Updated on October 26, 2021

When it comes to investing in your own personal gear for winter sports, a snowboard is immediately the first thing that tops the list. Boots, bindings, goggles, jackets, and all the other stuff can come later. But when you’re ready to dive into the sport headfirst, there’s no doubt that the best snowboard money can buy should be your first purchase.

Whether it’s your first board or your seventh, we’ve scoured the web for the best snowboards and curated them into a Top 10 List for your refined tastes (stay classy!). In the list below, you’ll find everything from backcountry splitboards to freestyle weapons of mass awesomeness, as well as powder boards to fill your winter time surf cravings.

Note: The specs for each snowboard will change depending on what size/length board you buy. We’ve assumed a snowboard length of ~160cm which would fit a 160 – 170 lb. rider. To determine the proper size snowboard, check out the “Things To Consider” section at the end of the article.

For more of our top snowboarding gear recommendations, check out these popular articles:

Beginner Snowboards | Freestyle Snowboards

 

Quick Answer - The Best Snowboards

  1. Burton Custom Flying V
  2. Arbor Element Camber
  3. Capita Super DOA
  4. Capita Spring Break Tree Hunter
  5. Arbor Bryan Iguchi Pro
  6. Bataleon Surfer
  7. Jones Ultracraft

 

Comparison Table - Best Snowboards

PictureNameStyleFlexExperience LevelPriceRating
Burton Custom Flying VBurton Custom Flying VAll-MountainMediumAll Skill Levels - True Beginners to Expert Riders$4.6
Arbor Element CamberArbor Element CamberAll-mountainMediumAll$4.8
Yes. BasicYes. Basicall-mountain, park & freestyleMediumAll$4.6
Ride WarpigRide WarpigAll-MountainMediumAdvanced Beginners and Up$$4.7
Yes. TypoYes. TypoAll-MountainMediumBeginner$4.4
Capita Super DOACapita Super DOAAll-MountainStiffAll Skill Levels - True Beginners to Expert Riders$$4.9
Capita Spring Break Tree HunterPowderMediumAdvanced Beginners and Up$$4.8
Arbor Bryan Iguchi ProArbor Bryan Iguchi ProFreerideStiffIntermediate Beginners and Up$$4.7
Bataleon SurferPowderMediumAdvanced Beginners and Up$$$4.4
Jones UltracraftAll-MountainStiffAll Skill Levels - True Beginners to Expert Riders$$4.5
PictureNameStyleFlexExperience LevelPriceRating
Want to learn more about a technical term? Check out our Features Explained section below.

Need buying advice? Take a look at these Things to Consider.

Reviews - The Best Boards for Snowboarding

Burton Custom Flying V

Specs
  • Flex: Medium
  • Shape: Directional Twin
  • Style: All-Mountain
  • Experience Level: All Skill Levels - True Beginners to Expert Riders
  • Sidecut Radius: 8.1 meters
  • Snowboard Profile: Camber/Rocker
  • Effective Edge: 123.5 cm
Features
  • Extended 3-Year Warranty
  • Board Is Already “Broken In” From Day One
  • Blend Of Strong And Light Woods Create Pop, Strength, & Reduced Weight
Burton Custom Flying V

BEST FOR: JACK-OF-ALL-TRADES VERSATILITY

Some of us (okay, maybe just me) like versatile and multi-use things, especially when it comes to outdoor gear. Even more so when it’s a snowboard. If you’re like me, then you may also appreciate the Burton Custom Flying V snowboard.  

The Directional Twin shape features a setback stance of 12cm off-center, giving you the drive and specificity of a true directional board but also being capable of riding switch when needed. The medium flex splits the difference when it comes to performance, hedging its bets on both stability and flexibility. 

The Custom Flying V also features Channel slides to mount your bindings. These are really unique in that they allow you to dial in the perfect fit and stance for a truly custom ride. Bonus points: the board is also offered in a wide size for larger framed snowboarders.

