We notice you're blocking ads.

We carefully manage all our local “ads”, to be relevant to Val d'Isere and your trip here. We fund our site by featuring these offers, many of which you might like. Please "whitelist" us - thank you for supporting our work!

Latest Gear - Surf Inspired Snowboards

Experience the art of the turn

Featured in:

Andy Malton | Latest Gear Reviewer | Published: 6 Feb 2018


Latest Gear - Surf Inspired Snowboards

It’s clear that the influence of surfing on snowboarding is huge right now. This is most obvious when you consider the explosion in surf-inspired snowboards currently on the market. Only a few years ago it was rare to see a swallowtail on the mountain, at least outside of Japan. These days they’re everywhere.

Snowsurf has brought a fresh aesthetic to snowboarding that’s all about celebrating the turn; whether in waist deep powder or on morning corduroy. It has less to do with technical ability and is more about individuality and personal enjoyment.

Here are a few of my favourite surf inspired snowboards available this winter.

Short & Wide - Jones Storm Chaser

Val d'Isere

The Storm Chaser made waves when it was introduced into the Jones Snowboards range a couple of years ago. A joint project between Jeremy Jones and legendary surf shaper Chris Christensen, the Storm Chaser is a short, wide board designed to maximise fun on a powder day.

One of the key ingredients that gives the Storm Chaser its surf-like feel is the rocker profile. The Storm Chaser has a large amount of both nose and tail rocker to help with float and control in the deepest snow. It also features Spoon technology - a 3D base profile that has spoon-shaped bevelling at the nose and tail to create as much glide as possible.

The Storm Chaser’s extra width also helps with float. So although the board is available in sizes 142, 147 and 157 the overall surface area is that of a much longer board of a more traditional shape. Short, wide snowboards like the Storm Chaser are ideal for deep days in the trees as they combine both float and manoeuvrability.

RRP approx €599.

Val d'Isere

A big part of the snowsurf movement is the idea that you don’t have to produce big numbers or be a big company to be relevant. There are many small, privately owned brands making small batch runs of high-quality boards out there. Offshore Snow Shapes are a great example.

Offshore are based in the small resort of Niseko Moiwa and have immediate access to some of the deepest snow in the world. They have a small range of boards that are all based around riding powder and making the most out of terrain. All Offshore boards are made in the brand’s bespoke factory in the Moiwa backcountry. Although they are beginning to sell through some retailers, Offshore still offer a custom board making service based around specific customer requirements. The Sea Biscuit is a standard model in the Offshore range that can be custom built to order.

It’s a short board with a lot of width and 15mm of taper to provide float. The stance is centered so tricks and landings feel more natural and a tight sidecut means it’s easy to slash your way down the mountain - both off and on piste.

RRP - depends on the custom finish

Val d'Isere

KORUA Shapes are perhaps the definitive new brand within the snowsurf movement. The Obelix is new to the KORUA range for this winter and it’s pretty much unlike any other snowboard on the planet.

The Obelix is built around a full rocker profile for maximum float and surf-like feel in powder. The board has only the slightest amount of sidecut. This gives it a unique feel in soft snowbut means it really isn’t a board for riding on any type of hard snow, including pistes. In addition, the Obelix has a massive 82mm of taper ensuring that the nose won’t submarine in powder and the dreaded back leg burn is avoided.

The Obelix is perhaps the ultimate quiver board. It’s the kind of snowboard for those who regularly ride backcountry powder all day in places like Japan or BC.

RRP €499

Val d'Isere

With the Millisurf, Amplid have taken their renowned Milligram Splitboard (the world’s lightest splitboard) and given it a surf-like feel by tweaking the profile and geometry. The Millisurf features a swallowtail for extra float, along with a 3D nose profile that provides advantages in both soft and hard snow.

The Millisurf’s profile features camber under the feet for power in the turn and stability on steeps and a long smooth nose rocker for excellent float in powder. It’s the ideal profile for a splitboard as a typical day in the backcountry usually contains a variety of snow conditions and terrain.

Although expensive, the Millisurf features cutting edge construction techniques that give it a big weight advantage against almost all its competition. Combine that with the beautiful shape and you’ve got one of the world’s most desirable splitboards.

RRP €1200

Jargon Buster

A cutaway section in the tail of the snowboard. This reduces the tail’s surface area which encourages it to sink when in deep snow This, in turn, pops the nose out of the snow which makes the snowboard easier and more enjoyable to ride in powder.

Rocker / Camber
This refers to the profile of the snowboard when viewed side-on. Camber is the upward curve that’s traditionally built into the middle section of the board. When compressed it provides the board with edge hold and power. Rocker is the upward curve of a snowboard that is often used to increase float and improve turn initiation.

The difference (usually in mm) between the width of the nose and the width of the tail of a snowboard. The more taper a board has the more the tail is encouraged to sink and nose float. Usually, only powder specific boards feature a lot (more than 10mm) of taper.

Read more of Andy's reviews on his website.