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I have been stuck between the flagship and the explorer. I actually have demoed both boards, but the snow was in such bad conditions that I could not get a genuine impression, which is why I am posting here. Still, I loved them both, but for different reasons.

I am looking for a board that I can use as my general board (I do not have a quiver, at least for now -- so this will be the only board I am using, aside from my old worn out Arbor). I do not care much for the park (though it is always nice to play around) and I really enjoy going fast and riding in the trees. I found that the flagship perfectly played into this, but when I was riding the Explorer, I just had such a great turning experience and carving was just a lot of fun. I do most my boarding (unwillingly) in harder and icier snow, though I do travel around to Utah and Colorado once a season or so to get nice powder. So I want a board that can basically do it all and handle all conditions. I am an intermediate to advanced free rider who enjoys doing the hardest runs and being tired/sore by the end of each day!

What are your guys' thoughts? Or if you know of any other boards I should consider, that would be great too (I have been looking a bit into the Yes Standard, Arbor Iguchi, Burton Custom, etc) Thanks!
 

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Begintermediate rider,... I bought the Flagship, rode it at Boyne, one of our better hills here in MI.

My experience was that It's sweet as hell going Balls Out on the steeps. But once it slows down, it's so stiff it becomes cumbersome to turn. And since here in MI "Steep & Deep" runs are rare and rather short, it really wasn't worth keeping for that.

I returned it to REI and picked up the 162 Explorer. I Love that board!! Fast, stable, nimble, still stiff but not too stiff. Can't say enough good things about it.

In the spirit of full disclosure,... When I purchased the FS. I was still riding very soft, one size too big boots, on reflex Cartels. So, LOTS of flex, probable heel & foot movement, etc. etc. Probably not the ideal set up for that particular rig. :dunno: :laugh: Now I switched all of that same set-up over to the Explorer afterward and loved riding it.

I have since picked up much stiffer, 1/2 size smaller pair of sb boots and have replaced the oem padded Asym straps of my reflex Cartels with the GenesisX hammock style ankle straps.

This set-up is much more responsive and I prefer it now. Hard to say how I would have felt about keeping the FS if I'd tested it out with this setup. :shrug:

My 2¢! :hairy:
 

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Came here to tag Chomps, but his spider senses must have been tingling :grin:

I haven't ridden either, but all accounts I've read, and what it's designed for, scream that the flagship needs speed to be enjoyed. If you want to have fun going slower sometimes, seems the explorer is the better option.
 
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Flagship is pretty burly. Great for hauling ass. Not the most fun for choppy, moguled out terrain. Haven't ridden the explorer but it's probably more of an all around riding type of board from what I've heard.
 

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The Explorer had a much better sidecut for general resort riding.

Other notables I'd look at, Weston Big Chief, Ride Timeless, Burton Deep Thinker, Yes PYL, DC Supernatant.
 

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The Explorer had a much better sidecut for general resort riding.
The sidecut is only a (small) part of it. In fact, the sidecut is not so different. But most people can't bend the Flag sufficiently to tighten the sidecut. So it is combination of flex, sidecut and some other points (shape of the contact points etc).
 
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