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The Andorra 2020/21 Skiboarding Report

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  • #31
    This weekend the resorts opened for residents only witht he expectation that it will be open to tourists as from 9 January. So finally got into some decent lift-operated skiboarding. I spent some time with a group at the El Tarter sector on Saturday. Light was flat at the start, but got better as the morning progressed. This was a Spruce Slingshots day and we rode a mix of groomed and soft snow. I rode center-mount the whole morning without too much effort. Once or twice I nearly caught the tips in soft snow sections, but the Slingshots always seem to recover with a bit weight on the tails. I spent some time riding at Pal resort today whilst the other half was snowshoeing the trees. Pal is notorious for having some icy red runs, but I seemed to have developed a taste for them on Spruce skiboards. I'm waiting for the Sticky Ickys to arrive, so I can test them on these exact runs as well

    Anyway part of the reason for riding the Slingshots was to scrape some of the fresh wax of them as they will get the touring riser mounted on them tonight to be taken for a touring test tomorrow. Weather is expected to be bitter cold tomorrow (-10C).
    Current: '20 Spruce Slingshot 119s, '20 Spruce Crossbow 115s, '18 Spruce Osprey 132s (touring), '21 Rvl8 SII 104s, '21 Summit Invertigos 118s
    Also: '11 Allz Elaila 94s, '12 Rvl8 Rockered Condor 110s, '15 Spruce Osprey 132s , '18 Spruce Crossbow 115s
    Previous: Gaspo Hot Wax 84s, Mantrax 98s, Summit Nomad 99s, Spruce Yellow 120s, Eman Uprise 104s

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    • #32
      If -10C is bitter cold, I'm envious of your climate.
      Push the Possible

      Comment


      • #33
        Originally posted by Steeps View Post
        If -10C is bitter cold, I'm envious of your climate.
        True, this isn't Canada. Without wind chill our normal skiing weather is between -5 & +3 with lots of blue sky days..

        Sent from my Mi Note 10 Pro using Tapatalk

        Current: '20 Spruce Slingshot 119s, '20 Spruce Crossbow 115s, '18 Spruce Osprey 132s (touring), '21 Rvl8 SII 104s, '21 Summit Invertigos 118s
        Also: '11 Allz Elaila 94s, '12 Rvl8 Rockered Condor 110s, '15 Spruce Osprey 132s , '18 Spruce Crossbow 115s
        Previous: Gaspo Hot Wax 84s, Mantrax 98s, Summit Nomad 99s, Spruce Yellow 120s, Eman Uprise 104s

        Comment


        • #34
          It turned out to be not that cold at all today and the sun was shining. It meant I could go out with a base layer and one of my Crazy pullovers.

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          Crazy is an Italian manufacturer of some excellent skitouring clothing. The Pull jackets are warm enough for climbing in small subzero numbers and have very useful pockets. I set off for a quick touring trip just to test the Slingshots as a touring setup.
          Current: '20 Spruce Slingshot 119s, '20 Spruce Crossbow 115s, '18 Spruce Osprey 132s (touring), '21 Rvl8 SII 104s, '21 Summit Invertigos 118s
          Also: '11 Allz Elaila 94s, '12 Rvl8 Rockered Condor 110s, '15 Spruce Osprey 132s , '18 Spruce Crossbow 115s
          Previous: Gaspo Hot Wax 84s, Mantrax 98s, Summit Nomad 99s, Spruce Yellow 120s, Eman Uprise 104s

          Comment


          • #35
            This is the Slingshots with the Tyrolia Ambition bindings on a flat riser. I have them center-mounted.

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            There is ample lift at the back and the rubber would not touch the board unless some jumping is involved.

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            Climbing

            Initially I felt the Crossbows climbed slightly better than the Slingshots, but I actually think to a great extent they are equal. I did put the Slingshots through more rigorous testing than the Crossbows when it came to climbing though.

            I went to the usual test area and the piste was packed hard, but I also use a off-piste section which does not see much traffic. Here there was enough soft snow to be found. The Slinghots seem to go effort-less through the conditions.

