The Burton Blog

Built on Boards: What Exactly is an “All Mountain” Snowboard?

Back in the day, there was no park riding. There were no powder shapes. Sure, they were out there, but the general idea was that you had one board for the whole mountain, and you rode it all.

This one-board mentality never went away, but with the development of different shapes and designs made for specific terrain or conditions, the idea of having a “quiver” featuring a bunch of boards for different kinds of riding became more prevalent. We talk about it all the time with the Family Tree. But there’s still the question: can’t you just ride one board?

No two boards are exactly the same. Can you tell the difference?

The answer is: yes, you can. You’ll want it to be versatile in its design, allowing it to perform on all kinds of terrain in all conditions. We call these “all mountain” boards. We have some, like the Custom, or Feelgood, that have been in the lineup for decades. They’re all-mountain classics, and have helped define what makes a great snowboard in the modern era.

Mark McMorris airing over a tree on the Flight Attendant
Mark McMorris sending the Flight Attendant in its natural habitat.
Maria Hidalgo with the Yeasayer
Grab the Yeasayer and head for the nearest bootpack.

Burton has been Built on Boards since day one, and we've never stopped striving for progression. It's all about helping you have the best time ever on your snowboard, so let's make sure you get on the right one for you. Keep scrolling to find out what sets these all mountain boards apart from the rest of the line, and each other.

The Feelgood

The Feelgood is the longest-running women’s board in the line, on-snow for nearly twenty years. Backed by Kelly Clark – the most decorated snowboarder of all time – it’s the highest-performing women’s all mountain board in the line. It’s hard-charging, and ready to perform like a hot rod in a half pipe, stick huge landings off jumps, or lay deep carves from one glade to the next.

Kelly Clark on the Deja Vu
Kelly Clark drawing lines with the Feelgood.
Burton product manager Samantha Bertolino with the Women's Feelgood
Get the lowdown from Assistant Product Manager, Sam Bertolino (link below).

"This is our tried and true, most aggressive women’s board" says Sam Bertolino, Assistant Hardgoods Product Manager. “Not the most forgiving shape when you’re just learning how to turn, but when you’re really charging and carving up the whole mountain, this thing’s going to lock in and do exactly what you tell it. This board is a bit on the stiffer side, so, super snappy, super poppy, and it can charge through any conditions.”

The Custom

Like the Feelgood, the Custom is the longest-running men’s board in the line (going strong since 1996!) It’s stood the test of time because it’s the most no-bullshit board out there. Cruising the park? No problem. Pow laps? Sure! It’s been the go-to for more team riders than any other board for exactly that reason, but it’s also a favorite for riders who are just starting out.

Burton Custom Snowboard with Cartel Bindings
A classic ride. The Custom, mounted with a pair of Cartel bindings.
FSC™ Certified Super Fly II™ 700G Core Illustration
The Custom uses the FSC™ Certified Super Fly II™ 700G Core, featuring stronger and lighter woods to target specific areas of the core to provide strength, and reduce weight.
Ben Ferguson hitting a jump on the Burton Custom
Ben Ferguson pulls it around on his rig of choice: the Custom.

“It’s a really comfortable board,” says Scott Seward, Sr. Design Engineer. “It’s on the lighter side as well, so it’s a really approachable shape that anyone from first time riders to pro riders like Ben Ferguson or Mikkel Bang can ride anywhere from a competition to the backcountry.”

The Custom X

If, for whatever reason, the Custom isn’t burly enough for you, try the Custom X. Pumped full of stiffer, snappier ingredients, this board is a high-performance precision tool, fit for riders like Red Gerard who are more comfortable flying off a 90 foot jump at 60mph than sitting on a couch.

Burton Squeezebox Technology Illustration
The Custom X includes the carbon-fueled snap of Squeezebox core profiling, improving pop and performance through the balance of thicker, more powerful core sections with thinner, more flexible sections.
Red Gerard airing out on a Custom X
Red Gerard cutting trails through the ozone on the Custom X.

The Yeasayer

The Yeasayer is the working-woman’s classic, this board owes its versatility to taking the middle path on all fronts: not to firm or too flexy, not too radical in its shape, able to ride anything and everything, but a bit more mellow than stiffer alternatives.

Maria Hidalgo hiking with the Yeasayer
You gotta earn 'em to burn 'em.
Maria Hidalgo riding the Yeasayer
Maria Hidalgo on the Yeasayer.

“This is a great board for an all-around rider who’s looking to do everything on the mountain,” says Lesley Betts, Sr. Hardgoods Product Manager. It’s so important to have boards with the same versatile values as top-performing models like the Feelgood, but with a slightly more laid-back personality. The Yeasayer hits that mark, with a more catch-free personality thanks to its Flat Top bend, which keeps the flex mellow without sacrificing edge-to-edge performance, and actually adds some float in powder, too. It also comes in the even more playful Flying V™ bend, so there's options."

The Flight Attendant

Boasting a longer nose, and 10mm of taper (meaning the nose is 10mm wider than the tail), the Flight Attendant is one of the more freeride-oriented shapes in this lineup. By that, we mean it’s more directional, making it less prone to going switch (backwards), as you might often do in the park or the pipe. Not that it can’t, of course. It’s just that having taper and a big nose makes this thing want to turn fast, and fly over everything in its path. It’s a masher, a smooth surfer, and a fast blaster. Riders who favor pow laps might take note of this, as the Flight Attendant is one of the more pow-friendly all mountain boards in the line.

Mark McMorris hiking with the Flight Attendant
Mark McMorris off the contest circuit and onto the Flight Attendant.
Ben Ferguson on the Flight Attendant
Great things happen when you strap the Flight Attendant to an all-terrain ripper like Ben Ferguson.
Balanced Freeride Geometry Illustration
Balanced Freeride Geometry includes setback camber and a sidecut that is centered on your stance to create a twin freestyle feel when riding flat base.

What makes this board so versatile is something that we call Balanced Freeride Geometry (BFG). What that means is that this board, when riding on hardpack, rides like a twin, but when there’s powder, that powder is going to lift up the nose of the board, making it feel more directional and floaty.

Mark McMorris flipping off roof on the Flight Attendant
"All mountain" isn't limited to the trail map. Mark McMorris, off the rooftop in an abandoned alpine village.
Super Sap® Epoxy uses bio-based materials to dramatically reduce each board's carbon footprint.

If you have any more questions about what makes an all mountain board tick, give our Burton Guides a call. Trust us, they love nothing more than talking about snowboards!

In case your first question was going to be about sustainability, check it out: all the boards listed above are made with FSC™ Certified wood (FSC-C124994), meaning they use wood that’s been harvested in alignment with the Forest Stewardship Council’s™ mission to promote responsible management of the world’s forest. They’re also made with Super Sap® Epoxy, which uses bio-based materials to eliminate resin waste in the manufacturing process.