The Weirdest Ways to Slide on Snow: Snow-Skates

From a skibob to a teleboard, Outside presents a definitive compendium of the snow-sliding tools and toys that will take your breath away. Safety not guaranteed.

    Photo: Courtesy of Sled Dogs

NAME: Snow-skates. There are a lot of things that could fall under this name. There are skateboard decks mounted on single skis, four tiny skis, and decks that slide directly on the snow. This is not what we’re talking about.

WHAT IT IS: The snow-skates we're talking about are the simplest sliding device possible. Take a ski boot, create a boot-length slippery plastic platform with edges, and mount it to the boot. Get ready to get rad.

FIRST APPEARED: 1994. A Swiss company called Snowrunner noticed the popularity of inline skating. After changing their name to Sled Dogs, they brought their product to America where allegedly they were allowed at over 75 percent of ski resorts.

15 MINUTES OF FAME: 1994. It’s 1994, and the Olympics are in Lillehammer, Norway. Tonya Harding has just finished clubbing her way into the Games, when the world is first exposed to the emerging sport of snow-skating during the Opening Ceremonies. It needs to be seen to be believed.

WHO RIDES: Norwegian teenagers. A Norwegian company now manufactures Sled Dogs, producing two high-end Dogs. Seemingly popular in Norway and also Hungary, with a distributor in California, it’s enough to make anyone ask: Who let the Dogs out? A thorough analysis of snow-skate videos conducted by this publication reveals that the ratio of jumps-resulting-in-air to jumps-resulting-in-hand-or-face-plants is nearly 1:1; therefore, it is recommended that only individuals with strong wrists or resilient chin structures try snow-skating.

RELATION TO SKIING/SNOWBOARDING: Not related—just a clumsy friend.

1. Available new for 1,595 Norwegian Kroner ($229) from Sled Dogs. Or buy the original Snowrunners for a fraction of the price through Forest City Surplus in Canada, with genuine early 1990s styling.

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