Down Skis is based in the Swiss Alps, and describes itself as “a montage of freeride skiers from all over Europe and the US that understand the current ski company model can be changed for the better.”
After working on product development and testing for three years, Down launched last season with a limited quantity release, and is now entering their first full production run with a five-ski lineup. Of the line, the Countdown 3 particularly grabbed our attention.
Simen Stori, Down’s co-owner and head designer, tells us that “the idea behind the Countdown 3 is to make a ‘fun-shape’ that is more of a charger,” by combining the playfulness of a tip and tail rockered profile with the minimal shape of a stable, directional big-mountain board.
The Countdown 3 is pressed with rubber dampening mats atop a poplar and ash core laid with full width triax fiberglass and full length carbon stringers. The ski’s tip and tail are meant to have a stiffer flex, while its midsection is slightly softer.
That sounds to us like a ski made to crush any turn shape and go really fast in wide open terrain, whether conditions are fresh or firm and variable.
Of course, in Las Leñas, the Countdown 3 is going to be up against some very big and very impressive competitors in its class category.
David, get ready to meet Goliath.
Next up: the Kästle West XX110. Kästle goes new school with the West, and so far, they appear to be doing it proper. Very proper.
The roll out begins with a bang. Check out our first two selections.
Next up for South America: Salomon Freeski's new Rocker 2 115 - the big mountain charger offspring of last season's Rocker 2.