The New, Improved ThirtyTwo Jones MTB Splitboard Boot
2020 -The Red One
The new 2019 2020 version of the ThirtyTwo Jones MTB splitboard boot is here. And it is red. And awesome in so many ways! Let’s dig in and see how they made this boot better.
ThirtyTwo Jones MTB splitboard boot – improved
I have been using and reviewing the Jones MTB boots every year since they first came out. They have always been great boots, with really great features. But sometimes they fell short in other areas. I have spoken to the designer (Jame Kim) each year about what all they went through to make improvements. It is always a great talk and I can feel the passion they put into making these splitboard boots.
No more yellow, all about the Red!
First things first, the boots are now red, instead of yellow. Not sure why, but I dig it! I know, the color does not matter all that much. But it is kind of nice to mix it up. There is still the iconic line on the zipper path. One that we can all relate too. The classic – “The Journey Is The Reward”
Walk Mode Collar
This is one of the best upgrades in my opinion. For years, I have been wondering why the walk mode lacked a protective cover to keep snow out of the boot. I chalked it up to using the pant’s own gaiter to cover the hinging mechanism. But this had a tendency to fail if the pants get loosed and the gaiter’s seal is compromised. These things do happen, and when they do, snow is getting in your boot.
While the collar pictured above might look a little different than what is being sold now (these are prototypes I have been testing!) they still function the same. Meaning, they work and they work damn well. Major improvement!
Other areas of improvement for the
ThirtyTwo Jones MTB splitboard boot,
from people other than me 🙂
I love collaborating with others to get their point of view on gear. I reached out to my good friends Russel Cunningham (The Sulton of Stoke at Karakoram) and my Chilean brother, Rafael Pease. They both have extensive experience with the Jones MTB boot and had these observations on previous models. Take note, as many of these issues have been addressed in the new red Jones MTB splitboard boot!
Russell Cunningham – The man, the myth, the legend
Areas of Improvement:
- The boot is too damn heavy. My Men’s 9.5US MTB’s weigh in at 1,500 grams per boot. This is about 300 grams heavier per foot than they should be. This feedback has been sent to 32, and I think they are working on putting the boot on a diet. For comparison, Fitwell in the same size weighs 1,200 grams, a far more competitive weight.
- Walk mode needs to be closed up. As much as I like the open air on my calf for hot spring touring, I do find it drafty on freezing cold winter tours.
- Materials could be better. Compared to the latest mountaineering boots from La Sportiva, Scarpa, etc., I do still feel that the materials and build quality could be made to match those companies. On that note, they should just make this boot in the USA, make it lighter and with higher-end materials, and just charge a thousand bucks for them. But hell, we take what we can get!
Real World opinion from professional splitboarder Rafael Pease
Rafael has been using the MTB boot for the last few years while filming his movie Yugen. He is one of my favorite people and a fascinating human. I had a chance to pick his brain regarding the splitboarding boots. As he has spent hundreds of days in them, often in remote parts of the world, he can attest to the pros and cons of the boots.
Rafael has 600 days on the Jones MTB boots (over 3 years and 3 versions of them). From the Yukon to Patagonia, Japan to Kyrgyzstan – Rafael has put the MTB through the wringer. Initially, he was a big fan. The articulation and durability came in handy on long tours and winter camping.
A few years in…
However, he noticed foot pain from pressure points and felt that the break-in time was too long. After recently touring with Eric Layton and others in the PNW, he noticed how much lighter and quicker the other splitboarders were, using hard boot setups. He also noticed how much less foot pain they were experiencing. His conclusion was to either 1) go hard boot for bigger tours or 2) go softer boot for quick laps.
Rafa is not one to compromise his integrity and stands by his word. So there you have it from Mr. Pease. He may be a little harder on gear than some of us riders, as he spends weeks at a time using them in remote areas.
You can read the entire write up here.
Lots to work on, did they fix the
ThirtyTwo Jones MTB splitboard boot?
Lighter weight – Finally!
One of the gripes I hear from users of the Jones MTB splitboard boot is the weight. I agree they are heavy boots! Just look above for some extra backing on this topic. So, I am happy to announce that ThirtyTwo did in fact, reduce the weight of the boots. My 2018 Jones MTB boots came in at 1600 grams. The 2019 – 2020 Jones boots came in at 1570 grams. Not a lot less, but that is over an ounce. I will take it, given the other improvements to the boots.
More comfortable, right out of the box
This is my favorite thing about the new Jones MTB boots. They are super comfortable, right out of the box. In the previous reviews, I kind of laid into them as being super stiff. Heck, I even named the review title “ThirtyTwo Jones MTB Splitboard boot – Stiffest Boot Ever!”. I think that summarized pretty well, how stiff they were.
I was pleasantly surprised by the comfort of the new version. No more days and weeks of breaking in the Jones boots. I had joked with many people that we should either hire interns to break them in or just get drunk and wear them around the house for a few days. I don’t recommend either, but it seems funny (and accurate).
Finally, the gaiter is refined and very useful. You still get all the extras that the previous version came with. The various arch supports, ankle donuts and stiffening rods.
Final review of ThirtyTwo Jones MTB Splitboard Boot
Of all the versions of the Jones snowboarding boot, this new MTB is my favorite. From the way it feels to the way it operates in the mountains. This is the best version yet. ThirtyTwo made the boots lighter, more comfortable and sealed out the elements with the walk mode collar. I have been using these for every splitboard tour since January 2019 and have never regretted choosing them. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!
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New to Splitboarding? Check out our guide to splitboarding. Splitboarding – The First Steps When Taking Snowboarding Into the Backcountry