Skin base skis are great for late season skiing – icy hard crust; soft wet fresh snow

Just a quick note to folks about what type of ski works well for late season skiing: icy crust, hard crust that you can’t break through, several inches of snow that would make great snow cones and clumps like crazy on most skis.

My out the door skis for the last two seasons have been the Hok from Altai Skis,
They are a metal edge short fat board bushwacking ski with mohair in the kick zone.
Nils Larsen, Francois Sylvain, helped designed the original TRAK Bushwacker skis so they have experience designing bushwacking, out the door, skis. And the Hok are build over the border in Quebec. LL Bean and EMS also list them in their on-line catalogs.

The mohair gives great grip for the kick and also resists lateral, side to side, movement so one doesn’t slide sideways on the kick. So you can ski instead of sliding/skating on a hard surface – the skate trails at Highland Forest, the refrozen crust that we have right now.
I put some anti-icing spray on and had no clumping issues a couple of weeks ago when we had 5 C plus temps and deep snow with snow cone consistency. Also last year with the Feb ’14 thaw.
I get great grip even at the cold -20 C conditions we had earlier. And I can climb a 20% slope without having to herringbone.
Plus the skin gives some drag on downhills. Although if the surface is hard and icy you still go fast and it is hard to get these fat boards on edge even with a 75mm binding and stiff boots.

The other skin based skis should have the skin advantage over fish scale or wax. Atomic Skintec, Salomon’s RC Skins, Madshus Intelligrip for 2015-16. BUT those are javelin skis best used in set tracks – narrow, no side cut. They aren’t wide enough to support your weight on untracked snow or crust so you punch through.
20 March 2015, Fri: To confirm I just took my Atomic Redster, wide Skintec module, out on the snow remaining in our front field and got the same skiing experience as the Hok while being able to ski at a faster pace.

This brand isn’t available in the States: OAC, Outdoor Action Finland –, is has several models of skin based bushwacking skis including the OAC XCD 160 based upon the Karhu XCD 160 but with a skin base.

The post says that the OAC WAP 127 and KAR 147 have more X-C ski DNA than the Hok – more camber, binding moved to the ski balance point, less mohair and the mohair is the Swiss mohair. [same brand as the Atomic Skintec skis?]

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