Report from the SIA Snowsports Trade Show 2012

Published on Friday, 03 February 2012 17:57 , Written by Chris Gallardo

Arbor is stoked to offer a splitboard next year after many requests from their riders and customers. The Abacus split is a directional twin with bamboo sidewalls and a reclined parabolic rocker shape. Boards come with Karakoram tip/tail/hook hardware. Look for a review soon!

The patent on the beloved Black Diamond FlickLock is up so you'll see lots of other pole systems producing their own versions of the mechanisms next year. As such, BD has improved and revamped their design. It's now primarily made of metal making the already bomber design even more durable and less likely to loosen. The Compactor pole was cool to see in person and while it does collapse small enough to fit in your pack, they do not provide much in the way of adjustment range, specifically on the shorter side. Good for standard tours but if your skintrack ends with a steep bootpack you'll wish you had your shorter 3-section Expedition poles. A good excuse to have a BD pole quiver I reckon.

Pete at Unity has been making splitboards for a number of years and was great to meet in person. Unity will be offering their Dominion splitboard again next year (the split I rode all last year and loved) as well as their Whale splitboard which features a powder-specific shape. Boards come with Voile tip/tail/hook hardware. Special thanks to for the pic!

Burton's history in splitboarding is long and deep going back 10+ years. In the early 2000's, largely in part at the request of the late Craig Kelly, Burton introduced their own interface and splitboard line. At the time there was literally only a couple other companies (Voile, Duotone) selling splitboards and while Burton's interface had it's woes, their interest and innovation in the sport was huge. Burton's interest in splitboarding has swayed a little over the years since then but I commend them for keeping at least one splitboard model in their line over the years. For 2013 it appears the candle has been lit again with the introduction of two new splitboard models to compliment their Freebird splitboard. Burton will offer a women's splitboard called the AntiSocial based on their women's Social board. They'll also be making a split version of their popular Nug shape called the Spliff. Boards come with Voile tip/tail/hook hardware.

Top - Spliff, AntiSocial, FreebirdBottom - The Family Tree, the boards in the line that are more about snowboarding and less about making money

Jeff from Burton also showed me the new Riglet system. My current home mountain Sierra at Tahoe is one of the only resorts to offer this program and the special park. The boards are super soft underfoot, bindings are easy to get in to, and the board features a towing string making it easy for the littlest of shredders to get started. Now your little one can start riding as early as 2 or 3 instead of 4-5. Look for more on this from us soon.