Ready for takeoff.
Built to address the needs of hard-charging riders seeking one binding for everything, the Now Pilot Snowboard Binding serves up a slightly stiffer flex to conquer everything from jaw-dropping alpine lines to fifty footers in the park. It's designed with the Hanger 2.0, which provides a wider heelcup to eliminate fit issues while enhancing lateral flexibility when you're dialing in tricks. Ultimately, the Pilot gives you the stability and responsiveness for slashing powder and straight-lining steeps, yet is still a great choice for the technical freestyle rider seeking a powerful binding for bigger park features.
Now's Skate Tech features a Hanger 2.0 base connected to a hinged Kingpin at its center. The hinge acts like a fulcrum, allowing you to rock the binding back and forth with a subtle amount of play, much like you'd experience when turning on a skateboard truck. Instead of transferring all your energy into turning on a rigid baseplate, the slight rocking motion seamlessly transmits rider inputs into precise turns with powerful edge hold. Another upside to this tech is reduced vibration and shock underfoot, thanks to bushings sitting directly under the Hanger 2.0. The Pilot has harder bushings (55 shore) than other bindings in Now's line, directing more energy to the board when you're charging the mountain.
The Flex Hinge 2.0 highback is the stiffer than the original Flex Hinge, serving up added power and edge hold on heelside turns. Its lateral hook allows you to exert more force when you're laying into presses and slashing powder turns. Another update is the Freestyle Flipit strap, which is a more traditional ankle strap construction with two layers of EVA for plush padding. The 3D toe cap won't slip out when you're riding, courtesy of its rubberized interior for a snug fit. Both straps feature tool-less centering for dialing in the fit without lugging tools on the mountain.
- Powerful binding for steep terrain and big park features
- Hanger 2.0 base for powerful energy transfer and lateral flex
- Skate Tech promotes fluid turns and smoother riding
- Hard density bushings enhance response and power
- Flex Hinge 2.0 highback offers unwavering support
- Freestyle Flipit strap offers plush padding
- 3D toe cap fits snugly over the tip of your boot
- Channel compatible with separate disc from Now
- Item #NOW000U
- Q & A
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
I picked these up this 2017-2018 season after having read a bunch of reviews, studying up on the skate tech, and because my snowboard role model Jeremy Jones reps the brand (Pilot isn't his signature model, however). I wear size 9 thirtytwo Prime boots (2016 model) and switch between Jones Aviator and Mind Expander depending upon the conditions. Goofy.
My first time purchasing the Pilot (2017-2018 season), it was certainly a good ride through variable conditions, super responsive in deeps and steeps, easy to turn, and pretty much everything as advertised. Both of my boards felt like riding a long (skate) board in the cat tracks, definitely a fun time. However, at the end of my first weekend trip just after my last run, I noticed that my front toe strap had exhibited a incision through one of the open screw holes. Not sure what caused it, being it on my strapped foot. Thankfully warranty had me covered so I managed to get a new pair. Shoutout to Backcountry for their excellent customer service.
This new pair did not perform like my first because now my back foot toe strap kept coming loose after several turns. When strapping after the chair, the ratchets engaged as they ratcheted down the ladder. I tried different length adjustments on my toe strap but all ended loosening as I come down a run so I constantly found myself losing the turning response, only to have to come to a stop to re-ratchet it, ride down some, stop, then ratchet again. This pair also got returned, I got my money back.
I will however, not get my fresh tracks opportunities or the time back that I lost adjusting/tightening my toe strap on the slopes.
So the two pairs I got to ride in, one had a materials failure and another had a hardware failure.
I will not be returning to Now Bindings.
2018 NOW PILOT
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
As a rep for the brand I hear first hand at on snow demos if it is a hit or a miss.
We have a winner here folks...The pilot mixes supreme all mountain Freestyle comfort with performance.
Hanger 2.0 offers a little wider heel cup to accommodate bigger boots and lower medial wall for big tweaks like your typan. The Flex hinge 2.0 highbacks are torsionally pretty soft yet front to back offer great response.