Völkl Split trip -Japan

Splitboarding: shredding pow every day!

 

Splitboarding is not a new trend but within the last years more and more riders have acquired a taste for it. Völkl Snowboards was into it from the start and has been producing splitboards based on the Selecta for their team riders for years. We have asked three Völkl team riders why and in which conditions they switch from a traditional board to a split. Aline Bock, Martin Seiler and Ueli Kestenholz gave different reasons but they all agreed on one thing: Splitboarding saves you the energy that you lose while hiking and is definitely not only meant for grey-haired endurance athletes or touring ski freaks!

We have asked three Völkl team riders why and in which conditions they switch from a traditional board to a split. Aline Bock, Martin Seiler and Ueli Kestenholz gave different reasons but they all agreed on one thing: Splitboarding saves you the energy that you lose while hiking and is definitely not only meant for grey-haired endurance athletes or touring ski freaks!

volkl split trip Alex Papis

Japanese Splitboard Mission with Martin “Seili” Seiler

I will never forget the splitboard trip to Japan: Smoking mountain flanks and pungent sulphur smell joined us on our hike to the volcano’s crater in Asahidake. Together with my Völkl team mates Aline, Keiji, Yoko and photographer Alex Papis we approached the luckily pretty sleepy Mount Asahidake with our splitboards. Standing in front of a boiling crater and feeling the enormous heat from the rising gases, as well as the rumbling from inside the earth, you become aware how small you are compared to the powers of nature.

“Standing in front of a boiling crater and feeling the enormous heat from the rising gases, as well as the rumbling from inside the earth, you become aware how small you are compared to the powers of nature.”

It was an impressive experience for us! Combined with the stunning view over the snowy hills of Hokkaidos, our hike was worth every single move on the splitboard. There is nothing more to say except: sick shit!.

volkl split trip David Birri

Full Moon Splitboarding with Ueli Kestenholz

Splitboarding means freedom: Freedom to go wherever you want: Freedom from ski resorts and their operation schedules; like this cold full moon night when we went for a tour through the beautiful Rosenlaui valley. With no lights of civilization, it felt like we could touch the stars. No noise except the silent sliding of our skins over the shiny snow crystals.

“With no lights of civilization, it felt like we could touch the stars. No noise except the silent sliding of our skins over the shiny snow crystals”.

Our warm clothes, constant moving and the beauty of this clear night made us not only forget but enjoy the minus 20C° temperatures. When we arrived on top of the summit of Große Scheidegg I felt like we had emerged from a forgotten world, as we looked down the other side and saw the lights of Grindelwald and it’s ski resort. After a warm cup of tea we switched our boards into Ride mode and headed back down the dark side.

volkl split trip Daniel Zangerl

Touring the Kaunertal glacier with Aline Bock

It was an incredible sunny, but cold morning when I met with the crew at the parking lot of the Kaunertal glacier, 2750 meters above sea level. From the top station we had to master some crossings and short hikes during which we carried our boards. At 3200 meters above sea level we reached a small leg of the glacier and had a stunning view on the surrounding summits. It was not until one more short ride down that we switched our Cashew splitboards into hike mode and fixed the skins. The plateau started flat which was perfect to get used to the skis and to find your rhythm for the hike. We headed towards the Southwest into moderately building terrain and soon reached the Weißseespitze at 3518 meters. Our ride from the top led us towards the East, and later towards the Northeast, through the so-called “slump”, until we arrived at a distinctive rock. When we reached a steep escarpment below the huge serac passage, we let things slide, or better glide. It is pretty amazing to see seracs from such a close distance. In the middle of the glacier valley, it got a bit tricky and we had to cross between the crevasses. If you don’t know the area, you should definitely have a mountain guide with you and ride on the rope.

“In the middle of the glacier valley, it got a bit tricky and we had to cross between the crevasses. If you don’t know the area, you should definitely have a mountain guide with you and ride on the rope.”

We had an experienced crew and were able to enjoy the ride through the beautiful glacial terrain. After a short and narrow chute we headed towards the Fernergarten where we had parked one of our cars in the morning. The trip on the Kaunertal glacier was another great experience in the middle of nature that you can only have with a splitboard!
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