Arbor Element Camber

Specs
  • Flex: Medium
  • Shape: Directional Twin
  • Style: All-mountain
  • Experience Level: All
  • Sidecut Radius: 7.8 - 8.05 meters
  • Snowboard Profile: Camber
  • Effective Edge: 117.1 - 121.6 cm
Features
  • Parabolic camber
  • Grip Tech sidecut adds 4 ergonomic contact points underfoot
  • Hand-dyed ash Power Ply topsheet is tough and flexible
Arbor Element Camber

BEST FOR: BOARDERS ON A BUDGET

In the category of quality all-mountain choice that cost under $500, the Arbor Element dominates.

Arbor designed the Element Camber with a medium flex and a cambered profile. Its soft feel makes it an ideal choice for all riders — regardless of experience level. It boasts a great edge for a budget board and lovely carving capacity.

What I like most about this snowboard is the nice, poppy feel it has to it.

Yes. Basic

Specs
  • Flex: Medium
  • Shape: UnderBite, twin tip
  • Style: all-mountain, park & freestyle
  • Experience Level: All
  • Sidecut Radius: 7.3 - 8.6 m
  • Snowboard Profile: CamRock
  • Effective Edge: 108 - 123 cm
Features
  • Underbite edges are pulled-in along the binding zones
  • Centered stance
  • Extruded base
Yes. Basic

BEST FOR: FREESTYLE

Despite its misleading name, there’s nothing basic about this board.

If you mainly stick to groomers and park terrain, the Basic is about as good as it gets — especially for the affordable $400 price. This board features a rocker profile in the tip and tail with camber underfoot, making for an ice and hardback machine. Its true twin shape is what contributes to its excellent performance in the park.

What I like most about this board is just how much fun it is to ride, especially through the park.

Ride Warpig

Specs
  • Flex: Medium
  • Shape: Directional
  • Style: All-Mountain
  • Experience Level: Advanced Beginners and Up
  • Sidecut Radius: 4.6 - 7.2 m
  • Snowboard Profile: Rocker
  • Effective Edge: 104 - 117 cm
Features
  • Directional tip-to-tail rocker
  • Short and wide silhouette boosts float in powder and over crusty ice
  • Bi-radial sidecut
Ride Warpig

BEST FOR: FRESH POW CONDITIONS

When those powder days demand a board that surfs on the surface, the Warpig is sure to answer the call.

Ride integrated its latest Slim Wall technology, which improves the board’s energy transfer while lightening the overall weight. This directionally shaped board features a medium flex and a shorter-than-usual length. Whether you’re looking for a board that can do it all or a powder day piece, Ride’s Warpig won’t disappoint.

What I like most about the Warpig is how agile it is, which came as a bit of a shock to be given its fatter profile.

Yes. Typo

Specs
  • Flex: Medium
  • Shape: UnderBite, directional twin
  • Style: All-Mountain
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Sidecut Radius: 7.7 - 8.6 m
  • Snowboard Profile: CamRock 2.4.2
  • Effective Edge: 113 - 123 cm
Features
  • UnderBite edges enhance overall control by adding grip on any snow
  • Poplar core is lightweight and offers a predictable flex
  • Sintered Spec base is durable, fast, and requires little maintenance
Yes. Typo

BEST FOR: BEGINNERS

A stiffer version of the freestyle choice we reviewed above, the Typo is designed to perform better on hardpack and is best suited for beginner riders.

The Typo offers a set-back stance, making for a well-rounded position ideal for beginners. As opposed to the park-centric design of the Basic, the Typo was crafted as a true all-mountain performer. The board features a medium flex and directional twin shape that allows for equally good performance on both groomers and moguls.

What I like most about the Typo is how well it carves and edges.

Capita Super DOA

Specs
  • Flex: Stiff
  • Shape: True Twin
  • Style: All-Mountain
  • Experience Level: All Skill Levels - True Beginners to Expert Riders
  • Sidecut Radius: 8.2 meters
  • Snowboard Profile: Camber/Rocker
  • Effective Edge: 120.6 cm
Features
  • Centered Stance For Symmetrical Riding
  • Board Edges Reinforced To Provide More Durability And Longer Life
  • Carbon Fiber Strands Increase Strength While Decreasing Overall Weight
Capita Super DOA

BEST FOR: GO-ANYWHERE, DO-ANYTHING FREEDOM

No, DOA does mean “Dead On Arrival”, at least in Capita lingo. It means “Defenders of Awesome!” How neat is that?

