Weston Backcountry are different. Not cross the street to avoid them ‘different’ but they pride themselves on doing things a little differently. They don’t pour big bucks into flashy advertising campaigns and sponsorship for the next gold medal wunderkind.
Instead, they choose to invest their time, money and expertise into creating innovative products and fostering the shred community. Weston aren’t faceless men in suits sitting at a table debating the merits of cost over quality, they’re the antithesis of anonymous corporate decisions and budget cuts.
Founded in the outdoor mecca of Colorado, Weston are firmly entrenched in their local community, their ‘pro’ team consists of a network of grassroots riders, guides and ambassadors. Over the years the name Weston has become synonymous with pow hunting backcountry bonanzas, and rightly so. They’ve gone from the ground up, painstakingly designing, testing and tweaking every single product, taking input from their riders and developing their brand into one that can go toe to toe with the industry behemoths.
As you’d expect the Weston crew are fanatical about snowboarding, but they’re also passionate about preserving the landscape in which they can do so and giving others the access and education to be able to enjoy it in a safe manner. They’ve partnered with leading non-profits like 1% for the Planet, the American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education, and the National Forest Foundation to try and spread the stoke and promote the causes close to their hearts.
In a world full of marketing spiel and hyperbole where every snowboard is ‘THE BEST EVER!!!’ it’s a refreshing take to have Weston put their money where their mouth is. They’re so sure of their premium materials and high-quality manufacturing that they offer an unprecedented 4-year warranty on their snowboards. And what’s more, even if your board isn’t covered by the warranty, they’ll still give you 30% off a new one just because they’re stand up guys.
Take a trip down to Minturn, Colorado and even if you don’t catch a glimpse of ‘The Big Tiny’, (the 27-foot portable Weston office/HQ/test centre) you’ll no doubt catch an earful of some whooping and hollering from the Weston crew as they’re out riding. They do it for the same reason you or I do; for first tracks on a bluebird powder day, for trips to the white room, for dropping cliffs and couloirs, for popping pristine pillows- for the love of snowboarding.
From humble beginnings, Weston has worked their way up to become one of the most respected brands in the game. They’ve gained legions of fans across far-flung corners of the globe, and now Weston is available in Europe exclusively at Surfdome.
The jewel in the crown of Weston’s women’s collection, the Eclipse is a bona fide freeride cannon. Brand new for 2020/21 the Eclipse is primed and ready for your no holds barred assault on the steep and deep.
Celestial observers have said that “An eclipse has historically acted as a symbolic portal for exponential growth, a time of rapid change, internally and externally.”
As a company, Weston are helping to incite change, both on the hill and off. After listening to feedback from their fleet of ambassadors they expanded their women’s collection, more than doubling their female-specific offerings over the course of a single season. It’s this kind of unwavering support for every rider that has catapulted Weston into the spotlight virtually overnight.
Taking a look at the Eclipse you can see exactly where it makes itself at home, the elongated nose is ideal for sniffing out powder stashes, and the tapered directional shape, setback stance and rockered tips do all the heavy lifting when you hit the payload.
Zipping through tight tree runs is most certainly on the cards with the Eclipse, the narrower tail making it far more manoeuvrable underfoot than it has any right to be. Sit back, relax and take in the sights because when Weston say unsinkable, they mean it.
Although the Eclipse makes a name for itself among the deeper snow, it’s far from a one-trick pony. You’ll still be able to take the Eclipse out for a spin when the tide’s low, the versatile profile runs a powerful camber through the midbody of the board, making it ideal for tipping and gripping on hardpack and blasting through chop and chunder.
Two carbon stringers run from the rear pack of inserts out to the contact points, these bolster the performance in the tail of the board, channelling rider input out to where you need it. This increased torsional rigidity speeds up edge to edge response and boosts pop from the back leg when you’re trying to get airborne.
When the going gets tough, the Eclipse gets going. This cat track killer is most certainly on the prowl.
As the lines between freeride and freestyle continue to blur so do the snowboards that are built to service them. The Hatchet is a brand spanking new offering from Weston’s Pow Slayer line for 2020/21, designed to drop pillows in the morning, boost sidehits for lunch and gobble up groomers in the afternoon. It’s your go anywhere, do anything VIP access-all-areas pass to the white room and beyond.
Only coming in a 152, the Hatchet is meant to be ridden significantly shorter than your regular snowboard. It retains the surface area, and therefore the float, of a snowboard far larger thanks to its curvaceous waist width but is able to zip through trees and turn on a dime.
The Hatchet is Weston dipping their toes into the boundless pool of volume shifted decks, a favourite now of many thanks to their increased versatility. You get the surfy float of a powder board, with the increased manoeuvrability and playfulness more often found on an all-mountain offering, it’s a win-win situation.
Although the Hatchet is a directional twin, the inserts are centred on the board bolstering its freestyle credentials. Very few things on a snowboard look or feel as good as a lofty cab 1 in the backcountry, and with the Hatchet you’re all set- whether it’s your take-off or landing that you choose to take switch.
The Weston crew know that every day isn’t a nipple deep powder day, so they’ve made sure the Hatchet’s got the chops to get it done on the groomers too. A beefy camber section runs through the midbody, injecting a big dose of life, aggression and dynamic energy into it.
This is backed up by Weston’s space-age ‘S-Weave’, it lays carbon through the length of the board, woven between the top sheet and base and back again. This buried treasure creates a 3-D stringer that is essentially always preloaded, ready to boost pop and snap from tip to tail for a lively and progressive ride on the hardpack.
The Hatchet is less about balls to the wall charging life or death lines and more about cruisy powder days playing around with your crew. Variety is the spice of life, and the Hatchet Pow Slayer is one of the spiciest sticks on the market- floaty when you need it, playful when you want it and bags of fun from first tracks to last lifts.