Darren Dix

Darren Dix

Kirkwood, CA

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Darren Dix's Passions

Snowboarding

Darren Dix's Bio

Ever since I went back-country last year for the first time, That's all I think about. Virgin powder, and dropping in off cornices and cliffs, airing off natural features. Love it!

Darren Dix

Darren Dix wrote an answer about on March 9, 2010

Darren Dix here again.
In response to Tyler Brawley's recommendation, Thanks, man! Those Spark fuse bindings were sure hard to find, and are totally sold out. However, I saw a guy on Craig's list that had a pair, and forgot to get into splitboarding. They're all mine now, and yesterday I tried them out at Kirkwood, CA. My Mojo 171 is now just as light as an average deck from my collection without those %&#*ing one pound plates. The heel is not as stiff as I'm used to with my Ride CAD's or Nidecker's CAD, but they do the trick. The split deck is 10 times better with these bindings for acting like it was never split.
Good call, Tyler! d

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Darren Dix

Darren Dix posted an image about on February 26, 2010

Postholing it uphill

The snow went past my knees with no snowshoes, but I managed haul up this 600 meter slope I just finished riding down. (Note that my line is right next to the "fall line" of the only other skier that had been through there before me and Ian.) If he had not taught me that, I may have ruined the whole run for others coming through there. It feels good to be polite and considerate.

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Darren Dix

Darren Dix wrote an answer about on February 26, 2010

Good question, Steve. I lucked out and bought the new mega-light 163 XL in January. I have 2 of last year's model, both 163's. This year has a spruce core. Unfortunately, I didn't manage to get a hold of the Ultra-light before Nidecker ran out of stock. Anyone know the difference in weight exactly? I only know what I have read on line about the ultra, but it is said that Nidecker eliminated the use of glue itself to save weight, and uses a new compression technology
to fuse the carbon composites to the spruce core. I have read that the mega is stiffer than the ultra, although I'm curious to see a reviews to the contrary by Donny and Kendrick below. Interesting!
Conflicting reviews! Did you really mean that the ULTRA is the stiffer board? It seems logical that the lighter board made without glue would be flimsier than the heavier one with it. I'm trying to come up with reviews on splitting the Mega, and/or the Ultra into a split board with the voile hardware. I bought 2 mega-lights to make one into a split, but still haven't heard of anyone doing it yet. When I hear back from Down the middle in Utah with a green light, I'll send one to them, and have it for next season. I'll write a review, as I suspect that this is the ultimate split-board design candidate. If the ultra-light is in fact not the stiffer board, perhaps the mega-light is the better to split. Also, which board lasts longer? the one with glue, or without? Are there any issues with the new glue-less ultra-light? Would this present difficulties trying to split the ultra? LOVE the new megalight with the camrock and ultimate grip. This is the fastest board I have ever ridden, with the most control to boot. I switched back to last year's mega-light for a run, and couldn't stand it! I used to LOVE that board too (I have 2). Standard camber is worthless to me now. Once I have my splitboard if all goes well, I'll have no desire what-so-ever to ride anything else but the new mega or ultralight. I honestly don't think they can improve upon this new design very much. This has to be the pinnacle of snowboard design. Thank you Nidecker! Can't wait to try the ultra-light! Darren Dix

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Darren Dix

Darren Dix wrote a review of on January 28, 2010

5 5

I bought the Lib Tech Snow Mullet 165 with magne-traction last year at the end of the season, and pulled it out this year at Kirkwood, CA. Just love it! Nice deep powder board. This is my first banana, or reverse camber. Right at first, it feels a lot different, buttery to be exact. I did expect it to be that way, but then you make great friends with this feature right away. Even a relatively long deck for me, (5'11", 145 pounds) even though I always have liked longer decks, turned like a sports car because of the magne traction, and the reverse camber. It really stays up in powder, but surprisingly was very easy to get used to, and in all conditions, even groomers and ice unlike what I was told about banana. I found myself speed racing it on the groomers, as the reverse camber is very fast. I don't have any desire to ride the old standard camber again with the new reverse camber around to be honest. Lib Tech has served us well for years, and this is my 4th Lib Tech since around '04. Good price for a fangtastic, durable product. A lot of my buddies complain about weight of Lib Tech, and yes they are heavier than my other boards. Perhaps Lib tech could consider use of carbon composites? They do have "Park Pop", and it seems you really can't have that and still be very light. However, they are very strong, and will deal with aggresive riding, cliff hucking, etc. I'll always remember the time in thunder saddle at Kirkwood with my older dark series 161, which I loved when it came out. I was on a hairy "isthmus" which was super steep. As I inched out to look what was beneath me, I started slipping, and couldn't stop. There were full on rocks jutting out, and I did notch my dark series, and hit the back of my helmet-wearing head on a big rock on the 40 foot fall. I buried in the pow, but was totally O.K. I know from how hard my head hit the rock that if I wasn't wearing a helmet, I probably wouldn't be writing this, so those of you with a "hard head", don't let a concussion or worse ruin your whole deal and be the warning to go spend $60 or $80 bucks on a comfy helmet. They are so warm and comfy that I wear mine at night and in rough snowy weather even after riding. Peace. DD

