Expert Review: 2023 GNU Money [with Video]
Snowboard Experts Sydney and Victor tested the 2023 GNU Money snowboard on carving, freestyle, and freeride at Powder Mountain in Utah.
Curated Snowboard Experts Sydney Johnson and Victor Von Claus got their hands on the 2023 Gnu Money 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 and every rider is different; if you have any questions about the Gnu Money 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 GNU claim about this board? [Sydney] GNU claims that this board is for that all-mountain park rider. This board slays in the park and turns with the pole. This board slays in the park and really turns the whole resort into the park. It's really poppy and really fun to ride.
[Victor] GNU claims that this guy is definitely a little bit more of your park-dominant resort board. It's going to be a little bit on the softer, mid-flex, jib-friendly side but more of a daily driver out at the resort.
What is your overall impression of this board? [Sydney] First impressions of this board, it’s a park board, but it really turned the whole mountain into a park. I felt this board was really lightweight, and especially as a female rider on this male-designed board, I was really impressed by how responsive it was. The edges have the magne-traction on there so it really cut through the icy snow in the morning, and throughout the day. It was awesome. I was also really impressed with the flex. It was soft enough to be really fun around the whole mountain, but because of the edge tech on this board, I felt really confident going in on carves and over variable terrain.
[Victor] My overall impression on this board was that it was super fun. It was definitely very playful with the C2 profile. You get a little bit more rocker than camber, but you still get enough that you're going to get a little bit more response than your more rocker dominant profiles, like the banana from Mervin. It was definitely very jibby, pressy, and wanted to go play around. But, when I took on harder stuff on takeoffs and stuff that was uncertain, it would still power through it. So, it can go outside the park and be a little bit more aggressive than your typical, more park-dominant all-mountain board.
What did you think about the flex of the board? [Sydney] Yeah, so this board's flex is more soft-medium, so it has a lot of pop. I'm a girl, but the flex was awesome and it really gives back what you put in. The flex was great. I was able to put some presses down and butter a little bit on this board with no problem. I would take it in the park and off side hits. We took it through a border cross track actually, and it was so fun. I was able to get some air off those knuckles and I was really confident on landing and able to ride it switch as well.
[Victor] It's a little bit softer than mid-flex, so you're definitely going to have that playfulness, especially if you like to jib around, or if you're hitting rails. You’ll have that little bit extra of wiggle room on sketchier landings to kind of butter it out and make sure that you get the clean ride away. But overall, you're going to have a very, very soft feeling ride when you want it. So, definitely very jib friendly, very park friendly.
How did it turn? [Victor] Yeah, this board is awesome to carve on. Big fan, since I'm from Washington state as well. With the magnetraction, as Mervin throws on almost all their gear, the serrated edges here, give extra contact points throughout the evolution of your turn and really give you that extra confidence, whether it's icier, more hard-packed, or even in powder. Their claim to fame is that it ‘turns ice to powder’ and it holds pretty true to that. You're going to keep an edge pretty well. It's going to feel like driving a Cadillac around.
Was it easy to control? [Sydney] Yeah. This board was really easy to control at speed. It has a hybrid cam-rock profile, which helped me feel like I had the flex of the rocker and the camber kept me aggressive in my carves. This board was really impressive to me because it was like a charging park board, which doesn't happen a lot, so I really loved this board.
What about dampness? Any chatter in the board? [Sydney] The one thing I will say about this board is I did feel a little bit of chatter underfoot, and that may have been because of the spring conditions that we were riding in, but it also may have had something to do with the flex of the board. But considering that, the flex to dampness of this board makes a really fun, playful, all mountain board. I loved it.
How did it perform at speed? [Sydney] At high speeds, this board felt really good on edge. When I was in between my edges (which it didn't take long to get from edge to edge on this), it was very efficient, but in between, I did feel a little chatter. However, the dampness of this board and the stability overall was really excellent. I felt really confident taking this board off jumps at high speeds and landing at high speeds just fine.
How did it perform riding switch? [Sydney] Riding switch on this board was just fine. I did some 180s and landed solid and was able to ride out of it. Also, I think that the extra contact points on the edges of the board give you more control on edge and more grip, so I felt even riding switch, I was really confident.
How was it for buttering? [Sydney] My experience with buttering on this board was really great. I was able to flex it enough to where I could get full rotations on my butters and also wheelie down and press. The flex on it was just enough to do that and still have really high quality turns and really high quality performance on the rest of the mountain.
How was it on jumps? [Sydney] Stability on landings with this board was great, especially considering it’s a park board, you really want to have confidence in how you're landing. So I really enjoyed how this board felt in the air. It was really light getting up, but as I landed, it was still super solid.
How would it be in powder? [Sydney] This shape has a little bit of a bigger nose so it's going to give you some more flow in the powder, and that's what's so great about this board. It is more freestyle oriented but on good snow days and powder days, this board will be able to handle it.
[Victor] Big powder days? I'm not quite sure this would be the first choice. If it's the only board in my quiver, setting the stance back, for sure. But other than that, no. If you're looking at steep and deep or just deep in general, really deep days, you probably want to look elsewhere.
How about tree runs? [Sydney] I took this board in the trees a bit and it turned really well, especially with that edge tech. The only thing is, I mean, it's also spring conditions, but the iced out moguls underneath all the snow really tossed me around a little bit on this board because of the flex and the rocker in there. But overall, it managed and you would be able to keep up with your friends in variable, tough terrain.
Is there any location you'd pack this board for? [Sydney] I would take this board really to any resort. You can find anything great to ride it on in any conditions like I did today in the spring. This would be a lot of fun in Mount Hood in the summertime. It would also be a lot of fun on the East Coast where if you're a park rider, and like the East Coast, it's going to maintain edge control on that ice but when you get to the park, you can play around. So it'd be good for that too.
Who would you recommend this board to? [Sydney] This is ideal for intermediate riders to advanced park riders that enjoy riding in the park but also like to send it all over the mountain. This board will go with you and will be flexy enough to throw some really cool stuff.
[Victor] This would be great for a pretty wide variety of customers, just because it has a pretty laid back profile, without being too beginner-ish. This is a higher-end board for a pretty well-seasoned intermediate into a more advanced rider, especially if you're looking for that kind of park focused, but do-it-all resort board. This is going to be a great option. Even your beginners could have fun with this, the Magne-Traction is going to keep you solid out on the groomers, and anywhere where it's pretty mellow riding. So, wide variety is going to have a good time on this board.
Who should avoid this board, there are better options for them out there? [Sydney] There's better options out there for you if you're a beginner. If you're an advanced rider, you would enjoy this, or if you are an advanced park rider that wants to start incorporating more of your park abilities into all-mountain terrain, this would be a good board to transition those freestyle tricks into the back mountain.
Just like all people are different, all boards are different. Go ahead and reach out to Sydney or Victor here on Curated. They would love to chat with you, see if this is a good fit for your riding style, and help you find the right gear for you. Happy shredding!