Snowboard Review: 09-10 Never Summer Lotus-R
21 May, 2009
Location: Colorado, Whistler/Blackcomb, Utah, Washington
Snow Conditions: Powder to hardpacked to slushy days, a good mixture of variety of conditions throughout this season.
Setup: I rode the Never Summer Lotus-R with Union Forces and my Rome Vamps size 8.
First Impression: I had two first impressions, I took some pipe runs with it at Breck on the first day and it was decent. Then I took it to Keystone for night riding where it drove me nuts, it was too grippy and I didn’t like how it was riding. I think I even said I hated it at the time, first impression on testing the board and then the next day I got used to it and now it’s my main snowboard.
Weight: average to a little heavier than average.
Flex: Since it’s the womens premier F1, it’s noticeablye softer than the men’s version but still offers a more aggressive ride for women. Softer nose to keep it afloat and stiffer tail for powder riding, underfoot it’s a midflex making it easy to initiate turns and still a stable ride. With the RC technology, you get some fun play from the rocker in the center and the camber giving it a freeride stability when riding. Since the creation of the Lotus, it’s been my main snowboard over the premier, with the narrower waist width to match my boot size and a tad softer flex it’s still able to handle the mountain and with less effort from me.
Turning: Quick edge to edge and it is great for carving, definitely you have to adjust to how to turn it within the first couple times. But once you get when to power into a turn, the board holds the carve, the speed on edge and is ready for the next carve. It’s easier to get on edge, I felt very comfortable on it when freeriding with even in the trees. Quick response and good handling. Coming from the cambered version, it still feels like you are riding a board that can really handle freeriding with the reverse camber/camber.
Stable: I’ve been riding the 157cm Lotus-R as my everything board all winter, from pow days to pipe days to even some mini park days. Through a variety of conditions icy to powder, it’s held an edge and held float through them. It’s able to charge through conditions, even choppier conditions with the dampening, remained stable through it all. On groomers, it can handle speed and charging with. I really have no complaints on how stable the board is.
Powder: I managed to get a couple powder days in with the Lotus-R and comparing it to the cambered Lotus, it does help more in powder. But it depends how much snow we are talking about, I noticed that in a couple inches to 12 inches it did fine, floated and was easy to control. But on one day where we received more snow and got 20+ inches, I had to stay in the backseat to stay afloat and the size impacted that as well.
Pop: With the stiffer tail of the Lotus-R, you still can pop ollies off the tail and there’s not much crazy adjustment to get used to that. In tail and nose presses, it’s not as easy as the freestyle boards in the line but the nose is softer and easier to press. The rocker/reverse camber is fun, I can ride rails without it catching an edge and ride halfpipe where it holds an edge going up the walls.
Switch: The Lotus-R is still a directional board, so it can ride switch but it’s not a true twin so takes some adjustment into switch riding on it. I haven’t noticed it being difficult to initiate into switch turns and it’s capable but with some adjustment. Took me a couple turns to get used to it.
Overall Impression: I was impressed when the Lotus first came out, a women’s equivalent of the premier which stepped up to women’s freeriding with another solid board to choose from. The Lotus-R is the next step up, with the reverse camber/camber you still get the charging women’s freeride board but with extra float in powder and still capable of freestyle. I’ve ridden my Lotus everywhere this year, in pipe, on rails, in trees and in powder. It’s been my everything board and it was the only board I took to Whistler with me because it does everything.
Shay’s Honesty Box: I really did hate it that first night riding session, I think my friends were amazed that I could hate a board that was gripping the snow on a icy night. It held an edge, but it was too much for me at the time. I ended up dragging it along some stairs at the contact points to detune it so I could keep riding it. Since then it’s been my main snowboard when I’m not demo’ing. My only gripe with it is the stance width and stance insert options. I wish it wasn’t set back as much and allowed the rider to have a broader stance range. I keep my bindings at the first insert and then the 2nd insert from the back, which is perfect for me.
*This Review was done in January 2009, please be aware that products may change.