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A couple of issues back we tested the Big Mama of the Pocket Air range. Coming in at 117 liters, it proved itself an impressive board for starting out on, or for heavier riders. We were particularly impressed with the weight of the board and thought that it was one of the most impressive entries we had seen to the wing board market. It was, however, a big board – so we requested a small one to see how it performed at the more intermediate/advanced end of the spectrum! Enter the 67 liter… This comes in at 6.4kg so again a respectable weight and, paired with a full carbon foil set up, is super lightweight and easy to carry around.
The smaller Pocket Air is a ‘compact’ board, coming in at a 137cm in length, with the bulk of the volume tucked away in its generous thickness. Its relatively square nose provides more volume as well as more buoyancy upfront, while the tail has a distinctive step up through the end section. The board has a fish-style tail and the rocker is relatively continuous although flattens out completely through the back third of the board.
On the water and this 67l can be knee started – not by a beginner, but if you understand the movements, it provides more stability than you would expect for a sub 70l board. It is relatively short and stubby and this width provides a little extra space and enables a wider stance with your knees so you can lock in and get to your feet quite comfortably. Of course the more power you have, the easier this is… Once you are on your feet the Pocket Air immediately feels super solid and stiff and you feel nicely connected with the foil. With the pulled in tail there is less board in contact with the water once you start planing, and we then found that it popped up onto the foil quicker than other boards in this bracket.
Up on the foil and the supplied foot straps are comfortable and the strap placement is spot on. The board feels solid and lively and – if you’re moving down from an 85+ liter board then it feels small and responsive. For touch downs, the wide nose is forgiving if you land flat, and for jumps if you land square then it begins tracking again immediately and is an excellent platform for this… In the surf, the boxier shape is less forgiving and it is easier to catch the nose while riding a wave but the shorter length also makes this less likely…
Overall an excellent board for an aspiring intermediate who still wants to be able to knee start but wants the benefits of less board under their feet. The step in the tail ensures a super crisp take off and overall we found the Pocket Air 65l as impressive and suitable for its target audience as its bigger brother. AH