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Yes 420PH 2019-2020 Snowboard Review

Over ten years in, YES Snowboards are well recognised as one of the most established and authentic brands in the industry. That’s in no small part down to the success of the stumpy, pow specific 420 and 20/20 decks. The 420 Powder Hull fuses the shape and technology from each and delivers a floater that just won’t flush.

If there was one downside to the 420 (there’s not, but if we had to pick one), it would be its limited edge to edge response, especially when the powder is no longer bottomless. This version has been elongated to an ever so slightly more conventional shape, allowing for less of a whopping waist width, without compromising any of its float. In fact, this one possibly has even more.

“This version has been elongated to an ever so slightly more conventional shape, allowing for less of a whopping waist width, without compromising any of its float. In fact, this one possibly has even more”

The concave Powder Hull design in the base works by pushing air into the nose and spewing snow out the back. Riders who are more familiar with seeing a good 3 feet of nose in front of them may take a while to get acquainted with the stumpy shape, but it will only take a handful of turns to reaffirm your trust in the technology.

This flex is a little stiffer than the 420, too, as you’ll be able to apply more torsional bend through the narrower waist. Obviously, it’s still not something you’ll be seeing on the Freeride World Tour any time soon, but it can be pushed in more challenging terrain than the OG.

This isn’t your one-stop-shop snowboard for riding everything the mountains throw at you. The 420PH takes a pretty unique look at riding powder. However, if that’s where you’ll be prioritising your time in the mountains this year, this could be the only friend you need.

Tester’s Verdict

Will HughesDragon Lodge

This is the 420 on acid. With only one longer length (154), a narrower waist width and longer effective edge, the 420PH a is a much more versatile ride and available most sizes of riders.

It’s a bit of a beast as the flex is stiffer, but this means it works on more variable terrain. Great for charging steeps, powder fields and piste. The powder hull on the nose and tail gives turbo float without compromising on-piste performance.

“It’s a bit of a beast as the flex is stiffer, but this means it works on more variable terrain”

An aggressive ride for the snowboarder who likes to ride fast off-piste with a bit of early morning groomers chucked in too.”

Tester’s Verdict 2018/19

Kieron Black@kieronblackart

“The YES 420 PowderHull is a funky little gumdrop of a thing, all bluntness and cheek. The topsheet is beautifully done; no puking demons or gynaecological nightmares – it’s just nice.

Which is a hint as to what it was made for – fluffy backcountry niceness and perfect piste days. Which is unfortunate, given that my test day was a lively blend of soggy piste and heavy, leg-achingly wet powder.

“It is incredible in the trees; so petite that you can whip around anything, with steeze, no matter how little warning you might get”

Is was only once we had negotiated the misery-quilt that was passing for a ski-resort that day and got into the woods that I was finally able to make the 420 PH come alive, and come alive she did. It was so laughingly odd, the juxtaposition of that fat little shape and the electric, joyful ride it delivered, that I could almost sense the delight the shapers at YES must have felt once they realised what they had achieved with this board.

It is incredible in the trees; so petite that you can whip around anything, with steeze, no matter how little warning you might get. Yet she still has the volume to crank it out in the open powfields too, so don’t let her fat little profile dissuade you of the fact that she is a serious all-round backcountry contender.

I am sure also that thanks to that sidecut she’s a lot of fun on the clean corduroy too, but unfortunately for me the piste that day was like a cardboard box left in the rain; heavy, sluggish, and globular, which meant that the combo of the board’s waist width and my tired legs gave me all the edge to edge torque of a toddler trying to lift a manhole cover – it was not pretty.

But I reckon that for good days, powder or piste, this is a hard board to beat. If I had any concern it would be that maybe on those truly rotten days when it’s hard to summon the enthusiasm to get up the hill in the first place, the 420 PH might have you heading for a beer just a couple of runs before anyone else.

Fortunately those days are few and far between, and so this little fizzy cola bottle of a board gets a full double-thumbs-up. Enjoy!”

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