Skiboardmagazine’s Jason reviews the Spruce 120’s…

I’ve always be reluctant to ride longboard skiboards, but I’ve got a change to try out the Spruce 120s a few times last season and this season and was pleasantly surprised.

The obvious comes to mind at first; picking wider lines (in the glades mostly) is a must, they are more board to throw around in the park, and skating around is a little bit more of a hassle, and they float great in powder.

The only option for these boards is releasable bindings, which of course is needed for this length of board, and also makes them a little heavier, but its easy to get used to that.

People who like to go big in the park will enjoy the landing surface of these boards, but they might be a little bit too soft for heavier park riders. The fairly sharp turning radius compensates their length for those who want to get creative in the park on rails and jibs, but be warned that there is much more ski to throw around than most skiboards.

On groomers they fairy pretty well. Again I found them to be a little soft, and heavier riders might find them to chatter at high speeds, but for the average rider they will hold up their edge very well thanks to the long edges.

Powder is really fun with these, i wish there was an easier way to set the bindings back, but this can be done by moving the bindings back on the Risers. Again, you’re going to have to pick slightly wider lines than traditional skiboards, but if you’re looking for float in the fresh snow you’ve got it here.

Skiers moving to skiboards will find these an easy transition. I also recommend them to medium or light weight riders looking for larger surface area and more edge control, meaning ripping groomers and shredding powder!

Rider – Jason Roussel – Expert Skiboarder Co-Founder of

120cm are the SUV of skiboards…

Just got back from 7 full days skiboarding in The Three Valleys, France. Conditions were WAY beyond perfect. These were the best conditions I have seen in 3V in 20 years of going there. There were three of us, all long time ski/skiboard buddies, with a collection of boards from 99 to 130. My two friends were to ski the Spruce 120 for the very first time this trip, and I was really up to see how they got on with longboards. Previously, they had only skied 99s.

Well, the answer is, Fantastic! They both agreed that in skiing terms, the switch to the 120 was life changing :-).

We skied hundreds of kilometers and many thousands of feet vertical over the seven days, in all conditions from deep fresh powder off piste to groomed resort snow. From powder covered steeps to flat groomed pasture, and all agreed the 120 is just the most perfect All Mountain skiboard ever. It has the lightning agility of the true skiboard, but enough flotation to deal with real powder. It is easy going enough to allow six hours of full on skiing every day without totally exhausting the rider (well, maybe a bit), but sophisticated enough to allow totally full on skiboarding.
This was the first time I have ridden the 120 with other riders of this level, and I was really surprised just how hard this board can be pushed. I certainly never found its limits.

The 120 has a reputation as a big soft cruiser, and that is justified, but it is also a total full-on all mountain missile if you want that, and we did :-).

We took gigabytes of video clips too. Loads of technical skiing demos showing incredibly fast short swings, deep carves, powder bumps, and three guys just having the time of their lives. Yes, there are crashes too; including what happens when the cameraman falls, and the nasty results of attempting sex with a piste pole! All the clips have sound, and it is surprising how much laughter you can hear! Also, no ugly gorilla stance here folks :-). I will try to get to grips with U-Tube to make it easy for you guys to see some of this stuff, but it will probably be easier for me to drop it onto a DVD and post it to anyone who is interested. I may make up a batch and send them off to Greco so they can be made available thru this site.

In 20 years, no snow sliding device of ANY description has given me the versatility and pure out and out thrill of the Spruce 120. This trip has confirmed once and for all that this will be my ‘go to’ board from now on. So do I think the 90 – 110 range is still relevant? Of course they are. I cant ever imagine parting with my 110s, but when I am out with guys who can really get it on, and want an all mountain missile, its going to be the 120 every time!

Let me know if you want a DVD……no charge :-), you can request one via email,

Rider – Dave Stevens – Expert Skiboarder

120cm boards are forgiving on the knees…

I’ve owned the Spruce 120cm skiboards since they first came out, I purchased them directly from Spruce before they were available by any retailer. The main reason why I bought these was due to the fact I was using 98cm Line MNPs and were constantly getting stuck in powder. I purchased this pair a few months earlier than purchasing my first 110cm skiboards, the Summit Custom Woodies super stiff.

First impressions, they are heavy, due to the bindings more than the extra length. If I used the Spruce bindings on the Summits instead of the Bombers, then their weight would be comparable. As soon as I went down my first run on the Spruces, there was an immediate difference felt. First, even though they are 10cm longer than the Summits, they don’t feel as fast. I wasn’t able to achieve the same speeds that I was able to on the Summits on the same trails. Second, the Spruces are much more forgiving if you break form. Hitting bumps, the Spruces absorbed the bumps and made them easier to navigate through than the Summits. The Spruces are less stiff than the Summits, which could account for these differences. I was also leary of the bindings since this is my first time on releaseables on a skiboard, but they were great. No pre-release, easy to use, felt as confident on them as I did on my Bombers. Big kudos goes to the design of the riser. As for the added length, it did take me a bit of time to get used to them. Going from 98cm to 120cm is a big jump, I had a tendency of getting my tails’ edges caught here and there at the end of turns, but since the Spruces are more forgiving, I was able to compensate. I’m sure with more time on the slopes, I will not have this problem.

