Best Splitboards 2021
Jones Solution Splitboard
The best all mountain splitboard that works as well riding in the backcountry as it does on groomers is the Jones Solution In years past the Jones Solution seemed a bit stiffer and more big mountain focused. For 2021 Jeremy Jones and his teamed designed a board that can be ridden every day throughout the season regardless of where you plan to ride.
Featuring a rocker/camber profile these Jones Splitboards have camber between the feet and a rockered tip and tail. The nose has more rocker for added float since according to Jeremy Jones “most falls in freeriding start from the nose of the board”.
The Jones Solution really likes to be ridden in deep snow with its directional shape blunt nose and just enough taper to keep the board in the backseat. Jones splitboards come in a splitboard package with custom fit Pomoca skins that integrate into the notches built into the tail of their boards. Jones Snowboards are some of the best men’s splitboard on the market and for good reason. They rip.
Best For: All Mountain Riding
Lib Tech Split BRD
Another splitboard on this list designed with touring in mind is the Lib Tech Split BRD. What you get here is C3 performance with camber-dominate splitboard that still has a little bit of rocker between the feet, it’s a Lib after all. With a Polina Wood core, the Lib Tech Split BRD offers a very lively, snappy ride on the descent. The real fun with this boards begins when you point it going downhill.
One of the best splitboards for ripping deep (think PNW) snow featuring a tapered shape, larger nose and early rise makes riding pow simple, fun and effortless. And for those of you riding in icy conditions, you have 7 Magne-Traction contact points that really bite into the snow. A great splitboard made in the United States, by snowboarders and splitboarders like you and I. Maybe a little weirder though.
Best For: Anyone wanted Splitboard made in the USA
Arbor Coda Splitboard
Year after year after year the Arbor Coda Rocker Splitboard makes our list of best splitboards of the year. For 2021 the Coda Splitboard from Arbor has won the award for the best powder splitboard. Riding powder is what we all search out while splitboarding this is this a board you’ll want to seriously consider. One of the best backcountry splitboards on this list, perfect for deep snow.
The Arbor Coda Splitboard is built on a parabolic rocker platform. This is ideal for shredding powder as the nose rocker gives insane float as the rocker continues to decrease towards the tail. When putting in a skin track in fresh snow the rocker performed well. However when the board was used in a heavily traveled skin track it slides back from time to time as most rocker splitboards do.
With a nice combination of wood, glass and carbon fiber this Arbor Splitboard has great pop, is easy to control and rides like a solid board.
Best For: Snowboarding Powder
Arbor Bryan Iguchi Pro Splitboard
Designed by Bryan Iguchi the Arbor Guch Splitboard focuses a little bit more on the touring side of things. Unlike the Coda above, the Guch Splitboard is built off a camber profile. It’s the sort of board you can ride and reminiscence to the 90’s. If you weren’t riding then, boards were stiffer, offered more pop and lots of power in the landings. Which is exactly the case with the Arbor Bryan Iguchi Splitboard.
On the way uphill the Guch Splitboard is a a beast, perfect for breaking trail, tail guiding and everything in between. With a parabolic camber profile and 4 additional Grip-Tech contact points you get some serious edge hold here. The only thing to keep in mind is with camber like this in a splitboard it was serious bite that might send you scorpin from time to time on these Arbor Splitboards. The trade off is incredible edge hold and stability you can trust at speed. This is a great men’s splitboard for burly hardcore riders looking for a big mountain splitboard.
Best For: Touring
Arbor Coda Camber Splitboard
You might be thinking another Arbor? For the first time the Arbor Coda Splitboard is now available in camber version. What this allows is incredible connection between your board and the snow with its Grip-Tech contact points along with a camber profile that makes touringa whole lot easier. I have had a love-hate relationship rockered version in the past. It rides so damn well, but had issues from time to time while touring on icy skin tracks. The rockered version, (mentioned above) is better for touring now but rocker can’t compete with camber on the skin track. Never has and never will.
As for going downhill, snowboards in the last few years have been built so playful and fun that most any board will be easy to ride going downhill especially in powder. The Arbor Coda is one of the all time top sellers in the Arbor line in it solid version, the splitboards ride pretty much exactly the same. Thanks to tons of lively wood inlaid throughout the board, the Coda Camber has tons of pop, can be used to hit jumps, spin and do everything the rockered version does. Riding “camber” isn’t the same as it was in the 90’s. Sure the boards are still stiff but they don’t ride like a 2×4 anymore.
