Forums Splitboard Talk Forum The Flats… why I gave up snowboarding!!
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  • #567424
    13 Posts

    Hey Splitboarders out there- I want some input.

    I recently sold my splitboard for a pair of randonee skis for the backcountry- (don’t hate on me too much.. read on)..

    I am an expert rider and a intermediate skier.. why then would I make the switch? Don’t you want to be on top of your game for backcountry riding? I like shredding with my board waaaay more than turning on skis. Then why the switch?

    The problem with my splitboard was the flat sections- you know, the ones between downhill stretches? I absolutely resented having to struggle through snow with one foot on the board and one off while my skier friends glided past with mocking faces.

    How do you guys deal with such situations?

    Has anyone tried to make a telemark turn with the splitboard skis? That is the only viable solution I can think of: after the steeps (and you know it’s flattened out) then you just gotta ski down the rest!?!

    Let me know what’s goin on>

    4150 Posts

    stick to skiing…its way better for the flat sections.


    13 Posts

    but snowboarding is sooooo much better for the steeps.. linking turns on a board is way better!! I wonder if there’s some kinda way to make tele turns on the split skis.. so that way I can actually make turns once I take my board apart..

    any ideas?

    47 Posts

    ski your split through the flats, but better yet, avoid flat sections if possible. ski mode is sort of fun for flat non-tech. sections! they must be really long flats to warrant a switch, IMO.

    79 Posts

    i’ve contemplated getting a pair of verts or trying to make something even lighter for quick changes to traverse short flat sections or when you get stuck in tight trees. anything so you are not postholing past your knees. it would be cool if it had a step in binding like the voile mountain plates. probably not worth the weight on the pack for most tours though.

    21 Posts

    Stop Crying! It comes with the package! If it were easy, everybody would be doing it!

    4150 Posts

    @plark42 wrote:

    any ideas?

    @plark42 wrote:

    snowboarding is sooooo much better for the steeps.. linking turns on a board is way better!!

    You just answered your own question. 😉

    And for those that share the same sentiment, skiing just isn’t an option. Neither skiing nor snowboarding is perfect, snowboards suck in the flats and skis don’t surf the earth like a snowboard. Life is a series of compromises.

    I would also echo what butryon said, its best to avoid the flats in the first place. Of course they are not always avoidable but you know what we mean. Sometimes skiers don’t really understand this when traveling with snowboarders so a little discussion and route selection can make the trip more pleasurable for everyone. You aren’t wallowing and they aren’t waiting.

    For the times when it isn’t avoidable, being ultra fast with your conversion also helps. Switching over might take a moment or two on both ends but the amount of energy and time it will save you will be huge. Just yesterday I had o skin up for a flat section while my skiing friends skated. No big deal for either of us.

    What is a nuisance is the rolling tours when there are small flat sections followed by steeper sections. I usually just go by the distance, snow conditions, and energy level. If its supportable snow I just boot the small flat section. If its bottomless pow, short, and I’m feeling like a stud, I’ll just bite the bullet and wallow to catch up. (see old powderhouse TR from last year)

    As for the tele turn thing. Learning to ski in split mode is a good skill for these exact scenarios. I don’t really try to tele, I just use parallel turns and go slow so I don’t crash. Sometimes this approach can also take more energy than just switching over modes too.

    Use your best judgment, have fun, and learn from your mistakes. 🙂

    112 Posts

    I am learning to ski on my splitboard…courtesy of OldMan. I must say it is a good tool to have in the toolbox. I’ve been fortunate enough to see why it is good, too.

    For example, a couple weeks ago we had a 3-4 mile approach on a relatively flat trail. It was steep enough to constitute skins on the way in, but not for the trip out. And to snowboard-skate 3-4 miles back would…suck. So, we skied out. It was cool because I got to practice ski-skating. I still suck, but I know with some practice I’ll get it down.

    The only downfall I’ve seen is that my brackets bend after prolonged use. But, that’s nothing that a leatherman can’t fix.

    Maybe oldman will share some insight as well…

    13 Posts

    this is true.. but this is by far the biggest drawback for splitboards.. what’s the fastest turnaround out there for a person to go from riding to touring? ever timed yourself?

    how do the split skis perform in terms of making turns/stopping? My previous splitboard was one from a split kit.. I buzzed an old K2 in half so I didn’t have the luxury of inside metal edges..

    I guess there’s no avoiding the one foot off/one foot on mode of transportation when there’s a bump in the terrain. It just sucks a fat one and wastes a lot of energy that could be used elsewhere.

    I guess I am just bellyachin’.. anyone out there have any suggestions for avoiding the one foot on/off posthole scenario?

    4150 Posts

    @plark42 wrote:

    this is by far the biggest drawback for splitboards..

    Maybe I’m missing something….

