Rossignol Experience 98 is the ultimate quiver killer, this mountain ski carves
like a boss but with a slight rocker tip and tail, it blasts through powder or
spring slush. One of the best skis we have enjoyed in decades. A winner!
Rossignol's Experience 88 gets the same raves from our Luxury Ski
Trips reviewers, the narrower 88 mm under foot has less metal so it’s a bit
lighter and quicker, but still crushes the competition. Happy to see Rossignol
making quality affordable skis again, complete with Le Coq logo, after years of
making sleepy roosters.
Rossignol Soul 7 could therefore be called the 109 since its
dimensions are 136-109-126. This is Rossi's highly recommended, a revered
western ski with honeycomb tip and tail and plenty of width under foot. Same can
be said for the Rossi Super 7 with 116 waist, and the fattest
of the fat at 120mm - The Rossi Squad 7 which our guy tester
loved on a Mt Bachelor powder day as the
Squads ripped through dense snow and glades, and continued to be great in the
gaper bumps after the freshies had been tracked out.
Volkl RTM series, or Ride the Mountain, are fully rockered and an easy adaptable
84 under foot. This ski is like the popular carver's dream- Volkl AC50, only a
bit wider and better off piste in deeper snow without giving up performance on
Nordica Five Arrow, from - yes the boot maker, makes our top
ski list for the first time for its frontside carver and speed ski. This is the flagship of
Nordica's extensive fleet, along with the Nordica Hell and Back all mountain series. For
a free ride ski, the Nordica Patron is getting big thumbs up among side country
skiers. Enjoy them with a shot of tequila - given the name and the wild
graffiti-style graphics with blue skulls and bullets.
Blizzard Bonafide is the all mountain version of the
Blizzard Magnum 8.7. This 98 waist
ski comes with the Blizzard Bull on the tip - snorting and ready to rip.
The Bonafide is a strong turner, with the right amount of rocker to plow through
pow, crud and bumps. Blizzard is making some bullish skis.
Atomic’s Automatic is a popular powder ski with a western size 117 mm waist and
fully rockered tip and tail. While it is not quite automatic as its name
implies, powder skiers are giving this fatty an enthusiastic thumbs up. Some,
including our youngest ski tester in his 20s who winters at Big Sky Resort in
Montana, like it even better than the big seller Atomic Blog.
Head Supershape Titan is a head turner in our ski book. This
ski is quick and responsive, but holds the snow (and hard pack - read: ice) like
a pro. The skis
is a more all mountain ski that is
getting good reviews, it was out of the demo tent when we wanted to sample these
- irony?! Austrian manufacturer Head is making impressive race skis, and that
technology trickles down to their expert ski line. Look out Russia, The US Ski
Team is on Head, from Teg Ligety to Bode Miller, Julia Mancuso and Lindsey Vonn
and they plan to be a-HEAD at the Sochi Olympics too.
Best Women's Skis
Rossignol Experience 88, as previously mentioned as a great men's
ski, is wonderful for women who like to carve,
rip through powder and bumps and can handle a beefy ski - this man candy is
great for ladies too. But there are no pretty flowers, pink swirls or girly
graphics. Man up if you choose to cruise on this ski gals!
Blizzard Viva X8 continues to impress the ladies on our luxury ski team, while
keeping right up with the men. The Little Black Dress of skis is fast and quick but
maintains her elegance and edge, especially under Eastern hard pack and groomed
packed powder. While not entirely dreamy in deep powder, this front side carver
is perfect for groomers and a little dust on crust.
The HEAD MYA 8 likes to go fast but with finesse – you will feel confident as US
Ski Team female on this pretty but precise ski. No wonder Julia Mancuso and
Lindsey Vonn like to
free ski on these, Head’s patented flow ride (their rendition of rocker) system
is smooth on hard snow and soft with a quick 84mm waist.
Rossignol Temptation is a great gals ski. It’s responsive and fun, but holds an
edge on firm snow too. Rossi Temptation 100, 88 and 84mm width
variety go from backside to front side, grip but float well
enough in soft snow. Of course our lady tester, Heather Burke,
preferred the performance of the Rossi 88 (and bought a pair), a man's ski, but the
of the Temptation is very tempting and highly recommended for a strong
intermediate to advanced skiing lady.
Volkl Aura is ideal for girls that like to be off trail, in the powder. This all
mountain 100mm ski tapers with a wide tip and narrow tail, and is constructed with
a light wood core, so it won’t weigh you down like other big mountain boards. We
must give a shout out to the Volkl Kenja -a fun front side friend in the Essenza series.
Volkl Yumi are yummy for carving
pretty arcs on your way to après
ski! Reminds us of one of our favorite original ladies Volkl skis of all time - the
Blizzard Black Pearl, introduced in 2012, is sturdy under foot for strong skiing
women at 88mm, to conquer everything from powder to cord to crud with grace – hence
the pearl necklace reference. The Black Pearl is bold and beautiful, best suited
for softer conditions – but a great all around ski nonetheless. The graphic is
old meets elegant, beautiful fanciful blue.
Salomon Lumen part of Salomon's Q series, we would say that stands
for quick and quiet pretty. This 95mm foot ski has beautiful pastel
mountain graphics, but there is just enough substance under the top sheet. The
Lumen are great
for light powder, soft bumps or spring slush, very lightweight, forgiving and easy to
ski with a fast glassy feeling on soft snow. Hard pack is not where the Lumens
Wagner Skis - we need to convince the genius engineers at
Telluride Colorado's Wagner Ski plant to custom make
skis for us to test and report. Wagner Skis are one of a kind, built to your
size, shape and ski style and ski terrain preference. How cool is that business
model and on mountain technology?
Similarly, The Parlor Skis made in Maine in a an old funeral parlor, creepy or
cute - you decide, are getting thumbs up. We look forward to testing the Parlor's
performance, bringing the mortician's masterpiece to the mountains, since we love a small ski batch home town story.