Best For: Introduction to Camber
Burton Family Tree Hometown Hero
A directional camber splitboard that rides more like a twin-tiped rockered board. That’s the magic you get when riding the Burton brand’s new Family Tree Hometown Hero splitboard for 2021. This board offers confidence on the way up and down thanks to its camber profile. With a shorter tail and rockered nose this board just has a fun feel to it making it easy to maneuver and effortless to spin, this was an easy pick for best splitboard of the year. A staff favorite.
Mounting a set of Spark bindings to this board is a breeze thanks to Burton’s use of the Split Channel System. However, if you run Union Bindings you need to swap out the split channel hardware to standard Burton channel hardware. The channel hardware that originally comes with Burton split boards is raised above topsheet and doesn’t work with Union baseplates.
One thing to note: “This snowboard is no longer certified (FSC-C125149) due to a certifying error by FSC™.” does this really matter to the consumer?
Best For: Freestyle Snowboarding
Not Compatible with Union Bindings
Weston Hatchet Splitboard
The Weston Hatchet is guaranteed to blow your eyes out of their sockets when you see it. Double notched tips with enough girth to be ridden a few sizes down from your normal pow boards. This board’s extra surface area and directional twin shape is tailor-made for those casual, blower days when riding even low-angle pow is heavenly. The multi-radial twin camber profile still ensures you can turn when it gets all variable.
As an extra, the board’s sales benefit AIARE, just another way Weston is cementing its place as a champ in the backcountry. And with their unique combo of shape, cambers, and S Weave Carbon, you can rip every angle of bottomless on just a 152. Doesn’t get more unmatched than this. Weston Splitboards have become one of the favorites of our testing team, these guys are cranking out quality gear as of late.
Most Unique Splitboard Shape
Salomon Sickstick Splitboard
Overall the best splitboard of the year for 2020 / 2021 goes to Salmon for the Sickstick Splitboard. Only hiccup is Salomon decided to not bring this board to the market for 2021. Here’s what Salomon hd to say: “we did remove the Sick Stick Split from the line for W20, replacing it with the Salomon Taka ($799.99) a more powder oriented profile, complimented by the Speedway, a more efficient touring shape. Apologies for any confusion.”
I have waited years to ride this board as something about the shape and performance always caught my eye. It’s shaped by Wolfgang Nyvelt, a guy that’s always super inspiring to watch ride. One of the board features that none of the others on the list do is the use of PLUM hardware.
The Salomon Sickstick features a Rock Out Camber profile that’s flat between the bindings, which is perfect for touring. Camber underfoot for that added bite on the way up and a rockered tip and tail for increased float in powder. Another added bonus this splitboard comes with pre-cut Pomoca skins that lock into the notches cut into the tail of the board. If you can find it, even used this is a great splitboard.
TahoeLabs PowFish Phantom Splitboard
When you need the most powerful, stiffest, sharpest, lightest board for the rowdiest conditions, TahoeLabs’ PowFish is your weapon of choice. Carbon camber takes a lot of power in the rider to control but if you’ve got it, and you like to go fast, this plank will carve the hardest ice and turn on a dime, hold speed at mach 2, absorb the heaviest drops and ask for more.
On the up, its lightness and stiffness ensures that you can move fast and light uphill with extra stability, keeping you charged on the up to slay it on the downhill. The TahoeLabs Phantom PowFish is a board to accompany hard-charging heavies on big missions into the high alpine meeting every condition on the way down. Just be warned of carbon splitboard durability issues if your tough on your gear you may want a different board from the list.
Best Carbon Splitboard
All of these splitboards will sell out this season. Get em before they are gone… This winter there really won’t be any cheap splitboards available. Most of these boards are fetching top prices.
Hi Mike, I’ve been considering buying a splitboard for about 2 years now. I wasn’t quite sure if I would use it or or I get caught. Currently out of season, prices are very low for the purchase of setup. Im looking between two boards – Rome Uprise 165 cm boards (for about € 419 for about $ 450) and Capita Neo Slasher 164 cm (for about € 470 for about $ 500).
