New and expanded ranges, design tweaks and updates, fresh new graphics and brand new tech – next winter’s skis are a seriously good-looking bunch.
The stories for winter 2020 are the continued growth of the free-touring sector, the expansion of the all-mountain category and the addition of many new women’s-specific skis to existing line-ups.
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But for now, our Top Ten highlights are below – in alphabetical order!
Everyone’s favourite Slovenians Elan are back with a new ski for 2020 – the all-mountain frontside specific Wingman featuring their unique asymmetric Amphibio construction (right and left skis). Last year’s high performance carbon ‘Black’ line has also been expanded for next winter and the legendary Ripstick freeride family returns with a new tribal member – the Ripstick 88 and 88 W.
The big news from Fischer is the all-new RC ONE range – a collection of piste skis designed to ‘make passionate skiers even better’. With a choice of 8 skis ranging from 72 to 86mm underfoot, the RC ONEs are packed full of tech (BAFATEX inserts, Triple Radius, shaped Titanal etc) designed to deliver a smooth, easy ride for advanced skiers. We’re looking forward to taking them for a spin at the Ski Test later this month. Other additions include the all-new Ranger 94 FR, and the super stable Ranger 92 Ti, 99 Ti and 107 Ti with free milled titanium.
In addition to a new clothing line (read more below), Verbier based Faction Skis have launched a new range of lightweight touring skis – the Agents – and a women’s specific Candide Mademoiselle ski. The Dictator series has been updated to be more user friendly with new shapes and shorter turning radii. The playful Prodigy 2.0 also gets a new shape and the new Chapter 1.0 (86mm) and 2.0 (96mm) are pitched as lighter, more forgiving version of the Dictators.
G3 walked away with 2 ISPO awards at this year’s show for their new Minimist skins and Findr range with ‘why didn’t I think about that’ magnetic bases. The lightweight steep/ski mountaineering specific Findr series come in 3 different widths (86, 94 and 102mm), all featuring these funky magnetic contact points. Say hello to speedy bootpack transition and goodbye to faffing around with ski straps – simply place the skis together and whack ‘em on your shoulder!
The big news at Head is the introduction of the KORE W – a new range of women’s specific skis destined to make the already immensely popular graphene-fused KORE range even more sought after.
The ISPO award winning K2 Mindbender 116C is part of the all new Mindbender series – 12 skis ranging in waist width from 85-116mm that are all about turning back the clock to a time when the powder was plentiful and life was super good in the K2 hood. The Mindbender range replaces the old Pinnacles and are packed full of crazy tech including Carbon Spectral Braid technology (light and playful) and Ti Y-Beam (targeted precision, power and stability).
It’s busy days at Rossignol HQ too with the launch of the all-new REACT range of race-inspired piste skis with FLEX TIP technology for faster turn initiation. The iconic and hugely popular freeride 7-Series gets an update for 2020 with funky looking new topsheets and there’s some great looking kids skis in the line-up too.
All members of Salomon’s QST family are due for an overhaul next winter with thicker sidewalls for durability, a new carbon, basalt and flax construction, and cork tips for dampness. These playful players will be joined by a whole new series designed for frontside all-mountain missions – the S/Force. All skis in the S/Force range come with an ‘Edge Amplifier’ which Salomon claim makes it 30% easier to get the ski onto an edge.
Home to the best coffee we tasted at ISPO, SCOTT are heading into 2020 with a new female focused range of skis. New for next winter will be the all-mountain Slight ski in a 93 W and the Scrapper 105 W women’s freeride weapon. There will also be a new non-female specific Speedguide 89 for those who like to earn their turns.
One of the most popular skis of all time – the Volkl Mantra gets fatter next winter with the launch of the new Mantra 102 and sister ski, the Secret 102, with 3D Radius Sidecut. If you’re looking for serious fatness and a ski that’s come out of genuine athlete collaboration then the Revolt 121 is the rig for you. Moving back down the widths, the Kendo 88 and corresponding women’s ski – the Kenja 88 – will be constructed using the same 3D Radius Sidecut as the Mantra 102. Back on piste and the RTM series moves into the Deacon range for 2020.
Other stories include the introduction of Atomic’s new Savor line – a collection of skis, boots and helmets aimed at the entry-level skier, Blizzard’s updated Zero G touring ski, new pinstrip paint jobs at Black Crows, and new members to Nordica’s super popular all-mountain/freeride Enforcer series – the Enforcer 88 and the women’s equivalent, the Santa Ana 88.