This board is truly a “Go-Anywhere, Do-Anything” beast. From groomed trails to fresh powder, off-piste to casual stunts at the terrain park, the Super DOA will do just about anything you ask of it. 

The True Twin shape lends itself to riding switch (front foot either side) for a truly versatile performance. The hybrid camber/rocker profile makes turning much easier while simultaneously increasing the power through turns. 

It’s also worth noting that the Super DOA has the shortest effective edge (120.6cm) of all the boards we’ve listed here but also mates it with a relatively middle of the road sidecut radius (8.2 meters). What this means is that while it makes less contact with the snow than other boards for easier turning, it balances it out in a way that brings some stability back into the board. 

The result is a board that turns on a dime without feeling like a snowy slip ’n slide.

Capita Spring Break Tree Hunter

Specs
  • Flex: Medium
  • Shape: Directional
  • Style: Powder
  • Experience Level: Advanced Beginners and Up
  • Sidecut Radius: 6.6 meters
  • Snowboard Profile: Flat/Rocker
  • Effective Edge: 121 cm
Features
  • Inspired By Modern Surfboard Designs
  • Blend Of Wood Variety Combines Strength With Lightness
  • Slightly Off-Center Stance Allows You To Sit Back On The Board For Better Handling

BEST FOR: AGGRESSIVE CARVING

The Spring Break Tree Hunter by Capita is the premier powder board for aggressive carving. If you’re looking to throw down quick turns, hit high speeds, and stomp on technical maneuvers, then this is your board.

What stands out immediately from the spec sheet is the exceptionally short sidecut radius (6.6 meters). This aggressive arc towards the center of the board translates into quick, snappy turns on the mountain. The Flat/Camber profile delivers more “feel” for the snow underfoot while adding upturned ends to increase your float in deep snow. 

The only drawback to this board is that it’s currently only available in a 161cm length, which limits the range of riders that are able to use this board.

Arbor Bryan Iguchi Pro

Specs
  • Flex: Stiff
  • Shape: Directional
  • Style: Freeride
  • Experience Level: Intermediate Beginners and Up
  • Sidecut Radius: 8.1 meters
  • Snowboard Profile: Camber
  • Effective Edge: 120.2 cm
Features
  • Green Production Techniques Reduce Carbon Footprint By Up To 40%
  • Includes Extended 3-Year Warranty To Back Up Arbor’s Commitment To Quality
  • Contains Recycled Materials In Accordance With The Forest Stewardship Council (FCS)
Arbor Bryan Iguchi Pro

BEST FOR: FREESTYLE-MINDED FREERIDERS

Intended as a freeride board for those who spend more time off-piste than on the groomers, this snowboard has its roots in freestyle snowboarding. Arbor teamed up with snowboarding legend Bryan Iguchi to breathe life into this widely versatile board. 

Many snowboarders end up collecting a few boards over the years for specific days: a freestyle board for terrain park days, a powder board for off-piste runs, an all-mountain board for groomers. The Pro System Camber snowboard meshes all these into one, allowing new snowboarders to invest in a single board that not only does all of that, but does it really well

The camber gives you the extra “oomph” to pop ollies and hit jumps while the stiff flex adds stability to your high speed pursuits. For dedicated carvers who want to lay down a trick or two in the process, this board will respond favorably and give you the freedom to do whatever you ask of it.

Bataleon Surfer

Specs
  • Flex: Medium
  • Shape: Directional
  • Style: Powder
  • Experience Level: Advanced Beginners and Up
  • Sidecut Radius: 7.9 meters
  • Snowboard Profile: Camber
  • Effective Edge: 128.9 cm
Features
  • Off-Set Stance Creates More Stability
  • Unique Shaping Is Like Surfing On Snow
  • Only 125 In Existence, Making This Board Extremely Rare & Valuable

BEST FOR: DEEP POWDER DAYS

Best suited as a second board for your quiver, the Bataleon Surfer LTD is a highly specialized board designed specifically for deep, soft snow. Many compare riding this board to surfing on snow, as the wedged tail sprays powder out of the back to create grooves that improve stability. 

