Two Planks Are Better Than One

The Skis You Need in 2017


Buying Guides By Photo by Blake Jorgenson/Red Bull Content Pool
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If skiing is an addiction, then buying skis is the indulgence that feeds it. A decent pair of skis can last years if maintained and cared for, but it can be hard to resist the allure of the new: new shapes, new materials, new graphics. The truth is, no ski does everything perfectly. An all-mountain does everything well, but only a dedicated powder ski will keep you floating in three feet of fresh snow, and only a true carving ski will keep you locked into a 55 mph turn on bitter hard pack.

The do-it-all ski doesn’t exist, and so the addiction is forever fueled. Whether you’re in search of a quiver-killer or just something special to round out your ski locker, look no further.

Kastle MX 89

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All-Mountain Carver: There’s nothing quite like springing out of one turn and into the next. The MX 89 is a skier’s ski, built to be responsive and stable at high speeds and in any terrain. It was built with a tried-and-true parabolic side cut that’s great for carving. There’s only a slight amount of early rise in the tip to aid in initiating turns, and Kastle’s Hollowtech cutout in the tip reduces vibration so you won’t have to worry about chatter on hardpack.

Size: 156cm, 164cm, 172cm, 180cm, 188cm
Sidecut: 129-89-113mm
Turn Radius: 17 meters
Weight: 1,989 g/ski (172cm)

Faction Candide 2.0

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All-Mountain Twin: The Candide 2.0 is for those with a more creative approach to skiing, who see every roller, ditch and rock becomes not an obstacle but a park feature. Designed for Candide Thovex, this ski is playful thanks to a poplar and beechwood core, yet sturdy, with a micro-cap sandwich construction and ultra-light carbon reinforcement underfoot. With a 102mm waist and rocker in both the tip and the tail, the 2.0 will keep afloat in fresh snow and carve down groomers, too.

Size: 166cm, 172cm, 178cm, 184cm
Sidecut: 135—102–135mm
Turn Radius: 16 meters
Weight: 1,950 g/ski (178cm)

The Metal by J Skis

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All-Mountain Powder: Powder days are the stuff of dreams. Unfortunately, they can be few and far between, so if you’re only going to ride one pair of skis all year, you don’t want them to be too wide. The Metal fits right on the line at 106mm underfoot: they’re not racers, but they’re narrow enough for carving and wide enough for a 20-year storm. Tip and tail rocker geometry has been matched with the sidecut to extend edge contact with the snow and keep you afloat when needed. J Skis releases each ski with limited-edition graphics, so you can choose the design that speaks to you most.

Size: 173cm, 180cm, 186cm
Sidecut: 135–106–124mm
Turn Radius: 17 meters
Weight: 2,250 g/ski

Nordica Enforcer 93

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All-Mountain All-Rounder: Nordica took last year’s highly praised Enforcer and made a narrower version. This ski comes equipped with two sheets of metal in addition to an ash-and-poplar core, making for a stiffer ski with high-energy return. The Enforcer is a low-profile partial twin with rockers in both the tip and tail and camber underfoot that’s responsive, playful and finely tuned to any conditions you might encounter.

Size: 169cm, 177cm, 185cm, 193cm
Sidecut: 126–93–114mm
Turn Radius: 16.5 meters
Weight: 1,818 g/ski (169cm)

The Curv by Fischer RC4

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Race Inspired: When Fischer teamed up with World Cup stars Hans Knauss, Mike von Grünigen and Kristian Ghedina to build a ski, there was no chance it would be slow. The 74mm waisted Curv is a speed machine, built like a race ski and designed for slopes beyond the red and blue gates. Fischer’s Diagotex carbon grid stiffens the ski and provides torsional stability during high-pressure turns while the Curv Booster Plate provides consistent flex throughout and quick edge-to-edge power transfer during turn transitions.

Size: 164cm, 171cm, 178cm, 185cm
Sidecut: 120–74–104mm
Turn Radius: 18 meters
Weight: 2,500 g/ski (178cm)

Dynafit Meteorite

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Backcountry Touring: The Meteorite is by no means the lightest touring ski on the market; it was designed with not only the uphill in mind but also the joy that comes with the descent. Dynafit made this ski with an ash and poplar core to produce solid damping while maintaining lightness. The carbon Ride tip is built to reduce vibration and compliments the Double Ellipse Rocker profile, which adjusts edge contact with the snow depending on the type of snow being ridden.

Size: 170cm, 177cm, 184cm
Sidecut: 126–97–116mm
Turn Radius: 18 meters
Weight: 1,820 g/ski (177cm)

LINE Tom Wallisch Pro

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Park and Pipe: World champion Tom Wallisch worked directly with designers and engineers at LINE to design a ski exactly as he wanted, and what works for him will work for you. The pro model is designed for park skiing, with thinner, tapered tips for reduced swing weight, along with thicker edges and bases for longevity when constantly hitting rails and integrated carbon stringers for added ollie pop.

Size: 164cm, 171cm, 178cm
Sidecut: 117–90–112mm
Turn Radius: 20 meters
Weight: 1,802 g/ski (178cm)

Armada JJ 2.0

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Big Mountain: Big mountains call for big skis. The Armada JJ powder ski has been an industry favorite year after year; the JJ 2.0 is constructed with a mix of lightweight woods and hardwood laminates underfoot, so it’s light for its size but still sturdy for those lines that’ll have you shaking in your boots. A heavy dosage of tip and tail rocker make this a true powder ski, but there’s still enough camber underfoot for cruising back to the lift at the bottom.

Size: 165cm, 175cm, 185cm, 195cm
Sidecut: 131–138–117–134–127mm
Turn Radius: 17 meters
Weight: 2,290 g/ski (185cm)

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