Outdoor Vanisle

Prior 2010 AMF Split Review

December 26, 2009

This is the first split board I have ever owned. I've poked at them in the past, but this year decided to go all in and get setup for the backcountry. With the Spark R&D Fuse coming out this year, it would appear I've picked a good year to do so!

I have the largest AMF split they make at 165. It's on the heavy side at 3.8kg (my Option Signature 157 is 2.8kg) which is to be expected from a Prior board with their bias towards stability. Being a backcountry all mountain board it's also fairly stiff, however the hybrid rocker makes it easy to pop off the tail and landings are unbelievably smooth. 

I've had the board out a few days now in some varied conditions - the first was the worst, at Mount Washington. Several days of heavy wet snow met a super cold and clear day turning the mountain into an ice field. Little bits of hard pack, but mostly just ice. While a sad day for boarding, it did let me find out that the board holds it's edges quite admirably on ice. Of the other days I've had everything from slush to nice powder, and the board has handled it all without any complaints or hesitation. 

The hybrid rocker really makes the board float through the powder without much effort, it wants to float on it's own as soon as it hits anything soft. Leaving the powder the board feels very stable at speed on pretty much any type of snow I was able to find. While it's a long board it turns incredibly quickly and easily - just the thing for a nice run through the trees, and it felt equally at home doing fast carved turns. The board is built to be ridden aggressively, and if anything performs better the harder you ride it. While it is twin tipped it is still a directional board, especially in it's flex. That said I found it comfortable to ride switch, in fact even more so than my Option. 

Skinning was another area that worked out quite well - once I got the hang of it I was cruising up the hill without much thought. Split each ski is pretty wide, obviously, but I didn't encounter any real issues with it other than my lack of technique in the beginning. With the step-up under the heel I was able to easily climb up some decently steep terrain without any trouble. I've never skinned with any other splitboard, so unfortunately I don't have much to compare it to.

The Spark R&D Fuse bindings are fantastic. I actually find them more comfortable than my regular bindings, and easier to step into. Converting the board to and from split is a very simple process with the Fuse, and really doesn't take very long to do. There is a video that does a better job explaining than I can.

Something else worth mentioning is that while in snowboard mode, the board felt like a solid board. At no point was I ever reminded that he board I was riding could turn into skis. There was no chattering, shifting, no movement of any kind, no telltale signs. I think a large part of this is due to the bindings - they mount directly on the surface of the board and do a lot to really hold the board in it's place. On good days if I have both boards with me and I'm at a resort, I'll likely be taking the AMF, and leaving my Option to do early season or poor conditions and ice duty.

The AMF split is an agile and stable board built for big mountain riding. It will do a good job getting you up the mountain and handle anything you run into on the way down, letting you pick the most interesting line wether that's in the air, through the trees, or carving up the steep sections. Prior set out to create a one board quiver with the AMF split, and from my first impressions I would say they have done a good job achieving that goal.

Prior 2010 AMF Split

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The hybrid rocker really makes the board float through the powder without much effort, it wants to float on it's own anything performs better the harder you ride it. While it is twin tipped it is still a directional board, especially in it's flex. That said I found it comfortable to ride switch, in fact even more so than my Option.

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very usefull information, thanks a lot

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