Construction and Materials
After the success of the Banked Country last season, we wouldn’t have been surprised if Gnu left it as is for 2023. But, they’re Gnu, and those wily guys like nothing better than innovating and refining their wares to ensure they’re kept at the forefront of everyone’s minds.
They’ve upgraded the Banked Country by adding a little more Paulownia into the mix in the core to shave weight and introduced Carbon Power Bands to up the ante for longitudinal pop and torsional reactivity. This is bolstered by the triax and biax hybrid fibreglass layup. It’s a pretty responsive setup and would definitely suit a more aggressive rider who likes to charge.
The Banked Country isn’t the lightest board on the market by any means, which is a bit of a double edged sword in these circumstances. It’ll smash through pretty much any chop or slop with ease, but you’re gonna have to work a bit harder to get it airborne.
“The camber dominant profile definitely caters more towards the resort side of your riding, bringing stability, aggression and dynamic energy to the forefront”
The brainchild of renowned ripper Temple Cummins and his already-cooler-than-any-of-us teenage son Cannon, the Banked Country is a passion project that blurs the lines of resort and freeride. We love that Gnu have embraced the similarities between snowboards built for deep snow and steep descents, and wrapped it all up in a more conventional package than something like the Orca. It’s fast, it’s fun and it’s ferocious- just like the Banked Slaloms it was built to dominate.
New for this season, you can also add the Banked Country Split to your quiver for adventures even further off the beaten track.
- This thing holds an edge like it’s on rails
- A best of both worlds for advanced riders who love to ride resort and pow
- It’s definitely not the lightest board on the market
Rob McCreath – Editor, Whitelines
“I have the simplest tastes — I’m always satisfied with the best.
I’d never considered myself a convert to the Magne Traction club, and the jury’s still out on how I feel about hybrid cambers, but if ever there was a board that could turn my verdict, it’s the Banked Country. As far as turning experiences on a snowboard go – this is one of the best out there.
The board feels like a freight train, there’s so much power and speed under your feet, but as soon as you set it on and edge it feels so effortless and fluid throughout the turn. And while the shape doesn’t initially spark too much excitement (especially when you compare some of the carving specific outlines out there), I really do think this is one of the best contenders in that category.
Better yet, it still rips through pow, slush, crud, and even the odd bit of switch if you’re up to it! Easily one of the biggest and most pleasant surprises of the Whitelines Test event for me.”
Lauren Lidford – UK Sales Agent, Mervin
“Temple and Cannon are an amazing father son team for Gnu…they live 5 minutes from the factory and are very hands-on with their board design. They combine years of freestyle minded freeriding with multiple Mt Baker Banked Slalom victories into their design concept. The Progressive Magnetraction (teeth in the tail) design was their idea and is intended to provide a smooth entry into turns but fin like bite in the tail for power and control in hardpack and icy race conditions. They ride the same board freeriding as they do racing.”