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Venture Storm Review

An even mix of freestyle and free ride that doesn't neglect flotation
Venture  Storm
Photo: Venture
Top Pick Award
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Price:  $919 List
Pros:  Fun, predictable, solid edge hold, confidence inspiring, great float
Cons:  Slightly soft nose and tail, heavy-ish
Manufacturer:   Venture Snowboards
By Isaac Laredo & David Reichel  ⋅  Dec 28, 2020
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75
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#3 of 11
  • Powder - 26% 8
  • Firm Snow - 26% 7
  • Climbing - 28% 7
  • Binding Adjustability - 5% 5
  • Playfulness - 15% 9

Our Verdict

The Venture Storm offers user-friendly performance due to its diligent and precise craftsmanship. This quality splitboard is exceptionally capable in soft snow; it also handles variable mountain conditions with confidence and encourages freestyle fun. In all conditions, its edge hold was secure, and its playful flex kept the ride predictable. The soft nose and tail were surprisingly stable in chop and high speeds but could be overwhelmed in heavy snow or powerful turns. The Storm is an excellent choice for riders looking for a playful and versatile ride that can perform in all conditions, especially in powder.

New Topsheet

The graphics have been updated for the Storm (pictured above), but the specs remain the same as the model we tested below.

January 2021

Compare to Similar Products

 
Venture  Storm
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Venture Storm
Awards Top Pick Award Editors' Choice Award Top Pick Award Best Buy Award Best Buy Award 
Price $919 List$899 List$900 List$650 List$799 List
Overall Score Sort Icon
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Star Rating
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Pros Fun, predictable, solid edge hold, confidence inspiring, great floatDurable topsheet, great powder floatation, excellent climbing, snappy turn experience, bolt-less baseStable, stiff, lightweight, solid, predictable, reliable, supports diverse riding objectivesDurable, affordable, versatile, easy to adjust stanceDurable topsheet, versatile, responsive, good offering of sizes
Cons Slightly soft nose and tail, heavy-ishExpensive, switch ridingExpensive, narrow waist width, shallow nose riseGeneralist, soft for aggressive riding or heavy snowChallenging to smear turns in firm snow at slow speeds
Bottom Line A fun and stable all-mountain offering that handles well in powderSolid board performance paired with exceptional climbing abilityOffering exceptional performance in powder and firm snow, the Solution in up for whatever you're looking to doWhere minimalism meets performanceA well-crafted splitboard that provides a fun and versatile ride
Rating Categories Venture Storm Backwoods Jones Solution Splitboard Voile Spartan Ascent United Shapes Covert
Powder (26%)
8
8
7
6
8
Firm Snow (26%)
7
8
9
7
8
Climbing (28%)
7
9
8
8
7
Binding Adjustability (5%)
5
5
5
9
5
Playfulness (15%)
9
8
7
9
7
Specs Venture Storm Backwoods Jones Solution... Voile Spartan Ascent United Shapes Covert
Weight 7.91 lbs 7.33 lbs 7.38 lbs 6.08 lbs 7.45 lbs
Tested Length 157 157 158 158 158
Flex Medium Stiff Medium - stiff Stiff Soft Medium
Weight in grams 3587 g 3325 g 3346 g 2794 g 3382 g
Weight Per Surface Area 0.8 0.74 0.74 0.62 0.75
Available Lengths 157,161, 162, 166, 171 152, 157, 160, 163, 163 (w) 154, 158, 159W, 161, 162W, 164, 165W, 166, 169W 154, 158, 162, 166 149,152,158,161,166
Construction Type Sandwich Sandwich Sandwich Cap Sandwich
Core Material Wood Wood/ bamboo Wood paulownia, carbon Blended wood
Waist Width 25cm 25.6cm 24.7cm 25.7cm 25.7cm
Shape Directional Directional Directional Directional twin Directional
Radius 8.48m 7.3/6.5/7.5m 8.5m 7.7m 7.5m
Camber/Rocker Straightline rocker Rock camber rocker Directional rocker Freeride camber Rocker/ Camber/ Rocker

Our Analysis and Test Results

Venture snowboards based in Silverton, Colorado has manufactured the Storm splitboard for many years. The current version is a highly evolved ride that continues to get lighter. The company has also fine-tuned its Straight-Line Rocker, essentially flat (no rocker and no camber) between the inserts with rocker starting just outside the inserts. Its soft snow performance is excellent, yet the all-around abilities of the board are not sacrificed. Venture has a done a great job of creating a super fun all-mountain splitboard from 100% renewable energy, and it should be on nearly everyone's shopping list.

Venture's Straight-Line Rocker describes the profile of their...
Venture's Straight-Line Rocker describes the profile of their boards. Essentially flat in the middle with early rise rocker at the nose and tail.
Photo: Venture

Performance Comparison


The Venture Storm is one of the heaviest models in the category but...
The Venture Storm is one of the heaviest models in the category but climbs well due to the balance of the split skis.
Photo: Isaac Laredo

Powder


During the heart of winter, we toured to find and enjoy the soft, fresh snow. To fully enjoy our experience, the board needs to float. Floatation comes from the shape of the board. Oftentimes powder specific shapes make certain trade-offs to provide optimal floatation. The Storm provides plenty of flotation at no expense to other performance attributes.


