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Splitboards – independency in the mountains

Splitboarding Aufstieg
Credits: Anne-Flore Marxer - Splitboarding in Patagonia
"There is something so special about hiking a mountain...more time to appreciate the environment, the mountains, the nature, the landscapes"

Splitboarding has been popular for a long time, but the real hype about splitboards has just started! But what exactly is the fascination about splitboarding?


Have you ever been hiking with your snowboard through the backcountry? It’s pretty hard after the first few steps. So the question is, how can I get easier to the top and get as much fun as I would have with my snowboard? Splitboards combine the fun of backcountry snowboarding and Touring. But this doesn’t mean that it has to be huge tours everyday. For afterwork tours beside the slopes Splitboards can be great too.

Advantages of splitboards

  • Experience nature beside the ski resort
  • Explore new terrain
  • Easier way to get to the top and same fun down again

What you should know when buying a splitboard!


Völkl Cashew Splitboard
Völkl Cashew Kit

You’re interested in splitboards but you have no idea what is important to know before buying? First of all the most important point to focus on is the board itself.

Mostly all brands like Burton, Jones, Völkl, Prior and many more have at least one splitboard in their season 2014 snowboard collection. Like snowboards, splitboards differ from their length, shape, flex, width, sidecut and your personal preferences. The first think that comes into your mind if you think about backcountry might be powder. A lot of powder! And that’s why most splitboards have a rocker or reversed camber shape which gives you a lot of uplift. The flex is usually a bit harder to give the “skis” more footing when climbing up the mountain. A lot of splitboards are made of extraordinary light material to keep the weight as low as possible!

Völkl Cashew Splitboard Kit

The Cashew Split by Völkl is not only a really light splitboard for a great uplift and fun in the backcountry, but it’s design is also very unique!





Bindings – the right binding system


For the best footing on your splitboard you need the best binding system. The cheapest solution comes from the market leader Voilé. With their slider system you can use your normal binding instead of buying a pure splitboard binding system. The disadvantage here is that your footing is a bit higher than normal and if you want to install your climbing aid, you need to deinstall your complete binding system. Voilé, Spark and Karakoram provide complete solutions including interface and binding system. Attention: None of them can be used with another interface or binding system by any other brand!


Climbing skins and climbing aid


For the way up you need climbing skins for your splitboard otherwise you would slide down again. Usually there are two different kind of climbing skins, synthetic skins and natural mohair skins. Synthetic skins are sturdier and cheaper but they lack in their sliding qualities and need more time to dry than natural mohair skins. Important when you set up your skins is that you make sure that the climbing skins slide in the way up direction and brake down to the other direction. Moreover the climbing skins distinguish how they are attached on the splitboards. Sticky climbing skins and stretch-sticky climbing skins. Stretch-sticky climbing skins are getting attached to splitboards via clips on nose and tail and furthermore glued on the base to get a better footing.

Splitboarding climbing aidClimbing aid helps you when the underground becomes too icy

You should use climbing aid when the underground becomes too icy to give you ideal footing. Keep attention to the fact that each brand produce their own climbing aid and that most of them aren’t combinable with other ones. Therefore you should choose your climbing aid by the same brand as your splitboard interface.



For the ideal footing during your tour you need a boot that is really sturdy and has a harder flex than normal. The boots will give you a better feeling on the way up and also provide a better footing. But a comfortable fitting shouldn’t be missed otherwise your feet will be done before you will ride down!




The right poles help you on the way up and give you a better and secure footing in difficult terrain. Poles can be made out of aluminum or carbon. The advantage of carbon poles is that they are really light but a lot more expensive than aluminum poles. It’s important that you can adjust the poles even if there is a thin ice cover on them and that you can shrink them so that they fit in your backpack.


Supplies and accessories


To be equipped right on your tours you shouldn’t forget to take the following additional equipment with you: