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Snowboards

Gnu Barrett 2020-2021 Women’s Snowboard Review

  • Price: £500 / €560 / $560
  • Category: All-Mountain, Freeride/Powder
  • Ability Level: Intermediate, Advanced
  • Sizes: 154.5, 157.5
  • Flex: 5.5-6/10
  • Profile: Hybrid
  • Shape: Directional Twin
  • Base: Sintered
  • New for 2020/21 season

Why we chose the Gnu Barrett Snowboard: A full redesign and some freeride finesse gets added to one snowboarding’s most iconic women’s snowboards.

A re-brand and re-build for the longest-running women’s pro-model snowboard, the Gnu Barrett (formerly B-Pro) beefs up the construction and gives it a more freeride focused shape for this winter. Not only does Barrett Christy have over 25 years of experience snowboarding as well as countless medals in everything from slopestyle to banked slaloms but she is also head of design for Gnu’s women’s snowboards. So, as you would imagine, the board that bears her name aims for the same high standards she did as a rider.

“Not only does Barrett Christy have over 25 years of experience snowboarding as well as countless medals in everything from slopestyle to banked slaloms but she is also head of design for Gnu’s women’s snowboards”

The Barrett is packing Gnu’s top-end wood core construction using sustainably harvested aspen, paulownia and balsa to give a light, snappy medium stiff flex. This is backed up by bi and tri xxial glass fibers as well as power pop bands, which make getting edge to edge quick and precise.

The new directional shape on the Barrett is tailored even more towards backcountry and freeriding for 2021 with the stance being further setback and a taper added to help sink the tail and float the nose. The C3 camber profile, however, is more grip and stability focused than float and forgiveness with camber between the contact points and a slight rocker right in the middle. It doesn’t scream pow laps like a rockered nose might, but the C3 profile is better suited to riding pisted, bumpy or chopped up snow than those shapes.

That versatility is added to by the Magne-Traction edges that aren’t straight, but wavy and act like a serrated knife to give the Barrett grip no matter how hard the snow gets. This snowboard is also doing its bit for the environment by having a Bio-Bean topsheet rather than using petroleum based plastics.

“If you’re a confident, all-mountain freerider, you should seriously consider bumping it up to the top of your wishlist”

Its saintliness doesn’t end there as the Barrett has also linked up with the Boarding 4 Breast Cancer foundation, giving a portion of sale proceeds to the non-profit organization.

Everything about this Barrett scream progression and confidence in the backcountry. This isn’t a shrink-it-and-pink-it job that’s all too depressingly common in many women’s freeride leaning snowboards. Everything, from the forensic level of construction design, the versatile and performance focussed shape and profile, right through to the quietly understated (but very, very cool) topsheet sends the Barret right up to the very top of our winter wishlist. If you’re a confident, all-mountain freerider, you should seriously consider bumping it up to the top of your wishlist, too.

Tester Verdict 2020/21

Holly Burns – Instructor

Tarun Knapp

“Barrett Christy is one of my all-time favourite riders, she broke down so many barriers and held the torch for women’s riding for so long.

I spend most of my time snowboarding either in the backcountry skinning up or sniffing out powder stashes, the Gnu Barrett was a great companion for an aggressive day out freeriding. The stiffer flex and underfoot camber put a lot of power through the board, it was ultra-responsive even at high speed.

“The stiffer flex and underfoot camber put a lot of power through the board”

It floated really nicely and was beefy enough for big slashes when you wanted to. Where I really liked it was on piste though- it just smashed through everything. Any lump or bump or cat track was annihilated by the Barrett, and it felt quite damp throughout. If you’re an aggressive chick who wants to spend their time hooning on piste or surfing pow then this is deffo one to keep an eye on.”

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