Taking the opportunity to demo skis can be one of your most fun days on the hill. Like test driving a bunch of sports cars, getting out on a new pair of skis can enhance your overall experience and ultimately help you ﬁnd the pair that’s perfect for you. However, knowing what to look for in advance can go a long way into determining your success. Here are a few tips to get you started.
Tip # 1: Plan it out:
Before you head to the mountain, think about where you plan to do most of your future skiing. Do you ski mostly in the East, or do you take a few trips out West? What type of terrain do you prefer – steeps, groomers, bumps, trees? Do you like to ski 100mph with your hair on ﬁre, or do you tend to enjoy your turns at more moderate speeds? Do you like to make short and quick turns or longer arcs? Knowing the answers to these questions in advance will certainly help.
Tip # 2: Do some research:
Because there are so many great choices in the market, knowing where to get started canbe confusing. Buyers guides and manufacturer websites are a great place to start, but calling and speaking to local ski shops employees is very helpful too. Find out which brands are offered. Do you have a loyalty to a particular brand? Try to narrow your options down to a few solid choices and then head to to the mountain armed with some knowledge. (If you really have no idea where to start, just come in an start talking – we’ll take care of you).
Tip # 3: Have your own boots:
Although this tip is not required, we strongly recommend it. After all, your ski boots are your single most important piece of gear you will own, so making sure you’re comfortable in your own boots is a factor when you decide to demo skis.
Tip # 4: Check the conditions:
Your sales person will help with this as well, but knowing what the conditions are like on your demo day will often help steer you in the right direction. If conditions are ﬁrm, you may want to choose a narrower waisted ski that can get on edge quicker. If conditions are soft and snowy you may look towards a slightly wider ski.
Tip # 5: Ski the same track:
If you really want to feel the differences in the skis, take the same trail on each pair. This way, you’ll get a feel for how the ski handles your speed, your turn initiation and style and it’s stability throughout the run.
Tip # 6: Feedback:
Upon returning to the ski shop, let your salesperson know what you liked about each ski that you tested (and also what you didn’t like). This will help you choose your next ski to demo or reconﬁrm that the ski you tested was actually perfect for your style. Form there, it should be an easy decision to make a purchase that has been well thought out and qualiﬁed.
Editor’s note: Don’t be afraid to test new brands that you haven’t tried before, or even wider skis than you may not of previously considered. At Potter Brothers, we’ve tested hundreds of skis from several brands and in various sizes and shapes. Our selection is far and away the broadest and most versatile offering you can ﬁnd to ensure your demo experience will be nothing short of amazing!