After careful deliberation and 18 hours of hands-on testing, crowdsourcing and gathering of peer reviews, we have concluded that the Never Summer 2017 Funslinger is the among the best All Mountain Snowboard of 2018 in our list. Owing to its ergonomic design and sheer durability, you are sure to plow through the hardest terrain and steer with ease even at the most unforgiving slopes
Let’s face it there are a lot of all mountain snowboards on the market just like the numerous options of best longboards, which makes it really difficult to decide which one to buy. We have tackled down some of the best mountain snowboards of the year. We have done the tedious work to save you time and effort.
In this article, the products have gone through a rigorous process of hands-on testing and crowdsourcing.
Read on through the article and learn which of them are our top picks.
The Best All Mountain Snowboards
|Never Summer 2017 Funslinger (Editor’s Choice)||Asymmetric-Twin||Hybrid Rocker/Camber||Soft -Medium|
|EMSCO Group Graffiti Snowboard ( For Beginners)||Twin||Hybrid Rocker/Camber||Stiff -Medium|
|Lib Tech Travis Rice Pro HP (First Runner Up)||Directional||Hybrid Rocker/Camber||Medium-Stiff|
|Arbor Wasteland (Second Runner Up)||Twin||Rocker||Medium|
|Burton Flight Attendant||Directional||Camber||Medium-Stiff|
Buying Guide for starter
Mountain snowboards differ greatly from conventional snowboards. They are constructed in a way that can withstand various terrain and conditions in the mountain. These boards are designed for making long jumps, breezing cliff drops and riding through trees on snowy terrain.
Read more below and be enlightened about the unique details of an all mountain snowboard:
The topsheet basically Is the topmost portion or surface of the board where you mount your bindings. The top sheet is also the part of the board that you see over your chairlift. Although it provides only minimal strength to the board, it also helps protect the parts from the core from several elements of the outdoors.
According to OutdoorGearLab.com, more often than not, top sheets are constructed from fiberglass, however, some boards flaunt a plastic or wood construction. The top sheets made from fiberglass are considered the most durable.
Anchoring most of the board’s weight and stress, the core gives the board much of its strength and also affects your overall feel on the terrain. All mountain snowboard cores are usually constructed from either hardwood or plastic. To infuse more stability and durability to the core, most manufacturers fortify them with Kevlar, carbon fiber and even metal.
The bottom of the board is otherwise known as the base. Most manufacturers construct the base with high-density polyethylene, or more commonly known as P-Tex. The base comes in two types, namely sintered and extruded.
Although expensive and a bit more difficult to fix or repair, a sintered base boasts a tougher construction and a faster and agile ride. On the contrary, extruded bases come with a lesser price tag and are easier to repair, but they are less durable and also gives you a slower ride.
The snowboard’s edge is responsible for keeping you from slipping off sharp curves and difficult terrain. In most cases, manufacturers make use of steel to make the edges sharp and durable.
Edges actually have a minimal effect on the pow, however, they make a huge impact in protecting the core materials from damage especially at very unforgiving trails and terrain. Be cautious when using your snowboards though because edges can be very difficult to repair.
Serrated edges otherwise known as Magne-Traction are exceptional in providing grip to the board. They provide support and help lock you into drifts whether you’re on cord or hard pack.
Consequently, coming back from turns can be difficult with this type of edge. Another caveat is that they make it difficult to track straight while trying to b-line the board.
The more common and conventional edges, however, have a lesser bite on hard snow.
Inserts are the nut-shaped, threaded nuts that are installed on snowboards. They serve with the purpose of being attachment sites for your bindings.
In most cases, manufacturers use a myriad of inserts for every binding to provide several stance width options. Burton snowboards are known to use inserts in a convenient slider track, this allows easier changing of stance. This allows you to save time in changing your stance compared to the usual four hole style.
How We Assessed and Evaluated These Products
Coming up with an objective evaluation of the products was very difficult. In our assessment, we did a rigorous process of evaluating each and every snowboard we found on various websites and pages.
We initially had 30 All Mountain Snowboards shortlisted for our list. These 30 snowboards possessed good qualities for a durable and reliable snowboard. Making it difficult to narrow down the list to the top 5.
In our hands-on testing, all the models were ridden in a similar way. The snowboards were treated similarly on hardpack or corduroy, deep powder and on park laps, making sure they were thrashed just about just as fast and loose.
In addition, the same lines were carefully mirrored for all snowboards. We used the exact same locations, turns, high-speed straight line, Ollie and spin, and jib that we executed for all models.
Complex, right? We did all that in the past 6 months to come up with an independent view of each of the models. After doing all the tests, we did a scoring method to evaluate each of the snowboards featured on our shortlist.
