The 2017-2018 Jones Ultra Mountain Twin was made by SWS instead of GST and it’s got a new nose/tail shape. I’d say maybe a touch softer but it feels more dynamic and just as damp. The 2017-2018 specs say centered and that might be true on effective edge but it’s still got the same 3″ set back on board that it had in 2016.
Conditions: Good mid season Sierra snow and late season mostly good spring conditions
Riders: James, Peter, Jimbo, Matt, Jack and a few others
Boots: Burton Almighty, Adidas Tactical ADV, Burton SLX, Burton Rover, Burton AMB,
Bindings: Union Atlas, Burton Genesis X, Burton Cartel, Union Force, Union T.Rice, Now Drive, Now Pilot, Now Select, Now O-Drive (Did a binding test with this board)
Set Up: Centered approx 22.75″/58cm 15 front -15 back
Approximate Weight: Feels normal bordering on light.
Flex: It’s a veyr interesting flex because it feels med stiff untill you get it out on the snow. Then on snow it butters and flexes from tip to tail more like it’s a medium flexing board. The torsional flex it’s pretty stiff. The SWS mae flex of the 2017 model doesn’t feel quite as stiff as past years models that were made in GST. It feels a little more dynamic. Yes has been making their boards at SWS for a few years now and the Jones Ultra Mountain Twin as well as all Jones boards have been YES’d but just with a stiffer flex.
On Snow Feel: Just like always that hybrid camber profile is nice and stable. It tracks well, doesn’t feel catchy, one foots well and flat bases well. It’s got that all condition ride and what I mean by that is it feels the same underfoot no matter what the conditions are from hard to soft. In this world of hybrid shapes there are many boards that change personality from hard snow to soft snow and the Jones Ultra Mountain Twin Doesn’t.
Edge Hold: Same great edge hold and it seems that SWS made the mellow mag almost the same. It holds in hard and doesn’t grab hard in soft snow.
Turn Initiation: The SWS model feels almost the same and maybe it’s just in my head it feels a touch quicker edge to edge but only by a little bit. When I rode both on the hill on the same day the SWS/2017 model seems to turn just a little quicker than the 2016 GST model and seemed to have a little more pop out of the turn.
Skidded Turns: Very easy to skid turns and we all felt that even though this board can be aggressive and pick up good speed its not a real consequence heavy ride. The Jones Ultra Mountain Twin is a very forgiving all mountain ride that can be aggressive or just cruise and skid turns.
Carving: Its fun to carve with and although I like the new shape of the tip/tail I wish they would of added a little bit extra camber to give it a harder carving ride. Still it carves pretty well for a board with camber just past the bindings.
Speed: It’s stable and fast and even though its a touch softer than before it feels just as damp.
Uneven Terrain: It’s pretty good for a med/stiff board that doesn’t turn too fast and if you ride messy Saturday resort snow it’s gonna be ok.
Powder: Even though SWS specs this as centered you can still set the 2017 Jones Ultra Mountain Twin back the same as you can with the 2016. So yes it’s centered on side cut but not on board. I can set this back all the way with 58cm or approximately a 23.75″ stance width. Setting it all the way back is 3″ on board which is pretty far back for an all mountain. Haven’t tested the new nose/tail in powder so can’t say if I felt a difference but I like that it feels like there is less weight in the tip/tail. Also like the look.
Switch: The Jones Ultra Mountain Twin feels very good switch and although not perfect it’s great for those, like Peter and I, who like to ride switch on groomers but love to get set back and surfy on powder.
Jibbing: It’s not the best jibber because of the stiffer flex between the feet and we’d rather be on the Mountain Twin with it’s softer flex instead.
Pipe: Pretty good in the pipe and although we like the Yes Standard a little better because it likes to turn faster and its easier to throw it around easier. However we wish the Yes Standard had that little extra edge hold from the mellow mag like the Ultra Mountain Twin does.
Jumps: The new and improved flex from GST makes it a little more springy and it’s got good snap to it. It’s also the kind of board we would all like to hit kickers with. It’s stable approaching and forgiving landing. The only thing we’d like to see is just a little more camber. We don’t want a lot but just take it maybe 1 cm on each side.
All in all we like the new design from SWS and feel it’s an improvement from GST. It’s a touch softer and a little bit more lively. Also the new tip/tail make the board feel a little easier to throw around.
2016 Jones Ultra Mountain Twin Review
The Jones Ultra Mountain Twin is basically a lighter snappier version of the Jones Mtn Twin and we like it much better than the LTD from last year. Normally I’d say that the higher price point isn’t worth the “Ultra” tech but at $79 more why the hell not! Also if you can’t get the right size in the Ultra then the regular version is still a great choice and an honorary favorite.
So here are some of the differences between the Jones Ultra Mountain Twin and the Jones Mountain Twin:
- The Ultra has carbon so it holds it’s flex longer and also acts a little more snappy. In comparing production models in the shop the Ultra Mtn Twin is a little stiffer.
