Header Image: Jordan Tiernan
The world wide web is filled with skis that claim to be “the best skis for park,” “the best skis for powder,” and “the best skis for after-dinner anecdotes.” But there can only be one king in the powder skis department – all mountain shapes just can’t cut it in the deep like a proper pair of powder planks. Although we hear you, all this marketing chat and ‘ground-breaking technology’ claims can be a real mind-melt.
There’s so many things to consider, so so many, that people have been known to wake up in the middle of the night mumbling the benefits of twin rocker skis and talking up the virtues of a decent sidecut. Heck, it’s stressing us out just thinking about all the people out there right now who are getting stressed out thinking about which ski to buy.
So here goes. We’ve broken down all the important traits of a powder ski and recommended some of the finest out there right now. Now you can sleep easy with the knowledge of knowing some of the best powder skis out there in 2019 – 2020.
What Makes A Great Pair Of Powder Skis?
Ski shaping and construction has progressed tenfold over the past few years, with more and more designs that make skiing the deep stuff not just easier, but a total blast – with fresher legs to keep going lap after lap. Here are a few of our recommended shapes and designs to look out for that go towards creating a great pair of powder skis.
Width and Length
Two pretty important features in making a handy powder ski are of course width and length – they’re the two attributes that give the ski larger surface area, after all. A large surface area equals more float when the going gets deep.
Modern skis with a waist width varying between 90 – 110 mm are considered a good all mountain setup, with 110 mm plus the de facto powder width. We’ve only got one ski under a 110 mm waist width featured in this list of best powder skis.
Sizing for a big mountain / powder ski is relatively simple – because of the use of rocker in the tips create a shorter effective edge, advanced and above skiers will want to size 10 cm longer than your all mountain boards.
Rocker is the technique used to raise the tips and tails of the ski, so that when the ski is lay on a flat surface, a section of the tips and tails of the ski is lifted off the floor – this raised section is called rocker. Rocker avoids the dreaded tendency for skis to ‘tip dive’ and keeps the skis tracking well through deep snow.
While rocker helps in the deep stuff, it has the opposite effect on firm snow, as the effective edge that is able to contact the snow beneath becomes less, the more the tips and tails are raised.
Tip / Tail Taper
Taper refers to the technique used by ski brands to bring the widest point of the tip and tails closer towards the middle of the ski. Identified by a tip and tail that resemble a paddle of a canoe, taper gives skis that ‘surfy’ feel people love to describe skis, by avoiding the hooky feeling of traditional sidecuts.
The Best Powder Skis 2019 – 2020
What a list. We’ve packed it full of powder shapes that make powder skiing just that bit more enjoyable; fully rockered, twin tipped, soft noodles and stiff missiles – we’ve brought in the best to bring your powder dreams to life (kind of). Enjoy the turns.
- Whitedot Ragnarok ASYM
- DPS Wailer Alchemist 112
- Armada Tracer 118 CHX
- Head Kore 117
- Atomic Vantage 107 TI
- K2 Pon2oon
- Völkl Revolt 121
- Faction Candide 4.0
- Black Crows Anima
- Line Magnum Opus
Whitedot Ragnarok ASYM
Sidecut (mm): 147 / 122 / 134
Weight (per ski): 2220g
The Whitedot Ragnarok ASYM has been designed for blasting your way around the mountains at mach-looney through any conditions you find out there. The original shaped Ragnarok was designed by Fred Syversen to be used as his weapon in Freeride World Tour. Now, as you can see the tips and tails have been given a asymmetrical shaping to make powder skiing that (little) bit more fun.
The Ragnarok ASYM is designed in such a way that the skiers who use it will find themselves floating across deep powder like Jesus did when he walked on water. Not only that, but the positive camber and full-length torsional stiffness (that’s what she said) guarantees incredible hold on even the most unforgiving of pistes.
The original Ragnarok shape has won independent ski tests, Freeride World Tour podium spots, and the love and affection of numerous professional athletes. Whether you’re a Jedi-level master of off-piste skiing or only just ditching the comfort of the groomed runs, the Whitedot Ragnarok ASYM has something to offer all you powder-pursuing skiers.