A few months later, I took these out to Vail to the backbowls and they performed great in the powder. Just like at Stratton, with the medium flex, they were much more forgiving on the knees, especially with sudden changes in conditions in the powder. I feel these are the perfect skiboards for someone who uses long skis to feel what a skiboard feels like, without losing the sense of safety with a releaseable binding system. These have become my go-to skiboards to introduce skier friends to skiboarding and have since converted them over to skiboards!
Rider – Edward Ho – Expert Skiboarder

120cm is a joy to ride…

On to the Spruce 120, when I am at the resort on a day when there is not a lot of pow the very first board I go to is the original Spruce 120 . Skiboarding is all about getting the most maneuverable intimate riding experience.

We don’t want a big bulky board getting in the way. We want to be part of the carve, part of the ride, part of the slope and don’t want a big long ski or snowboard to get in the way of that experience. The Spruce 120, as Valmorel says, is the ultimate free ride center mount skiboard. It performs fantastically that way and is a joy to ride and feels so maneuverable and much closer to the shortboard skiboards then the other two longboards … yet it has much of the stability and speed of the two larger longboard skiboards. It in no way has been replaced by the two newer and bigger longboard skiboards and remains an absolute favorite of mine .

Rider – Jack Jue – Expert Skiboarder

120cm boards are a great product…

First some background: I never participated in any snow sliding sports until 4 seasons ago when I rented some Big Easy skiboards at a local resort out of boredom while waiting in the lodge while my children were snowboarding. Since then I have used 90 Snow Jams the first two seasons, and 105 EMP last season. The EMPs took me a huge step forward in boosting my confidence to try more challenging terrain and are a fun and controlled ride. When I am accompanied by my wife (on Tanshos), we like to cruise the green and blue groomers, and occasionally challenge ourselves on the black runs. But I found that when I pushed hard to try and keep up to my young adult children (advanced snowboarders) while racing on the groomers, and negotiating the powder or the trees, I was exhausted and beat by the end of the day, having struggled to keep my balance (front to back) when going through uneven terrain, crud or changing conditions.

Although I rarely post, I read the forums every day and took notice of the many comments (by Valmorel, & Jack to name a few) of the Spruce 120s being stable, forgiving (and requiring a sharp edge). So I picked up a “blue” pair from Greco and mounted Salomon S810ti bindings on a Spruce Composite riser with a 35 mm setback, and polished the edges (0 degree base, 89 degree side, detuned 1” from the front and rear contact points), and gave them a hot wax.

These are my first experiences with the 120 Spruce:

Day 1 – Local hill (250′) with only one short run open with manmade snow and about 1” of fresh powder.
My first impression, “these are long”. But skating was not a problem and it was effortless since they glide so well. I did notice that with the extra length up front, the edges caught a few times on my first run. But after a couple of runs, I learned to weigh the tails (stand straighter) to alleviate the front edges from catching while cruising. But when I wanted to carve aggressively, I would keep them on edge and change to a lower (gorilla) posture to weigh them centered/forward. My first full day of the season was without a stop and not a single sore muscle (or spill). I knew they were fast but the real test against my son was yet to come.

Day 2 – Local hill (110′) with a single groomed run and the balance set up as a terrain park. The run was very hard corduroyed man made snow and it was bitterly cold. (I joined my snowboarding daughter who was being certified by the ski patrol.)
I made the first tracks in the rock hard corduroy and found that the edges held well and I was not sliding out. After about three runs, I was confident that I could stop prior to the lift (confined area) and get around the moving pylons (new snowboarders) if I just ripped down the hill. By mid afternoon, I started noticing that middle age skiers were waiting for me to get off the lift so they could race me. And by the end of the day they were joining me on the same chair so they would have the same momentum at the top of the hill. Not a word said, but definitely a competitive atmosphere. If I did not beat them, it was a tie at its worst.

Days 3 to 6 –Lake Louise, Sunshine Village, and Norquay resorts, in the Canadian Rockies and Kicking Horse resort in the Purcell Mountains. (This was our annual family Christmas trip to get out of the flat lands of the prairie where we live.)

This was my first opportunity to ride with my children. My son’s on hill statement sums it up best: “those boards made a big difference for you Dad”. He made the proclamation after the two of us exchanged the lead position during a race that left my daughter and her boyfriend in the snow dust.

