Ski Tests Best on Test

We asked our testers to nominate their favourites; their choices for “best on test”. The votes were collated and lined up with the test results to determine the top four choices for 2011 and they went like this:

  • 2011 ski of the year, Volkl Kendo
  • 2011 best value buy, Blizzard Magnum 7.4
  • 2011 chix ski of the year, Nordica Infinite
  • 2011 chix best value buy, Nordica Fate

 




2011 Ski of the Year
Volkl Kendo

Volkl Kendo
 


2011 Best Value Buy
Blizzard Magnum 7.4

Blizzard Magnum 7.4
 


2011 Chix Ski of the Year
Nordica Infinite

Nordica Infinite
 


2011 Chix Best Value Buy
Nordica Fate

Nordica Fate
 


all mountain - 86mm+ Waist

Kastle MX 88
Kastle MX 88
Scott Crusade
Scott Crusade
Volkl Kendo
Volkl Kendo
Elan Apex
Elan Apex
Fischer Watea 94
Fischer Watea 94
K2 AMP Aftershock
K2 AMP Aftershock
 


all mountain - 80-86mm waist

Blizzard Magnum 8.1 CA
Blizzard Magnum 8.1 CA
K2 AMP Rictor
K2 AMP Rictor
Kastle MX 78
Kastle MX 78
Armada Pipe Cleaner
Armada Pipe Cleaner
Elan Waveflex 82 Amphibio Xti
Elan Waveflex 82 Amphibio Xti
Nordica Hot Rod Jet Fuel
Nordica Hot Rod Jet Fuel
 


value buy

Blizzard Magnum 7.4
Blizzard Magnum 7.4
Elan Waveflex 78
Elan Waveflex 78
Head Peak 78 LT
Head Peak 78 LT
Scott Punisher
Scott Punisher
 


carve/groomer skis

Dynastar Contact Cross 4X4
Dynastar Contact Cross 4X4
Head Supershape Titan
Head Supershape Titan
K2 AMP Rictor
K2 AMP Rictor
Kastle SL
Kastle SL
Nordica Fire Arrow
Nordica Fire Arrow
Rossignol Z76 Titanium Basalt
Rossignol Z76 Titanium Basalt
 


traveller's fatty - 100mm+ waist

Armada JJ
Armada JJ
Elan Spire
Elan Spire
Nordica Enforcer
Nordica Enforcer
K2 Kung Fujas
K2 Kung Fujas
Scott Mega Dozer
Scott Mega Dozer
 


twin tips - 90mm+ waist

Elan Chainsaw
Elan Chainsaw
Dynastar 6th Sense Slicer
Dynastar 6th Sense Slicer
K2 Recoil
K2 Recoil
Rossignol S3
Rossignol S3
Salomon Twenty Twelve
Salomon Twenty Twelve
 


chix all mountain

Elan Pure Magic
Elan Pure Magic
Nordica W Speed Xbi CT
Nordica W Speed Xbi CT
Nordica W Victory
Nordica W Victory
Roxy Joy Rider
Roxy Joy Rider
 


chix value buy

K2 Super Free
K2 Super Free
Kastle MX 70
Kastle MX 70
Nordica Fate
Nordica Fate
Dynastar Exclusiv Elite
Dynastar Exclusiv Elite
Elan Inspire
Elan Inspire
Scott Maya
Scott Maya
 


chix twin tips

Liberty Envy
Liberty Envy
Armada ARW
Armada ARW
K2 Miss Demeanor
K2 Miss Demeanor
 


How they win the medals

We divide the skis and the testers into groups. At the end of testing a group of skis, each tester awards gold or silver medals according to how they felt the skis performed. There is no limit to the number of medals they can award and the medals are not awarded in a ranking sense – a tester could award no medals or could award gold to every ski in the group. What we then do, to ensure accuracy and to eliminate personal bias, is look at how the skis rated overall and in the various performance categories. We then combine the calculations to award the medals.

How we rate the skis

Most ratings are self-explanatory, but snow and terrain could need some clarification.

When we look at snow types, we rate ski performance on powder, crud, spring, corduroy, hard pack and ice.

When we look at terrain types, we rate ski performance on groomed, bumps, steeps, off-piste and the race track.

With turn types, testers have to consider the ease of initiation, accuracy of the carve through the turn, overall edge hold, exit and acceleration out of the turn and how the ski forgives mistakes.

Consider your own terrain and snow preferences when reading the results and take account of what we leave out as much as what we leave in.

Scoring is simple –

0 = useless
1 = just acceptable
2 = adequate
3 = performs
4 = excels
5 = sets benchmark

 

jim darby/the snow biz
There's a lot to like about ski lifts, and the people who make them.

arnie wilson/from the alps
Life is full of ironies. The Alps got the snow and Russia got the Olympics.

go flip/flip byrnes
Meet the fashion victims; a whole winter world of them.


There's a lot to like about ski lifts, and the people who make them.

Life is full of ironies. The Alps got the snow and Russia got the Olympics.

Meet the fashion victims; a whole winter world of them.