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Snowboards

Burton Skeleton Key 2021-2022 Snowboard Review

Tested and selected for our top 100 snowboard products of the year: the Burton Skeleton Key

  • Price: €580
  • Category: Freeride + Powder
  • Sizes: 150, 154, 158, 162
  • Flex: 3-6/10
  • Shape: Directional
  • Profile: Camber / Setback Camber
  • 3D: No
  • Base: Sintered

Why we chose the Burton Skeleton Key Snowboard: Proof that all-rounders don’t have to be dull. This one is fun, versatile, and sporting an eye-catching tail shape.

What’s in a name? Well, when on the hunt for your new ride, a model’s moniker can often tell you a lot about what to expect from it. Case in point: the Burton Skeleton Key; a veritable access-all-areas pass in snowboard form. [NB: this is no hard-and-fast rule. Whitelines accepts no responsibility if you buy a Jones Hovercraft and aren’t able to buzz around like Marty McFly in Back to The Future Pt. II].

Ben Ferguson had a hand in the original design, so for those keen to channel even a speck of his do-it-all approach to the mountain, look no further.

“Case in point: the Burton Skeleton Key; a veritable access-all-areas pass in snowboard form”

MORE INFO:
BURTON.COM

Who Is The Burton Skeleton Key For?

Riders that tend to gravitate towards directional or true twin shapes, but don’t actually spend a great deal of time in the park or riding switch, are missing a trick – and this could be the shape to which you should shift. The Burton Skeleton Key will stay afloat in the deep, but it scores high on groomers too.

Shape, Profile and Sidecut

The Burton Skeleton Key shares a lot of DNA with the ever-popular Flight Attendant; both have a setback camber profile with an elongated, rockered nose that loves the powder, and a 10mm taper that helps the tail sink. It also shares its sister stick’s way of letting you centre your stance bang in the middle of the camber section and the sidecut, making it feel a little more like a twin when you’re riding on firmer terrain.

However, while the Flight Attendant has extra carbon in the core to assist with getting airborne (again, these names don’t just think up themselves), the Skeleton Key foregoes that extra pop in favour of a mellower end-to-end flex.

Add in a slightly wider waist and you’ve got something a bit more suited to ground-level; a safe-as-houses powder cruiser in the height of winter, and a trench-digger come springtime.

“The Burton Skeleton Key will stay afloat in the deep, but it scores high on groomers too”

Construction and Materials

The Burton Skeleton Key has largely been constructed from the brand’s second-tier tech. The base may be fast, but it’s not shit-off-a-shovel fast. The core core may be light, but it’s not Legolas-cutting-for-an-MMA-bout light. While it’s got a nice torsional stiffness thanks to the triax fibreglass, the aforementioned lack of carbon means that manipulating it isn’t too much of an ask when the time comes.

So while pretty much every aspect of the build could be higher-spec, this is precisely why we like it. Unless you’re not the kind of rider who strains every sinew as they push their gear to the limit, it’s hard to fault performance-wise. It also means that the price is beyond reasonable, giving you some more left over to put towards the dedicated jib-stick that will complete your quiver.

“The core core may be light, but it’s not Legolas-cutting-for-an-MMA-bout light”

Roundup

While the Nicholas Law artwork makes the 2021/22 edition look a bit madder than usual, the Burton Skeleton Key remains a highly accessible snowboard that should appeal to a wide range of riders. Maybe it’s not freestyle-focused or hard-charging enough for some, but you’d struggle to find many other boards that cover the rest of the bases as well as this one does. Plus, as mentioned earlier, the marketing folks at Burton have kindly telegraphed all this in the board’s name. Kids, sometimes it pay to pun.

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