We’ve been working on a new Gaia deck for quite some time now, and we are stoked to finally present it to the world. The Gaia has been a staple in the Pantheon lineup since 2015 as our premier freeride deck, and we are now at version 4! Four years into its existence with immeasurable feedback leads us to a more refined Gaia than ever–one that is more beautiful, more multi-functional, and less cumbersome for virtually any style of skateboarding, from your cruise through the neighborhood to bombing the steepest mountains in Colorado, to freeride and freestyle skating.
This year’s Gaia features a 0.2″ modified crescent drop, hidden within the board’s rails to create super clean lines that both look smooth and fast and feel less intrusive. You will notice obvious places to stand, where your feet are really locked in the pockets, but the concave hardly forces you into them. It’s much more free flowing and surfy than the older models with wheel flares–ideal for freeride and flowy downhill–and it lets you stand close to being right on top of the trucks if that’s your style. The Gaia doesn’t separate the tail from the rest of the deck as much as previous models or other decks with a specific center platform and kicktail. And this board does have POP.
The taper is as close to our version of “perfect” as our experience has been able to produce. The shape of the deck forces a surfy stance, and with your front foot placement at about 45 degrees and toe in the drop, your heel will drop right into the fattest part of the board at 9.6 inches. The rear foot placement will depend on comfort. The deck is right at 8.5 inches wide at the base of the rear drop, so if you’re freeriding and or predrifting and dropping back to stick your toe in the drop, you will have a combination of rail feel and drop leverage to really push the deck around. Finding a way to get these specs to both look and feel right is why we are on V4, and as sweet as the old Gaia decks have been in the past, we are definitely in a superior space with this new mold and shape.
THE MOLDRegarding mold changes, we wrote a blog on this, speaking about what we are calling the board-mold “handshake.” The Gaia, more than ever, was designed with a customized, very specific shape in mind, specifically for this mold, and the mold was designed specifically for this deck profile. In fact, if you shaped this board any differently, it wouldn’t look or feel the way this board is made to look and feel, and the difference would be pretty drastic. The complexities of why this is special are many, and some riders will place more value on it than others. But as we’ve been designing longboards for about 8 years now, the demands we place on ourselves to continue to push the envelope have put us in this space where we really just want PERFECTION. It is unlikely that we will change this mold again, but as always, we will continue to listen to feedback from riders all over the world who have real world experience on our decks, and we will respond appropriately.
Gaia Deck Specs:
Purpose: Downhill / Freeride Skating with a Cruiser Vibe
Construction: 7 ply Maple Core, Biaxial Carbon Fiber Top and Bottom
Length: 37 inches (94 cm)
Width: 9.6 inches (24.5 cm)
Wheelbase: 24.5 – 25.5 inches (62.25 – 64.75 cm)
Drop: 0.2″ (0.5 cm)