Thanks for the feedback everyone.
I think I'm starting to lean toward the Never Summer SL at this point. Has anyone compared this board to the Lib Tech TRS or GNU Rider's Choice?
This might be a ridiculous question so go easy on me, but is there such thing as "too much board?" In other words, as an intermediate, would I be better off and have an easier time advancing on an intermediate board vs something like the SL or TRS?
You sound like my twin... 5'8", 150, east coast, and rides a Never Summer SL... well, not yet. Don't get a North Face jacket and 686 pants or people won't be able to tell us apart if we ride the same mountain.
"Too much" board can mean getting something super stiff or super long (insert phallic joke here
). A deck that is too much of both will force you to move more dynamically from the get go because during slow, static turns, you'll have to input a lot of energy for simple torsional twists from your front foot in order to steer. If your past that stage and ARE moving more dynamically, then getting a more "advanced" (read:stiffer) board won't be much of a problem. My very first board, as I stated above was a Never Summer SL. It ended up being perfect as, once I got the technique down pat, I was able to torsionally twist my lead foot for comfortable, slow static turns. I'm of the belief that if you got a super-soft rocker in the beginning, and you aren't disciplined, that can lead to using bad technique because of the effortless turning and catch free ride. You can get away with "ruddering" way more with noodle boards.
You say you're an intermediate, but that could mean a wide range of things. If you're just past the stage where you're linking slow static turns down greens or blues, then you're in the lower intermediate stage of riding. If you're starting to dynamically carve/skid down blues, and maybe some blacks, then I would say you're in a higher intermediate stage. Depending which stage you're at depends which boards you can use effectively.
After getting my SL, I wanted to charge down the mountains even faster, so I went and got a NS Raptor after my ~40th time up the mountain after I was comfortable dynamically carving/skidding down blues and some blacks. I'm glad I waited because if I got that board earlier, it could have lead to a lot of painful falls. Until I can go down moguls and steeper terrain dynamically carving, I won't consider myself an advanced rider, but I still am good enough to use and appreciate a more "advanced" board like the Raptor.