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Halfdays Guide: The Best Ski Recommendations According to Our Slack Channel

By Emily Crofton

Halfdays Chalet Slack Channel
As skiers, we all know how overwhelming it can feel attempting to pick the right gear amidst the seemingly endless amount of options. From which pair of boots will be the most comfortable to what brand of outerwear will be the warmest, there are a number of important choices that can make or break your ski season. Whether you’ve been skiing your whole life or you’re brand new to the sport, it can be difficult to choose between the overwhelming number of options. With online retailers and local ski shops, you can spend days sifting through gear, hoping you’re investing in quality products that will fit your needs.
Particularly when it comes to skis, there are so many different sizes, widths, lengths, graphics, and models to choose between. You’ll want to base your ski choice on the type of terrain and conditions you’re likely to ski. For example, if you ski deep powder on West Coast terrain, you will want to choose a wider ski. If you ski tight trees on the East Coast, you will want to choose a narrower, shorter ski. Regardless of what you decide on, be sure to pick a size that coincides with your height/weight and ability level. As always, if you are unsure, visit your local ski shop to learn how to choose the best fit.
It’s no secret that shopping for ski gear can be overwhelming and sometimes discouraging. But don’t worry, your community members are here to help! To gain knowledge from fellow skiers, we asked a few of our slack channel community for their most recommended pair of skis. Check out this list of popular skis based on their personal experience.

1. Nordica Santa Ana

Recommended by Nicole Prefer, the Nordica Santa Anas are among our top five skis for a few notable reasons. Recognized for being highly versatile, the Santa Anas perform exceptionally well in a variety of snow conditions and terrain. With a 98 mm waist, they are a great all mountain ski for advanced to expert skiers looking for a lightweight but powerful feel. Featuring a short turning radius, the ability to make quick, maneuverable turns is effortless. For those deeper days, the rocker profile in the tip and tail allows for maximum flotation. For Nicole’s setup, she mounted a pair of Salomon Shift bindings on her Santa Anas to be able to ski in both the backcountry and at the resort. 

2. Faction Dictators

Second on our list is our very own Karelle Golda’s favorite pair of skis-the Faction Dictators. Considered a highly forgiving ski, the Dictators perform well and are easy to turn in regardless of the conditions. If you’re looking to ease into a ski and gain confidence, these are the perfect option. In addition to their maneuverability, the Dictators are also very playful and responsive, encouraging skiers to explore the entire mountain. Another excellent every day ski, the Dictators come in a variety of lengths and feature a 96 mm waist, which is perfect for varying terrain. Geared towards intermediate to advanced skiers, these skis will have you feeling stable and comfortable in the woods and on steeps and groomers.

3. Elan Ripstick 102

The Elan Ripstick 102s were voted a top favorite by Izzie Raitt. Based on her experience, Izzie says, “they rip in all conditions and steal glances from everyone in the lift line.” Her adoration of the Ripsticks is justified, considering the fact that they are designed by women! Known as one of the top rated women’s freeride skis, the Ripsticks perform best in deep powder, providing maximum flotation. However, if you find yourself in less than ideal conditions, you’ll still feel a reliable edge hold when carving turns and will feel stable cruising at top speed. With a wider width underfoot, the Ripstick 102s are the ideal ski for west coast terrain or deep east coast days! 

4. Armada Tracer 98

Next up on our list are the Armada Tracer 98s. This all mountain ski is recommended by Bex, who says, “I love them! They perform well in icy conditions, but can also keep me afloat on big powder days.” We love an all around ski that can perform well in various conditions! Another middle of the road waist width, a 98 mm underfoot ski is an ideal all mountain ski that can handle a bit of everything. Another feature that Bex loves about these skis is that they are lightweight, making them the perfect ski to take into the backcountry. If you’re looking for a fun, easy to maneuver ski geared towards lighter weight skiers, then you will love the Armada Tracers. 

5. Line Pandora 104

The last pair of skis featured on our top five list are the Line Pandora 104s. Voted for by two fellow skiers, Katrina Lynn and Laura Thompson, these skis clearly make an impression. Boasting a highly unique graphic design, these skis make a statement both on and off the mountain. With a generous width of 104 mm underfoot, the Pandoras are ready for deep powder days, yet can handle firmer conditions with ease. If you want an all around ski that’ll have you ready for anything the mountain brings, the Pandoras are a dream. They float with ease while also maximizing stability and edge hold. For a light, nimble ski that you can take from ice to powder, the Line Pandora 104s are an excellent choice!
With so many different types of skis on the market today, making the right choice can be tricky. We hope that by providing some intel from our slack channel community we’ve helped you feel a little less overwhelmed by all of the choices! Make sure to have some fun when picking the perfect ski for you, that’s what it’s all about!

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