Besides your flawless technique, the first factor that will influence your ability to ski in particular conditions while out in fresh, untracked snow will be your backcountry skis. To the inexperienced, the market offers a bewildering array of shapes and constructions, each of which imparts distinct qualities to the ski tailored to various snow conditions.
While the perfect pair of skis may build confidence in people unable to manage them, the wrong pair of skis can create fear in those unable to control them. Therefore, we must choose the proper skis based on ability, end goals, and build. Let the ski experts assist you! Read on to find out the best backcountry skis of 2022.
Best Overall Backcountry Skis: Movement Alp Tracks 100
The Movement Alp Tracks 100 climbed fast to the top of our rankings. Essentially, it achieves an excellent blend of uphill performance and downhill efficiency for many skiers. If we had to choose a ski for all-season, all-conditions human-powered skiing, we'd go with this award winner.
As long as downhill performance is good, 1271 grams for each ski is a great weight to achieve. The downhill performance of this Movement ski is well balanced. It isn't good in any one venue or condition, but it can handle them all. We've known for a long-time performance increase at this weight. The performance appears best when the weight is between 12 and 1300 grams. This ski gets a touch overpowered at faster speeds, but not as much as you might expect because of its lightweight. The Alp Tracks for several seasons now has no issues with durability.
Also Best Overall: Black Crows Camox Freebird
It takes some time for the Black Crows Camox Freebird to grow on you. It must also enhance and improve to achieve winner status. If you maintain it for the next season, you'll notice that your feet become even more authoritative, and for obvious reasons. This champion strikes all the perfect balances of downhill, adaptability, and uphill weight balances.
Along with the Alp Tracks 100, we gave the Camox a top tier. These two models ski pretty similarly in a direct comparison. Both are excellent in all conditions and exceptional in others. The Camox is more durable, while the Movement is lighter. The Camox will give you more mileage than the Alp tracks 100. Price is a point of differentiation. The Alp tracks 100 is a touch more pricey than the Black Crows.
Best Value for your Money: K2 Wayback 106
This K2 Wayback 106 is our most recent value suggestion for all-around, all-season backcountry skiing. It provides well-balanced capability over the whole range of backcountry conditions, weighs in at a moderate, competitive weight, and the cost is the best in value. The measurements are a little large for all-around backcountry skiing, but the performance is excellent.
It's difficult to determine the worth of backcountry skis. Ski costs have remained relatively stable in recent years. Due to changes in models and aesthetics, older skis are sold at bargain prices. Still, we consider a reasonable starting price, quality, comparative endurance, and easy availability for this category. All of these criteria are met by the K2 Wayback 106.
Best for Super Deep Powder: Voile Hyperdrifter
The Voile Hyperdrifter is the heavyweight ski in our test (ginormous), yet it's also the lightest. If you're looking for enough truly deep powder snow to warrant powder skis, this is a fantastic solution. Get the Hyperdrifter if you're lucky and good enough to track down soft snow. It impresses as the biggest ski on our list. You'll enjoy it on the coldest days, as well as when the pitch is low, and the snow is soft.
Powder skiing is great on a variety of skis. However, it must be steep enough to carry speed, and the snow must be deep, soft, and graduated but not too heavy. On milder terrain, big skis like the Hyperdrifter can help you maintain pace. Because you've chosen these Hyperdrifters to go with your all-around skis, you'll need to adjust and learn when they'll help you and when they won't.
Best for Super Lightweight Missions: K2 Wayback 80
These aren't the only backcountry skis you'll have. The K2 Wayback 80 is designed for strong snow turns and is light and narrow. It performs admirably in powder and severe snow, but when those conditions are more usual or anticipated, you'll want something else. When you're going high and firm, the ultralightweight of the WayBack 80 will charm you and leave you fresher for more of what you're after.
Sorting through all of the alternatives was a challenge. The key metrics in our evaluation will help you understand each ski a little better.
In this criteria, the K2 Wayback 106 delivers a powerful punch at an affordable price
The K2 WayBack 80 is a lightweight performance ski that weighs only 1093 grams. The Movement Alp Tracks 100 stands out for its excellent combination of uphill weight and downhill performance in all situations.
One of the ultra-lightweight models evaluated was the K2 Wayback 80 and Movement Alp Tracks 100. They have better all-around performance than the ultralights because of proportions and performance.
The heavier skis, such as the Black Crows Corvus Freebird, were predictably more stable than the lighter ones. Weight is, once again, the most important predictor of stability. The downhill performance of a ski is influenced by its bulk.
Hard snow performance
The K2 Wayback 80 is an ultralight ski mountaineering specialist that performs well in hard terrain early in the season. On top of this, the K2 Wayback 106 performs better on firm snow than its weight and width would suggest. On firm snow, the large and wide Black Crows Corvus Freebird performs admirably. Stability and torsional stiffness are provided by the hefty material.
The Movement Alp Tracks 100 are ultralight powder tools with above-average girth and soft snow proportions. The massive Voile Hyperdrifter eats up powder, but it's best to put it away when the snow gets hard. The big Black Crows Corvus Freebird demands more input than others.
In difficult snow, the broad, hefty Black Crows Corvus Freebird performs admirably. Breakable crust champs include Movement Alp Tracks 100 and Black Crows Camox Freebird. In crud, however, Voile Hyperdrifter has a hard time.
Backcountry skis are designed to suit a wide range of conditions and customers. In this review, we have chosen the size and design for both uphill and downhill performance.
Backcountry travel can be personal. We hope that our list and observances will help you in making an informed decision based on your varying needs.