The Salomon Rancho is the evolution of the Burner and creates a mellow but aggressive quasi hybrid camber kind of ride that will appeal to a wide variety of riders. You normally don’t hear mellow and aggressive in the same sentence but hopefully after this review you will understand how Salomon got those two opposing ideas to get in on and produce a really fun Powder/Freeride board.
Conditions: Really Good Snow and a really fun
Riders: James, Peter, Kyle, Jimbo
Boots: Burton SLX, Burton Imperial, Nike Kaiju,
Bindings: Salomon Chief
Set Up: Set way back about 23″ wide 18 front 0 back
On Snow Feel: This tapered set back board feels really competent off the back foot, easy to turn and really surfy. It’s like they took all the feel and ride of the Burner but shrunk it down and made it more fun. It has a much more set back slashy/surfy feel than the old Burner but you can still feel a little of it’s personality in the ride when carving and picking up good speed. It really feels like a hybrid camber ride so we are calling it hybrid camber even though Salomon calls it camber or “backseat camber”. It’s a really fun mountain board for such a set back surfy powder kind of shape and it’s a lot more of a balanced groomer/powder board than it looks. It’s the kind of board that can comfortably cruise or bomb and that’s pretty rare.
Powder: We had no powder but with these specs and camber profile. Looking at the nose you see what looks like some early rise rocker to us. When combined with the massive set back of 1″ (2.5 cm) and the tapered tail you have a surfy powder bomber. This is definitely a powder first board with it’s super directional surfy powder shape but it can also ride well on groomers and easily pass for a freeride board. Shit you could argue it either way.
Turn Initiation and Carving: It’s nice to see the smaller sizes and a little bit smaller waist that makes it a little more quick and slashy than the old Buner. It’s very quick edge to edge and makes for a very fun ride to make just about any kind of turn. Carving is a tiny bit washy but it’s such a fun off the tail kind of carve that
Speed: So for a board with this kind of medium to maybe even medium/soft kind of flex you would think it wouldn’t bomb but it fucking bombs! It’s weird going so fast on the back seat of a board like this but it doesn’t feel like you are that far back. It feels like you are more centered and and it’s really stable at speeds. The base is great and keeps it’s speed very well. There is some kind of rubber going on in there I think and it makes the board flex easy but act incredibly damp.
Uneven Terrain: It is really easy dealing with chunder and we had no problems off piste with emerging moguls and crappy uneven snow. It’s rubbery flex does what many boards try to do but don’t do. It’s really hard to be incredibly fast but also handle slower speed crappy snow like a champ as well. The board has a multifaceted shock absorbing system. Usually a board this fast would suck in bumpy terrain but this doesn’t.
Edge Hold: Pretty middle ground. It’s good bordering on great. It would be nice to see a little more edge hold for harder condition carving but it’s good for most good to borderline rideable conditions.
Flex: This is a nice medium flex that just doesn’t feel like a normal freeride board. It feels more like an all mountain or all mountain freestyle flex but yet it still also feels really lively and tells you that it’s time to ride hard and fast. There is a nice pop off the tail as well for launching off natural features.
The rest doesn’t matter.
All in all this hybrid camber/ backseat camber kind of ride is a really fun change up on the older bigger beast that was the Burner. This is one of those rides that could easily contend with our favorites selection and was very close to becoming one. It will make a lot of directional surfy freeriders happy.