Published in Whitelines Magazine Issue 88, January 2010
What’s that bollocks they lay on you every new year, about new starts, new horizons and all that? Well we at Whitelines aren’t gonna start preaching before the hangover’s worn off – we’re not like that. What we will do is offer show you some great new stuff that will help you take the edge off that thumping pain in your head and the post-Christmas blues in your heart – because everyone knows the best way to clear it is to get out on the slopes right?
STEPCHILD CORPORATE | £355
AVAILABLE SIZES: 148, 155, 158.5, 158.5mW, 162.5
Everyone knows Stepchild’s snowboards are sick. So sick in fact, that JP Walker decided to abandon his sponsor of 11-years to ride for this company instead. Whether he’d have made the same choice if he’d realised what they were really about is uncertain – this powerful all-mountain freestyle board is typical of Stepchild’s build quality, but as the graphic suggests, it’s so good you’ll find yourself signing away your soul in a second just to ride it – just take a look at JP’s blank stare if you don’t believe us.
RIDE RAPTURE | £225
AVAILABLE SIZES: 138, 143, 147, 151
Ride is a company that has really earned its reputation in the world of girl’s snowboards. Since the early days of women-specific sticks, they’ve been cranking out quality options for the discerning shredette – and this intermediate-level board is no exception. Far from stealing your soul and sucking you down to hell, the Rapture will transport you to the next level of ecstasy, taking you to heaven and back. At least that’s what some fanatical American bible-belters believe. Either way, it’s a pretty attractive option for the price.
LIBTECH SKATE BANANA | £400
AVAILABLE SIZES: 148, 151, 152, 156, 156W, 159, 159W
Like 80s ideas, reverse camber boards have become popular again recently. The Skate Banana, which helped drive this trend, is a bit like a La Roux of snowboard production. The first Skate Bananas appeared a couple of years ago, and since then Lib have tweaked the production techniques, jazzing it up without losing what was good about the original. So the latest incarnation of this all-mountain stick is sort of like that Skream remix of La Roux – an awesome reworking of an 80s-influenced original. And we know how well that worked out.
ARBOR WASTELAND | £630
AVAILABLE SIZES: 155, 159, 163
Arbor, which crafts environmentally friendly boards out of sustainable materials, used to have a reputation as a hippy soul-surfers brand. Freestyle focussed boards like the Wasteland have changed all that. From its high performance, sintered base to its skull graphic, this top-of-the-range directional twin is all about one thing – performance. This won’t let you down wherever you take it on the mountain, meaning the days of swapping sticks for different conditions are over. So it’s more than worth that price tag.