turn. In actual fact, you don’t feel a thing. It’s so effortless, agile, nimble and an absolute pleasure to ride powder.

Obviously sinking will never be an issue, but by keeping the swallowtail a little stiffer I never felt myself washing out the back of the board either (although I know some people have found that to be the case).

It’s a hell of an experience, but it comes in at a hell of a price tag too. This has the look and feel of a collector’s item. If you’re going off-piste, you’ll be double-checking the snow depth before you do.

Would I demo it again? Every time. Would I drop the big bucks on it? Ah, shit… I just might.”

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