I am most interested in Rome Uprise because it looks like more oriented as allmountain board but there are no reviews anywhere and I see that you have it in the photos (so it was probably the subject of your testing and also in the video (in terms of spitboard bindings). But you did not publish a review of him anywhere.
Zaujimalo by ma ci sa zlepsila odolnost (zivotnost) oproti Rome Whiteroom.
So far, I have mostly driven in resorts. I drive 25 years mostly allmountain on stiffer boards Rossignol Jonas 160cm (stiffnes 10/10) and now I bought Jones UMT (9/10). My net weight is 92kg, height 182cm (5,97ft). I’m looking for a stable board for fast and controllable crossings over Allmountain and also backcountry in powder (more on allmountain focus).
Thank you for the detailed answer.
(sorry for my English)
Great review, thanks Mike!
Just curious about your thoughts on top boards for good uphill performance (multi-day tours/mountaineering). Particularly hoping for good performance on steep uphill traverses.
Currently thinking about the Arbor Coda Camber based on your review or the Amplid Milligram. Any thoughts?
Hi Mike, I`m looking for a new Splitboard to update my battered Jones Solution 2016. Since it would be a bit boring to buy the Solution again I think about getting the Arbor Iguchi. Do you think thats a good idea? What differences can I expect from the Igutchi Split? (On ascent and decent)
Thanks for your help!
Hi Mike. Enjoyed your article and reviews. Where would you direct a 6ft 1 rider that has size 11.5 and is about 210? Im in Australia and most of by BC touring will be in Japan on powder, and maybe the odd trip to our very average ski regions here in Oz. I can get my hands on a Weston Carbon Backwoods in 160 or 163. I was also considering the Jones solution 162W, Brian Iguchi Pro Camber in 162 or 163MW, or a Ride Splitpig 154.
I was considering the the Hovercraft split, but was concerned about the length of the nose tip and tighter turning in trees. Ive also heard that the splitpig can washout out a bit because of its profolie and is harder in ascent mode because of the width and shortness.
Any input would be appreciated.
Curious between the Coda camber and rocker, which you prefer and why! I’ve got an older Abacus which I love but have been leaning towards the Coda camber to replace it. I’m curious on how much pow capability might be given up on the camber versus rocker. Thank you!
I’m in a dilemma for my first split. I used to live in Japan for the past few years but now back in Eastern Canada, I’ll see less powder day everyday and more glacier days…
I’m riding a Drake Battle 164 for Japow. (spear head and super setback stance). Loved the setback feeling as don`t usually ride switch anyway or freestyling and I was trilled by the “steer it like a surf” feeling. Although, almost worthless on hard snow.
I was thinking the Weston Backwoods Split (160 maybe) to go midway with my former all mountain board. There used to be plenty of nice comments back in the days, but seems it got down or out of the top lists in the last few years or so, not sure why. Will the Backwoods serve its purpose other than my very occasional deep powder trips elsewhere?
I was also considering a middle rocker type for my woody and icy mountains, like the Lib Tech Orca split (thinking a 156 this time). I know the tracking might get compromised by its wider waist and middle rocker, but not sure how bad. Do I underestimate the climbing qualities over the downhill feeling?
Was maybe looking at the Jones Solution, but might be too stiff for me.
The sizing is also a challenge as I’m only 5’8 but 185lb with US11 boots, not sure I want to go with a wide for the climbing.
Couple mentions of difficulty with camber boards in the skin track. Do you have any articles talking about this?
I’ve found that my board breaks through skin tracks more often than others (flight attendant, now hometown x) and it seems like the board sort of bananas and loses the weight distribution. Is that what you’re referring to?
Where is the best place to buy second hand snowboards and how do you determine if the board is still in good shape other than obvious chips or cracks. Thank you for your insight.
Looking to put together my first split setup. Wondering if you ever got on the Taka split or had a recommendation for sizing. I am 5’9″ ~145pounds no gear. Wasn’t sure between the 155 and 158.
My solid setup is a Prior Khyber 156 with Union Forces and Vans Highcountry and hellbound and I really enjoy it.
I was also eyeing the Spark Surges as what I read flex wise was they would be closer to the Forces, do you think I will be okay going that route despite being on the lighter end?
