Expert Review: 2023 K2 Party Platter [with Video]
Snowboard Expert Matthew Kaminski tested the 2023 K2 Party Platter snowboard on carving, freestyle, and freeride at Powder Mountain in Utah.
Curated Snowboard Expert Matthew Kaminski got his hands on the 2023 K2 Party Platter this spring and put it to the test at Powder Mountain in Utah. Check out how it performed in the carving, freestyle, and freeride categories, but consider the fact that each rider is different. If you have any questions about the 2023 K2 Party Platter or need recommendations on which board would be best for you, reach out to a Snowboard Expert here on Curated.
Before we get started, it's worth noting that Curated Experts are not sponsored by any brands. All of these reviews are completely unbiased.
What does K2 claim about this board? K2 claims that this is a volume-shifted, directional, all-mountain, freeride board.
What is your overall impression of this board? When I first got on this one, I was super excited to be on a volume-shifted board. They make some of my favorite styles of boards. Being able to ride something wider and shorter is a dream. Just being able to get on a shorter board alone makes everything way different. I’m able to throw the board around and pop way higher. It's really lightweight. It's different from riding a regular-shaped board.
Is this a one-board quiver or more of a specialty board? This is the kind of board that you could definitely ride as a daily driver. If you're really into volume-shifted boards, this would be one of my top choices. I personally rode a volume-shifted board for an entire season and hit everything from park to 30-foot cliff drops. They can handle a lot of different types of terrain, and that's the great thing about them.
How does it turn? This board is going to be a little different than a traditional board. It's very wide, so when you’re turning it, you're going to want to lay into the edges. It's not going to turn traditionally, where you can kind of carve and put that edge in. With the board being wider, it's going to have almost a skate-like feel where you want to go carve and get on edge to edge.
How about edge hold? Did it feel stable? Overall, I noticed it was pretty stable once I was carving. It didn't have too much chatter. It didn't feel like it wanted to flex too much. It rode planky, pretty straight through, which I'm honestly looking for sometimes in these volume-shifted boards. If you want something more powder-oriented, you're going to want a little bit more flex. But if you're looking for, like I said, that daily driver that can handle all different types of terrain, this thing rides great.
What about dampness? Did you feel any chatter in the board? There’s not much dampness on this board that I felt. You did get a little bit of chatter here and there. The snow was soft today, and that could have had something to do with it. I'm sure if I was on some icy or steeper terrain, I would've maybe felt a few of those bumps, but in this slush, this thing really showed its true colors.
How did you feel in terms of speed? You could definitely get this thing up to speed, but I wouldn't want to go as fast as I can. While going down the mountain, you're not going to want to straight line it. You're going to want to be able to get on your edges. With it being super wide and shorter, you're not going to have the most control at the highest speeds, but you are going to be able to still charge hard when you want to.
Was it easy to control? At short speeds and through tight areas, this was such an easy board to control. I was able to find some nice spots and transitions in the woods where I could boost it and go big. I was surprised how high this board would ollie and pop off of things. In those tight areas, you want to be a little more conservative, but this thing really wanted to boost.
How is its playfulness and pop? This board features the ollie bar from K2. That ollie bar is really noticeable when you're getting big air. Basically, it's a carbon insert that allows the board to really snap. It's a super fun, playful board. I was noticing that I was going higher on this board than any other K2s that I’ve ridden before.
How is it riding switch? This board can handle some switch riding. I threw a couple of 180s in there. It did feel a little awkward with this bigger nose and more swallowed-out tail. This big shovel nose is going to want to ride in the front, so if you're mainly a switch rider, or if you like to go switch to regular pretty frequently, this might not be the best option for you.
How is it for buttering? You can lay into this board, but with it being so wide, it's really not the best buttering board. It does have a lot of surface area, so if you can get up on that nose and be playful, maybe pop and come around on it. There is room for buttering, but it's not my top choice.
How is the board on jumps? I was surprised how high this board would pop. Even when I landed, it was very stable. That's my favorite thing about a volume-shifted board. You have all that area to land on. Sometimes on a more narrow board, it will start to flex and noodle under your feet, but this thing is super solid when you're going big. I probably got it about 10 feet in the air, and I felt really confident that I was going to land solidly.
How would it be in powder? I can only imagine this board would be great in powder. We didn't get the chance to try it out in any fresh snow, but I know that with this bigger nose, and with it being a volume-shifted board, you're going to be able to float on anything. I would love to ride this thing in a foot of snow and see how it performs.
And in uneven terrain and chunder? I could feel a little bit over uneven terrain and chunder, but it's not going to make too much of a difference. With it being so wide and having all of that volume, it really charges through aggressive stuff. I was able to ride it through a little bit of bumpy terrain, and I did notice a couple little popups that were felt underfoot. It does have some flex to it. It's not the stiffest board, but when it comes to chunder and bumpy stuff, it can handle pretty much anything you throw at it.
How about tree runs? This is the perfect board for tight areas. If you're in the trees, you're going to want to be riding this thing. I can imagine taking this thing through some high Alpine trees that open up to maybe a little steep chute and being able to get into some technical riding. Ideally, you'll want to ride some fresh snow when you're on this thing, so in the woods, I can only imagine it being a playground.
Is there any location you'd pack this board for? I've never had the chance to ride in Japan, but I know this board would do great out there. Seeing videos of Japan and its snow, the snow looks super deep and the trees look amazing. I can imagine using this board in some steep and narrow terrain to get me boosted into some fresh snow.
Who would you recommend this board to? I'd recommend this board for anyone looking for a solid daily driver, volume-shifted ride. It's hard to find the right volume-shifted board. They're all different, but this one is really designed for someone who wants that one-board quiver that they can trust every day and wants to ride it no matter what the conditions are. It can handle anything that you want to take to the party.
Who should avoid this board; there are better options for them out there? I wouldn't put a total beginner on this board, but I would feel comfortable suggesting it to relatively new snowboarders or intermediates all the way up to more experienced riders. This board will allow for a lot of progression, but for anyone just starting out, you might want to stick to a more traditional snowboard.
All snowboards are built for different riders. If you need any help finding the best snowboard for you, feel free to reach out to Matthew or any other Snowboard Expert here on Curated. We'll make sure to get you the perfect snowboard.