best snowboards for ice

The 5 Best Snowboards For Ice

by Fraser

Ice is certainly not a snowboarder’s friend (unless it’s in your drink).


It severely limits your ability to hold an edge, turn, or even stop. 

Unfortunately for us, ice comes with the territory. Especially on the east coast!

To help you master the frosty conditions, let’s check out the best snowboards for ice. 

The Best Snowboards For Ice Are:

  1. The Burton Custom X
  2. The Gnu Rider’s Choice
  3. The Lib Tech Terrain Wrecker
  4. The Rossignol One LF
  5. The Capita Mercury

But which one is right for you? Keep reading to find out… or else.

Features of The Best Snowboards For Ice

Having tested dozens of boards on the ice east coast, I know a thing or two about icy conditions. 

Here are some key factors that make a snowboard good for ice:

  1. Camber Profile: Snowboards with a traditional camber profile tend to provide better hold on ice. Camber distributes pressure evenly along the edge, enhancing stability and grip.
  2. Edge Tech: Advanced edge technologies like Magne-Traction (found in GNU and Lib Tech) or Frostbite (Burton snowboards) increase the number of contact points along the edge.
  3. Flex: A medium to stiff flex is preferred for icy conditions. Softer boards may lack the necessary support and edge hold.
  4. Dampening and Vibration Control: Boards with built-in dampening tech, such as carbon fiber inserts, help absorb vibrations and provide a smoother ride.
  5. Shape: Directional shapes are often favored on icy terrain.

Best Snowboards For Ice

1. The Burton Custom X

Burton Custom X
9.4/10 Our Score

Flex: 7-8/10
Profile: Camber
Base: Sintered WFO
Shape: Directional Twin
Additional Features: Frostbite Edges, Dragonfly 600G Core

  • One of the OG carving machines
  • Holds an edge like an absolute champion 
  • My favorite snowboard for icy conditions
  • Packed full of tech and premium materials
  • It handles even the biggest park features with ease

✖️ Pretty stiff - probably a little too much for a beginner. Check out the regular Custom for a more forgiving ride. 

More Details: 

The Burton Custom X is the best snowboard for ice… for the right rider. 

This thing is a certified beast!

But if you’re able to tame it, you’ll be rewarded with bulletproof edge hold and unmatched precision. 

The Frostbite edges, Squeezebox core profiling and 45° Carbon Highlights make the Custom X a dream to carve.

Get pro-caliber speed and precision with the most aggressive board in Burton's lineup.

Personal Thoughts: 

What an incredible board.

The Custom X revealed my worst habits, and punished me for them… in a good way. 

With a little concentration, the Custom X became one of the best boards for carving at speed, whether on groomers, hard-pack or ice. 

I was also surprised by how much pop you can generate on this thing – albeit with a little more preload than a softer hybrid board. 

Who Is This Board For? A strong, intermediate-advanced rider looking for a board to tackle icy terrain, such as the East Coast.

2. The Gnu Rider's Choice

The Gnu Rider's Choice
9.3/10 Our Score

Flex: 5.5/10
Profile: C2X Contour (Rocker-Camber-Rocker)
Base: Sintered
Shape: True Twin 
Pairs With: Burton Cartels
Additional Features: Magne-Traction, ASYM Level 2, 

  • An all-mountain machine
  • One of the best twin snowboards for ice
  • Forgiving hybrid profile, with lots of pop
  • Great edge hold - especially for a twin
  • Huge range of sizes

✖️ The only true twin on the list - awesome for freestyle but slightly less free ride focused 

More Details: 

Pretty much every snowboarder will enjoy the Rider’s Choice. 

It’s much more forgiving than the Custom X and leaves a little more margin for error. The C2X hybrid profile allows smooth turn transitions and easily-accessible pop. 

Magne-traction (a series of extra contact points allong the edges) works like a charm. So much so that it now features in all Gnu and Lib Tech boards. 

gnu rider's choice - one of the best all-mountain snowboards of the year

The Rider’s Choice is also the only board on the list to feature asym tech. This keeps your heel-side turns as dialled in as your toe-side turns. I found this super helpful on ice. 

Personal Thoughts:

Regular readers know how much I love this board. It’s one of the few boards that genuinely can tackle the entire mountain.