From an all-around shape standpoint, it's high on the list for powder performance. The large nose and ample rocker give this board impressive floatation in powder. The nose is a touch soft, which produces a surfy feel in soft snow. We did find the nose to be slightly soft for heavy snow densities.

The Storm also has a tapered shape meaning the nose is wider than the tail. This helps sink the tail and float the front of the board in powder. It floats well, is incredibly easy to turn, and provides impressive stability.

The medium flex of this board is shockingly capable to hold its own for those who like to charge. We were surprised at how comfortable we felt going fast. Fortunately, the profile of this board allows it to turn quickly and easily making it user-friendly and simple to manage for the more casual sender.

The Storm is easy to turn, yets thrives at higher speeds.
The Storm is easy to turn, yets thrives at higher speeds.
Photo: Isaac Laredo

Firm Snow


While the Storm stands out for soft snow performance, this would not be so remarkable if it came at the cost of firm snow functionality. It maintains a solid edge hold when the slope is steep and the snow is hard.


Occasionally we may ride blower pow from the peak to the trailhead, but more often we encounter hard snow in multiple locations. We edged over firm wind-scoured ridges while avoiding wind slabs below the peak. Many routes finished on tracked out logging roads that more resemble iced up bobsled tracks than the epic powder seen on social media. The Storm performs very well in all these conditions. We never felt insecure when traversing or edging on steep or icy slopes, and the stability provided exceeded our expectations from the flat camber. The Storm has a freeride inspired shape paired with a playful and fun medium flex. Its tail is adequate for confident switch riding when lining up narrow couloirs or landing.

Climbing


The Storm climbs easily despite its heavier weight (relative to other models of a similar size). This model had one of the heavier surface area/gram values of the review fleet. The split skis are well balanced to help with its on-track efficiency.


Most rockered powder boards provide less security than a cambered board; this is because the purpose of the rocker is to lift the nose higher. It lifts the board quickly in powder on the up and down. However, this also can also reduce the amount of edge contact and surface area available to provide purchase on the snow.

The Straight-Line Rocker works well, enough of the Storms middle section contacts the snow to avoid problems with vertical skin grip. In sections of icy sidehilling, the middle section of the edge had the most purchase leaving the better part of the tip and tail ungrounded. This threatened our side to side stability when climbing, due to the lack of full edge contact.

Breaking trail on a storm day.
Breaking trail on a storm day.
Photo: laredo

In both firm and soft snow conditions, the Storm skins well. Venture rates the Storm as a 6 out 10 in their flex scale. Assuming you buy a size appropriate for your weight, this middle of the road flex works great for snowboarding. When climbing, this model provided adequate stiffness for our 158-pound tester to avoid over flexing the board in soft or icy conditions. Over flexing in soft snow creates a dished skin track, adding to the difficulty of breaking trail. In icy conditions, overflexing can result in losing edge contact and sliding down the slope into the abyss. Because of the Storm's medium flex pattern, it's worth considering a size buffer when sizing larger riders.

Binding Adjustablity


The Storm utilizes the standard mounting pattern. To change your stance from this orientation requires that the user reinstalls the hardware, which takes at least 20 minutes.


Playfulness


The Storm loved to crush big arcing powder turns when deep snow is abundant. Between snowfalls, the Patagonian winds often reset these slopes with smaller panels of soft wind buff, and the Storm eagerly wheelied and slashed through these pockets.


The first portion of the track is fairly steep and whoopee (sort of like a brutal natural boardercross course). It begins with a sunny steep wiggle section that begs for slashes, and the Storm obliges. Next the track transitions to a shadier and icier section; the Storm maintains enough confidence that popping 180s on the features in this section was manageable and made the exit even more entertaining. The middle section traverses through a sunny North facing, that was held thin conditions.

The track out required quick turns and multiple ollies over logs. The final section returned to the piste by passing under a lift while crossing a boulder-strewn creek. Following the narrow path across the creek with the added pressure of the folks on the lift required confidence and quick turns. The Storm was agile and inspired enough confidence that it could be ridden out the entire way, and honestly, this funky semi-frozen luge track was delightful. This would not be the case with many splitboards.

Kudos


Venture has a well-deserved reputation for manufacturing quality boards. Holding up the Storm, the two skis were perfectly aligned with zero noticeable gaps between them.

Impeccable craftsmanship by Venture Snowboards. The alignment of the...
Impeccable craftsmanship by Venture Snowboards. The alignment of the two edges of the Storm splitboard is perfectly tight. This photo was taken after a month of heavy use.
Photo: David Reichel

Venture produces high-quality boards from their wind-powered operation in Silverton Colorado. One of the most alpine areas of the United States with substantial avalanche paths and enticing peaks visible from the main street.

Value


The Storm is on the higher end of splitboard pricing. It is also a great splitboard that is made with solid ethos. Many of the other splitboards are produced at larger factories in Europe or Asia, while Venture models are made in smaller numbers in Silverton, Colorado. Venture build quality is exceptional and it is readily apparent by examining how tightly the board halves fit together.

Conclusion


Versatile, playful, and reliable, the Venture Storm can handle whatever you throw at it while maintaining a playful ride. The Storm remains one of the best splitboards we have tested.

The Storm staged in touring mode.
The Storm staged in touring mode.
Photo: Isaac Laredo

Isaac Laredo & David Reichel