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Gear Review

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What's this Sex Panther?

That was my friend's question when he caught his first glimpse of my new setup sitting in my backseat. I put white 2011 Cartels on the board and it could not look sexier in any way. When he touched it, he said it felt like a beautiful weapon.

I have only ridden this board 3 days as I bought it at the end of the season. For the past 5 years I've had a park board - a Burton dominant 156 and a Burton Custom X 168 for my serious serious mountain issues. I broke my dominant in the French Alps, and I've been dreaming about these libtechs for years.

Long story short, I can't talk about all aspects of this board because I've only used it in spring conditions for those 3 days. What I can say is that everything you've heard about this board and libtechs in general, is true. The first time I went on a sketchy little dip on the side of the trail to do a back 180 back into the trail, it all came to bear instantly. Normally, I'd have to lean into my toe side hard to hold me edge through the choppy side ramp. None of that. The magnetraction just holds. It smooths out anything you come across. The camber profile is a mountain eating machine. There's no adjustments to make. You stay centered, simply and easily. Then I went for a little pop at the end of the ramp, nothing serious, I'm a few months out of a broken collarbone, and this was my first run with a new board. The thing LAUNCHED ME. The pop is insane, and it has like a different profile and feel. It's snappy but not negatively aggressive in any way. I flew out into the middle of the trail and landed perfectly and naturally at least twice as far as I figured I would with the speed and pop I brought into the situation.

In general I'd say the most amazing and under-discussed aspect of this board is how easily you can stay centered. The profile and magnetraction just allow you to sit perfectly on your board at all times. The camber puts the contact under your feet, and you can feel the difference instantly. It seems like the tips are freed to do almost like natural dampening work for anything that comes your way in the trail. Really it just feels like it was born to monster the mountain. Riding a normal setup after this feels a little like work. You have to lean, absorb, compensate. This board does most of that for you. All you have to do is decide how and where you want to rock out.