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Darren Dix

Darren Dix wrote a review of on January 21, 2010

5 5

The crown you find on the new Nideckers is justified, they are king indeed. I've only been riding the new ultimate grip163w for 7 days (at Kirkwood, CA), but I'd have to say that this design changes everything. You masters at Nidecker have managed to make all my other boards obsolete. The only other brand I care to ride is Lib Tech, and I do love the reverse camber, and the magne-traction. Nidecker is better, and by far lighter. Now that there is a spruce core, this should be the absolute ultimate split-board, and I will make one eventually this season. (I'll write a review on it, and please, if anyone else has done this to this board, write us a review, pretty please!) My new mega-light with the ultimate grip seems to be a true zero camber, which I love, but was wondering if there is a reverse camber model? I despise standard camber now, and love the reverse for ease of turning, lack of catching an edge, speed and float in deep pow. HOWEVER, I find that the "zero camber" I seem to have is best for absolutely everything, and is not too buttery, especially for icy or steep situations. Ultimate grip is way better and much faster than Lib Tech's magne-traction. I found myself higher and faster than some skiiers. I'm only just now discovering there is an even lighter model, the ultra-light, and will definitely buy one as soon as I can get it. Actually, I will need 2, as this is clearly the best split board design. I'm sure the savings in weight will actually be magical, and even safer if you are B/C, since a heavier board would make you exhausted much faster. I have thought to make a "banana split" Lib Tech, and would love to hear reviews on that. Does the banana rock in skin-up mode like I think it would? I think the Nidecker once again is better and much safer on steep icy cliffs that are always in the back country, with the zero camber and "U-grip". Who wants to be super man on a snowboard? WORTH THE MONEY!I read a review stating Nidecker delaminates pre-maturely, but I couldn't imagine such a thing. They must be riding icy parks and groomers with it, as I am SO hard on my decks, but never have managed to have trouble other than rocks. Finally, I see more people riding Nidecker, but am surprised they are not more popular. I think that is about to change. Thank you guys in Switzerland for your huge advances in our riding, we that have the deck REALLY REALLY appreciate it, and thanks for not charging us $1500 like Burton! Darren D

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Darren Dix

Darren Dix wrote a review of on April 17, 2009

5 5

I first tried the split board as a snowboard at kirkwood 5 days ago. Board rode better than I expected. Then I tried the skis, keeping in mind I have only ever skied one time 20 years ago. (I'm a fairly aggresive snowboarder of 12 years). Your experience snowboarding will not make you a skier overnight, I learned immediately. I got off the lift without falling, but man! It was very frustrating at first. O.K., so as open minded as I am, I am a snowboarder, not a skier. I retreated back to my 11 board selection for the day, riding my Nidecker 163 Megalight (I would just love to cut this board in half now because it is light, and a fantastic powder design). The next day, I decided I'd better try the climbing skins to complete my evaluation of this split board. O.K., NOW this is soooooo cool! I had my poles, and just straight launched right up the mountain! WOW! This totally changes everything!I had only back-country rode for the first time on my last excursion in March behind chair 6, also at kirkwood. I very much had the best riding day of my life. (O.K., it was THE best day of my life period, but don't tell my wife) I actually went with a pro skier, Ian Kent, who had climbing skins, and I had no snow shoes, and my Lib-Tech Dark Series with the much loved Magne-traction (another board I'd love to split now, as well as the banana with magne-traction)Sure enough, the Lib-tech was the good call for decending an icy wall coming down north gate near the entrance from the highway. The 6 hour expedition was so incredible after 12 feet of recent snowfall, and 4 fresh feet on the surface. Only one skier had dared put down a fall line, and later there had been no-one before on our route. So addictive! But so exhausting! Ian told me I must have been using 20 times more energy than he was with skis and skins. We timed it. It took me 3 times longer to traverse up steep pow, (untracked) and 2 times longer up medium but boot-tracked trail. I'm looking forward to the 5 times more terrain I'll be riding on future outings, and I'm already planning on hauling a light tent and overnight gear to make an overnight adventure. The hard part is to get someone as crazy as I am that is physically up to such a haul! Thank you folks at Voile for coming up with this one. From reading others reviews, I can see I'm not the only rider who's life is just dandy now because of you guys! God bless you! All the same, I'd like to see your board design improve. Carbon composite would save a pound or so, and have a nice pop, and if you could steal the magne traction off of a Lib-tech, and go banana camber, it would be THE ultimate! Especially for the traverse up with the skins, the banana would skip you up on the surface. By all means, respond to this and tell me what you think. Snowboarders?
P.S. in response to the rude comment below by "gir2464917" check out the photo on my profile of me riding down north gate out of bounds outside of Kirkwood before hitting the highway. Why would I lie? Where's your photos of your action at Kirkwood?

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