Splitboarding may still be a little bit niche, but there's no doubt that it's gaining traction (pun intended) as more riders seek to make the most of deep snow days. And equally, there's a strong argument that as the tech gets better, lighter and easier to use, its allure can only be becoming broader.

At the forefront of the split board hike, Spark R&D continue to cut new paths as they follow their name, researching and developing the tech needed to get you to the top, and give you a better experience on the way down too.

In the lead up to Winter 2017/18 they've brought three new focal points to their line up: building all new super lightweight one-piece 'Pillow Line' binder straps, introducing their very first split-clip, and easing the ache for riders in need of angles with a canted version of their already popular pucks.

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Above you'll see some of the process behind Spark's Pillow Line strap development, which has helped save 50-60% on strap weight in comparison to its predecessors. Made on-site with Spark's own molds, their one-piece construction incorporates soft 'pillows' inside for comfort, with stiffer ribs outside for support. Think they look too minimal to be true? Keep an eye out for our review dropping soon.

Spark's canted pucks on the other hand, will come as a relief for riders who've found canted binder footbeds a big help for knee problems. They'll be out and available with a three degree angle, and offer a great alternative if you've been missing that feel on splitboard missions.

Below, you'll see a first look at Spark's new Crossbar clip, with customisable clamping tension to give a perfect fit for your board, and a solid aluminium bar to stop movement across the join. They've already been described as "simple, bomber, and easy to use", which surely fulfils the key criteria of a small but important part in any splitboard.

Find out more and see where you can get your hands on your own Spark kit on their site.