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The Long Strange Trip of Jones Snowboards First Splitboard

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When Jeremy Jones announced he was leaving board sponsor Rossignol last September, the industry was all a twitter. Jones is arguably the best big mountain rider of all time, a passionate environmentalist and forward thinker — who else could convince Teton Gravity Research to shoot a film where all peaks to be descended must be ascended by human power first? And now he was planning on hatching his own, eponymous line of boards.

Jones Snowboards promises a small line of only four boards including a splitboard, all mountain, freestyle and pow deck. By the time the snowboard industry tradeshow SIA came around there was a huge buzz around the company.

Proving anticipation brings out the worst in some folks, the single prototype of the Jones split, The Solution, disappeared from the Jones Snowboard booth at the SIA. Employees from the company quickly turned to Twitter and Facebook to get the word out.

“Our one and only Jones Solution Splitboard was stolen from our SIA booth along with a carbonfiber Bern Jones helmet,” read a Facebook post on January 30. “The board is one-of-a-kind with Sparks bindings. We’re trying to build the best boards out there and need this for development and sell-in to retail. Contact Chad@jonessnowboards.com w/ info please!”

Angry comments were forthcoming, but the board was not.

It looked like the deck, which will retail for $799, was gone for good. Until April 6, when the Jones folks showed up to their office and the prodigal board had returned.

According to their Facebook update, “The stolen Solution Split has been returned “Undamaged”, check out the care of preparation measures that were taken in “packaging” the board for delivery. Awesome! Literally this is how it showed up to my office today, wrapped in a leopard print blanket!”

Board-napped in January, the Jones split was returned unharmed in early April.

. Most notably from a fellow named Douglas Gundlach , “I didn’t want to return it but I had a religious experience from the first turn …. more turns = more remorse …. couldn’t imagine the heartbreak from losing such a plank of pleasure! Wrapped it in my favorite blanky (don’t shine a blacklight on it) and since shipping it I have had two cool job offers, my girlfriend came back to me, my dog came back to life on Easter and I won the lottery! (j/k – my assumption of the perp’s thought process).”

—Stephen Krcmar lives and writes about the snowboarding in Mammoth Lakes, Calif. Currently testing the best boards of 2010-11, he almost understands the motivations of the theif — the Solution is awesome.

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