Yesterday was a surprise all around. We got 2″ of snow in the valley and ?? at the mountain. So with the sun poking out I loaded up the “spatula” and raced up there. To date, the snowfall has been in tiny increments but Friday night delivered around 6″ to the mountain. This 6″ was a drop in the bucket compared to what they need to open. They do make snow at Schweitzer but only on the beginner hill.  They build up huge piles in front of the machines then spread them out and repeat. I parked by some condos and walked to the run. The snow was pretty light and fairly deep. Rounding the corner and seeing the run my thought was, “dang, should have brought the powderboard.” Well I’m glad I didn’t cause this was a perfect time to test the “spatula”. At first glance it appeared that they had flattened out the mounds and that the fresh snow had fallen on top of the groomed run, sweet!! I hopped on and started down the slope. Being the bunny hill its not exactly steep but it has a consistent fall line that goes for a couple of hundred yards. Snowmaking snow is really gloomy and crusty until they spread it out so if you rode directly under the gun then it was weird but on the sides it was light. My first run was ok but not great, I was able to keep speed but not cut hard. When riding on the groomer’s track (not the blade just the bumpy track) the board turned fast and easy and felt really stable. But off the track it was hard to bury the tail. Could be the core was a bit stiff, something I felt from the start or more likely the inserts were too far back which kept the sub from bending where it should. Well, luckily I do have two rear truck settings although they are only an inch apart and might not make any difference seeing the adjustment is so minor. I pulled the pin and moved the rear truck towards the front hole, then hiked back up for a second try. Wow, what a difference an inch made, night and day and all of a sudden the nose was popping out and the powder wasn’t a struggle. Powder might be too nice of a word for crusty wet man made snow but it was untracked that’s for sure. The board rode really well, super fun on the groom and very lively off piste. Now this isn’t the proof I need to start building these, on the contrary this thing has only proven itself to insure another trip to the mountain, but I’m stoked for sure.

Now for the really BIG NEWS the grip kicked ass!!!!! No snow build up, no icy spots, didn’t deteriorate under my tread, looked the same when I left as it did when I started. Completely blew me away and puts my mind at ease.

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