Setup: '14 Jones Mothership 156 with Burton Escapades '14 M and Ride Cadence women's 8.5 boots.
Stats: 125lbs, 5ft 7.7in; 22in stance, +24/+9 angles. At first centered but I seemed to put too much pressure to the tip, tended to dig in when carving. With one insert setback it felt perfect.
Location/Conditions: Swiss Alps, high and mid alpine 35-45° BC, and red and black groomers: fluffy pow, heavy wet fresh, softpack, slush, moguls, crud, hardpack, ice - well, everything.
And 5d heli boarding in Alaska Chugach Mountains: 40-50° chutes and very challenging conditions: deep slush, windblown crusts, pow and ice changing every odd meter.
The '13 season I spent on a Jones Flagship 158. Loved the board for it's stability and great float, but as fun it was in deep pow and to bomb groomers, it was hard work in challenging conditions, it more wants to go just straight. Thus - having the AK trip in mind - I was insecure, if it could be too tiring. After having very good experiences with my Jones Womens Solution 156, I also got the Jones Mothership 156 mid '14 season.
Compared to my Ride Farah (not a soft board neither!), the Mothership feels like a stiffy, compared to the Flagship, she feels soft. For me she is the perfect agility/stability tradeoff. Enough dampened to still be fun to ride in moguls, but stiff enough to be super fun to charge with fast edge to edge transition, immediate response, precise and predictable, easy turn initiation for wide turns as well as quick narrow ones. She doesn't swallow heavily bumpy terrain as well as the Farah, but she cuts through crusts and mellow bumps at speed very nicely. You certainly can relax and criuse with her but the challenging terrain is where she shines.
Base is very fast; she picks up speed immediately. Sometimes almost too fast. While the Flagship was like a tank charging pow no matter what speed, the Mothership surprised me sometimes with being a tiny bit squirrelly at high speed in pow when I was a bit too much in the backseat (my bad). Base is also very resistant; hit some rocks where I expected to find nasty damage and found only minor superficial scratches. Absolutely no issues with the wooden top sheet; on contrary, she resisted all the skipole attacks in lift lines and stuffing into the heli basket.
The profile is pretty much the same as the Flagship, but she has a more narrow waist and is a bit softer. She has a RCR profile with a very pronounced softish rocker nose, the rocker beginning right after the last insert. That nose floats pow easily without having to lean back.
Carving: she carves very well, lean into a carve and it rails effortlessly.
Stability: very stable at speed, she gives me all the confidence needed to flatbase and charge a slope. I didn’t ride at the same speed as with the Flagship, that one still is a notch more stable, but the Mothership is such a great compromise with the amount of agility she offers compared to the pure kitchen door.
Edgehold: That's the thing which impressed me most. I've been on pure ice on +40°, where I first though ugh, now you're in troubles but no, the edge held. After that experience, I didn't reduce speed anymore when hitting icy patches.
All in all, great freeride board!
The setup (2nd from left)
Some of the steep runs in AK she brought me down safely. There was no second I didn’t have full confidence with her.
Pretty narrow and icy chute in the middle: easy hop turning, the edge held perfectly,
A lovely spine with fluffy pow.
Did ride the spine in the middle and the convex snowfield run on the right. Knowing that she is so easy to throw around I had the confidence to tackle them and enjoyed the runs a lot.
She's also fun on groomers!
Getting ready to enjoy some fresh in the Alps
Very happy Mothership rider