Ski Bum Reviews top skis for glades, trees skiing and all things natural bush whacking skiing has to offer.
Glades, Side country or just tree skiing. Regardless of what you call it, chances are you have already experienced the joy of skiing in the trees. Finding the perfect line and slashing through natural features offers a thrill groomed trails can't. In order to make the most out of skiing glades you are going to need the right ski for the job. You are going to need a ski that feels light and nimble, but is tough enough to handle the bumps, ruts and the occasional rock natural skiing can throw at you. For the purposes of this list we stuck with skis with a width 100-105 mm under foot, Ideal for east coast glades. Additionally, if you are planning on skiing tight eastern glades you might want to consider going a size down in length. For skiers in the west, most of these skis come in wider, more powder friendly options if you don't mind sacrificing a little on piste performance.
Nordica Enforcer 104 Free
Womens: Santa Ana 104 Free
Day in and day out, the Enforcer 104 Free boosts your confidence. Although it’s the newest addition to the Enforcer Free collection, it’s already renowned for providing power and versatility in a design that’s accessible and easy to ski—no matter the terrain or conditions. The Enforcer 104 Free pairs a balsa wood core with carbon and two sheets of metal to maximize stability and response. This also dampens vibrations for an especially smooth ride. And for exceptional floatation in powder and easy steering through variable conditions, it features a high rise tip and tail rocker. If you’re a progressive skier searching for the perfect daily driver, it’s time to meet your soulmate—the Enforcer 104 Free. Powerful and poppy, it’s at home everywhere and anywhere.
Fischer Ranger 102 FR
Even if you own several pairs of skis, the Ranger 102 FR’s blend of float, stability, and playfulness makes it hard to choose anything else. The moderate twin-tip and smooth rocker and taper profile release easily and slash at a moment’s notice. The carbon fiber shovel provides enough float to crush nipple deep powder laps in Japan, while maintaining the stability and confidence to charge demanding terrain at speed. The hardest part of owning a 102 FR is realizing you want a second pair with touring bindings.
Rosignol Black Ops Sender
Womens: Rosignol Black Ops Rally Bird
Ride free. Fresh tracks to hardpack, the Blackops Sender is your ticket to ride the whole mountain. It brings an effortless, responsive feel to go anywhere the snow takes you, inbounds or out. Vibration dampening tech balances a lightweight wood core for the versatility to cruise or charge at will. Fly beyond the boundaries and roll through mixed conditions without hesitation.
Black Crows Camox
Womens: Black Crows Camox Birdie
This incomparable mid-fat all terrain ski is reputed for its tolerance and playfulness.
The association of a very progressive flex and good lengthen side lines brings great maneuverability and strong hold at high speed. With a DNA derived from freestyle, the progressive and supple flex makes it easy to handle and adapted to progression , whereas its side lines give a very effective and stable edge. Creativity for everybody on all types of terrain.
Atomic Bent Chetler 100
The most versatile member of the Bent Chetler family, the Atomic Bent Chetler 100 is a go-anywhere, do-everything freeride ski. Designed by ski legend Chris Benchetler, this all-mountain ski is a slimmed down version of the award-winning signature model offering a wide (but not too fat) 100mm waist for maximum versatility. The directional shape of the Bent Chetler 100 features HRZN Tech in the tip and tail for increased surface area and float, a Light Woodcore and generous Powder Rocker for slashing and slarving the entire mountain. The Dura Cap Sidewall offers controlled power transmission and commanding edge grip on harder snow surfaces. Whether its fresh snow, deep untracked, or hard variable conditions, the ski magazines have praised the Atomic Bent Chetler 100 as a ‘hero ski’.
Blizzard Rustler 10
Womens: Blizzard Sheeva 10
The Rustler 10 has long been praised as the Holy Grail of freeride skis, and for good reason. When a steep shot of north-facing terrain is getting chalky, it’ll carve sweet, smooth arcs. Lining up a booter to a stash of pow? The Rustler 10 is stable, yet nimble, so you can approach lines with confidence. Ripping a groomer back to the chair? The Rustler 10 is a steady ride that loves speed. Just want to float through some fresh snow? This is your ride. It’s founded on two signature concepts: Carbon Flipcore D.R.T Technology and an innovative waist design. The longer the ski, the wider the waist, which gives freeriders and freeride athletes more control and float, even on steep terrain. The smooth rocker-camber-rocker profile make it responsive and stable, yet super playful in softer snow and on any type of terrain. The Rustler 10 is the one-ski quiver for the progressive freeride skier.
Faction Prodigy 3.0
Inspired by the Prodigy 4.0, this ski shares the same shape, construction and materials as its big brother, meaning that whether you’re gapping safety barriers, bouncing down pillow lines or wheelying rollers, this ski is playful, solid and versatile enough to do it all, in style.
K2 Reckoner 102
Womens: K2 Reckoner Alliance 92
From the pow to the park and everywhere in between, the Reckoner 102 delivers thanks to its heavy freestyle influence. Featuring the same tech as its bigger brothers but with a more nimble waist width, this playful twin-tip is at home whipping cork threes off cat tracks, pivoting through tight east coast trees, or hunting for side hits on the groomers. Wherever you decide to take it, the Reckoner 102 has got your back.
The goal was straightforward. Build a 15m radius ski that we can take to the groomers on an average day with friends, carve hard, trick around on, laugh and have a good time. No bottomless pow, no 80 foot booters, no racing gates... just making the most of the average conditions at your local resort. Because piste skiing can be way fun with the right tools. 100mm under foot, featuring a straight-tapered, edgeless butterzone in the tip and a rockered Springboard tail for endless wheelies and extra pop, the all new Stranger merges carving with freestyle and freeride attributes.
Line Skis Sir Francis Bacon
Our most popular ski, the LINE Sir Francis Bacon, is back for another season. Equipped with a versatile 107mm waist width paired with 3D Convex Tech™ it floats and butters through powder without sacrificing performance on hardpack. Slash through wind lips, butter over rollers, and experience the playfulness the Sir Francis Bacon has to offer.
J Ski Vacation
“The Vacation” is the ultimate getaway from traditional boring skis! It features a truly one-of-a-kind, soft flex pattern that’s equally distributed throughout the length of the ski. This enables it to match transitions and excel at a larger variety of freestyle terrain so you can throw down with more style and control, without getting bucked. Its 104mm waist is super versatile, it floats easily in powder, yet is quick enough to also shred all over the mountain, including the park. The added surface area under foot makes for stable landings and provides even more balance and control when buttering and sliding rails. I designed the tips with a very smooth rocker and a unique early tapper geometry for a catch-free, effortless, surfy feel. You can pivot on a dime, and never have to worry again about catching your tips when popping from forward to backwards, buttering, or throwing tricks… even in fresh snow. If your idea of fun is to slash, press, air, butter, nollie & jib from untracked pow to the park and everywhere in between, it’s time for a Vacation!