NEVER SUMMER Proto CT 2012
Flex: Just past medium stiff both longitudinally and torsionally. A good deal stiffer than the Evo.
Stability: Outstanding. Held an edge nicely carving and absorbed chunder much better than my Evo. I noticed that I rode this board consistently faster everywhere on the mountain than I ride my Evo. I had a ton of fun hitting 20’ park jumps and railing faster turns on this board. Rutted out jump landings were absorbed with a lot less chatter than the Evo. I had no problems on steep or icy terrain. I’ve always found Never Summer’s sidecut design holds an edge nicely.
Pop: Great…I got way more boost out of my ollies and off of jumps than I do on my Evo.
Butters/Jibs/Presses: The 157 was just too much board for me. I couldn’t butter or press well at all without working really hard for it.
Who I would recommend it to: Intermediate to advanced freestyle rider than wants to rock the whole mountain and prefers to ride a twin. Definitely a good choice for someone who finds the Evo to be too soft.
Conclusion: My only frustration with this board was that it was just too much snowboard for me. I’m pretty lightweight and not a super powerful rider, so quality presses and butters were simply not happening. Due to the torsional stiffness I actually found the board easier to turn when going faster. I attribute these traits to the size of the board I was riding more than anything. The Proto CT is stiffer than the Evo to begin with, and on top of that I was on a longer board than usual, so these results were to be expected. I still really enjoyed the board and I’m seriously considering purchasing a Proto CT as my primary ride for 2011-2012, but it would definitely be in the 152 cm size. I think that would give me the control over the flex that I want, along with the benefits of increased stability and pop over my Evo. Look for an update on this review when I get to ride a smaller sized deck in the fall.
End of the Season Update: Here are my end of the season notes on what proved to be my daily driver this year (Proto CT 152). While I did like it at first, I wasn’t in love with the board right off the bat. I went from stages of “I miss my evo” to “ok this IS pretty good” to finally loving it. Even at mid season I thought I’d be selling it at the end of the year, but by the end of the season I had completely ruled that out. I tested a fair number of snowboards this spring and every time I hopped back on my Proto I was happy. I took it out to Tahoe and it performed really well in deep snow and in some steep chutes. I did find that I enjoyed the board a lot more with a 1 degree bevel than with the 0 degree bevel it ships with. I think that overall it’s a very capable deck in the right hands. I still wouldn’t recommend it for anyone less than a solid intermediate rider, the board likes to be pushed. With that said I haven’t found much that this board isn’t capable of and it will most likely be my go-to ride for the 2012-2013 season. Never Summer did well with this one!
Their description: For the new 2011/2012 Proto CT (Carbonium Twin), we’ve taken the powerful flex of the time tested SL, and blended it with the responsive damping of the Evo to create the ultimate all mountain true twin. This board has the versatility of Never Summer’s patented Rocker Camber Technology, our new Superlight wood core, graphite impregnated Sintered 5501 base and adds a whole new element to the proven Never Summer Carbonium Series of boards. Our new blunted, true twin shape cuts down material on tip and tail for a reduced, more balanced swing weight, while increasing effective edge for on snow stability. The Carbonium Proto CT is the future.
Tester Specs: Hanna Haidar
Stats: 5’10” 155lbs, boots 7.5. Stance 23.5” 15, -15.
I would describe my riding style as relaxed. I enjoy riding steep and deep woods, mid sized park features, and of course roosting through pow. I have fun monkeying with butters when nothing else is going on. At 155 lbs I’m not a super powerful rider so I typically enjoy riding medium to medium-soft snowboards.
About our reviews. Equipment reviews are by nature subjective….meaning what might suit my riding style might be miserable for you, and vice versa. Weight plays a huge role in how equipment performs as well. So take these reviews for what they are, our take on the gear we’re trying out. Hopefully we can provide some good insights on how this stuff performs in the real world. Check out our rider profiles to get a better idea of what is influencing our thoughts on the gear.