We love mountains

My thoughts and experiences cycling, snowboarding and travelling around the world

Gear reviews

View down into Yoho national  park

Putting together a Burton Freebird splitboard

I have used a lot of kit and have worked in gear shops for a few years. So I thought I would share what I think works and what I think doesn’t work.

I have ridden lots of bikes and tested/owned a fair few snowboards, I also like light weight kit so this is what the bulk of my reviews will be.

My current snowboards are;

Ride Highlife UL – This rides like a dream, super stable at speed. It is super light so you hardly notice it boot packing or hiking with it on your back. It is certainly a stiff board for experts, it has to be carved and ridden straight. On powder it is superb, floats well and super responsive for hitting multiple pillows or big drops into deep stuff. It does have some pretty major negatives; it is thin and weak hence how it is so light, I have cracked the heel edge about 5 times. The soft light steel edges also wear fast, so grip on ice is limited. If you only use it on powder then it is fine otherwise not worth the money!

Rome Agent – A great all round intermediate board. Strong as houses, plenty of pop, hits kickers well. I use it as a jib board but not really soft enough for presses etc. I like it but doesn’t really excel at anything, but then it is not bad at anything. It is too soft to handle at speed, not bad in powder but there are better boards. Overall a great progression board.

Jones Flagship – Well this is a mixed one, I had last years and it was pretty sketchy, no real camber as advertised gave it a unstable feel at speed like most K2 or certain flat base Ride boards. However I returned the board and got a 2013/14 model and the difference is night and day. The camber is more defined and has a slightly longer effective edge, and now it rails. It has super grip on ice cuts through crud hucks cliffs like there not there, rips up powder so easily and feels so stable you can text at the same time!

Burton Freebird – This is my third splitboard. It is also my favourite.It is a little but soft but otherwise spot on. The base like most Burtons is strong and fast. The Camrock profile of the Freebird is the only option to consider for a split board, skining up on a reverse camber split from Libtec, GNU or Never Summer? Have you tried it? Well it is sketchy. If the ride down is always on powder or if you like going slow then reverse camber or the moustache shape rocker might work. If you push the limits and ride fast camber or camrock is the only option. It is stable at speed and the camber pushes the contact points into the snow to help gain traction on those scary skin tracks. I have ridden both flat camber or reverse camber and they can be turned easier, they let you get away with poorer technique but they just wobble about at speed.





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