These four winners dominated our annual ski test at Snowbird, Utah. Watch how we tested for this year’s winners.
Blizzard Viva 810 TI IQ
Spend most of your time on groomers? Put the Viva ($950) on edge, sink into the belly of your turn, and shred corduroy at will. Even with its relatively wide and stable waist, the responsive Viva could shift easily between quick fall-line turns and big sweeping arcs. The right amount of tip rocker makes for smooth turn entry and soft-snow versatility. Bonus: the price includes Marker IQ bindings. 125/81/108.
Armada VJJ 2.0
The revamped VJJ ($900) makes bottomless powder skiing so loose, fun, and easy it should come with a snorkel. During one of the deeper days at our test, its ample rocker kept us afloat while finely tuned tapering at the tip and tail—Armada is a leader in shaping powder skis—prevented it from getting hooky in chop or heavy snow. All that and there’s enough camber underfoot to feather the occasional turn on firm snow. “Whoop-inducing fun,” a tester raved. 130/137/116/133/126.
For the brand-new Stella ($700), Salomon shaved weight from the tips and tails by using Koroyd— honeycomb-shaped polymer inserts that swallow vibration. The result? You can pivot the Stella effortlessly on technical steeps, wind-buffed bowls, and knee-deep powder pockets. A wood core and camber add hardpack-worthy power when you need it. Boot-packing? The lightweight Stella is easy on the shoulders. 127/102/110.
Fischer KOA 88 Ti
To save weight, Fischer incorporated air channels into the already lightweight poplar wood core. Even the Titanal layer has machined cutouts to trim fat. But the KOA ($699) is no skittish flyweight. Camber underfoot and the Titanal supply enough edge hold that you can leave trenches. Subtle rocker adds float for hunting powder stashes, and testers praised the KOA’s quickness in the trees. “More versatile than my TI-89 calculator,” said one (dorky) tester. 128/88/115.