Splitboarding 4/28/11

28 Apr, 2011

It’s been a busy week at work which means less ride time but that doesn’t mean I can’t ride after the lifts close and work ends.  I discovered splitboarding a couple years ago when I lived in Steamboat Springs, Colorado but it wasn’t till recently that I had the means to get into splitboarding.  For those not familiar with splitboarding, it’s a snowboard that’s split in half from nose to tail so it turns into skis for going uphill and you connect it back together to make a snowboard for going downhill.

A while ago I started with acquiring the backcountry safety gear: shovels, beacon, probe, poles and then later added the mobility of getting up with the Venture Storm splitboard, Sparks Blaze bindings and skins.  Combined with rad packs to try out from K2, like the new pilchuk it made everything easy.  Thanks to Venture, K2 and Sparks, you’ll see me splitboarding more and more!

In order to get my endurance back, get comfortable skinning up on the splitboard and be safer since I’d be doing it alone, I opted to skin up Mammoth Mountain with my dog.  Even though Mammoth is open till July 4, some of the mountain shut down operations last week but there is more than enough snow to enjoy a good hike up the runs that are now empty.  My goal today was to just make it as far as comfortable and have fun with it.  I figure each time I splitboard, I’ll be better and go higher on the mountain.

Ready to ski up

As soon as I was skinning up, Capita my dog figured out her role which was to run up as high as she could while being visible, then run down to me, then run back up.  It was amusing that she was kicking my butt but I was stoked to ride with my dog finally!

My skin track up

We ended up passing going up next to Art Park where the cats were busy taking down the features in the park.  Hoping to see them pop up in Main Park/Forest Trail soon!

My splitboarding gear.  Next year’s K2 pilchuk kit backpack with shovel, probe, skins, beacon inside, black diamond trekking poles, Venture Storm 156 and Sparks Blaze bindings.  I figured even though I’m not in backcountry, I want to get used to having everything and be safer.

We stopped up at the top of Art Park area where the weather was noticeably more windy than when I started so I switch the skis into a snowboard for the ride down.  Capita the dog was unsure what that meant but she’d soon find out.

On the ride down I had my camera out and snapped this pic of my dog following me down the slope at full speed

Me riding down with Capita in the background

It was a good first day out on the splitboard, definitely planning to get out more often after work and soon start to explore outside the resort.  It was definitely fun to introduce Capita to the mountain I love and get her running next to me each turn.

About the author


From the beginning of time, I was Shannon. From the beginning of snowboarding, I was Shay. From the beginning of online communities, I was Shayboarder. In the end, I’m the writer, photographer, editor, publisher, guru of sorts, product tester, curvy girl, and most importantly the snowboarder behind it all. Follow me on this journey through snowboarding, mountain biking, traveling and fun experiences!

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  1. April 28, 2011

    Nice ride, take that damn sticker off tho! Next time you’re in the PNW we’ll have to do a summer tour

  2. April 28, 2011

    Rad I need to get one! how quick is the switch to board? Just simple snap in here and there? I’ve never seen them assembled before. I’d be annoyed if I had to bring a Phillips screw driver along and have to tighten down things in the deep pow.

  3. Tom
    April 29, 2011

    Nice! Fold in those split hooks! Splitdogging is the future!

  4. Thomas
    April 29, 2011

    How was the board? I’ve heard that some of the older splitboards had some flex issues horizontally.

  5. Fes
    April 29, 2011

    Love to know how the ride both on the ascent and the descent was, Shay. 🙂

    Heard it’s a bad ass really board.

  6. jbaysurfer
    April 29, 2011

    Nice Shay!

    Riding canyon is an EXCELLENT idea to get going…

  7. Jon
    May 02, 2011

    Can us passholders venture into canyon/eagle without getting our passes clipped?

  8. May 02, 2011

    Jon, Mammoth has an open boundary policy. Right now Canyon/Eagle are ski boundary lines. Some terrain is closed however like for private photo shoots. It’s at your own risk like any time you go out of bounds and it’s not patrolled/avy controlled etc. That being said, conditions aren’t groomed so you’ll encounter some rough terrain.

  9. May 02, 2011

    I did some snowshoeing last weekend because I have no split board (but got free shoe rentals).. it was pretty easy, very much like walking but I saw some other people roaming around on skies and it seemed much faster.

    What kind of slope can you ascend with a split board? I was shoeing up some fairly steep terrain, wondering what the split boards limitations are.

  10. Jon
    May 02, 2011

    Thanks Shay, I’ll keep that in mind if there happens to be a storm there the next few months =D

  11. May 08, 2011

    Martin, pretty steap terrain. Jeremy Jones did his steep terrain with a splitboard. Anything is possible.

    Eddie, it’s quick and no tools needed. I’ll do a video next time for you.

    Thomas, definitely when I get more time on it I’ll get a review out on the gear.