The profile of this board is cambered, which at first glance is odd for a powder board (most powder boards are rockered to improve float). But what makes this board so unique is how that camber is paired with a shorter length that ends up providing both power and float in its own unique way. 

The ability to float is further aided by the unique shaping of the nose (front of the board). It has a concave curve to it, so that if you were to look at the board straight on it would look like the front is smiling. These upturned edges allow greater float in powder and a greater ability to turn.

Jones Ultracraft

Specs
  • Flex: Stiff
  • Shape: Directional
  • Style: All-Mountain
  • Experience Level: All Skill Levels - True Beginners to Expert Riders
  • Sidecut Radius: 9.5 meters
  • Snowboard Profile: Camber/Rocker
  • Effective Edge: 125.7 cm
Features
  • Unique Shaping At The Tip And Tail Makes Turns More Fluid
  • Green Production Techniques Reduce Carbon Footprint By Up To 33%
  • Made From Sustainable Lumber Approved By The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)

BEST FOR: HANDLING CHOPPY CONDITIONS

Conditions won’t always be ideal and it’s nice to have a board that will perform well despite. The Jones Ultracraft is one such board that will not only excel in great conditions, but stand up to cruddy ones when they occur. 

Featuring the longest sidecut radius of any board on this list, the Ultracraft is primed for wide, sweeping turns and smooth transitions. It’s more of a cruiser than a speed demon. The Camber/Rocker profile delivers exceptional edge hold, especially on steeper slopes, as well as the ability to float above powder. 

It’s also important to keep in mind that this board is sized 4 – 8 cm shorter than you would normally ride. This lends itself to more control when conditions get rough.

 

 

THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN BUYING A SNOWBOARD

HOW WE QUALIFY SKILL LEVEL

True Beginner

  • Someone with absolutely no experience on a snowboard.

Intermediate Beginner

  • Someone who has boarded a few times and is able to enjoy Green runs with ease.

Advanced Beginner

  • A snowboarder who is adept at basic skills such as carving, stopping, riding edge-to-edge (heel and toe edges), and maintaining control at higher speeds among other things. The Advanced Beginner may have begun experimenting with stunts and tricks in the terrain park. Most Blue runs are handled with skill while some more advanced Blues may still prove difficult.

Experienced Rider

  • A boarder who has quite a bit of experience and is able to skillfully tackle Blue runs. They may give be honing their skills on Black Diamond runs, although prefect success isn’t expected.

Expert Rider

  • A snowboarder who is considered expert level is able to run Black Diamond trails with grace and skill while Double Black Diamonds are in currently being learned and mastered.

 

STYLE OF BOARD

All-Mountain

Best For All Snowboarders – Beginners to Expert

  • The most general of all snowboards, an All-Mountain board is designed to tackle any condition you throw at it. Whether you’re riding on groomed runs, off-piste (ungroomed trails), or hitting the terrain park, this board has the versatility to do just about anything.

Freestyle

Best For Advanced Beginners and Up

  • Designed specifically for the terrain park, Freestyle snowboards are lighter and shorter* than other boards. They also have more flexibility to achieve jumps and stunts and can be ridden backwards and forwards (typically a True Twin shape; see Shape below).
  • *Keep the length in mind when choosing a board, as Freestyle boards are sized 4 – 6 cm shorter than what you’d expect to ride on other boards.

Freeride

Best For Advanced Beginners and Up

  • Freeride boards are made to handle the unpredictable terrain of off-piste (ungroomed) snowboarding. They’re typically on the stiffer end of the flex spectrum in order to provide stability and are most often shaped as a Directional board (only ridden in one direction; see Shape below).

Powder

Best For All Snowboarders – Beginners to Expert

  • Powder boards differ in many slight ways from a traditional All-Mountain board. From the bindings to the flex, everything is engineered specifically to help you float above the snow. Most powder boards also feature rocker (see Camber and Rocker below) to its profile to assist with this.