Aside from our hand on testing, we also have collated consumer reviews from popular review sites. The review sites we have based are from reputable ones in the field of snowboarding, which include Snowboardsteez.com and Snowboardingprofiles.com.
With a combination of intense hands-on testing, crowdsourcing, consumer feedback from reputable websites, we were able to successfully narrow down further our list of 30 snowboards to the top 5 models that are available in 2018.
Our reviews are free from inducement from brands and vendors hence we are in no pressure to provide a positive review. We hope you will find our evaluation useful.
In our reviews, we have highlighted the important specifications of each model while also stating their pros and cons. Read on to find which one is our top pick and which ones come in as honorable mentions.
Our Top Picks
1. Never Summer 2017 Funslinger – Editor’s Pick
The first entry on our list is the Never Summer 2017 Funslinger.
Breeze through difficult terrain and fire shots around the mountain with this reliable snowboard. This model allows for a highly responsive and poppy feel with each shred, hump and pipe, thanks to its soft-middle flex.
The Assym sidecut and vario power Grip allows better control as well as the essential edge hold that will allow you to steer through difficult slopes. With its Ripsaw Rocker Camber, the Funslinger provides a poppier feel to each run while also improving edge hold without skimping out on the level of flex. With this setup, you can breeze through buttering rollers and rails to sending jumps with ease and convenience.
The Extended transition zones offer better feel and also help the board plane plow with ease. The Vario Power Grip featured in this model utilizes several radii to increase the number of contact points for better edge consistency.
When it comes to build quality, the Funslinger delivers because of its Bi-Lite fiberglass construction which also adds more flex. The Carvon VXR infused lamination provides efficient transfer of energy for better control.
Despite extreme temperatures, you can be assured that this snowboard will endure thanks to its sintered P-Tex sidewalls which maintain the board’s shape even at very cold temperatures.
What We Liked
- Better control and feel
- Good flex
- Provides good edge hold
What We Didn’t Like
- Graphics could be better
2. EMSCO Group Graffiti Snowboard – For Beginners
The next entry on our list is the EMSCO Group Graffiti Snowboard.
This product is highly suitable for snowboarders who are of beginner to intermediate level. The ergonomic design allows for better control and power as you steer through difficult trails. The EMSCO Group Graffiti Snowboard boasts of trendy and hip board designs. The surface also serves as a canvass for your well-desired designs.
What’s interesting about the purchase is that it comes with markers and even stickers.
The EMSCO Group Graffiti Snowboard features a highly robust construction that is sure to withstand very strong impacts from unpredictable terrain. Built with solid polypropylene the product is able to endure the elements that may cause abrasion, scathes and the often inevitable wear and tear. The moment you grab a hold of this board, you immediately notice its durability and stability.
The purchase comes with step-in bindings that can be adjusted to a wide variety of sizes. Once the size is determined, the bindings are securely locked into place making sure that fitness and security are not compromised. Because of this, you can be assured that you’re feet are secured in place even at very steep slopes or difficult terrain.
However, when we tested the product, we found a few drawbacks. Initially, we noticed that the adjustable bindings that came along with it were somewhat flimsy. A couple of uses and we already noticed some cracks in the areas where they are located.
What We Liked
- Made of highly durable material
- Creative designs
- Design can be customized
- Lightweight and easy to maneuver
What We Didn’t Like
- Flimsy adjustable bindings
3. Lib Tech Travis Rice Pro HP – First Runner Up
The third entry on our list is the Lib Tech Travis Rice Pro HP, donning aggressive edges, pointed tips and even a wide waist is known to be convenient and easy to maneuver on the mountains.
The banana-shaped base, as well as the wide width of the board, allowed it to float exceptionally well on difficult terrain. In terms of edging and carving, the Lib Tech Travis Rice Pro HP is able to breeze through sudden curves on the terrain.
As expected with most all mountain snowboards, you need a good head start to achieve better control of the curves.
You may be wondering whether the wide waist can hinder efficient transfer from one edge to another, however, with its banana-shaped edge, this was not an issue, giving the Rice Pro smooth control on the trail with utmost precision.
Despite its stiff construction, the Lib Tech Travis, during our tests was able to float exceptionally well. This was a bit shocking since stiffer boards would fight in pow, but with the Rice Pro HP, it was able to float with ease and convenience.
At high speeds, the product was able to cruise easily thanks to its stiff rockered base. Even at high speeds, the Rice Pro did not at all exhibit any signs of instability.
As with most hybrid camber/rocker boards, the product exhibits lesser spring on vertical directions, providing better feel and pop for users.
In our testing, we noticed that the Rice Pro HP was not suitable for lighter and smaller individuals. Even though our resident tester was 6 feet 2 inches in height, he still had to start off with more push to even power the product. So if you are lesser than 5 feet 8 inches with a weight that is less than 150 pounds, you are better off using another snowboard.
