Expert Review: Burton Step On Escapade Re:Flex Snowboard Bindings · Women's · 2023Published on 02/02/2023 · 5 min readThis review is my honest opinion of the snowboard bindings, which I purchased with my own money in November of 2022.
Racing Banked Slalom in Big White with my StepOn set up. All photos courtesy of Jenny Ackers
About this Review: This review is my honest opinion of the snowboard bindings, which I purchased with my own money in November of 2022.
While the convenience of the Burton Step On Escapade Re:Flex Snowboard Bindings is certainly a plus, it can be challenging on powder or soft snow days to get fully locked in with that much-needed second heel click.Though they are a comfortable, highly adjustable binding, and pretty responsive on easier terrain, I experience inconsistent performance as I increase the aggressiveness of my riding.
About the bindings I own
- Model: 2023 Burton Escapade StepOn Re:Flex
- Size: M
- Burton channel compatible: Yes
- Mini disc (reduces footprint of the binding on the board to enable more board feel): No
- Height: 5’7”
- Weight: 150 lbs
- Experience: 20 years of snowboarding
- When I bought these: November 2022
- Days tested: 30+
- Board: Arbor Swoon Camber
- Boot: Burton Felix StepOn
- Where I’ve used it: Big White, Canada; Breckenridge, Powderhorn Mountain Resort, CO
- Terrain: Powder, Groomers, Bumps, Trees, Jumps, Boxes, Banked Slalom Race
How they perform
What I was looking for
I am a women’s upper limb para snowboarder, and I race boarder cross and banked slalom against other riders who have disabilities in their upper limb(s). I’m also a snowboard instructor at Powderhorn Mountain Resort in Colorado. I was looking for a StepOn system to replace my older strap set up, which was falling apart and clunky for me to use with only one fully functioning arm.
Why I chose this gear
I chose the Burton Escapade StepOns because they were the most feature-rich binding in Burton’s StepOn lineup that promised a responsive yet comfortable feel. I did consider K2s Clicker bindings as an alternative, but their boot options to pair with the bindings were more limited.
What I love about them
- Comfort: Without straps to cause pressure points on my feet, the Escapade StepOn bindings are extremely comfortable.
- Shock absorption: With a full EVA foam footbed and B3 gel cushioning, the Escapades have plenty of shock absorption when landing jumps.
- Durability: Aside from a little bit of scuffing, they still look brand new, and I have put them through just about every type of terrain and snow condition imaginable. All of the clips and StepOn components work just as well as they did on day one.
- Other: The best part about these StepOn bindings, especially for riders with disabilities or mobility issues, is the ease of not having to bend over or use two hands to strap in. Once I know I’m fully locked in, I have never had an issue with my boot popping out of the binding.
Issues I’ve encountered
- Responsiveness: I bought these bindings with Burton’s Felix StepOn boots, and I have a lot of struggles with the BOAs loosening and popping on this supposedly stiffer boot (I wrote a review for Curated on those as well, if you want to check it out). Add to that the hammock system integrated into the Escapade’s high back, and these bindings wind up feeling a lot less responsive on steeper terrain than I think they’re intended to feel. The high back actually hinges really significantly off of the heel cup when I’m on my toe edge, which hampers the responsiveness of the Escapade StepOns, especially on more difficult terrain, when I’m really trying to lay into them.
- Other: The other big issue I have encountered is getting the bindings to fully engage with the heel clip on my boot, especially on powder days or on really soft snow. It will click once pretty easily, but I’ve found the second click requires an ollie, or me torquing on the board with my feet. This is easy enough most days, but I have been fortunate enough to ride a ton of powder this season, and even with my usual tricks, it can be challenging to get that second click.
Favorite moment with this gear
As an instructor, especially one with an upper limb disability, it really is convenient to be able to StepOn instead of strap in. I love being able to take my board on and off with ease, especially in beginner lessons when I’m needing to demo all kinds of movements on and off the board and hike up to students who need help.
Value for the money vs. other options
I think these bindings have a lot of potential, but my entire StepOn boot/binding set up falls short of my needs. I’d love to try the Escapades in the strap version for my all-mountain riding and just deal with the frustrations of trying to strap in with one fully functioning arm. I’d also love to give them another try with boots that don’t loosen up every single run. I do think they would work well for someone who likes to cruise and carve on easier terrain from first chair to last, but who also likes to throw a few park laps into the mix. The ease of use on groomers paired with their comfort and adjustability is why I think I’ll keep these bindings to use while teaching lessons. But for my personal riding and competitions, if I were to give StepsOn another go, I’d try either their standard StepOn bindings or the StepOn X. I may also just go back to strap bindings for peace of mind and a more predictable level of performance.
The Burton Escapade StepOn Re:Flex bindings are an easy-to-use, resort binding for a rider looking for all-day comfort and adjustability. However, they are not without their quirks (maybe partially due to the pairing with the Felix boots) and would not be my go-to choice for someone who really needs consistency in performance on all-terrain and snow conditions.