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Cross-Country Ski Skis

Upgrade: Skate Skiing

Upgrade: Skate Skiing

Outside reviews the best gear in the 2012 Winter Buyer's Guide, including the Fischer RCS Carbonlite Skating Hole skis.

What cross-country ski-and-boot setup should I get?

I want to take up cross-country skiing again after a 20-year layoff. What's the latest in gear, not necessarily top of the line but not entry level, that will get me back there again? I'm a classic skier with a passing interest in skate skiing. Can both be done with two sets of skis and the se boots and poles? I remember waxing as something tedious to be avoided at all costs but the waxless skis back then were useless in some conditions—have they improved? Mike Wheaton, IL

Which cross-country skis work best in the backcountry?

I’m an alpine skier but would like to bomb through the fresh Iowa powder (when we get it) on cross-country skis. I prefer skis that are for off-trail but that can also take some turns down the gullies. Any recommendations? Steve Iowa City, Iowa

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