RYAN REPORT – Elan Ripstick 106

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As a gear reviewer I see products long before they make it to stores. I see a lot of new gear. Through all the noise of new skis, jackets, helmets and the rest a couple pieces usually stand out. My gut tells me they’ll be successful. Sometimes my picks are bang on. Sometimes I’m surprised. This ski season biggest surprise is the Elan Ripstick.

The five men’s models and three women’s, are all mountain/freeride skis, ranging in width from 86 to 116. Ski Canada testers really liked these skis: we reviewed the men’s 96 and 106 and women’s 94 and 102. I personally skied four of the models last spring, including two of the women’s specific skis, and had a blast in everything from firm groomers to knee deep couloirs.

But I hadn’t seen a new pair of Elan’s in the lift line in at least a couple season. So I wasn’t expecting to see a ton of Ripsticks this year. I was wrong. They’re everywhere I go.

So far this season I’ve skied at Panorama, Lake Louise, Mount Washington and Whistler. At each resort I saw multiple pairs of Ripstick skis. When I ask the owners about them they’re all enthusiastic about the versatility and performance. It’s a great surprise that speaks to Elan’s focus on the skiing experience. They make great skis.

RYAN REPORT is a frequent web post by Ski Canada magazine’s technical editor, Ryan Stuart.

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