hmmm...I was doing some more reading and I came across this recent post by the Angry Snowboarder:
The Angry Snowboarder Blog Archive The History of Gray Marketing Continues
about Burton canceling distribution contracts with some major people because those places had overstocked and then were dumping the product for cheap somewhere on the "gray market."
Seems like way too much of a coincidence that REI.com has no 2010/2011 Burton products and this is also going on. I know many retailer websites act separate from stores, with different inventories and policies. Maybe REI.com is getting slapped by Burton, but the individual stores are not.