My on mountain impressions of the 120 Spruce:

Very stable as others have already noted. It takes a major error or loss of balance to find yourself on your butt as I did once in the four days coming out of a wind packed powder tree run (the steepest longest and most difficult black I have ever tried). As Valmorel has pointed out, if in trouble, put them on edge and you will recover. It allows for a very relaxed non-tiring cruise at speed on the groomers.

Skating was effortless, with great glide. So much so that I did not take poles with me to the mountains this year, which I had in the past due to the long flat sections at some resorts.

Moguls were very manageable. What little maneuverability was lost due to length was made up in stability and less effort to keeping your balance if the best line was not taken.

I found that I was no longer giving much attention to the conditions. I only knew I was on ice or crud by the change in sound I heard. It was my signal to point straight down and if required, reduce my speed somewhere else.

The flex of the board made it easy to negotiate rough terrain and trees in a (speed) controlled manner or transition into softer conditions without a face plant.

A fast or a relaxing cruiser, the rider’s choice.

Edge hold was good with a sharp edge (89 degree). Only noticed some sliding on my last day on very icy conditions. This was not unexpected given that I had not undertaken any edge touch-ups after prior days of edge abuse on granite rocks hiding under the powder and on early season marginal coverage runs.

I did not have the opportunity to ride in knee deep plus fresh powder. But I was able to find some wind packed powder and had no problems (other than the rock hiding underneath).

The black sintered base will be easy to repair.
We all are looking for the perfect board that meets all our needs. I am lucky because I have found mine; the 120 Spruce meets my needs.

Thanks Jeff and Greco for making it possible with such a great product.

BTW: I am 48 years old; consider myself non-athletic, and am 5′ 11”, 186 lbs without any riding gear.

Rider – Slow – Intermediate Skiboarder

120cm boards are OUTSTANDING…

Spruce 120 is a great board IMO. Although I’ve only ridden two boards(SJ90 is the other) I felt really good with the 120. It is stable and fast. I have yet to have it wax; I’ve just use it straight from the box. The powder trail run between the trees with about 2-3 ft of snow was excellent. It plowed right through it and this was center mounted. It also felt good when jumping off some made up ramps off the groom trails, and some of the drops that I’ve encounter when going thru the tree runs, I guess because its stable/solid when landing.

Carving too is beautiful, I can do it with ease and it felt so nice doing it. I would not be doing park runs cuz I’m 40 and that might be my downfall in skiboarding but that would be fine with me. The Spruce 120 gives me that feeling of satisfaction guarantee and then some :-) I will take this board for some backcountry runs with a powder plate and telemark binding later on. Overall this board is OUTSTANDING!

Rider – Thom Javier – Intermediate Skiboarder

120cm not just beginner boards…

I’m new to skiboarding and the Spruce 120 was the board I started on (I have 3 others 103, 105, 110). I’m 5’10/230 uncoordinated and had not been on skis in 20 years and had forget most everything about how to do it. I tried skiing once at the beginning of the season and fell so many times I got frustrated, so I thought I’d try ski boards.

I was recommended the Spruce 120, I got the blue ones and Spruce Pro Prime release bindings. The 120s are a GREAT board to start with as a novice, so glad I chose these first. The length and width gives you plenty of stability fore/aft and it was four days on ski boards before I had my first fall (out of a total of 4 falls in 22 days of riding, I fell more than that in one hour on long skis). They are easy to “ski” like skis for beginners, and also easy to “carve” like ski boards. You can use them with poles or without. All this gives you lots of versatility and forgiveness of bad form for a beginner.

But, these are not just beginner boards. They have so much more to offer that I have not learned yet. They have plenty of room to progress. Even after 22 days of skiing them I still have tons of performance left in the board I have yet to even experience. It’s simply lack of skill on my part, not that boards limit you in anyway. I highly recommend the Spruce 120s for people just getting into the sport, I think you can’t go wrong with these boards as a beginner and they have plenty of room left to grow on before you ever reach their limits.

I only rated the things I have personally tried on the Spruce 120s, so that is why some things are 0, because I have not done those yet.

Rider – Matthies – Beginner Skiboarder

120cm boards are AMAZING…

These boards are AMAZING! They carve effortlessly, even on demanding terrain, and excel at screaming down the mountain in situations I wouldn’t even consider on my smaller boards. They inspire you to take on more challenging terrain and reward you by making it a fun and exciting ride while giving you the control to feel like you own it. The risers are an amazing invention – the handling they provide is indescribable – absolutely superb!

It is truly life changing, as another reviewer commented – I don’t think I’ll ride any of my old gear again!

Rider – Leslie Gray – Intermediate Skiboarder