Getting that first taste of mountain air and strapping a board to his feet while living and working as an Engineer in France turned everything upside down for Paul. A “normal” life no longer seemed acceptable, snowboarding was the only thing that mattered. Finally taking the plunge to ditch the rat race in 2013 he’s been a fully fledged Snowboard Bum ever since travelling the world in search of that sweet white powder. He now calls the town of Fernie, a little British Columbian gem in the Canadian Rockies, home and works full time at Boardstiff Snow, Skate & Surf when not out trying to cover his face in that white goodness (or using crude innuendos).

Working in a snowboard shop may not pay Wall Street wages but it does come with its perks, like getting pro deals, seeing whats in store for the industry almost a year in advance of release, test driving some of the hardware that his store sells and getting as much freeriding time as possible. Here he gives us his own personal review of their fleet of Never Summer Snowboards for 2016.

In my time working at Boardstiff I generally find there are two types of customer when im discussing snowboards: Those who ride and love Never Summer, and those who have never even heard of Never Summer. The great thing with the first group is I don’t have to tell them anything about the brand or up-sell them with snowboard-speak and buzz words, they just want to know what’s new for the current year and can they buy one, right now.

The second group is a whole different story. For many it isnt a familiar brand (the company don’t go all-in on advertising and a gigantic pro team) so I do find myself spending the first half of a conversation introducing them to the brand, their history and philosophy etc. By the end of this I am in desperate need of water to replenish my dry mouth. So I figured before I give you my outstandingly well written and witty reviews of the Never Summer boards we are carrying this winter here at the best store in Fernie I would give you a brief history of Never Summer and why they are awesome.

NEVER SUMMER HISTORY 101:

Designed and manufactured out of Denver, Colorado since 1983 Never Summer have been around the snowboarding block for quite a significant amount of time. I won’t go into too much detail about their progression from the old days to now, more of where they are now in this post-Back to the Future II present day.

Never Summer apply to all their boards a “Rocker-Camber profile” believing that this is THE board profile that gives the most versatility and performance in all conditions. In simple terms, this means a rockered portion between the bindings that creates a natural float and surfy feel for the deep stuff and mellow regular camber extending from the bindings to the tip and tail bringing back old school edge performance and pop. So basically this puts them in the position of having benefits of both camber and rocker boards while eliminating (for the most part) the inherent drawbacks of each and creating 3 contact points instead of the regular 2.

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Now, obviously, nothing is ever truly perfect (my girlfriend will attest to that) so you are sacrificing some things with this profile but they do a damn good job of making their boards as versatile as possible for all-mountain slaying.

Throw in the fact that every board is made in house in their own factory in Denver, all come with a 3 year warranty as standard and that my Boss has carried them in our store for, like, forever then you know you have a mighty fine package on your hands.

REVIEW TIME:

So, you’ve made it this far and through my initial ramblings! Congrats. Now you have an idea of the brand let’s get in to my own personal reviews of the line up we have in store. Not to make a scene or anything, but I am Canadian Level 2 / Freestyle Level 1 snowboard instructor so I think I know what I’m talking about… I know, in fact, that doesn’t make me in anyway a big deal (I mean those that can’t do, teach, right?) but I like to think I know what I’m doing and what to look for in boards enough to be able to give you some decent feedback on how these boards performed.

When I heard we were getting demo boards in the store this year I was super hyped. My old 154cm DC Mega was on its last legs, and I was really starting to feel my progression was being hindered by it in the awesome mountains that Fernie has to offer, so effectively having a quiver of boards to use over the season filled me with ever so much excitement. I tried my best to use them in ideal and not-so-ideal conditions to get a true overall feel for the individual boards.

The reviews are in order of when I used each board. (Bear in mind that I’m a dude so I only ride the Guys boards. We do have some Womens Never Summers in store too which I will give a little bit of info on at the end)

For reference, I have definitely been on the freestyle side of things with my riding up until this moment in time (at least I’ve tried to be with moderate success) but as time has gone on and I ride more I am definitely leaning to pushing my free riding this season with a freestyle edge sprinkled on top.

BOARDS:

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So there you have it, my own humble review of our Never Summer line-up. Every one of them is fantastic in their own ways. I love how they are all subtle variations of the same idea but these small differences in geometry etc. have big impacts on how they ride on the mountain, and that in turn means there is a board for everyone depending on what you want as a rider.

They feel so solid underfoot, the quality of the construction is evident just by looking at them. They appear burly and strong yet are suprisingly light. I’m yet to see one be brought back into the store because it has snapped or is broken, which is why they come with a 3 year warranty – they are that durable. I was trying to be as delicate as I could with them because of course they are our demo fleet and they are there for customers to try out primarily but even when riding hard and getting knocks here and there none of them showed signs of any incident. And lest I forget, the graphics look dope!!! Which is also important.

They also have a much bigger line-up than we can carry at Boardstiff, with boards filling in the gaps of the ones we do have at both ends of the spectrum, most noticeably the Ripsaw and The Chairman which I fully encourage the gnarliest of riders to check out. We also have the Womens Infinity and Raven boards in stock and available for demo. The womens line-up follows the same philosophy as the guys range and I have had nothing but praise from female riders when either testing and/or buying. Check out their website: http://www.neversummer.com/snowboards/

In conclusion, you should give Never Summer a go. I guarantee that you will enjoy the hell out of them. And if you ever end up in Fernie, pop by Boardstiff and demo one for the day, you won’t regret it. Oh, and tell me how much of a wonderful writer I am. I need praise to survive.

Peace out shredders.

P