|Overall Rating||Loved it!|
|Riding Level||Advanced - Expert|
|Fits Boot size (US)||8-10, 10-12|
|Manufactured in||USA by Mervin|
|Camber Profile||Directional Camber|
|Stance||Setback over 20mm|
|Approx. Weight||Feels Normal|
|On Snow Feel|
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Gnu Mullair 2019 - 2017 Review by The Good Ride
The Gnu Mullair is a board we have been dying to get on since it came out last year in late release. After almost 2+ years of it being out, we finally got a head to head test. The short of it is we all preferred the Gnu Mullair a little more than the Flight Attendant in the conditions we rode them but the edge hold made the ride more fun in the snow we tested them in. Both are great boards though. The design has stayed the same from 2017-2019 and the only thing new for 2018-2019 is it now comes in wide sizes.
Days: 2 (1-day thanks to P3 at Mammoth)
Conditions: Really good Sierra Snow. Another day with 1.5-2 feet of Sierra Cement at the top and perfect groomers on the bottom.
Riders: James, Zobel, Peter, Jimbo
Boots: Burton Almighty, Adidas Tactical ADV, Burton SLX, Ride Trident, Burton Rover
Bindings: Union Ultra, Union Atlas
Set Up: Set back, approx 23″ 15 front -6 back. Day 2 approx 23″ 18 front -9 back
Approximate Weight: Feels normal. Not heavy and not light.
Flex: Nice medium/stiff flex
Sizing: The 159 feels pretty much size 10 and under. Jimbo and Zobel booted out often with their size 11 and 11.5 boots.
On Snow Feel: The Gnu Mullair feels like a more traditional more surfy version of the Flight Attendant. It’s got a similar feel camber wise but overall it just feels a little better and dynamic underfoot along with better edge hold. It’s a stable mostly camber ride that you expect to feel when riding Mervin’s C3 camber profile. It feels a touch less catchy than full on camber but not by much.
Edge Hold: Nice bump compared to the Flight Attendant and although it doesn’t feel like Full MTX like you get from the TRS or old Darker Series but it grips really well and it’s on the top end of the spectrum.
Turn Initiation: If you know how to turn its quick edge to edge if you like to roll from edge to edge quickly on short turns and it’s very easy to turn in tight spots. If you like wider turns once you are committed more to the side cut it turns a pretty average circle size and it’s fun. Getting a board like this is all about directional stylish turning and that will be the number one thing you do. The Gnu Mullair does not disappoint and we could turn this all season.
Skidded Turns: The Gnu Mullair isn’t the board you get if you want to skid turns. There are much easier boards for that. It’s best with competent advanced riders to Expert riders.
Carving: So much fun to carve and I didn’t feel like I had to commit too much weight to the back foot to keep it from washing out. The Flight Attendant feels more between the feet than the Mullair but the Mullair has a more directional surfy feel with the turn. If you are really into a more traditional surfy turn the Mullair will be the call and if you are more into a more double ender/all mountain style/more skate like/less surfy turn then the Flight Attendant will be more appealing to carve.
Speed: This isn’t a racing board but it can bomb without excessive chatter.
Uneven Terrain: Yeah this is a stiffer freeride board but
Powder: So it seems like there is a slight touch of early rise in the nose which definitely helps compensate for all that camber. The difference between nose and tail when setting all the way back is is 4.75″ and the true setback on board is 2.375″ vs. 1″ setback on sidecut with at a stance width of approximately 22.75″. After over 1′ of thick wet snow at Mt. Bachelor, I felt the float wasn’t quite there with the Flight Attendant that has more setback on board and I needed to work that back leg harder for it to stay afloat. It feels like it would be best in a steep run in powder rather than staying afloat in normal terrain you might see at many resorts. The Lib Lost Round Nose Fish Floated a lot easier than the Mullair and the YES Pick Your Line out floated both.
Switch: Doable and we liked the Flight Attendant better here. However, you aren’t really buying this board to ride switch a lot. It’s mainly for riding one direction.
Pipe: The Gnu Mullair could be a great directional pipe rider thanks to the springy drive it could have from wall to wall as well as the pretty strong edge hold. We wouldn’t know though as we didn’t ride the pipe.
Jumps: Great pop and it’s got an easy directional spring off the tail for an ollie or off a drop or even a kicker.