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            I did not really notice how the snow broke up until I stopped to take photos. I'm glad the slope was only 29 ̊.

            I did experience some slippage traversing the slop especially where the snow was soft - this was mostly on the valley ski (as they call the downhill side in these parts). I suspect this was more to the crumbling snow on that section of the slope. I found that by angling the leg more uphill I got some better stability - that would become tiring on a longer traverse. Later I got a nice hard slope and I found I got more engagement of the edge than in the soft sections. There is a pretty reasonable edge here - better than the Ospreys I reckon.

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            I also tested with the Tyrolia crampons, but I did not really the enagement I hoped for. There is quite a bit of lift in the front of the crampon. I am not not sure if the flat riser is contributing to that. The jury is still out of this - will need to do more testing.

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            As I mentioned, I did get some icy slope where to do more testing. On this slope I had to rely on the edge more than the skin as can be seen from the little ice sticking to the skin. If the skin was slightly wider it might have helped a bit, but frankly I would like to edge to bite enough and the skin to simply prevent back slippage. Angling the boards slightly downhill helped.

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            More testing is definitely required, but more ideas as to how a riser should look like for touring is beginning to form.

            I also need to go out of the Ospreys again just to reset and baseline the experience.

            Downhill

            Not much to say here. Slingshots ski nearly anything as long as the legs can hold out.
            Current: '20 Spruce Slingshot 119s, '20 Spruce Crossbow 115s, '18 Spruce Osprey 132s (touring), '21 Rvl8 SII 104s, '21 Summit Invertigos 118s
            Also: '11 Allz Elaila 94s, '12 Rvl8 Rockered Condor 110s, '15 Spruce Osprey 132s , '18 Spruce Crossbow 115s
            Previous: Gaspo Hot Wax 84s, Mantrax 98s, Summit Nomad 99s, Spruce Yellow 120s, Eman Uprise 104s

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            • #36
              To add to my Slingshot experience, here is a link to what Jack has written up using a different riser, but also using Slingshots for touring. To a great extent his experience is the same as mine. https://forums.skiboardsonline.com/f...986#post261986
              Current: '20 Spruce Slingshot 119s, '20 Spruce Crossbow 115s, '18 Spruce Osprey 132s (touring), '21 Rvl8 SII 104s, '21 Summit Invertigos 118s
              Also: '11 Allz Elaila 94s, '12 Rvl8 Rockered Condor 110s, '15 Spruce Osprey 132s , '18 Spruce Crossbow 115s
              Previous: Gaspo Hot Wax 84s, Mantrax 98s, Summit Nomad 99s, Spruce Yellow 120s, Eman Uprise 104s

              Comment


              • #37
                Originally posted by ysb33r View Post
                It turned out to be not that cold at all today and the sun was shining. It meant I could go out with a base layer and one of my Crazy pullovers.

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                Crazy is an Italian manufacturer of some excellent skitouring clothing. The Pull jackets are warm enough for climbing in small subzero numbers and have very useful pockets. I set off for a quick touring trip just to test the Slingshots as a touring setup.
                You may not be in Canada, but you're appropriately dressed for it. That's a sweet jacket! Red plaid and denim never goes out of style here, but that's the first time I've seen it combined in one garment. The fit certainly looks European, as it'd be shapeless and baggy enough for another 3 layers if it was Canadian-made.

                "Bitter cold" here starts about -20C. I don't mind riding at -25C if the sun is out and the wind isn't too strong, but will probably be doing lots of hikes to stay warmer. Below -25C the snow stops gliding well and it's not really worth it. I used to work outdoors in temperatures -30C or lower when I was in Alberta... provided the machines we were working with were permitted to run. Things break easily when it gets that cold.

                I live in a relatively mild area now, in the Rockies, and -5C to -15C is fairly typical skiing temperatures. The powder stays nice and light in the alpine.
                Push the Possible

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                • #38
                  I wasn't happy with the edges on my Slingshots. They were set to 1 on the base and 2 on the edge. The guy from the ski shop recommended we try 0.5 on the base and 1 on the edge. Much better performance on the icy runs!

                  Meanwhile we had more snow come in, so I swapped over to the touring riser on the Slingshots and took them out. Going up was decent. There were some snowshoers ahead and following their tracj was great in places. Unfortunately there we some steep sections they made a path and where I wished I had crampons becasue I could not get enough purchase on those sections and had to criss-cross and do kick turns to get up.

                  Skiing back on the first part through the forest was tricky. This was not a free-for-all tree run. There was really only track one could follow, but it was narrow and there was no place to really slow down. The track was flanked by rocks and no space for a wedge or to slide side ways. I had to stop and bootpack a section until it was safer to ski. Thereafter it was a changed over to climb a hill and a relative easy ski back.

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                  The last section to the car had a nice run with the snow coming up the top of the boots. It in itself was interesting as I could feel the harder pack further down have a lots of bumps, but one could not see them.
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                  Current: '20 Spruce Slingshot 119s, '20 Spruce Crossbow 115s, '18 Spruce Osprey 132s (touring), '21 Rvl8 SII 104s, '21 Summit Invertigos 118s
                  Also: '11 Allz Elaila 94s, '12 Rvl8 Rockered Condor 110s, '15 Spruce Osprey 132s , '18 Spruce Crossbow 115s
                  Previous: Gaspo Hot Wax 84s, Mantrax 98s, Summit Nomad 99s, Spruce Yellow 120s, Eman Uprise 104s

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    I was back touring with Slingshots today with a group. Lots of variable snow, but we had sections of very soft sugary snow, which caused problems on the uphill. I think I've found a real issue with the Slingshots. The narrow tail that causes it to do so well with skiing powder, works against it when going uphill. It seems to sink in deeper in that soft snow which made progress harder than a touring ski on the steeper sections.

                    Skiing down the Slingshots dealt with the conditions without an issue.

                    One piece of good news is the little mod I did on top. I found these small indents on the top of the board. They were caused by mounting screws on the flat riser.


                    Sticking little protection stoppers on the board solved the problem.

                    They did not fall off during the day and they definitely dealt with the flex and at least one small unavoidable jump.

                    Sent from my Mi Note 10 Pro using Tapatalk

                    Current: '20 Spruce Slingshot 119s, '20 Spruce Crossbow 115s, '18 Spruce Osprey 132s (touring), '21 Rvl8 SII 104s, '21 Summit Invertigos 118s
                    Also: '11 Allz Elaila 94s, '12 Rvl8 Rockered Condor 110s, '15 Spruce Osprey 132s , '18 Spruce Crossbow 115s
                    Previous: Gaspo Hot Wax 84s, Mantrax 98s, Summit Nomad 99s, Spruce Yellow 120s, Eman Uprise 104s

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Originally posted by ysb33r View Post
                      I was back touring with Slingshots today with a group. Lots of variable snow, but we had sections of very soft sugary snow, which caused problems on the uphill. I think I've found a real issue with the Slingshots. The narrow tail that causes it to do so well with skiing powder, works against it when going uphill. It seems to sink in deeper in that soft snow which made progress harder than a touring ski on the steeper sections.


                      Yes , I agree with the sinking of the narrow tail of the Slingshots on climbing in steep soft snow , especially if breaking trail . Not as much of an issue if on a skin track that has been firmed out by the skiers in front of you . In the kind of soft snow you talk about I like climbing in a center mount Rockered Condor best, second best is my rear mounted Sherpa ( A center mount Osprey or Sherpa would climb better in that kind of snow but I prefer a rear mounted Sherpa for descent to either of those two options so it is a trade off). . I like the Slingshots for firmer backcountry spring conditions , perfect for firm icy snow going up and slushy soft snow going down
                      Boards :
                      Blunt Xl, DLP, Spliff, Condor, Rockered Condor , Slingshot, Sherpa, Icelantic Shaman
                      Boots
                      K2 BFC 100 Grip walk sole , Dynafit CR Radical AT boot, Ride Insano Snowboard boots
                      Bindings:
                      Zero Pro Non release Binding
                      Modified Receptor Backcountry Bindings (Bill Version and Slow Version)
                      Spruce Riser with Attack 14 GW /AT binding
                      Custom Risers with Fritschi Backcountry Bindings (Jeff Singer version 1, Bill version)
                      Rocker and Sbol Soft Boot Bindings.

