One ski, for every day on the mountain, any and all conditions….
The One-Ski Quiver is the Holy Grail of the ski world. Practically anybody can make either a really good pow ski or a fantastic carver, but to design a ski that will excel across a whole host of conditions? That’s another thing altogether.
Actually, the One-Ski Quiver might be a fantasy, one that’s easy to imagine but impossible to achieve. After all, all ski design results in certain tradeoffs. And so our improbable search for the One-Ski Quiver is driven by the desire for simplicity and a hatred of compromise.
OK, well, it may also be driven by a lack of storage space and cash—it’s tough to own a bunch of skis when you’re broke, or you’ve got no place to stash them, or both.
But if the single ski that perfectly handles all conditions doesn’t exist, it is certainly true that manufacturers today have come closer than ever to creating it, and there are a number of skis that do a lot of things very well.
In what follows, we’ll name the skis that in our view come closest to the ideal.
We’ve asked our reviewers the following four questions, and these questions make up our selection criteria:
1) You have to choose one ski to use every day at the following ski areas: Taos, Alta, Jackson Hole, Las Leñas, Niseko. What ski would you choose for each of those places? (You’re allowed up to two picks for each place, a first choice and a runner-up.)
2) What skis were the most difficult to leave off your list?
3) What skis do you imagine have the greatest likelihood of making your list, if and when you get to ski them (or get to ski them more)?
And finally, the Ultimate, End-All-Be-All, No Caveats, Bottom Line, One-Ski Quiver Question:
4) If over the next three seasons you had to ski one ski, every day, regardless of location, what would you choose?
TWO RULES, ONE REQUEST:
1) We’ve only considered what we’ve actually skied.
This should, of course, be obvious, but the ski review industry is a funny place. Some review sites give awards to stuff that they’ve hardly tested. We don’t. If you want to brush up on how we do things around here, check out the BLISTER Manifesto.
2) No company has paid us to get their ski on this list.
BLISTER is different. We don’t accept any money from any of the manufacturers we review. We don’t allow them to buy advertising on our website, and we don’t charge them a fee to review their skis. (Maybe that’s why our reviews don’t read like everybody else’s….)
3) If you’re ticked that your favorite ski didn’t make our list, tell us.
We’ll look to test the ski this coming season, and we’ll see whether we agree with you.
Next: The Selections
• Jonathan Ellsworth