THE VIEW FROM OUR CREW: THE NEW SKI AND SNOWBOARD GEAR FOR WINTER 17-18
What our team is riding and wearing for winter 17-18.This is the Style Altitude crew's pick of new gear from the most wanted skis (and yep all the skiers want new skis even though most of us have a few already in our quiver) to must have jackets for Arctic freeze and the latest essential goggles. See an up to date list of the best ski gloves on a budget here on Slopehound.
FAYE YOUNG - Snowboard Contributor
'The Oakley Flight Decks are such a good investment, you will never buy another pair of goggles again. The lens clarity is amazing and if you go for a sapphire prizm lens you will be covered in pretty much every weather condition. The XM model is perfect if you want a smaller fitting frame that still has a wide field of vision.
'The Riji jacket is a really flattering long fit jacket, the high neck and hood keep you cosy and I love the print. It has a really handy lift pass pocket in the sleeve too which saves time in the lift queue.'
JONATHAN 'BING' BINGHAM - Ski Contributor
They're ultralight and stealth described by Elan as 'the baddest and raddest of our (free)touring collection'. For the expert freetourer, the skis combine new generation Bridge technology with a Tubelite Woodcore and have mountain rocker for float and control, making for a unique freetouring combo for the most demanding skier. Encased in a Carbon Powershell reinforcement for that extra kick in performance and designed with a unique shape to prevent snow from sticking, the Ibex 94 C XLT is the state of the art in wider touring skis. Or as Bing says, 'My ski mountaineering set up just got wider but lighter'.
'Who says fat skis have to be heavy?' Bing is riding the wider, lighter touring wave, not content with just one pair of new touring skis for the winter. He's also chosen the Volkl BMT 109s which have a full carbon construction and lightweight multi-layer wood core, featuring full rocker and an early-taper sidecut, for true big mountain versatility after a self-powered ascent. It also features the added advantage of the ICE.OFF topsheet, designed to keep snow and ice from adhering to the topsheet to keep the lightest possible setup.
GAVIN BAYLIS - Tech Editor
'I'll be using them on fatter 108s (Black Crows Atris, below) more for powder touring and with my Salomon Mountain Lab tech boots which are stiff enough for more aggressive downhill riding. I like the option of a stronger, more secure heel which is the beauty of the Tecton as opposed to twin pin. I've used the Vipecs for three seasons and I'm impressed that they have continued to develop and improve their bindings to become established in the touring market. I've always found them pretty easy to get in and out - and these are even easier!'
Having lost one of my SCOTT Cascade 110s last season when caught in an avalanche (and never finding it in the summer inspite of searching four times) I needed similar all mountains skis specifically for touring and riding powder. I tried the Black Crows Atris 108s at the ski test in Kuhtai last year - and they really put a smile on my face. So the Winter 17-18 ones seemed an obvious choice.' As the Black Crows blurb says: 'We wanted to make the Atris more stable at high speed without altering its great handling and playfulness. Our team was successful with this by intervening on three variables: extension of the radius, a softening of the flex and a more progressive heel rise. So, the Atris has become more easily handled at speed without altering its ease of handling.'
LOUISE HUDSON - USA AND CANADA EDITOR
'With the 2018 Winter Games coming up, I'm getting my Olympian on with Kari Traa's ritzy Rose range in pink, grey and black merino. Although it's a baselayer, most of Kari's designs have an apres ski application too – handy when restricted to carry-on only!'
'As a Skeezer (see Snow Tribes), I'm more into precision than power these days, and the Rossignol's Temptation 88 HD, with their blend of carving capabilities and a free-ride feel combo of carbon alloy, air tip and auto-turn rocker are hopefully going to carry me through all the tempting and tyrannical terrain on my travels around Alberta, British Columbia, Utah, Colorado, Tahoe and Wyoming, this season.'