What We Liked
- Banana base
- Floats exceptionally well
- Made of robust material
- Convenient manoeuvre and control
- Contemporary, edgy design
- Provides better feel and pop
What We Didn’t Like
- Not suitable for lighter individuals
4. Arbor Wasteland – Second Runner Up
The fourth entry on our list is the Arbor Wasteland.
This product is one of the flagship offerings of the well-renowned brand in the field of snowboarding -Arbor.
The Wasteland features a rocker type design which eliminates the force that is required to release as well as re-engage the outside’s contact points. Because of this, you will get a more efficient and seamless initiation for your turns. It will also offer better floatation in the powder and more convenient spins and slides.
It has a medium flex which allows better response and control even at the most unforgiving terrain and trails in the mountain.
In terms of shape and design, the Wasteland dons a shorter tail nose which gives the board a somewhat setback feeling that allows the board to stay on top of the snow for a better point for progression.
It also flaunts thunderhead tops which increase the speed and velocity of the board even in deep snow.
Featuring a tri-radial sidecut design, this was for the purpose of shaping intersections to heel and toe contact points that allow for a more ergonomic way to snow gripping. This also allows the board’s edges to lift faster whenever buried slightly in the snow.
At its core is their patented Highland Core which is constructed from a concoction of estate-brown Poplar and Paulownia. This provided the Wasteland to achieve a lightweight build without compromising on performance on backcountry and powder.
Finishing the board’s exterior is mixed glassing lamination which provides better strength and performance. In another note, the top sheet is made of premium inlaid power fly which works like an additional layer of fiberglass. This provides even more stability and durability for the board’s overall build.
The major drawback that may turn off consumers is that the design is somewhat very simple and understated donning a wood-like pattern. Also, we have noticed that the bindings were flimsy.
What We Liked
- Mixed glass lamination
- Tri-radial sidecut design
- Offers good control and maneuverability
- Stable even in deep snow
- Offers good flotation in the powder
- Thunderhead tip increases speed
What We Didn’t Like
- The wood design may be too simple for some
- Flimsy bindings
The last entry on our list, Burton Flight Attendant, boasts of providing a board that is easily more controllable in flex than the usual freeride board. At high speeds, the Flight Attendant floats over powder with ease and convenience.
With a 35 mm set back, the Flight attendant delivers in steering in powder effectively without compromising control and maneuverability.
In terms of carving, the Flight Attendant also delivered since it has a medium-stiff flex while the large camber profile also adds more control. Even at high speeds, the Flight excels when carving. Because of this, you don’t need to worry about washing out at all since it offers a very stable ride.
With a softer flex compared to most freeride boards, you will get a good response and edge hold. This will come in handy whenever you are steering through difficult and uneven terrain.
In terms of drawbacks, the Burton Flight Attendant does not perform well on jumps as it does not excel much in regards to floatation.
With the tapered shape and featuring a 35 mm setback stance, this product does not give much feel and pop when we used it for testing.
What We Liked
- Performs well in deep snow
- Durable material
- More controllable flex
- Has good edge hold
- Nice design
What We Didn’t Like
- Does not perform well on jumps
- Not much feel and pop
Editor’s Pick: Never Summer 2017 Funslinger
Among the five All Mountain Snowboards we have evaluated in this buyer’s review and guide, we have concluded that Never Summer 2017 Funslinger is the best in our review. We chose it because it has all the essential characteristics of an all mountain snowboard.
It gives you better control of power while also allowing you to achieve great runs even at high speeds. With its soft middle flex, it provides better response and a more tangible pop. The patented Assym sidecut and Vario power grips further stabilize the snowboard providing more control as it speeds through difficult terrain.
When talking about build quality, the Funslinger ultimately delivers as it is constructed with Bi-Lite fiberglass that further adds more flex with the overall board. While the Canon VXR laminations add a more aesthetic appeal and protection to the board.
Lastly, the Funslinger is durable, assuring you that it can withstand even the harshest conditions, thanks partly to the P-tex sidewalls.
Overall, the Funslinger excels in all the important aspects, control, maneuverability, feel, durability and not to mention, looks.
Not veering too far away from the top spot are the equally reliable and great, Lib Tech Travis Rice Pro HP as well as the Arbor Wasteland.
The Lib Tech Travis Rice Pro HP, thanks to its banana base, is able to float exceptionally well even on hard terrain. It also adds better control as you swerve from edge to edge. Flaunting a robust construction, it is sure to withstand harsh wear and tear, that is expected from harsh trails.
The Arbor Wasteland, on the other hand, flaunts a tri-radial design which provides better control even at steep slopes. With its mixed glass lamination, you are sure that it is highly durable and reliable, assuring that it will endure even through the harshest elements of the snow. Lastly, the thunder tip increases more speed for this product.