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        Out downhill skiboarding today. We had some rain yesterday which later turned to snow in places. This caused an interesting mix - some great soft snow in places, some breaking crust and some plain icy sections. I [ackled the Ospreys and the Crossbows with the idea to ski the the same routes on both sets of skiboards. I own to pairs of Ospreys at the moment - the newer pair is direct mounted with Tyrolia Ambition bindings and and the older pair had the original flat touring riser. Since I'm using that riser for experiments, I just used the normal Spruce Riser. This was actally the first ever that I rode a pair of Ospreys with a Spruce Riser & Attack bindings.

                        First off was the Ospreys. I ran some pistes which were hardpacked or covered in a nice dusting as snow was being made. No problem dealing with that. (I always feel one has to reel in the Ospreys a bit as they just want to run away on the groomers). When some friends arrived we started hitting the soft snow at the side of pistes. I was actually pleasantly surprised with how nicely the Osprey turned through the soft snow. As we descended on one of the pistes I encountered an unexpected sheet of ice next to the piste and the Ospreys simply flipped out on the turn. I was really annoyed by this as I am pretty confident skiing icy terrain - I have even done that on Rockered Condors which generally is not a pleasant experience for most people. Maybe the edge was not sharp enough, but I did not expect that to happen. So after that we hit another ungroomed piste - once again I felt that the Ospreys did well through the soft parts, but did not behave the way I liked when cutting turns through the more crusty stuff.

                        Off to the car it was, swapping over to Crossbows and hitting the same ungroomed run through a crustry mid section, but othersie heaps of soft snow, trenches and bumps. The Crossbows absolutely outperformed the Ospreys. Turns were easier, hitting bumps in succession were no problem and in the end less tiring. I shot the same run in a shorter time on the Crossbows as well.

                        I am finding that the Ospreys are falling out of favour for me. The Slingshots and Crossbows simply outperform them. I am beginning to wonder what a slightly longer pair of Crossbows would ride like. By slightly longer I am thinking in 122-125cm range. I like the amount of camber in the current model and the rocker if just enough too. However maybe a board, slightly longer, with a lesser sidecut and about the same amount of rocker would work. I think I can settle for a turning radius of 9.5m.
                        Current: '20 Spruce Slingshot 119s, '20 Spruce Crossbow 115s, '18 Spruce Osprey 132s (touring), '21 Rvl8 SII 104s, '21 Summit Invertigos 118s
                        Also: '11 Allz Elaila 94s, '12 Rvl8 Rockered Condor 110s, '15 Spruce Osprey 132s , '18 Spruce Crossbow 115s
                        Previous: Gaspo Hot Wax 84s, Mantrax 98s, Summit Nomad 99s, Spruce Yellow 120s, Eman Uprise 104s

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Originally posted by ysb33r View Post
                          I am finding that the Ospreys are falling out of favour for me. The Slingshots and Crossbows simply outperform them.
                          I just managed to get a day on the Ospreys in some reasonable powder, they were beasts going through everything without a glitch, even if they were not on top of it, they were going straight through it without any nose dive whatsoever. But I discovered I had trouble controlling them, with my rudimentary powder technique (rather lack of) I was constantly on the tails, resulting in massive thighs pain... And I was only taking some in-between groomers shortcuts, nothing extreme, but couldn't do many such tracks because of the pain.
                          How would you order the Ospreys, Slingshots and Crossbows for powder ? In terms of floatability and ease of controlling them ? Ospreys should have the most floating power, but I was not expecting to be that hard to control/find balance. At least for me.
                          Myself: RVL8 2015 Blunt XL, RVL8 2009 ALPdors, RVL8 2014 Condor, Spruce 125 LE, Spruce 2016 Osprey
                          Daughter: Twoowt Pirania 95cm;
                          RVL8 2010 Revolt Trees; Spruce 120 Yellow/Red

