Snowboard Review: 09-10 GNU Park Pickle
21 Mar, 2009
Location: Keystone, Colorado
Snow Conditions: Bluebird with hardpacked snow.
Setup: I rode the GNU Park Pickle with Union Forces and my Rome Vamps size 8.
First Impression: The heelside edge is an improvement, I was skeptical as this behind marketing hype but it does make your heelside carves less effort.
Flex: I was expecting a softer flexing board like the skate banana but it’s definitely a tad stiffer. The toeside of the board has a stiffer flex and the heelside is softer going with the asym sidecut to make it easier to carve on your heelside which is more difficult for people. Overall flex, it was stiff but it wasn’t soft either…mid range and still pressable with the banana tech.
Turning: It was an easy ride, no adjustment to how it turned with the exception of the first time I did a heelside turn and found myself doing a carved turn without much effort. On heelside turns, the park pickle has a deeper sidecut making it a lot easier to turn and hold on edge. My heelside turns aren’t as strong as my toeside turns and with the pickle I was able to really carve it over on edge, it was definitely noticeable in the difference. On toeside turns it was more gradual, spread out. Even with a different sidecut it didn’t feel off like I had expected where having two sidecuts would throw me off when riding.
Stable: When I was filming the mini video from the demo day, the first minute to two minute mark I’m riding the Park Pickle while filming Dan. To me, a board I can ride and film someone while riding means it’s a stable board and I’m not worrying about catching an edge or not being able to control it. It handled very well for a more park specific board, could still charge the mountain with it. It’s a little lighter than average and through some bumpy chop it didn’t feel as stable as with the groomed runs did.
Pop: I played with the pop in the halfpipe and just getting used to it. It’s still pressable it’s got banana which gives it the ease of pressing/butters with it.
Switch: True twin asym, perfectly the same board whether I was riding regular or switch on it…no change in how it rode, flexed or handled on edge.
Overall Impression: I can see why people will buy this board, easy ride and easy to ride heelside edge, just to lay it over and get a better carve than without it. Fun ride overall and a handle the groomers to park board. A lot of people are comparing this board to the skate banana and it was a different ride to me, more stable, less loose feeling and a tad stiffer.
Shay’s Honesty Box: I thought that maybe this board was hyped up but I was proved wrong. I felt a lot better on my heelside turns which aren’t as strong as my toeside turns, the park pickle helped that. Yes I know GNU is not the first to do this but it’s cool to see it brought back and I like it. I am curious to see if this second round of asym will stick around and people will take to it.
*This Review was done in February 2009, please be aware that products may change.