Thanks for your help
Have you tried the Orca split? I currently have a earlier model Jones Solution 162 split and feeling the toe drag(size 12 boot). I’ve got a 156 orca that I love and first board I didn’t have to get in a wide and was thinking of moving to the Orca split.
You missed out on Telos!! I’ve been using them for over a year now and there’s no comparison to their ultralight splitboards in market.
Did you get a chance to demo the Taka Splitboard?
Kinda funny that you dislike the Neversummer Splitboards (review of NS Atom) with the rocker/camber profile and on the top 9 Splitboards the Arbor Coda, build on a rocker platform, is 2nd best.
You mention that the Arbor Coda and all other rocker splitboards have problems when going through skin traveled tracks, wonder why they could score so high on this top list.
Hey man, was hoping you could help me with a sizing question… I’m ready to pull the trigger on my first splitboard but I’m torn between the Jones solution or the Jones hovercraft split. I really like the idea of 3D base/nose on the solution but then like how nimble the hovercraft sounds…
I’m 5’11, 175lb-180lb ish without gear, wear a vans size 9 boot, and currently riding a 156 niche story. I’m pretty happy with the 156 size but the size guide on the Jones website says I should be on a 161 solution and I’m wondering if 161 would be too big for me? or if the 158 would sacrifice too much float?? or if I should grab the split hovercraft to keep a similar length??
Orrrrr maybe the Bryan iguchi split lol??
And if you have any binding suggestions I’m all ears as well!
Looking forward to the advice, Thanks a lot:)!
Thanks for all the great insight…
Got a Jones Solution 164 last years. Im 6ft and 200lbs.
Looking for a stiffer splitboard for this year… Any suggestions? I ride a Burton Custom X on the hill.
Question about women’s split boards. I had planned to demo some solid boards (that have a split option) and then well- 2020. I’ve been riding NS for some time- Lotus, Aura and now Lady West (a brief stint on a High Society, playful but too soft). I’m dealing with some recovery issues from an injury, so no early season demos for me, and by the time I’m ready to go I’m concerned my choices will be limited. I’m looking towards Jones since I know the profile is better for climbing and float, but also the opposite profile to what I’m used to. Opinion between Dream Catcher and Solution? I know the Solution is more aggressive and designed for big mountain terrain, but is it good for mixed and mellow backcountry? I know the Dream Catcher is more playful, but still solid if someone wants to ride it more aggressively? I would love any guidance you have to offer.
hey mike, do you ever tested the amplid milligram? i heard it should be the best split on planet can you say somthing about it?
Any experience with Prior Slasher? I’m 6’, 200lbs been riding for 20+ years. Looking for a new split this year and having a hard time choosing one. So many options…been looking at the Prior Slasher carbon in a 161 or 167 or the Jones Hovercraft in a 160. I ride a lot of backcountry in BC’s interior, mostly tree riding and always deep. Nice vid of WH20 btw, and love the NOFX soundtrack. I’ve ridden almost every inch of that mountain. Can’t wait for this season to start!!!!
Have you tried out the Black Diamond Goat? I’m thinking about switching to a split board, currently riding a Niedecker megalight, probably about ten years old, how would it compare to a split board
Thank you for your awesome and thorough reviews of all the available splits. I have a question about the Flight Attendant X. Some reviews claim that the added carbon has indeed made the board light for uphill travel, but sacrifices performance on the way down. I have read some reports that say the board (especially the tail) is too stiff and its hard to slash and turn the board like you would a non-X version of the F.A. I was wondering if you had any thoughts on this? Or, was the board that light on the uphill that you could look past some minor downhill stiffness?
This is a lot of great info to absorb. I’m looking to buy my first split board for the northeast. I have a normal jones explorer, but I’d like to start touring around and think I should get a Splitboard that might be a little different from my Jones to change it up. Any suggestions on what would rip down the fresh groomers, but also tear apart a backcountry deep pow day?
Looking to by my first split, I have narrowed down to either jones frontier, mountain twin or lib brd.
I would like to be able to use it for backcountry in New Zealand and japan so good for big lines and nimble enough for trees.
