Völkl Sanouk, Fischer Big Stix 10.6, Atomic Big Daddy
Wide Sizing Available: from left, Völkl Sanouk ($1,000; 800-264-4579, www.volkl.com), Fischer Big Stix 10.6 ($795; 800-844-7810, www.fischerskis.com), Atomic Big Daddy ($799; 800-258-5020, www.atomicsnow.com)
These Bindings Byte
Is the world ready for a digital ski binding? ATOMIC aims to find out. Sensors inside its new NEOX EBM 412 monitor whether or not you're correctly locked in, thenif all is wellbeam an LCD "OK" to the cold-impervious display screen. $1,099; 800-258-5020, www.atomicsnow.com
Big Is Beautiful
This is the year to get ultra-fat. Underfoot, that is. Scope the slopes this winter and see for yourself: A half-dozen companies are offering boards that are more than four inches across at their narrowest point, with shovel-wide tips. These planks float powder like hovercraft and crash through crud with aplomb. And, unlike the glorified two-by-fours of the fat-ski past, these sticks have real sidecuts for carving on the groomed stuff. True, tankers aren't for everyone, nor every day: Even a strong skier will struggle to whip 'em through short-radius turns, and on icy New England runs you may find yourself skidding more than skiing. But if you've been known to stomp big mountains in Haines, Alaska, or swing GS arcs through the fresh on Jackson Hole's Hobacks, you'll want to throw your arms around these three full-figured phenoms.
TECNICA's DIABLO MAGNESIUM HOT FORM alpine ski boot is built specifically for today's shaped sticks. Designers precisely tweaked the location of your foot inside the liner to more efficiently transfer lateral pressure to the inside and outside edges of your planks. $860; 603-298-8032, www.tecnicausa.com