Splitboard

Best For Experienced and Expert Snowboarders

  • Splitboards are designed with the backcountry in mind. Since there aren’t any ski lifts to bring riders to the top of the mountain, snowboarders must hike their way up.
  • Splitboards have a long seam that runs the length of the board and can be “unlocked” to create 2 individual boards that are worn like skis (or snowshoes) in order to trek up the mountain. Once you’ve reached the top, the bindings are dismounted, the board is reassembled, and the bindings remounted in the traditional snowboard setup.

 

SHAPE

Snowboards can be shaped in 3 ways to provide specific performance results.

Directional

This can be thought of as unidirectional, meaning that the board is intended to be ridden in a specific direction. This shape is typically found on Freeride boards and occasionally on All-Mountain boards. The bindings are mounted off-center, towards the back, to provide relief from potential fatigue when hitting super steep slopes.

True Twin

Symmetrically made from front to back, True Twin snowboards are designed to be ridden multi-directionally. These are the most popular types of boards as many riders end up riding both ways for a variety of reasons, whether conditions demand it or when laying down a trick in the terrain park.

Directional Twin

Combining both aspects of the previous two board shapes, Directional Twins vary widely depending on the particular features that the manufacturer chooses to implement. No two Directional Twin boards are made the same. Take a look at the details to determine what the board is trying to achieve with its overall shape.

 

CAMBER AND ROCKER

A snowboard’s profile is how it looks from the side when lying on the snow. Some boards lay flat, some curve up at the ends, and others rise in the middle with an arch. These are all specifically designed to achieve certain results.

Camber

Best for Groomed Runs

Delivering liveliness and pop, cambered boards have an arch in the middle of the board. This is designed to provide the kinetic energy needed to aggressively enter and exit turns as well as build speed. Overall, cambered boards perform best on groomed runs.

Flat

Best for Powder and Off-Piste

Snowboards with a flat profile make the most contact with the snow, translating into an increased “feel” of the snow underfoot. Flat boards are best suited for quick turning and floating above powder.

Rocker

Best for Terrain Parks and Powder

Rocker is characterized by having upturned ends (the tip and tail) that make turning exceptionally easy. Many boards with rocker are also True Twins, allowing you to ride “switch” (either way). They make tricks easier to engage and help you float above powder. Some riders describe using them as feeling like “surfing” on snow.

Camber/Rocker

Best for All Types of Terrain

Combining the arch and pop of camber with the ability to float on powder that is characteristic of rocker, camber/rocker boards are a hybrid that can be ridden well in any environment, from fresh powder to groomers.

Flat/Rocker

Best for Powder and Off-Piste

Snowboards that have a Flat/Rocker profile feature more “feel” underfoot while also applying the turning benefits of upturned ends. These are another type of hybrid board that excel on powder and off-piste.

 

SIDECUT RADIUS

All snowboards feature a narrower width in the middle of the board than at its ends, which creates an arc known as sidecut radius. If you were to trace the arc with a pen and complete it into an entire circle, you could measure the radius of that circle to determine the sidecut radius of the snowboard.

This is an important measurement as it lets you know what kind of turns a snowboard is capable of making. The larger the radius, the wider the turning ability of the board. Boards with smaller radiuses are able to engage in tighter turns.

smaller radius = fast, quick, & tight turning ability

larger radius = wide, sweeping, stylistic turning ability

Just because a snowboard has a specific sidecut radius doesn’t mean that it can only achieve one type of turn or another. Rather, the radius indicates what types of turns that board is able to accomplish most easily.

 

EFFECTIVE EDGE

A snowboard’s length is a measure of how long it is, from tip to tail. A snowboard’s effective edge is a measure of how much of the underside of a board is actually touching the ground since there are different profiles that can affect this, such as Rocker which upturns the ends. Effective edge is measured in centimeters and is always shorter than the overall length.

  • Boards with a relatively short effective edge are easier to turn as they make less contact with the ground. However, they are less stable than other boards. Boards with Rocker typically have shorter effective edges.
  • Boards with a relatively long effective edge provide better stability, especially when hitting higher speeds. However, turning may be more difficult or require more skill/effort. Boards with Camber typically have longer effective edges.

