Hello and welcome to my YES The Y snowboard review.
In this review, I will take a look at The Y as a freeride snowboard.
As per tradition here at SnowboardingProfiles.com I will give The Y a score out of 100 (based on several factors) and see how it compares with other freeride snowboards.
DISCOTINUED BOARD: Note that the 2022 model was the last model of the Y. So, naturally this review has only been updated to the 2022 model. Note however that the 2023 YES Optimistic is like a combination of the 2022 The Y and the 2022 Optimistic.
Board: YES The Y
Flex Rating: Stiff (8/10)
Flex Feel on Snow: Medium-stiff (7.5/10)
Rating Score: 79.7/100
Compared to other Men’s Freeride Boards
Out of the 32 men’s freeride snowboards that I rated:
Overview of The Y’s Specs
Check out the tables for The Y’s specs and available sizes.
Hybrid Camber (YES's 2-4-2 Camrock)
Centered (on effective edge)
Sintered Spec (between extruded and sintered)
Heavier than normal
Waist Width (mm)
Rec Rider Weight (lb)
Rec Rider Weight (kg)
Who is The Y Most Suited To?
The Y is like a slightly toned down and priced down Optimistic. It's only very slightly toned down from the Optimistic, IMO, so if you like the sound of the Optimistic or have ridden it and liked it, but prefer the price tag on the Y, then it's a good choice.
It has those rocker sections that the Optimistic doesn't have, but they are subtle and it's slightly softer flexing, but again that difference is subtle too.
Great for those looking for a board for freeriding who have bigger feet or someone looking for a short wide freeride option with a friendly price tag.
Definitely not for beginners and even would be a challenging prospect for most intermediate riders.
The Y in More Detail
O.k. let’s take a more detailed look at what The Y is capable of.
Board: YES The Y 2020, 154cm (262mm waist width)
Date: March 14, 2019
Conditions: Overcast skies with about 75% visibility - not bad but not perfect vis.
Snow on groomers was medium with some softer spots. Some fresh snow off groomer - though some of it was a little crusty on top, but still rideable.
Cold around 20 degrees (-6 celcius) with wind chill. Around 30 (-1) without windchill.
Bindings angles: +15/-15
Stance width: 560mm (22″)
Stance Setback: Centered on effective edge - but quite far back on overall length
Width at Inserts: 271mm (10.67") at front and back insert*
* even though there's some taper and no setback on effective edge, the width at inserts is the same on the back insert as the front. The reason for this is that the underbite comes in just outside the front insert but it comes in before the back insert. Otherwise typically with that much taper, without massive setback to offset it, I would expect the width at the back insert to be narrower, but in this case it comes in the same because of the positioning of the underbite.
Rider Height: 6'0"
Rider Weight: 185lbs
Rider Boot Size: US10 Vans Aura
Bindings Used: Burton Malavita M
Weight: 3000grams (6lb 10oz)
Weight per cm: 19.48grams/cm
Average Weight per cm: 18.21grams/cm*
*based on a small sample size of 24 boards that I weighed. So heavier than the average, but it is a wider board and felt closer to riding a 159/160. Even as a 159, 160 it's still a little heavier than normal, but not to the same extent.
It's just that little bit mellower than the Optimistic, but not as much as I was expecting. Still quite stiff.
Didn't get great conditions for testing powder, but could tell that this board would thrive in powder by the feel it gave and by it's specs.
It might be centered on effective edge in its reference stance but overall length it's setback quite a bit (I measured 56.5cm from center of the front binding to the nose and 40.5cm from center of back binding to the tail). That plus it's width, the little bit of rocker in there and a healthy amount of taper, all make it well setup for riding pow.
Carving & Turning
Carving: A nice board to carve on. It's not a seriously lively carve, but you can get nice and aggressive on it and it hold that edge really well.
Maneuverability at slow speeds: It's not a slug edge to edge at slow speeds, but it's not super nimble either.
Skidded Turns: A little on the catchier side when it comes to skidded turns. You want to be turning/carving properly on this board most of the time.
A really good board to ride at speed. Definitely preferred it when riding faster vs riding slower. Nice and stable feeling and quite damp too.
Decent but not amazing for navigating bumpy terrain or crud.
Let’s Break up this text with a Video
Doesn't have that effortless pop that I like for a board for jumps but solid for approach and landings.
Pop: There's some decent pop in there, but it does take some effort/strength to extract it. Not a an effortless popping board.
Approach: Nice and stable.
Landing: Solid for landings.
Side-hits: Not as nimble or easy popping as I like for side hits, but it's doable.
Small jumps/Big jumps: Better for bigger jumps, where you want that solid-to-forgiving ratio to be more towards the solid side of things.
Was doable like any board, but not ideal.
OK to get the spin around, but not great for landing/taking off switch and the pop was just that little bit too hard to extract to make spinning really easy/fun.
You can butter it to an extent but it's not easy or effortless. But it's also not a complete plank in that respect.
Score Breakdown and Final Verdict
Check out the breakdown of the score in the table below.
TOTAL after normalizing
Overall, the Y is a good board for the price, but not the most exciting YES board I've ridden.
I really like a lot of the YES lineup, but the Y/Optimistic aren't my favorites in their line. The Y is a toned down Optimistic, but it's very subtly toned down. I thought i would like the Y more than the Optimistic, given that I rode the 157 Optimistic but felt the 154 would be the better size for me. I rode the Y in the 154 and still didn't get excited by it. I think I would prefer it to have felt a little more toned down than it does.
However, if you like the Optimistic or are looking for something with the kind of flex and slightly more aggressive feel of this kind of board but don't want to pay the price you typically have to for this level of flex/aggression, then the Y is certainly worth looking into. Not for me, but some will really like it.
More Info, Current Prices and Where to Buy Online
If you want to learn more about The Y, or if you are ready to buy, or if you just want to research prices and availability, check out the links below.
If you want to check out some other freeride snowboard options, or if you want to compare how The Y compares to other freeride snowboards, then check out the next link.
What bindings would you run on the Y? Burton Cartels or Malavita…
Between the Cartels and Malavita, I would go Cartel for the Y, but I would go a little stiffer again. You don’t have to go super stiff, but I would go up to a 7/10 flex preferably. 6/10 flex will work, but I think 7/10 to 9/10 would be more optimal. If Burton, the Cartel X would be the best bet, IMO.
Thanks again. I’ll just grab some cartels.
Definitely looked into the Cartel X. I will grab those. Didn’t know Burton made the regular Cartels softer… Appreciate it Nate!
You’re very welcome Jim. Hope your new setup works well for you.
Hey, do you know the width inserts on the 157cm on the Yes Y? Thanks
Apologies for the slow response – has been a crazy few days!
I would estimate the 157 to be around 276/277mm at the inserts – assuming going out to the 23″ (584mm reference stance).
Hey bud Looking at the Yes Y or Gremlin. You told me the Gremlin in 158 would suit me better at my specs… 6’2″ 200lbs size 12. Could I get away with The Y in a 157cm. Definitely a toss up between those Two boards. Thanks again
Yeah, I think you get away with the 157 in the YES Y – it’s a little longer and wider than the Gremlin 155 – and it’s wider than the 158 Gremlin (the 158 Gremlin is a little wider at waist and in the nose, but the Y is slightly wider at the inserts (around 275mm at the inserts with a 22″ (560mm) stance width) and wider in the tail. Overall, the 157 Y is pretty comparable size-wise to the 158 Gremlin, IMO, so I think you’d be good with the 157 Y.
Definitely appreciate your comments. Wish I didn’t have size 12 boots. This would be a lot easier. Thanks again