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            Originally posted by newbie2011 View Post
                            I just managed to get a day on the Ospreys in some reasonable powder, they were beasts going through everything without a glitch, even if they were not on top of it, they were going straight through it without any nose dive whatsoever. But I discovered I had trouble controlling them, with my rudimentary powder technique (rather lack of) I was constantly on the tails, resulting in massive thighs pain... And I was only taking some in-between groomers shortcuts, nothing extreme, but couldn't do many such tracks because of the pain.
                            How would you order the Ospreys, Slingshots and Crossbows for powder ? In terms of floatability and ease of controlling them ? Ospreys should have the most floating power, but I was not expecting to be that hard to control/find balance. At least for me.
                            I'm lightweight enough not to require any setback, so all my riding is done center-mount. I can also get away with stuff a 90kg+ rider might not. Having said that , in deep enough. mostly untracked snow, I tend to just ride upright with the weight on the heels. I also just nurture the tips to go left and right with out tilting the edges. It steers well enough. There should be no need to actively sit back in the saddle to keep the tips up.

                            In such snow the Ospreys is an easier, less tiring ride. However, once the terrain is variable I find that both other models do an overall better job. The Slingshots have a slight edge over the Crossbows in the softer snow due to the narrower tail. Both ride the bumps better than the Ospreys.

                            If the snow is soft and not deep, the Ospreys turn hansomely when turn initiated from the ankle. The only time I really use toe-initiated turnes on them, is on hardpack when I need to force the turn.
                            Current: '20 Spruce Slingshot 119s, '20 Spruce Crossbow 115s, '18 Spruce Osprey 132s (touring), '21 Rvl8 SII 104s, '21 Summit Invertigos 118s
                            Also: '11 Allz Elaila 94s, '12 Rvl8 Rockered Condor 110s, '15 Spruce Osprey 132s , '18 Spruce Crossbow 115s
                            Previous: Gaspo Hot Wax 84s, Mantrax 98s, Summit Nomad 99s, Spruce Yellow 120s, Eman Uprise 104s

                            Comment


                            • #44
                              Originally posted by ysb33r View Post
                              In such snow the Ospreys is an easier, less tiring ride. However, once the terrain is variable I find that both other models do an overall better job. The Slingshots have a slight edge over the Crossbows in the softer snow due to the narrower tail. Both ride the bumps better than the Ospreys.

                              If the snow is soft and not deep, the Ospreys turn hansomely when turn initiated from the ankle. The only time I really use toe-initiated turnes on them, is on hardpack when I need to force the turn.
                              I see, thanks a lot, I was in some 20-30cm partially untracked fresh powder, so the problem is certainly on me, I couldn't get to an upright position, even if it was not really steep, I was getting immediately backseat... Time to get back to the learning board for me
                              Myself: RVL8 2015 Blunt XL, RVL8 2009 ALPdors, RVL8 2014 Condor, Spruce 125 LE, Spruce 2016 Osprey
                              Daughter: Twoowt Pirania 95cm;
                              RVL8 2010 Revolt Trees; Spruce 120 Yellow/Red

                              Comment


                              • #45
                                newbie2011 I've been out twice on Ospreys this week. I kept your posting in the back of my mind and tried to pay attention to how I ride. I did notice that an upright stance do work better for the soft snow - even sitting a bit in the back saddle will work well. You just have to keep an eye out for when the terrain changes to harder conditions.

                                This morning I lost my balance when I hooked a tail in rain-crusted snow. The technique does differ when turning in conditions like that. Later in the day though I was filming other skiers on-piste and there I noticed leaning forward gave me more speed to keep up with them. You really have to have different styles depending on the terrain.
                                Current: '20 Spruce Slingshot 119s, '20 Spruce Crossbow 115s, '18 Spruce Osprey 132s (touring), '21 Rvl8 SII 104s, '21 Summit Invertigos 118s
                                Also: '11 Allz Elaila 94s, '12 Rvl8 Rockered Condor 110s, '15 Spruce Osprey 132s , '18 Spruce Crossbow 115s
                                Previous: Gaspo Hot Wax 84s, Mantrax 98s, Summit Nomad 99s, Spruce Yellow 120s, Eman Uprise 104s

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