Is there anything better than laying down the perfect heelside slasher into a deep pocket of powder? We haven’t found it if there is. But as intuitive as it looks, snowboarding in powder actually requires more technique than you’d think. Figure it out and you’ve unlocked the door to the best part of being a snowboarder.
Gear Choices: First off, you don’t necessarily want to ride a little jib stick on a two-foot day. Choose a board that’s going to float, ie. keep the nose above the snow surface. And move your stance back toward the tail a notch or two – this will help with the float factor, and reduce back-leg burn. Rocker shapes dominate in powder; camber boards still shred just fine, but rocker boards require a little less effort to keep afloat.
Reading Terrain: There are few things worse than finding yourself marooned in the flats after milking a few extra powder turns. Watch how the slope angle transitions – if it’s deep and the transition looks flat, there’s a good chance you’ll bog down. Avoid these powder traps unless you feel like hiking out in waist-deep snow with people on the lift above heckling you.
Technique: In powder, it’s key to keep up your speed and weight your back foot to avoid a nosedive. You can make longer radius turns at higher speeds and maintain control because of the support and resistance soft snow provides. Surf it, slash it, point it – in pow, it’s pretty much all good.