Which All Mountain Ski is YOUR All Mountain?
We know first hand that discovering a new sport can be intimidating. That’s why we want to help break down this barrier by creating skis that perform well for all levels and provide education on what that means for various skier types.
Coalition Snow builds skis for the hard charging, cliff dropping, badasses of the mountain, or for the bluebird loving, groomer slaying folx. Regardless of your experience level, Coalition has a ski to fit your needs.
All Mountain Breakdown
The term ‘All Mountain Ski’ can have a different connotation for people who love to ski. To some, that may mean groomers and less technical turns, while others may see it as off trail, bumps, and even some steep and deep.
Skis are complex pieces of art. On the outside, they may appear similar, but when you look closely, there are key terms that help explain how skis differ. Now, let's dive into those terms and how they apply to skis.
First, we have width underfoot. This is the width of the ski typically at the thinnest point, underneath where your foot would sit. This is also sometimes referred to as the ‘waist width.’ These varying widths will make it easier to ski different terrain. 95mm and smaller is traditionally used for skis that will be skied on piste. This also allows for quicker edge to edge and carve like no other.
Between 95-110mm is referred to as a medium width. This allows skiers to feel confident on and off trail, keeping them afloat in powder or controlled on ice. This larger width will help a ski to float more, but it will also create a larger turning radius, meaning the ski cannot go from edge to edge and carve as efficiently as the smaller underfoot widths.
Next, we have tip and tail rocker. This refers to the early rise of the tip and tail of the ski. This style of rocker helps the ski to stay afloat in powder, increase maneuverability, and create more of a contact point when sliding rails or landing tricks, reducing the risk of catching an edge. These rockered tips are also referred to as shovels. The shovel is the turned-up part of the ski, or nose. When referring to a wider shovel, this is indicating that a ski has a wider turned-up tip, or nose.
SIdecut is another ski differentiator. Sidecut can also be referred to as the radius. This is what helps to create the turning radius of the ski.
SOS versus the Rebel
To help you find your perfect match of skis, let’s give a rundown of the difference between our two all mountain skis so you can determine your personal definition of ‘All Mountain.’
Today, we will be breaking down the SOS and the Rebel, two Coalition All Mountain ski models. These skis are both all mountain skis, but there are some key differences in how these all mountain skis perform on the mountain.
First, let’s talk about the SOS. At a 105mm underfoot width, the SOS will charge hard on all conditions. From slush, to powder, to corn, the SOS will grip and rip in all the ways you could want. With a rocker in the tip and tail, the SOS will help you to navigate both the deep, and hardpacked snow.
The SOS has traditional camber underfoot, meaning you’ll receive excellent edge response to handle all the bumps and ice your heart could desire. This ski is built with a birch core, allowing for some vibration dampening while to maintain pop and energy. Its slanted ABS sidewalls help to protect the core while giving the ski great edge hold while also providing torsional stiffness (which just means the ski is strong and holds its shape when twisted).
The SOS also comes equipped with a multi-radius sidecut. This is a longer sidecut that lengthens the turning radius. The 24m radius underfoot is ideal for long, arced GS type turns, and responds well to speed. The SOS has a wider radius, so it will have larger turns, and be harder to make smaller, carvey turns.
In comparison, the Rebel is between 82-88mm underfoot width depending on the length of the ski. The longer the length, the more underfoot width. Like the SOS, the Rebel contains a birch core, and will carve just about anything without sacrificing stiffness.
The slanted ABS sidewall will generate phenomenal edge hold without a loss in torsional stiffness. The Rebel will perform best on East Coast hardpack and powder (because of the rocker and because it has a wider shovel than a traditional carving ski), groomers, and bumps. With 2mm of camber and an early rise, the Rebel feels effortless to turn, with consistent stability.
The side cut (or radius) of the Rebel is designed to carve, so if short to medium length turns are your jam, then the Rebel is your ski. This ski also has rocker in the tip to reduce vibration and charge through chowder, and to give a little float on those softer days. The Rebel has a single radius sidecut. This is a shorter sidecut that allows for a shorter turning radius.
On the Rebel, we have a sidecut that initiates smaller turns, creating a carving ski. At 17mm, this sidecut is ideal for making medium to short length turns, and shines when carving corduroy as well as negotiating trees, bumps and variable terrain.
The primary difference between these two skis is the width underfoot. The wider 105mm offered by the SOS will help to handle those deep 8-10 inch powder days better than the Rebel’s 88mm underfoot width. The next differentiator is the sidecut. Due to the Rebel’s directional shape and single radius sidecut, it offers steady control, and a shorter turning radius that is great for ripping those groomer laps.
The SOS’s multi radius sidecut is ideal for longer turns at higher speeds. If you are looking to venture off trail, experience some wicked face shots, and still be able to rip it on some groomers, then the SOS is the All-Mountain ski for you. If you prefer groomers, bumps, and blue-bird days, then the Rebel may be your perfect match.
Keep in mind that skis need to be the right length for your ability, height, and weight. If you get a pair that are too long, it will be hard to control your movements, but if they are too short, you will feel unstable. You want that perfect feeling to give you the most confidence up on the hill!
Check out our blog post “Tips for Choosing the Right Ski Length” if you have questions about sizing or reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org where we are happy to help answer any questions you have.