Why do certain terrain park features stop working when it gets too cold?



So I’ve been snowboarding for 23 years, and been riding in the park for about 8 now. But it’s a particularly cold day here in Quebec city. When I tried hitting some of the boxes during my first ride through, I nearly fell over the nose of my board because it stuck like velcro… I’ve had this happen to me before, but I’m curious as to what causes it.
I’m also curious as to what tempurature does this happen at, so that I can plan accordingly in the future… do other environmental condition effect it? (Eg. Humidity, sun exposure, ext…)

Thanks again guys for helping me understand. 🙂

In: Physics

Same reason your board needs wax and different waxes work better in different temps and conditions. Boarding involves the interplay of water, ice, metal, plastics, and waxes.

I’m gonna guess that at cold enough temps, the thin layer of water on your board freezes to the rail or box nearly instantly, or the wax sticks, or the metal of your edge directly contacts the metal of the rail and steel on steel without lube makes a ton of friction. At warmer temps, a thin layer of water and wax provides lubrication and keeps you sliding.

Notice how at temps below freezing but very close to it, the boxes are super duper slick? That’s because a layer of ice builds up, but the top layer is water, and as the parking lot shows your drunk buddy (or self), water on top of ice is nearly frictionless.