Esplanade Range, BC. FOW: Nick Russell // Photo: Jack Dawe (@wjackdawe)
From the moment our first prototype touched snow on a remote Alaskan line in early 2021, we have been getting increasingly more excited to share them with the backcountry community. The BelleTour split and BelleAire solid are inspired by North America’s highest peaks, equipped with our own palette of AlgalTech® biobased materials, and built to ride any snowpack you encounter. Created with the same overall shape but with subtle differences in core profile, both boards tackle alpine descents with equal passion and a likeminded feel, but take different approaches to the ascent.
Explore the materials that make these boards unique, then get to know each board individually below.
The boards' capabilities are enhanced by biobased materials we develop in house. Algal Core - a composite of microalgae oil-derived polyurethane hard foam and domestically sourced aspen - keeps weight low while maintaining torsional rigidity. Algal Wall - our own biobased polyurethane sidewall, offers significantly better impact absorption properties than a conventional petroleum-based ABS sidewall, while eliminating the need for epoxies to join the sidewall to the core.
Finally, we’re introducing a brand new material in all of our boards - Spiral Plate. Derived from our own fabrication waste in the Design Lab, Spiral Plate is a composite of recycled plastic particles and a biobased resin system.
In addition to utilizing our own waste material, Spiral Plate insert packs give all of our boards better pullout strength than conventional binding inserts, while virtually eliminating the possibility for the inserts to spin when too much force is applied.
With our first splitboard, we sought to create a backcountry tool that could support remote missions to seldom explored lines high above treeline, yet float and play in powder with the fun loving freerider in all of us.
To uphold the human-powered philosophy behind the BelleTour, we experimented with our core profile designs until we settled upon one that would tackle big tours as capably as it descends. The result of this experimentation is a production core with greater thickness at the waist, which supports and distributes the rider’s weight effectively while touring and aids stability, especially while breaking trail in deep or heavy snow. After transitioning, this core profile creates greater torsional rigidity across the entire board, helping it ride like a solid on the way down.
As the solid companion to the BelleTour, the BelleAire is designed with a pure dedication to the downhill. Whether you’re putting the board on your back to boot your favorite couloir or accessing the goods via other means, the BelleAire thrives when it’s pointed down big mountains at speed.
With Algal Core, Algal Wall, and Spiral Plate incorporated to support the board’s versatile shape, the BelleAire is a weight conscious solid that pivots easily, yet stays planted and predictable when it comes time to point it down the fall line.
“I am honored to be able to finally unveil the BelleTour and BelleAire to the public. Expanding the reach of AlgalTech® materials, we wanted to optimize both boards for the kind of alpine powder riding that Nick and I both live for. You can seek out the same kind of descending freedom on both boards, but your approach to the ascent determines which one you select. Here’s to a long season of snow, surfing, and science!”
- Alex “Frothpuppy” Andrews, FOW