Spruce Slingshot Reviews
Phillip Nowell on 3-22-2021
Conditions: 20 degrees, sunshine and only two beginner trails were groomed with the rest covered in 4” of new powder over hard frozen corduroy with ice patches on the steeps.
The slope in the Barnyard beginner area had been groomed before it froze so it was a hard surface. My first impression was not good as the tails seemed to break free and slide out on the first slow speed turn to the left. However I soon learned that my technique was the cause and not the skis fault. I usually ski on Raptors or Ethan 2’s and can get away with more weight on the uphill ski without getting it on a firm edge.
Once I got used to the skis, their performance was outstanding for someone of my size and ability! (5' 9”, 165 pounds, Advanced)
Due to the big shovel, these skis floated along like my Raptors on the powder and, having a little more stiffness, they easily plowed through the piles of pushed up powder after the snowboarders had done their work.
The best part was how well these skis held on the ice.
The Lower Ridge intermediate trail was a mix of pushed up powder with patches of bare ice. Other good skiers were complaining about having a hard time dealing with the transitions and their skis sliding out from under them on the icy patches. I plowed along, and as long as I kept my weight forward in the turns, the big tips dug in and pulled me through the turn with a firm grip so I could comfortably ski that slope as fast as I usually do.
I’ll probably not get a chance to test these in deep fluffy powder (just an old East Coaster) but these will probably handle our powder as well as the Raptors but better when it gets pushed up, and it’s quicker to turn than the Ethan 2s and feels just as stable on groomed hard pack.
Jack Jue on 12-9-2019
Here is my short version, best all around skiboard I've ridden!! . Edgy on firm when you want, slarvy when you want to slide, wonderful ,floaty and fast in deep unbroken pow, variable and crust, riding off the tails, tips nice and floaty in variable stuff, excellent carving on groomed snow, great in moguls, all ridden from center mounted bindings in an upright centered to slightly forward riding position. Instant classic!
Comparisons from Jack on the Slingshots vs other boards:
Crossbows vs Slingshots:
I'll start with a comparison of the Slingshots and the Crossbows. The Slingshots and the Crossbows are about the same surface area but are designed differently with the Slingshots having a wider tip and a narrower tail than the Crossbows. The Crossbows have a rockered tip and tail and are perfectly symmetric. The Slingshots are rockered at the tip and are not rockered in the rear. My own personal experience with the Crossbows is that they carve for me wonderfully in the center position but in variable conditions, crust and in deep pow I need to ride them rear mounted for them to work for me, to prevent tip dive and to avoid having to lean back on my heels. I have defaulted to riding the Crossbows in the rear position all the time now because I do not like to keep changing binding positions but I have to lean forward in firm snow a significant amount to engage the tips and have them carve properly when rear set and even then the carve is not as edgy or great as in the center position for me. With the Slingshots I have them mounted center and kept them center mounted all day in all conditions. Interestingly, the center mount position on the Slingshots is rear set to the exact center of the board and sits on the center of the turning radius of the board and is actually set back on the board compared to how a center mounted binding is on the Crossbows. This and the asymmetric shape of the board causes the tail of the board to sink enough in crust, variable snow and deep pow, that I do not need to rear set the binding in these conditions. In these types of conditions the board works very well, feels floatier and faster than the Crossbows, primarily I think because it is not sinking the tail quite as much as a rear mounted Crossbows and causing drag in three D snow.
Sherpas vs Slingshots:
I ride Sherpas rear mounted. That way they have more float, are faster, and more stable in variable conditions but take significantly more work to turn and are less fun in moguls. I reach for them in deep pow conditions but on most days they are a bit of overkill for me. Certainly more work to carve.
Spliffs vs Slingshots:
I ride Spliffs 4cm set back with non release Zero bindings. I love the fat short shape, light weight of the set up with non-releasers especially in soft snow - they carve ok but nothing like Crossbows or Slingshots.
In general if it is a light pow day, you might see me on Spliffs, deep pow on Sherpas, all around conditions like today, with pow variable, firm, the whole range, you will probably find me on Slingshots!
More from Jack Jue on 12-16-2019
Had a great day 2 on Slingshots at Kirkwood. Mountain 100 % open, all kinds of conditions, double black diamond runs all open, steep chutes, big bowls, natural wind blown snow, pockets of undisturbed powder, broken powder, steep icy moguls where skiers have ridden the snow off and wind has blown and made them icy, nice groomers .. the Slingshots are really the Swiss army knife of skiboards for me, they just do everything I want and are easily controlled with no bad habits.
I love that I don't need to set them back and can ride them center in everything ,
A fantastic new board. Thanks !