ELAINE DEED - Editor
'I am always on a mission to find the perfect functional AND stylish ski wear. It can take months (even winters) for me to be find what I'm looking for because, in my opinion, the majority of the ski brands don't deliver on function, fit and style for women. So once I find the perfect gear I'm likely to wear it for the whole season - and beyond (I have a Jottnar Fenrir down jacket I've hardly taken off all year!). But I've been looking for an alternative and as I'm going to Japan this winter, I'm also thinking super warmth. The SCOTT Ultimate Down jacket ticks the boxes especially with it's bodycon, flattering fit. Meanwhile, my hunt for ski pants goes on and on. I've ordered and returned two pairs this winter already because their sizing was, well, pants. They were meant to be small but I could have fitted my SCOTT Alpride avy bag inside! But I'm loving Jottnar's Vanir hardshell pants described as 'waterproof, windproof and bombproof' especially as, thank the Lord, they're not in the usual girly pink, but an eye-popping eucalyptus.'
'When I tested the Nordica Santa Ana 100s a couple of years ago, I ordered them on the spot. Finally we have a women's ski that does powder and can handle the piste. Then, for this winter, Nordica added the 110 to the Santa Ana line, in essence bringing the El Nina into the Santa Ana stable with balsa wood core and carbon sandwiched between two sheets of metal. This design also enhances edge hold for powerful and precise turns while dampening vibrations for a smooth and predictable ride. And to maximize floatation in powder and boost performance in variable conditions, it sports a high rise tip and tail rocker profile. I've mounted them with the new Tecto 12 bindings (same as Tech Editor, above) for a super light all mountain ski set up. I'd been expecting to really appreciate them in Japan in January where the wider waist will be perfect but, with the amazing snow we've had in the Alps I've already been out touring and shredding the pow. And, yep, they DO float. They're a surprisingy easy ride on the piste too! But, okay, half of the graphics are a tad girly pink for my liking but hopefully that's always going to be covered by pow. '
MIKIE KITARUTH - Snowboard Contributor
'They might just look like bindings to you, the same old Union Contacts that have been around for seasons. But these are different. These are the Scotty Stevens pro model. It’s been a while since a set of bindings caught my eye. Firstly, look at those Barney-The-Dinosaur colours. I do love a bit colour. Secondly, having ridden Contacts before, they are up there as the best bindings on the market. The Duraflex baseplate adds comfort and cushioning in landings while being lightweight and look at the Asym S2 Highback, it’s solid but also has the perfect amount of flex.
'Thirdly, anyone who has seen or knows of Scott’s riding will know this guy absolutely rips so hard and is constantly blowing people’s minds! If there’s a tiny chance that these bindings might make me ride like him, I’m taking it. Plus they just look so rad!
'New season, new board and a brand I’ve never ridden before. Back in 2011 Capita put out a film called Defenders of Awesome and I remember being glued to this DVD for the entire season and through summer. So this year I figured why not try the board with the same name as the film? The DOA is your ultimate fun jib park board and has won the Transworld Good Wood award every year since its inception. With its next generation hybrid camber packing the board full of pop and response, I can’t wait to get on the slopes and see what it can handle. And yes, before you ask, it was a hard toss up between the DOA and the Scott Stevens Pro board… but you can’t have the bindings and the board, that’s just too much!'
14) BRO OUTERWEAR
There’s nothing wrong with my jacket from last year (still waiting on my free one, Adidas) so I’m not replacing it. But, one item I have spent all summer waiting to bust out is the Chill 'n’ Shred hoodie from the awesome guys at BRO! These super comfy, longer in length hoodies are everything you need for mountain life. You know those spring days when you wish you didn’t have to wear a jacket? Well, this hoodie is perfect by itself. I even wore one under my jacket last year in February and was way too hot… I guess it is doing its job correctly, plus it looks awesome!
DARREN TURNER - Ski Instructor / Skiing Guru
'Everybody wants to ski powder but let’s face it, it's not always there. When the pistes are in good shape these things are absolute weapons. Fast arcing turns on a firm piste. Love it.' As the blurb says: 'The race slalom-inspired, SPEED ZONE 16 Ti merges World Cup caliber precision with smooth, responsive ski control for the most comfortable and fluid carving sensations on snow.'
'I’m up the mountain pretty much all day every day and I hate getting cold. This jacket is my best friend when things start going Arctic. If you haven’t heard of Stellar Equipment you should check them out. They are a Swedish technical mountain clothing company selling everything direct so you get great quality clothes at a very good price.'