    I think you mean the biggest drawback for snowboards. With splitboards you can split the board into skis so you don’t have to wallow. With a snowboard that’s just not an option.

    ps. inside metal edges and a stiffer splitboard (non DIY) will really help.

    pss. if I really try I can transition my board into either mode in most conditions in about 1.5minutes. There are lots of little tricks you can learn both with the product itself and by getting to the top or flat spot first so you are a moment ahead of your partners.

    47 Posts

    i ski mine a lot, turns and all. the tele turn, well, it happens when it’s mellow, but mostly it’s survival skiing. ya know, pizza(wedge) and french fries (parallel). the inside edge thing on the diy’s will skate just like a production split. personally i like my diy better than my production, but in touring mode they are the same, minus size diff. you will never be as fast as a skier, but you can be close. depending on fitness, kick ass by far enough to give you the xtra time 😛
    p.s. i don’t know to many people who switch back, seems illogical

    22 Posts

    I’m on my first split this season and have been having all the trials and tribulations, but I’ve decided 90% of the hassel with the flats is avoided with good route selection, knowledge of the terrain and picking key times to switch/boot it… I have no problem keep up to skiers unless its a long flat groomer…. who rides those anyways???

    I will be investing in the sking side of touring soon for the icier traverses and if/when i get into the guide industry…

    668 Posts

    Sometimes keeping your poles in your hands helps if you know the flat spot is coming, especially if you can get in some skier’s tracks (yes, skis are good for something)

    288 Posts

    My solution to keeping up with skiers: Go on long enough tours so that the transitions are used as a breather as well as a switching period. When you’re really tired, you want the transition to take more time, not less 🙂

    If you keep the skins on for the steeper skiing sections (within reason), you will be slower but the speeds and turns can be a lot more manageable.

    66 Posts

    Ive had simmilliar issues and found skiing the splitboard in split mode really isnt that hard. I dont Tele turn I just lean back on the heals so they stay put and ski from the bask seet. I think the fact that Im a far better skier then snowboarder helps. Ive also found that using your poles while riding works well. Carrying poles while riding most of the time doesnt bother me, once again skier thing, I would recomend shortening them up quite a bit from your touring length so as not to get them stuck. I have considered trading my split for randonee gear, in that I could ride more on skis then I could on the snowboard, but the float and surf you get from a board in the deep backcountry pow is just unbeatable in my oppinion. Plus you get lots of funny looks in the parking lots :P.

    13 Posts

    Nothing beats floating on a board in powder- this is for sure.. I just can’t stand the smaller terrain features that stop me dead in my tracks.. like the short 50 yards or so of flat on a ridge line or in the trees. Skis are just superior when it comes to that.

    For some reason I have convinced myself that being mobile on skis (i.e., having both of your feet functioning independently of each other) is far superior and safer than having your feet stuck to one board. If I was out on some line that failed and a buddy got buried, I’d much rather have the mobility of skis than a board…

    I used to go out in the bc of colorado and practice beacon recoveries with my skier buddies (I was on my board).. and it sucked to have to take my board off and post-hole around until I found a buried beacon. Now I know avalanche debris is hard but.. hmm.. think I would opt for the skis..

    Thanks for all your input.. I guess voile/burton/prior should come up with a board that you can switch back and forth from touring to board and back without getting out of the bindings.. that would be truly amazing!! that way small terrain features would just require a click and shift to get past!! some day..

    24 Posts

    I ski my splitboard about as much as I ride it even though I’ve got two pair of tele skis sitting at home. People ask me why I don’t just bring tele gear instead and the response is always “because I like to make the decision to board or ski at the top of the hill, not at home.” You never know what the snow will be like until you’re there so why decide at home?

    It only makes sense that a splitboard would make great powder skis…They got more surface area than any skis I’ve seen so they float great in the powder. They turn great (assuming you put the curved side on the inside) and make short radius turns easy. The straight side of the splitboard isn’t a hinderence either because (as any skier will tell you) that edge doesn’t have any weight on it. I think using hard boots makes it easier to ski.

    Yeah, you can’t really make tele turns with it (pivot point is all wrong under the foot and you can’t pressure the ski with the ball of your foot), but it reminds me of alpining it on teles. Along those same lines, you got to be on the ‘sweet spot’ fore/aft so that you don’t eat the tips. I haven’t done any damage taking spills yet…but having a lot of teleing under my belt probably helps with falling ‘softly’.

    Still need to work on style points 🙂

    13 Posts

    Nice picture!!! Do the bindings on the split skis stand up to such abuse? I might need to try making turns on the split skis before I make my final say. It appears that splitboards might be the best of both worlds.. (I can board the steeps and ski the bumpy unevenness).

    13 Posts

    btw- what type of bindings do you use in that picture? strap ins? mtn plate? tele plate?

    24 Posts

    No damage to the touring brackets but you have to occasionally take out the slop at the pivot point by bending the sides of the touring bracket to hold the plate tighter.

    I ride on mtn plates with snowboard hard boots.

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