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If you’ve been skiing for years, you know that selecting a pair of blades and poles is a vital part of the process. Ideally, you’d be using them for a handful of years (about eight, on average).
There are dozens of technicalities to consider when purchasing all mountain skis, from the type of ski you’re looking for based on terrain, to the length and width you want (often correlated to skill), to whether you can shift into touring mode. The right set will allow beginners to make easy turns, and speed-demons to feel stable when cruising at high speeds.
We’ve rounded up some of the best options on the market that will serve you well, no matter where you’re ripping up powder. Out West, you’ll encounter way more fresh snow than the rest of the country; out East, you’ll need to be prepared for packed, wet snow and a bit more ice. These skis will get you down most any mountain safely, and you’ll have a blast regardless of whether you’ve been skiing for two years or 20.
Our top picks, below.
There’s something distinctly sleek about these Salomons, and the look reflects on their build, which yields a smooth and stable ride on groomed resort trails or ungroomed backcountry routes.
Wide enough to float on powder but stable for challenges like trees and moguls, the 93 from HEAD’s classic Kore series will let skiers explore new terrain while enjoying immense speed if desired. It’s also built to withstand a multitude of conditions with a Graphene, Koroyd, and carbon-fiber construction.
Crafted in Colorado, Romp skis are ideal for those looking to maximize their skills on the mountain. The company tailors the blades for each skier, using a special Countervail® technology to increase edge hold, a lightweight carbon fiber for a fatigue-free ride, and personalized tuning for guaranteed fun and stability. You might not think you need custom skis, but they can improve your comfortability, execution, and overall experience on the slopes. The buying experience is informative, too: When shopping for stock skis, you only get to adjust for height. But with these custom skis, you learn what kind of camber, rocker, and flex you want based on the type of skiing you are planning on doing.
Winter order times can take up to six weeks; the skis will arrive a lot quicker in summer. If you don’t like the gear after a couple uses, Romp will make you a new pair for free. All sales come with a two-year warranty.
The Icelantic Riveter 85s are all about versatility. With a tapered shape and 5mm of camber underfoot, they excel at all points on the mountain. Skiers can expect a butter-smooth ride, as well as major power and speed gains when desired.
Rossignol makes some of the best skis on the market, and when it comes to a product for beginner to intermediate skiers, the Experience 76 CI is no exception. Beginners won’t outgrow these too quickly, so the value is great. These skis feature a narrow and light build, ideal for easy turning and stability.