The Bataleon Jam is a very aggressive directional twin that is made for high speed. This makes for a pretty good all mountain freestyle ride if you don’t see a lot of powder or super hard conditions. There is also still a forgiving catch free ride because of the triple base hybrid camber shape which you usually don’t see with this kind of aggressive flex.
Conditions: Medium to hard pack to 1-2 feet of thick west coast powder
Riders: James and Eli
Boots: Burton Ions
Bindings: Burton Cartel and Burton Co2
Setup- 22.5 centered 15 front -15 back
Bataleon has a loyal following of riders that swear by the Triple Base Technology. It has almost a normal flat base in the center and then the sides angle up a bit. It looks like a hybrid camber board from the side but like a camber board with a smile on the tip to tail. It’s very catch free where edges are most likely to catch. The Bataleon Jam feels like a twin version of the Bataleon Enemy.
For 2012 the Bataleon Jam was re-designed a bit and the sizing was changed. The effective edge was shortened and the sizing was increased to make the Bataleon Jam a little more playful but still have similar characteristics as the old Bataleon Jam. This is very fun edge to edge and offers up a pretty solid snappy ride.
On Snow Feel: It flat bases and one foots well so you wont have any issues off the chair or on long flat runs. It’s stiff flex makes it a fun board to hit groomers and the park at higher speeds than you normally would with a Twin. If it wasn’t for the tripple base technology I would say this would feel locked in. So it’s a very forgiving aggressive twin. It doesn’t mean that an intermediate can go out and have fun on it. It just means they can go out and pick up some bad habits without much consequence.
Powder: So Eli had a special release model (might still have it) and he wasn’t that into it because he’s more of a freeride rider that lives for powder. I didn’t try his board but rode the standard model. This All Mountain Freestyle Twin didn’t cut the mustard for him in powder and he had to work too hard off the back leg. I felt the same here and thought it was just a little better than a standard camber twin. This is not the kind of hybrid camber either of us would prefer for riding powder but if you are an old schooler who takes on powder with a camber twin you will be fine with this. We were in thicker snow on the West Coast so it magnifies the issue. However even in lighter fluffy Utah Powder isn’t going to be as easy as other boards here.
Turn Initiation and Carving: This is an aggressive all mountain freestyle board so it’s not the easiest twin to get from edge to edge. For a good rider this will be fun and preferred but it could lead a less experienced rider to skid their turns more than they should. In Groomers we found this to be fun edge to edge on short radius, medium radius and wide carving turns.
Speed: This has a medium flex and a fast base so it holds up well on wide open big long groomers that openly invite speed. It’s no Bataleon Enemy but for a twin it does well.
Uneven Terrain: Not ideal in crappy snow but this is the price you pay for riding fast on good snow.
Approximate Weight– It never sat on a scale but it feels pretty light to us. Not going to bother you on a chair lift if your boots and bindings are of similar light weight build.
Edge Hold: This isn’t bad but also isn’t great either. It seems to hold well in medium to soft conditions. The harder it gets the less it can hang with boards with additional stuff going on in the side cut.
Switch: This was a fun board for me to ride switch because I like riding switch on groomers at moderate to good speeds. It’s a true twin that is rather stiff so it’s fun to ride switch at any speed.
Rails/Jibs– I’d rather be on the Airobic or the Disaster here. It’s more of a jump and mountain kind of board.
Pipe: This is a pretty good pipe board but the edge hold is lacking to make it great. I didn’t really get too much pipe time in there but took a few passes on an icy pipe and didn’t feel comfortable. It will be fine in a soft pipe and probably a lot of fun.
Jumps: It has pretty solid spring to it for those that like to create their own air. It can feel weird hitting kickers if you set a bit of an edge when taking off. It’s hard to describe but it feels like the edge doesn’t set but instead you have to keep leaning in to feel like you do on a normal board which can be sketchy. It’s fine spinning off a jump but not if you like to make a little S-Turn into the take off. You have to get use to going off the jump with a flat base kind of feel. If you get use to this I could tell that hitting larger kickers is not going to be a problem on this board and even though it’s pretty aggressive it’s less catchy than a camber board because of the Tripple Base Tech. When I hit medium to small kickers it felt ok. It didn’t feel terribly loose or sketchy hitting a jump straight slightly on rail. It’s still not like other boards. There is also less chance of catching an edge with the smiling nose/tail.
All in all this is a pretty fun board but the lack of edge hold and average powder performance didn’t really make this a board that we would like to be on in all conditions.