Love love love your article – thank you for all the reviews. I am riding Arbor Poparazzi now (150), and I am trying to decide on my first splitboard now. I was looking into Arbor Swoon 152 vs Jones Dream Catcher 151. I do not have specific needs, I just love riding! 🙂 Which of those 2 would you recommend? Or would you suggest something else?
And as far as bindings – I looked into Spark R&D: their Womens Arc is out of stock, and their Womens Surge is available in M/L size only, and I am right in between their sizes (in shoes I am 8.5-9), and their XS/S : 5-8.5, and M/L – 9-11. Do you think it is OK for me to buy Men’s Arc n Medium?
Thank you in advance
Hi Mike, thanks for the reviews. Im heading to Hakuba Japan next week and I will be there for 2-3 months. Im going to be doing some back country touring and I am wanting to buy my first splitboard setup. I want something surfy that is great in powder and trees. My height is 5″5, weight 143lbs, boot size US 7. I have the 150 Jones Mind Expander but I am wanting to add a splitboard to my quiver. What splitboard would you recommend that I can buy in Japan?
Cheers for your help 🙂
Mike, thanks for the reviews. Looking for advice on splitboard upgrade. Have ridden Jones Solution and Venture Storm in the past. Both hard chargers and super stable but I’m looking for something a bit more playful and nimble for trees and powder. Also important that it tours well (camber underfoot?) and handles variable snow. Looking at Weston Backwoods, Prior Khyber, or Hovercraft. Any thoughts between those boards? Or something else I should look at? Thanks!
I was seeing if you enjoy the family tree flight attendant x over the jones carbon solution split for someone who likes to charge fast but also mainly riding powder.
Thanks for the info. I own a Jones Solution and have never had it in deep pow. How do you think it will handle the deep? Also it’s a 2014 I think. Has the design changed much since then?
Hi! I read your article and really appreciate the pointers here! I am a woman and am trying to buy my first split set up this season, and was wondering if you had any pointers on which board is best if I’m just looking for something that’ll give a smooth ride, be easy to manipulate (turn/carve- not stiff) and is forgiving with catching edges?
Regarding the Amplid- they moved their production away from Austria to east Asia and had some production issues. Indeed, the first board I had de-laminated after a few days out. They were super good with the warranty and sent a new one right away with no questions asked. New board is fine so far. That being said, the board some seem somewhat delicate.
The performance is simply spectacular, though. It is amazing going up due to the light weight, stiffness and camber. Downhill it was really surprising- it feels stiff yet playful / surfy. Worth a try, if you like to do lots of vertical and still want to rip on the downhill.
Hey, just wonder if you have demoed any of the korua splits or amplid splits?
I/m planning on making a switch to splitboarding. I usually ride Telluride, Crested Butte, and hike as well. Not big into freestyle. I would like an all mountain board. Which would be the best and do the split boards come with step on bindings or what would be the recommended bindings to use? Thanks
I really wanted to get the goldmember split as I love the goldmember board but I’ve heard it’s a little sketchy and loose on the way up and touring. Does anybody have thoughts on this?
Hi Mike, thanks for all the great reviews! Are you going to post a full review for the Jones MTN twin? I am wondering how it does on the up and also how reactive it is edge to edge on the down?
I’m confused, the article says Top Splitboards for 2019 but has last years Signal split.
Thanks for the nice review. Any chance you wil or could test West Snowboards Grammont, Korua Shapes Tranny Split and Cafe Racer Split Plus?
Solid list. Could you also list which semi prominent boards you didn’t test? It’s hard to know if a board is missing from the list because it sucks or because you just didn’t try it. Voile, Never Summer and others come to mind. Maybe list the others you did test but didn’t make the top 10. Thanks!
Hahow about adding the Lib Tech BRD? I’m dying for an honest review on this mystical creature from the Northwest. I had the GNU Beast from 15-16 season and would like to know if it has any resemblance.
Never ridden the GNU Beast split but I have the Split BRD and it rips! Reminds me a lot of riding my SPAM but a little bit faster. The set back stance, big nose, and slightly less stiff make it a super fun pow ride.
Where’s the split bean at?
Split Bean review to follow sometime Fall 18
I have one. It is pure phfunnnnn! Any coffee roasting splitboarder isn’t worth beans without one… hehehee…
we started reviewing coffee… just sayin’