- Faster Base. The regular model is very fast but this is a touch faster.
- Lighter Core…well generally lighter core. You never know for sure because wood isn’t consistent so it’s not guaranteed it’s always going to be lighter compared to the standard twin but it should be most of the time.
Conditions: Hard Pack with only a few softer patches here and there, 1-2 feet of powder and everything in between. No ice though.
Riders: James, Matt, Peter, Jack, Jimbo and a few others
Boots: Burton Fiend LTD, Burton SLX, Burton AMB, Burton Imperial, Nike Kaiju and a few others
Bindings: Union Atlas, Burton Cartel, Burton Genesis, Burton Genesis X, Burton Diode, Union Contact, Union T.Rice, Union Force, Union Ultra and a few others.
Bindings: Salomon Defender
Set Up: Centered to set all the way back 15 front -15 back almost 23″
Approximate Weight: Felt normal to bordering on light. It’s not a featherweight like the Aviator but it feels much more sturdy and reliable.
On Snow Feel: The Jones Ultra Mountain Twin ame great on snow feel as the Jones Mountain Twin that’s stable and consistent in all conditions but a little more stiff, lively and snappy which is always a bonus. Such a massive improvement from the Jones Mtn Twin LTD from last year. That board felt kind of dead where this feels the exact opposite. This set back hybrid camber acts the same in all conditions. It’s reat for one footing and flat basing but still catch free. It’s the kind of board that has personality that likes to go straight but also says hey if you want to slow down, cruise and make some good turns I’m down for that too. It can handle the aggressive and moderate rider almost equally well.
Powder: I didn’t have any powder with the Ultra but had more powder days than I can count with the standard model. There shouldn’t be any difference between the two boards because they have the same very powder friendly camber profile. I can only imagine that the Ultra will be better at keeping speed with the faster base and stiffer flex. You are looking at a -20mm set back on the effective edge but with the longer nose than tail the set back on side cut is a good bit more. Also with approximately a 22.75″ stance width on the 157 you can get get 3″ back on the board which is pretty far. Our only complaint with the Jones Ultra Mountain Twin is it’s a little slow turning in trees or tight spots in the deep stuff so if you want it to turn better more responsive bindings are pretty important.
Turn Initiation: Still the same kind of moderate turn initiation but feels just a little bit quicker edge to edge compared to the standard model. Not enough really to rate it higher but instead just a shade better. Even though the Jones Ultra Twin isn’t a super aggressive board I generally like paring up mid to responsive bindings with it to help turn the board quicker. I’d love to see just a little quicker turn initiation because it can be a little slow in tight spots.
Carving: The camber between the feet allows for a pretty surfy fun carve. Unlike many hybrid rocker boards this hybrid camber doesn’t require you to get your knees out towards the tip/tail to make it hold. You can if that’s your style because it handles just as well if you make a surfy carve with your knees closer together or a carve with your knees out in more of a gorilla squat.
Speed: From what little time I had on the Ultra and a ton of time I’ve had on the Twin I feel its kind of a wash between the standard model and Ultra. The faster base has a longer glide that picks up speed vaster on the ultra but I think the standard Twin feels more damp going faster despite the lack of carbon. I’m hoping to test this more and get an on snow a/b test but you never know how it plays out.
Uneven Terrain: Very close to the regular Mtn Twin but I felt just a little more bucked around in uneven snow than I did with the standard model. It’s not a lot but just a little.
Edge Hold: Same great mellow mag edge hold that does great in hard snow, ok in ice and doesn’t grab at all in softer snow. It’s a great all condition ride. I noticed that it felt a little more chattery in harder uneven snow and the edge didn’t seem to want to bite in as much but it’s hard to tell for sure unless I took the standard twin up right after.
Flex: The Jones Ultra Mountain Twin feels like it has a little more stiffness and pop in the flex. You can still butter the tip and tail but it’s just a little more work than the Standard Mountain Twin.
Switch: There isn’t much “Twin” left in the name but It still rides pretty well switch when centered or close to center. The tip butters different than the tail and the set back camber makes it a little different but its still an easy board to ride switch and you can get use to it pretty quick.
Jibbing: Not really a solid jibber. Neither is the standard Mtn Twin but I liked the standard a little better for stopping in the progression park which is about all I’m good for with jibbing.
Pipe: Same great feel in the pipe. Personally I’d like to see a little faster turn initiation for quick adjustments from wall to wall but it’s still fun to lap the pipe with. If the turn initation was quicker it could be a great dedicated pipe board.
Jumps: There is a little bump in terms of pop and it makes the Jones Ultra Mountain Twin more easy and more fun to ollie and hit kickers with. It’s very stable and confidence inspiring when approaching a kicker.
So all in all the Jones Ultra Mountain Twin is a great snowboard that improves upon the already great Mountain Twin. The only slightly higher price range makes me wonder why not just bump the price up of the standard Twin and give it this tech instead of have 2 models.