 

LENGTH

The proper board length can be determined by taking into consideration you weight and height. These are an estimate, at best, since some snowboarders prefer longer or shorter boards depending on what they’re trying to achieve.

If you find yourself in a shop, you can quickly determine the right size by standing the board on its end. The proper length board will fall between your nose and chin. However, if you’re buying a board online, you can use the chart below to quickly and easily pick the right size snowboard.

Note: If you’re buying a Freestyle board to hit the terrain park, consider a length 4 – 6 cm shorter than what the chart recommends. Freestyle boards are meant to be smaller in order to land stunts.

 

WIDTH

A snowboard’s width is dependent upon what size snowboard boots you wear. This is because your boots need to hang over the sides of the board by roughly 1 – 2 cm in order to create the most control. A board too wide for your boots will be harder to turn while a board too narrow will leave your boots prone to catching on the snow and cause you to crash.

The chart below is a quick way to find the right board width based on your boot size.

 

FLEX

The flex of a snowboard aids in the responsiveness needed to achieve certain goals when riding.

  • Soft Flex snowboards are easy to turn, jump, and pop and are best used in the terrain park as well as on powder.
  • Medium Flex snowboards offer more stability than soft flex boards but also more flexibility than stiff snowboards. They are a general use hybrid that performs well on all types of terrain but do not excel at any particular type of run.
  • Stiff Flex snowboards are extremely stable especially at higher speeds. They’re best suited to groomed runs and off-piste.

 

 

FEATURES EXPLAINED

BINDINGS

The mechanism that holds/binds your boots to your snowboard.

CARVING

Carving is a style of riding characterized by alternating back and forth between your heel edge and toe edge in order to ride downhill in an “S” shape. This style is well-suited for beginners as it builds confidence, skill, and allows you to feel the “flow” of snowboarding.

DECK

The topside of the snowboard.

HEEL EDGE / TOE EDGE

The edges of your board are identified by your stance. The side of the board where your toes point is called the “toe edge” and the side of the board where your heels face is called the “heel edge.” These are useful terms to know when riding as it helps you orient yourself both on your board and on the mountain.

When carving (see definition above), your heel edge will have your body facing downhill while riding on your toe edge will have your body facing uphill (regardless of rider stance).

LEASH

An ankle leash is usually attached to one of your bindings and should be fastened around the appropriate boot. This keeps your board from running away down the mountain.

GROOMED RUNS

Groomed runs are large, sweeping trails found at resorts and are maintained regularly to provide a relatively safe and predictable trail. The snow found on groomed runs tends to be relatively smooth (no large snow chunks) and modestly packed. New snowboarders are advised to practice their skills here before moving onto other types of terrain.

NOSE / TAIL

The nose and tail are the front and back of your board, respectively. Regardless of which stance you ride, your front foot will always be nearest the nose and your back foot nearest the tail. This is true even for Twin boards, which can be ridden forwards and backwards, or when riding switch (see below).

POW / POWDER

Fresh snowfall of at least several inches that provides for a smooth ride unlike groomed slopes. Great for high-speed and steeper descents, snowboarding on powder feels more like floating than anything.

REGULAR STANCE / “GOOFY” STANCE / SWITCH

A rider’s stance is how they ride their board when going downhill. Most people ride with the left foot in front, which is known as a “Regular Stance.” Less commonly, some people prefer to ride with their right foot in front, known as “Goofy Stance.” Those who ride both ways, usually those doing tricks, ride “Switch.”

Don’t let the term “Goofy” scare you though, boarding is chock full of fun slang meant to be light hearted. If riding “Goofy” feels better to you, then go with it! Some of the biggest and best pros prefer it.

TERRAIN PARK

A section of a ski resort’s trail that features jumps, rails, boxes, half pipes, and other fun obstacles that can be used for executing trick moves such as ollies, rail grinds, and gaining big air. Think skatepark, but on snow! (Also, helmets are cool – brain damage is not).

READ MORE

For more of our top snowboarding gear recommendations, check out these popular articles:

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