With plenty of winter still ahead of us, Zimmermanns has created a list of the Top 5 Skis for New England! Ski reviews aren’t hard to find. So why make another one? Well, most ski reviews or buying guides are tested or reviewed in the Rocky Mountains and/or by professional skiers. But we live in New England, and our conditions aren’t quite the same as out West. So this top 5 list is based on skis we carry, skis we’ve tested, and skis that we love for New England’s varied conditions.
Zimmermanns has a variety of skis for all price points and all ability levels. The skis featured in this blog were picked because they can handle any snow condition New England can throw our way. The skis below will rip groomers, hold an edge on ice, plus, offer float for pow days and spring conditions. Pick one of the skis below and it is all you will need for your ski quiver.
1. Black Crows
Men: Orb, Vertis, Camox Women: Captis Birdie
We can’t tell you here the differences between each model we carry. Black Crows skis are designed so each model is entirely unique. Many companies use the same type of press or mold which they use for multiple ski models. Not the case with Black Crows. They are a new company which is already taking the industry by storm.
The easiest way to describe how we feel about Black Crows: in 2016/17 we didn’t carry any Black Crows, after the Zimms crew tested them last winter we jumped in with both feet originally carrying four models of mens skis and 2 models of women’s skis. We’ve already sold through and re-ordered as many Black Crows as we can. After skiing this you’ll be instantly sold just like we were. They are poppy, while still providing a smooth ride, and push you in and out of turns. You may not know it yet, but this is the ski you’ve been dreaming of.
Men: Brahma, Bonafide Women: Black Pearl 78, Black Pearl 88
The mens and women’s Blizzard skis we carry are the quintessential “quiver killer.” Like mostly all ski companies they design mens and women’s skis differently, but the underlying principles behind the design and how they ride are the reason you’ll notice tons of Brahma’s, Bonafide’s and Black Pearl’s on the hill.
They are wide enough with enough rocker in the tip to eat up all of the inconsistent crud you’ll find on some New England days. But there is also enough strength in the women’s models or metal in the mens’ versions to bite into ice. Not that there would ever be icy conditions in New England… If you like making unbelievably quick, short radius turns these might not be for you. But if you like cursing or carving deep GS style turns you’ll be in heaven.
3. Armada Invictus/Victa
Men: Invictus 85, Invictus 89 Ti, Invictus 99 Ti Women: Victa 83, Victa 87 Ti
Not many people have heard of Armada skis, and those who have usually asscossiate the brand with twin tip and freestyle skis. However, the brand has expanded to make more versatile skis for people who don’t just spend time lapping the terrain park all day. These skis are light, have a nice balance of sidecut and tip rocker, and most models are equipped with titanium under foot to handle New England hard pack.
Versatility is the name of the game, but the models listed above will usually offer a surfier ride as opposed to ripping deep carves on New England’s firmer days. If you ride every part of the mountain these will be a great choice.
4. Elan Amphibio Technology
Men: Amphibio (various widths), Amphibio 88 Ti, Spectrum (various widths), Ripstick 86, Women: Insomnia, Speed Magic, Inspire, Ripstick 86
For people who are skeptical or unsure of new technology going on the ski world, you need to check out Elan’s Amphibio technology. Elan spent a lot of time designing these new skis which have a specific left and right ski. The reason for this is that when turning to the right, the left ski is the down hill ski, therefore, uphill edge of the left ski has more camber to help hold a turn. Conversely, the uphill edge of the right ski has more rocker to help with easier turn initiation. When turning left, the technology is the opposite to help turn the other direction. For more about Elan’s Amphibio technology check out this video.
Amphibio, by nature, is meant to preform and grip on groomed terrain. However, in the event of a powder day or a little bit of March slush, you can put the skis on the opposite feet to provide the skier float where they would normally want edge hold. We carry these in a variety of lengths and widths, so if you spend most (but not all) of your time in the trees try a Spectrum series, or if you spend the majority of time on groomed terrain one of the narrower waisted Amphibio system skis will be more up your alley. Whatever you choose, there is no wrong answer.
5. Fischer Pro Mtn Series
Men: Pro Mtn 80 Ti, Pro Mtn 86 Ti, Pro Mtn 95 Ti Women:
Each waist width will help guide you based on your ideal terrain selection. The 80 Ti preforms better on trail while the 95 Ti would lend itself more to a combination of on-and-off-piste. All of these have a tighter side cut and will make a quicker, shorter, more effortless turn. One of the things Fischer tried to achieve with this was to make it is as lightweight as possible without compromising structural integrity or torsional rigidity.
Fischer milled parts of the titanium to keep it light. These skis also used a convex construction in the nose and tail to keep the skis nice and stiff at speed. Similarly, where the skis are very thin at the tip and tail, Fischer reinforced the ski with carbon fiber for maximum strength. Are your current skis heavy? These skis won’t be.
No matter which way you choose to go there is no wrong answer between any of these options. As always, the friendly, knowledgeable Zimmermanns staff is here to help guide you to the right choice. Have a great rest of your winter!