The sight of the crescent-tailed Jones Hovercraft no longer has the impact it once did – several other models, including the brand’s own Storm Chaser, are far more eye-catching – but few sticks have become as iconic in as short a time. Thanks to its directional shape and no-frill graphics, which this year have actually been branded on rather than inked, you can spot a Hovercraft a mile off.
And spot them you shall, especially if you go wherever the powder is plentiful. The Japanese backcountry, for instance, requires something that has plenty of float but is still nimble enough to dart between the trees – indeed, the Hovercraft’s design is heavily inspired by the decks Jeremy Jones came across in the Land of the Rising Sun.
With its spoon nose and stubby tail the Hovercraft ticks all the right boxes for the deep stuff, but it’s also surprisingly good on piste. The wavy Magne-Traction edges grip the corduroy, and there’s just enough tail still there to allow you to really open her up.
True powder hounds will still love this, though, as there’s been no compromise on backcountry performance. There’s also a splitboard version available for the truly fanatical.
“If you want a board to take away on your trip that’s specifically for shredding the pow, then look at the Hovercraft.
The long nose effortlessly lifts above the deepest of powder, even when you get caught out on flatter/slower terrain. It’s pretty stiff so smashes though crappier snow too.
I also shredded this late afternoon on a really wet slushy slope, point-and-shoot style, and it bashed through the slush, aquaplaned on the puddles and kept on picking up speed. Rad."
"The long nose effortlessly lifts above the deepest of powder, even when you get caught out on flatter terrain"