Joined: Sat Apr 04, 2009 10:32 am Posts: 585 Location: Dethbridge, AB
Curious, for everyone saying they weigh 160 or 170 or 180 and then going on about what they ride as a resort board, how much do you think you weigh loaded up out in the backcountry? Why not load up your pack, get your gear on, strap your bindings to your feet and then step on the scale. Maybe add another 5 pounds on top of that for split hardware and breakfast. I guess my point is, what you weigh in your tighty whities at home is of little relevance to what the board is trying to float in the super fresh.
All that being said, other than width, board size is mostly personal preference as you can see from the responses here. My solid is a 158, my first DIY was a 160 rockered and the project I have in the works will be a 172 s-camber. Seeing a trend? It's not so much a go big or go home attitude, more a, "I'd rather have an oversized board in crappy conditions, than too short a board in the powpow". What's the point in riding 2-3 feet of fresh if you sink to the bottom? In the end though, ride what you are comfortable with or experiment with something off the wall, either way have fun doing it!
155 for resort, 156 for a split, 157 for really deep days!
seriously, I'm 180-185, can't stand to ride less than 175 by 26cm in dry snow, just too sluggish and submerged. A board for bottomless quality snow from Utah up through interior BC could easily be 10-15cm longer than your resort board. Commonly not-so-deep places like Front Range Colorado or heavier coastal pow = not so much need for more surface area.
Most of the answers here seem pretty heavily slanted towards conditions in the Rockies. Here in the NW my daily driver is typically a 159-161 and I just mounted up a 164.5 banana split. My solid board hasn't changed much in dimensions over the last 10 years or so but I did spend a season on a 173.5 when I was much younger (and dumber?) so I have something to compare it to.
Most of my resort riding is still sidecountry or secret squirrel lines, not groomers or parks so that might explain why my resort board is kind of my long board. It would be fun to have a 156 for a spring fun board but by then my eye is wandering to bikes and bouldering.
And I'm about 195 and 5'8" with a size 11 boot and a mid-wide board (~25.5cm waist).
For me height in relation to length is a bit of a factor of stance width. Being taller (6'2") I am more comfortable at a wider stance then my 5'7" buddy and trying to narrow my stance to the limits of his shorter board doesn't give me enough leverage.
But when I started riding, I basically rode what came up to my chin. Have no idea where I picked that up but that was my first method of sizing 14 years ago Started out in the 160 range at that age, never got anythign longer then a 164 solid, my most recent resort shredder being a 156. My split is a 165 AMF....
As has been said, its all preference though and the reality is skill will trump gear every time. I can hand a lil mini stick to my oh-so-better-than-I-am buddy and he will jet past me in chest deep powder simply because he's fucking sick. To a point - gear can help. But if you've got power you can ride a board 8" shorter then you're used to in the deep without drowning. Having a good amount of slope helps with that too
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2008 3:34 pm Posts: 165 Location: Boulder, CO
Nice board, I've got a T5 165 that was made in 2006. It's a rocket that likes to go fast and make powerful turns (I'm 5'9" and 160lb's)- I only took it out when there was over 8 inches of new at the resort or bc missions via snow mobile, but damn would it get it on. Pretty much will eat up a mtn no matter the conditions. It's mostly a back-up board these days, but one I intend to keep for sure!
All this talk about "centimeters" is hilarious...a 10 cm longer board, riding centered, 5cm per end, isn't going to make all that much difference charging down a steep slope in deep pow, however overall weight(with gear) and riding ability IMO will make the most difference
I ended up getting a 2004 NS Premier T5 165, its getting made right now. Thanks for all the input!
Nice choice, have fun! Snow is on the way, gonna be a sick winter!
Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2005 10:05 am Posts: 1538 Location: Colorado
Anyone who says it (size) does not matter is lying, too small is just no fun at all. Only if it gets really, really huge is it going to be a problem at all.
I think everyone will agree upon that, but how we all define to big and too small is what differs.
I would say the answer is: it is relative... to the situation, terrain, riding style, and rider height. I have never ridden a board that was too big, and the longest board I have ridden was a Morrow, Matt Goodwill at 179 cm. That was a nice board (for a cambered board). I am 6'1".