Ski Picking Update From Fischer, Salomon, and Atomic

Ski Picking Update From Fischer, Salomon, and Atomic

Our first ski-picking trips are underway, and this year we were able to go a bit earlier than the past few years, which is a good sign that manufacturing is returning to normal capacity. We always time our trips around peak production so we have the most options to select for our pick list and general store inventory. This year, we first went to Austria to pick Fischer, Salomon, and Atomic.

This season came with a few notable changes from each brand, which I will highlight below in a brand breakdown. Using our flex tester, hands, and eyes, we will pick our order from thousands of skis available at the factories.


Skis from Salomon had a fairly significant change for the upcoming season. All models will now come with a plate to which the binding will attach. So any skiers still holding onto the SNS dream will now need to swap over to NNN/Prolink to get new skis from all brands. On a more serious note, we are very excited about this change. While no changes have been made to the core materials or carbon layup, adding the plate seemed to increase stiffness underfoot, providing a very stable feel when transitioning weight onto the ski. On the classic skis, this means the binding is adjustable to move forward for more grip and backward for more glide. We've found that the plated classic skis have been closing more consistently underfoot throughout the pocket.

Every brand is always making small adjustments to how they measure skis or evaluate them, so it is always great to constantly get updates from Salomon guys on what may have changed from year to year. This allows us to continue learning and stay up to date with new trends, which allows us to continue to pick the best skis for our customers! We will always test every ski with our flex tester to ensure the quality meets our standards of a good pair of skis.


We continue to see slight tweaks in Fischer's lineup for this season as they seem to be making a shift to Helium as their flagship model over the traditional "610" skate plus skis. The newest ski this year is the Speedmax Helium 61k. While the Helium has been available in small quantities over the past few seasons in the Helium Skate Plus mold, this is a newer version that we will have a lot of inventory of for the upcoming season.

Another change is the addition of a new base material for their cold ski. The A5 base that had been on the Speedmax cold had always been tricky to nail down which conditions it performed best in and rarely worked well for us in the Midwest. Fischer looked to produce something that worked in a wider range of conditions and came up with the 31 base. We were able to get out and ski on them a few times last season and noticed a big jump in performance compared to the old A5. We were very excited when we walked in to be greeted by a ton of bright yellow skis. There were so many skis to choose from, which was very encouraging as Fischer has had some manufacturing issues over the last few years. While we have always found the good ones, it is definitely easier to find the best pairs when there are so many available to look through.


There are some major changes for Atomic this season, and we were very excited to pick their skis. They have been working on a new core material called Innowave for a few years and testing on the World Cup, and it is finally available for production and purchase this season. This core material is now made in-house at their factory, so they should have a lot more control over what is produced. This new core material on snow led to a stable, and lively feel compared to the Atomic skis of the past that used a Nomex core.

The skis performed well in our limited testing last winter, and they also looked great on our flex tester that we travel with. We picked out a few pairs for ourselves to try and get a more in-depth look at them for an entire season. Per usual, we had great luck finding skin skis that should be fast and get great grip. Atomic has made some of our favorite skin skis for the past few seasons now.

Of course, it wouldn't be a successful trip to Austria without drinking beer with great views...

... doing some fun hikes...

... and touring a castle! Burg Hohenwerfen 

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