So we knew this was a fun board when we tried it last year but now that we got to compare it to a favorite and Nico’s past model we found out how much more we like it.
Gnu Mullair Past Reviews
Gnu Mullair Specs
Gnu Mullair Images
Gnu Company Information
Gnu Mullair User Reviews
I too have had the hard ship of this board delaming. I absolutely loved the board for the first month and a half. I sent it back to mervin who did a "repair" but now the board feels dead and isn't as fun to ride. Pretty disappointing for a $600 board. I won't buy a mervin again because of this experience.
one of todays better freeride boards
First thing I will say is that you have to take this board and judge it in the era it's being offered. Any comparison to a late 90's or early 2000's cambered board (custom X, Timeless, Supermodel X etc.) is tough to do. Those older boards were typically stiffer, much narrower stance options, longer effective edge, just basically very different feeling boards than almost anything being made today.
The Mullair along with other boards in the same category (Flight attendant) have a more mid to stiff flex and a touch of early rise in the nose and sometimes the tail as well. This definitely gives the board a surfy more maneuverable feel than other straight bomber boards.
I personally have two of these. A 152 for riding with my little kids and a 155 for ripping around with the boys. Certainly could use a 159 if travelling out west for bigger terrain but since i'm currently here in the northeast the smaller ones are good for me.
I found this board to be plenty stable at speed and it rips turns on hardpack. Floats well in pow, snakes thru bumps and is easy to navigate tight tree sections. The nose beats down chunky uneven snow, the tapered tail is super fun to hammer the sides of your local resort trails and the mellow mag saves my ass on speed runs over solid new england ice.
Bottom line on this one is it does a ton of stuff really really well. Maybe not the most heavy duty straight line bomber but certainly a solid daily freeride board that should not be overlooked. Enjoy.
low quality board
I was a big fan at the beginning of the season of this snowboard but now I´m totally disappointed from GNU and the quality of the Müllair. after 4 weeks and without excessive riding my edges under the front foot popped up. I´ll sent it back to GNU but they refused to accept it as a construction fault. I paid 599€ in Europe for this board.
Thats definitely not acceptable!!!!!!
Fun and Playful Freeride
Ref stance about 22" my stance 22 1/4"
I know it's early season but were getting dumped with snow and I already got 12 days. This boards base is also super durable for those worried about rocks and such.
Flex: Mid/stiff. Under foot is stiffer than tip and tail which makes flexing the board with your hands harder to gauge the flex while riding.
Edge Hold: Edge hold is great, the magtek isn't as strong or large as some other Mervin or Rossi boards but it is still in a tier above most.
Turn Initiation: Like a sports car. I put some T.Rices on her so that could be part of the reason it feels super quick.
Carving: Carving is a blast with the camber, quick turn initiation, and magtek. Also, GNU lists the contact edge at 114cm. I found that measuring the distance from widest part of the tip to widest part of the tail give you an effective edge of 121.5cm. I don't fully understand the difference between contact area and effective edge but if you're afraid this boards edge is too short, don’t sweat it.
Speed: Ok, so this board doesn't handle speed quite as well as the Flagship or the XV but it still rip it. The base is also slower on cat tracks then my XV split but the base is way way WAY more durable then my XV.
Powder: So I have had two good power days so far. First day was about 7-8 inches in which I had my stance on reference and I was satisfied with the performance. Second day was about 16-20" and I put ref 1cm back and I was still impressed. However, next time I get in that much snow I'll drop it another cm but If you're looking for a power board better than this get a hovercraft.
Uneven Terrain: My main resort doesn't groom anything over a blue so having a board that handles uneven terrain is important. I do a lot of hike terrain that ends in a shoot into a bowl. The bowls are always bumpy and negotiating that terrain is pretty easy and fun on this board.
Switch: Most of my switch riding is on a traverse where I don't want to be on my heels or before/after 180s. The tail is a short sharp upward sweep after the camber zone. This means switch in powder requires you to really lean back but other then that it rides switch well.
Jumps: This is probably the most poppy "freeride" board on the market. All rollers, side hits, and jumps, are easy to blast off and easy to land.
Buttering. I don't find this board any harder to butter then the jones mtn twin or the burton custom flying V.