It’s a little more freestyle focused than the rest of the list. But if you’re looking for a true-twin, this is it. 

I discussed the Rider’s Choice in a little more detail in my article about the top all-mountain snowboards

Who Is This Board For? The all-mountain freestyle rider looking for a board that can also hold up on ice. 

3. The Lib Terrain Wrecker

Lib Tech Terrain Wrecker
9.15/10 Our Score

Flex: 6.5/10
Profile: C2X (Hybrid Camber)
Base: Sintered
Shape: Directional Twin
Additional Features:

  • A super fun, one-board quiver
  • Magne-traction provides awesome edge hold - even on ice
  • Hybrid profile for a more forgiving, surfy ride
  • Very freestyle-capable 
  • Eco-friendly construction 
  • Held up like a champ on cold East Coast mornings

✖️ Not as precise as pure camber options 
✖️ A little on the heavy side

More Details: 

This bad boy is a true all-mountain ripper.

It’s built to handle anything you throw at it, including icy terrain.

The camber-dominant hybrid profile provides killer edge hold. Sprinkle in some Magne-Traction and you’re ready to hit the East Coast. 

Personal Thoughts:

The Terrain Wrecker is pretty similar to the Rider’s Choice. 

It was lively, responsive and way more fun than I expected. I found myself sending every side-hit, roller and drop-off in sight. Loved it!

Who Is This Board For? The rider who might be tempted by the Rider’s Choice, but is slightly less freestyle orientated and looking for a directional twin. 

4. The Rossignol ONE

Rossignol One
9.1/10 Our Score

Flex: 6/10
Profile: Amptek All-Mountain (Hybrid)
Base: Sintered
Shape: Directional Twin
Additional Features: 5S Serrated Edges

  • One of the best snowboards for ice this season
  • New 5S edges worked like a charm
  • Surprisingly light, thanks to their L.I.T.E. Frame wood core
  • Excellent customer service

✖️ Slightly stiffer than I expected

More Details: 

Rossignol have made the list this year with the ONE – their most versatile all-mountain board.

Back with a fresh new shape, the ONE offers L.I.T.E. Frame technology and RadCut sidecut. 

Their upgraded 5S Serrated Edge tech is now on-par with Magne-traction, creating a board that digs deep and holds a super solid edge. 

Personal Thoughts:

Rossignol blew me away with this “one”. A hidden gem!

I managed to test this on a few overcast, freezing cold days. Against all the odds, I had an absolute blast. 

The board held a super solid edge, all whilst being fun and lively. It also looks incredible (even though we’re supposed to pretend that doesn’t matter). 

Who Is This Board For? The rider who isn’t afraid to stray from the “well-known” brands and wants a super solid all-mountain slayer 

5. The CAPiTA Mercury

Capita Mercury
9/10 Our Score

Flex: 6.5/10
Profile: Resort V2 Directional
Base: Sintered
Shape: New Age Directional
Additional Features:

  • An awesome all-mountain carving machine 
  • Very firm edge hold
  • Death-grip is a welcome addition
  • Versatile enough for pretty aggressive freestyle riding

✖️ On the stiffer side - less ideal for lighter riders or beginners

More Details:

Last but not least…

The Mercury is easily one of the best snowboards for ice and the east coast. 

With an extended effective edge, a camber-dominant hybrid profile and a lightning fast base, the Mercury tested super well this season. 

CAPiTA’s Death grip (a protruding contact point on the sidecut underfoot) is another great tool in the fight against frozen conditions. 

Personal Thoughts:

The Mercury has been popular for several seasons, and for good reason. 

It’s super fast, super stable and super fun. 

Not much has changed this season, but CAPiTA have just released the incredible Mega Merc upgrade. If your wallet can take the strain, it’s well worth considering!

Who Is This Board For? The all-mountain rider looking for a trustworthy, straight-forward board that handles most conditions with ease. 

Final Thoughts

Equipped with your new board, you’re now ready to tackle some serious ice!

Still unsure?

Drop your questions in the comments below.

Alternatively, pray to the snow gods for fresh powder and check out the top swallowtail boards.

Happy ice skating snowboarding!

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