It feels like summer now but just a few short weeks ago it was still snowing and I was still hitting the slopes. Just in time to catch the final long days on the hill I picked up some new skis that I’m super excited about!
I’d read lots about alpine touring (AT) racing skis and how they are amazingly light weight, but I had a really hard time finding anywhere to buy them in North America. I was actually starting to plan a trip to Switzerland to pick up a pair in person when I came across ShowInn.com. Strangely, this site is based out of baking hot Spain but has high-end skis that you’ll have a hard time finding even at the most ski die-hard resorts in Canada or the US.
I debated for ages about which line of skis to get – the very top end used by the fastest ski mountaineering racers in the world or one step down. In the end I decided to go with Dynafit PDGs, an amazingly light ski but one that won’t have you winning gold running up and skiing down challenging slopes. And these skis are tough too. Since I tend to really beat up anything I put on my feet, that’s important.
As soon as my new toys arrived I brought them into MEC for a hotwax. Everyone was amazed at the feathery lightness. Three different people asked me how my racing season went. That’s funny – when I take my fat skiboard to the hill teenagers ask what kind of tricks I do at the terrain park. Suddenly, everyone thinks I’m a skimo racer. But I bought these more as an efficient tool to get into the backcountry. They really shine at climbing big slopes but they’re also great when you want to explore a bubbling creek that winds its way up into the mountains.
But they’re fun when it comes to charging down steep slopes too. I headed out to Fernie for the final week of the ski season to put in turns on some of my favorite runs and to discover some new ones. Ski patrol let me skin up to the wind-swept summit for an exhilarating run down through ice and fallen boulders.
I only got about 10 days on these new skis before the lifts stopped running but I’m really excited to take them out into the backcountry next season!