My opinion on this board is that is more aggressive all mountain then freeride. My biggest complaint with freeride boards is that after the terrain is chopped out you would rather have an all mountain or freestyle board. Yes there are better boards for handling speed. Yes there are better boards for powder. However, I think this board is good enough at speed, powder to still be considered freeride. This is a softer freeride board, where it lacks in pure bombing it makes up with in uneven terrain and pop on ollies.
Not what i was hoping for
Just wanted to chime in on the board - after having it out on both powder and hard pack / groomers. In short, I was expecting more. Given the boards shape, I thought it would float much better in powder (had 1.5 feet of fresh to play in). It really didn't stand out as a great powder-friendly board. I spend a good amount of time on T.Rice and Banana Magic, and both felt like they did much better in powder. (my 2c)
As for carving, seeing it rated as excellent, I was REALLY expecting a lot more from this board on morning groomers. Having come from many camber boards (Custom, Custom X, Timeless, Prophet, Yukon, and more), this definitely did not stand out. I would attribute the lack of carving ability to boards effective edge (or lack thereof).
For comparison sake - I'm also on a burton custom X 162, which has an effective edge of 1260 mm, whereas the 161 Mullair has an effective edge of 1140 mm. IMHO, that's quite significant, and noticable when trying to dig deep into turns. The Mullair just didn't feel locked in to the carve, and didn't carve as well as other cambered boards I've been on.
I'm sure Nico can get much more of of this board than I. LOL. But for me, it just didn't stand out.
Total time spent with the board: 5 full days
Conditions: Packed Sierra Cement, 2 day old Powder
Boots: DC T Rice size 10
Bindings: Burton Genesis X
So Last year I rode a Burton Flight Attendant 156, and after seeing this board sized 155 on Sale I decided to snatch it. Like James says in the review, this board is definitely a “Burvin”. Lot’s of similarities between the 2 models, since Nico helped designed both of them (really the FA should have been called his pro model, but it seems like Burton only does that with the White Collection these days). Anyway, these boards have some similarities but are definitely different. This review is mostly comparing the two of them, but also trying to help out those who never ridden either.
Approximate Weight: On the Light Side of Normal
On Snow Feel: Poppy, Playful and not as aggressive as you would think.
Powder: The 155 is probably not the best size for powder since this board is pretty narrow. Saying that, I will state that the float was decent but nothing to write home about. The FA 156 has a better float than the Mullair 155, but I am sure that the 159 model would do a lot better in powder.
Turn Initiation and Carving: Super quick edge to edge, one of the quickest I have ever ridden, comparable even to the ultra quick Yes PYL. When it comes to a carve though, it’s good but not perfect. This board has a freestyle feel to it, and the 155 even though never washed out on me, didn’t feel super stable or inspired confidence when laying down on a hard carve.
Speed: Definitely not a bomber. One of the main differences between this board and the FA is how both handled high speeds. Since the FA is a lot stiffer I felt super comfortable riding it fast and did not feel a lot of chunder under my feet, and I was using bindings and boots with great shock absortion (DC T.Rice/Burton Genesis X) . The Mullair was not as damp as the Flight Attendant and once I started going fast I felt lots of vibration under my feet. I did not feel confident straight lining this board.
Uneven Terrain: Due to its maneuverability, this board did great on uneven snow. Managing bumps and chunder on low speeds was incredibly easy, but you don’t wanna do the same thing through late afternoon snow going while riding super fast with the Mullair.
Edge Hold: Incredible edge hold, Mellow Magne traction from Mervin in my opinion performed better than other brand’s magne traction (from my humble perspective). As previously mentionded, even though I was feeling a lot of vibration under my feet going fast, this board held its edge even through early-somewhat icy morning groomers. This one could do well in the pipe.
Flex: It felt right in the middle for me, but I usually ride mid-stiff to stiff boards. This one felt super easy to butter and playful due to its flex.
Switch: I don’t ride switch that much, but it seems doable.
Jibbing: For the right Jibber, this board could lots of fun. Im not strong at buttering but this board made it easier.
Pipe: This could be a good board for the directional pipe rider
Jumps: Amazing pop, I’d say just as good as the Flight Attendant. This board likes to be in the up in the air at any given chance, and it’s so much fun popping from little hitters and traverses.
Conclusion: I feel like I would like this board better if I got the 159. Saying that, I wish the 155 was stiffer. This one is more for the playful freerider or aggressive freestyler, than for for those who like to go fast and aggressive in the backcountry. A fun board for groomer days, but personally this would not be my choice for deep powder days.