The Nidecker Princess is a very mean, aggressive, stiff, super poppy Freeride board for the rider who wants something serious and aggressive. We don’t see the women’s Megalight marketing thing from Nidecker. It is fast and stiff but it’s missing some of the forgiving nature the Legend and Megalight has.
2011 Nidecker Princess- Directional Camber Shape. 2012-2013 Nidecker Princess- Hybrid Camber Directional Shape
Size 149 (Camber) and 148 (Camrock)
Days on the board- 15+
Riders: Heather and a few riders not on the site.
Conditions: Everything from hard pack to deep powder.
The Nidecker Princess is a strange board that isn’t for everyone. As you can see it is very large for it’s size and is made for hauling ass. This is more for the expert rider but can work with an advanced rider who wants to push it.Its all about wide open speed and super aggressive riding and not at all forgiving. There isn’t a board out there that is like the Princess. For some it can be good and for others it can be a very rough experience.
For 2011 the Princess hasn’t changed much from 2010 but for 2012 the Princess mellowed out a little by adding hybrid camber that they call CamRock. This will make the ride more forgiving and a less ultra poppy which is a good thing. Still we would just like to see a Women’s Megalight instead of the Princess.
On Snow Feel: Princess is kind of an ironic name for this board. It’s not sweet and lovely. Maybe it’s more of the real life princess. It’s only happy in a few situations and throws a tantrum when she’s not where she doesn’t like things. This Princess is spoiled and only likes good groomed snow or powder. It’s all about high speed directional riding and carving.
Powder: The Princess will keep speed in any flat area on the way back to a chair or snowmobile. It’s big, directional and has a sizable set back. You will be happy in almost any depth of powder with the Nidecker princess. In trees and narrow chutes the princess is not the cream of the crop and doesn’t have that slashy surfy feel. That being said you can manipulate your way through tight spots without too much effort and have a lot of fun.
Turn Initiation– The princess is very much made for the rider who wants to lay out a huge carve when bombing the hill. The edge to edge transitioning is not easy but what would you expect for such an aggressive board. Most people get a stiff board for this reason want to work for it and make technical carving turns. The addition of camrock for 2012 is a good thing and makes the turn initiation easier but it’s still not anywhere close to easy.
Speed: This is a bomber board. The base is fast and the board is incredibly damp. Don’t worry about this boards speed and instead worry about your health plan.
Uneven Terrain: When all is clean and well groomed the Princess will fly down as fast as any board out there. It’s mean and chatter free. However when the groomers get rutted up and moguls start to emerge watch out. The Princess is very unforgiving and hard to maneuver through. It’s like there is reverse chatter going on. The 2012 is much better in the chop thanks to the more forgiving shape that hybrid camber will offer but it’s still not a picnic.
Lightweight– Very Light. The 149 had the weight of a 144. You will only feel this board on the chair if you have a bad knee or the wind is blowing hard.
Edge Hold: Very grippy and it should be. There is nothing worse than an icy run along the top of a peak before entering the chute you want. The Nidecker Princess will get you there better than most. Even if you go out on a hard pack to icy day the board will do a good job.
Flex: One of the more stiff snowboards out there. We found it to be pretty stiff torsionally and slightly less longitudinally. Again this is not for the timid or for women looking for a soft and playful ride. This is more for someone who wants speed. The addition of Camrock makes it a little more mellow and now it probably isn’t the best for bombing the boarder x track but it’s still great for bombing the hill.
Carving– Carves anything out like a steak knife through butter. If you want to really lean into a turn and have the tail hold the Princess is your board. The Camber was more difficult but better at carving than the new 2012 hybrid rocker. The Camrock/hybrid camber is not as difficult to carve which will open this up to a wider ability level of riders.
Switch: Not so good. The Princess is not an either direction kind of board. It can ride switch but it’s not what you want if you like to mix it up all over the mountain.
Jibbing– The princess doesn’t like the jib park and is known to throw tantrums that could hurt you.
Pipe: The edge hold is there but the size and directional shape takes this board out of contention. You can go up and down but you can’t really take it further than that.
Jumps: Great for a method off a natural hit on a powder day but not the best in the park.
All in all we had mixed feelings about the Princess. It owned a firm freshly groomed morning and deep powder but the pop on this board was too much for many of the riders when the conditions were less than ideal. If you are only ride when it’s good/smooth the Princess will be fun but if you are an all day weekend warrior there are better choices out there. The addition of CamRock makes the it easier to ride in less than ideal conditions but we’d rather see the a women’s version of the megalight for lady freeride/powder riders than the Princess.