K2 Simple Pleasures Review
Our Analysis and Test Results
After the first turn on the K2 Simple Pleasures, we were hooting and hollering as we railed turns down a black diamond run of perfect corduroy. We will remember the turns we could hold on this board for a while — they were that incredible. We could go fully on edge without encountering heel drag on our size eight boot. This is attributed to the volume shifted profile of the snowboard. Volume shifted snowboards are shorter and wider to achieve the same stability of a longer, narrower board.
The primary benefit is that it mitigates toe or heel drag, which changes the ride of the board to require a little more effort to get up on edge. The added effort takes some getting used to on smooth snow, but it is incredible when you tune into it. It becomes a set it and forget it edging style when turning. The width of the board can be challenging in bumpy snow or rutted out powder areas because you can get bucked around. In slush, we were able to surf around and coexist with the inconsistency of the snow surface, thanks to the short tail and surfy shape.
The shape of this board is designed for carving and making beautiful arcs all over the mountain. Its camber profile and complimentary sidecut help create powerful turns of any radius and style. We felt the board was consistent in its turning power and accelerated out of the turns; the shape created a board that turns and turns well. However, its flex pattern was underwhelming.
While the flex was consistent through a turn, it lacks the liveliness that is responsible for in turn sensation and finishing acceleration. This board absolutely rails, which makes the experience fun despite a bland flex pattern. We reached for this model often because of its edging prowess. The Simple Pleasures board should appeal to anyone who wants to lay beautiful lines around the mountain.
Float in Powder
The Simple Pleasures brings the simplicity and elegance back to low angle snowboarding. Its shape and design bode well for float to be able to ride low angles than possible with some other boards in the category. This board has a wide waist width, shorter tail, and long rockered nose to strategically map out the surface area of the snowboard. The surface area is one of the main components of floatation and a key to minimizing back leg fatigue. Its short and volume shifted profile allows the Simple Pleasures to be incredibly nimble in tight areas, thus very enjoyable to ride in the trees. Overall, this board would please any powder enthusiast.
Stability at Speed
At higher speeds and in firm conditions, the Simple Pleasure is an impressively stable turning platform. We found the volume shifted platform and stiff nose to support a lot of power and speed. The board resisted chatter very well when straight-lining and turning; its stiff flex was able to plow through bumps, while the tail was reliable enough to catch our weight when we needed it most.
This model is playful on edge but less playful in flex. We were able to surf, slash, and ollie around the mountain in a playful style. However, it was less playful in regards to butters, due to its camber and stiff flex. The nose is pretty hard to flex in butters. If you're looking for a playful and buttery ride, better boards can suit your needs.
Pop and Jumping
This board is fun to get in the air, as its long nose becomes a platform to load your ollie. If you're not used to popping off a smaller tail, it will take some getting used to because there is less to lean on. The tail is quite stiff and has a strong pop to help your ollies and jumping. When we landed backseat, we were able to recover more often than not due to the stiffness of the tail.
The Simple Pleasures offers a turning experience and unique ride that supports its value statement. We think it can change your outlook on the mountain. K2 is a widely available snowboard brand, and with some searching around, you are likely to get a good deal on this board.
Thanks to its wide waist width and stiffer camber profile, the K2 Simple Pleasures might change the way you look at turning. It provides a stable ride for strong arcing turns but allows you to slash and surf the mountain. This board is a great choice for intermediate to advanced riders looking to add to their quiver to carve and surf the mountain in whatever condition they may find themselves in.
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