It’s only been a few months since we opened our doors in September. As Winter slowly goes by, a stressful season starts for a young business like ours: tradeshows and bookings season. While backcountry skiers are still thinking about next weekend’s trip, we have to start thinking about next year already. What did we do well? What could we improve? How to make sure the equipment we select will really shine come 2019? So we hit the road (ARSA in Calgary and Outdoor Retailer in Denver) in search of what gear that makes us think “this is awesome” as skiers. Nowadays, there are so many great skis, boots, bindings and everything else you could possibly think of that it becomes quite overwhelming and confusing at times.
At SkiUphill, we thrive on carefully selecting products that we are excited about. It would be easy to simply carry the most popular items and the stuff that just every other store has, but that would be so boring... Instead, it is hours and hours spent comparing, studying and testing various products to find what we are the most excited about. Our philosophy is simple; to carry only products that we genuinely believe in and will stand behind. Among all the marketing lingo (and sometimes bullshit) are some gems. Our passion is to find those for you.
Now back to the tradeshow season. We are on the plane to Denver for Outdoor Retailer show but we had a chance to attend Alberta’s ASRA show earlier today. Here are some of our highlights:
1- Narrow skis are back!
BD Helio 76, K2 Wayback 80, Salomon X-Alp,etc. We are starting to see lots of tip notches and kilogram skis in the booths of North American brands! While weight is not the only thing that matters, more and more skiers are seeking for more efficient ways of enjoying the backcountry. This usually means a weight reduction. And the snow is always deeper on narrower skis...
2- Fischer’s New Line-up
After a few years watching it grow, it looks like Fischer’s touring line-up is reaching its potential. An interesting and varied range of skis and boots, from rad huckage to skimo racing, make for a great line-up. Watch out for that Ranger Free boot next year!
3- K2’s New Touring Ski Line-up
K2 is revamping its touring skis. The new Waybacks and Talkbacks now share a lot of features that I like in touring skis. Lightweight constructions, titanal plates, straighter sidecuts and beautiful topsheet designs that impressed us. Their shapes remind me of Blizzard’s Zero G skis with a touch less stiffness. This should make them more enjoyable for those of us who didn’t grow up on race courses.
We will be at Outdoor Retailer until Saturday! What would you like to know or see?
Bonus: Here are a few photos snapped on our first day at OR
Removeable whippet from Black Diamond
ATK’s rebranded bindings. SL-Evo, Logic, Trofeo, Haute Route 2.0, all stamped BD
Not much change at Scarpa except a new Alien 1.0
New colour for the Fischer Travers
Fischer’s 2019 Transalps
No change on the Zero Gs, but some classy topsheets!