Colorado-based Icelantic makes short, fat skis that often leave people scratching their heads. Why are they so short? Icelantic says that the lengths of its skis, coupled with the substantial footprint, make for very maneuverable, versatile skis that remain stable. Because of this, these tools are best used for all-terrain adventures. New this year is the Pilgrim, a dedicated park and pipe ski that is the closest thing to a traditional ski the company offers.
Length: 161, 173 Dimensions: 160-110-130
MSRP: $620 @ 173 Stoke: 6.5
The Shaman is the closest thing to a big-mountain offering from Icelantic, a company that makes alpine touring boards primarily designed for backcountry skiing and touring. The massive sidecut of this ski, coupled with the length make it “turn on a dime.” Surprisingly, the Shaman is also “pretty damn stable for its length.” It’s still a unique offering though, and “is most at home in really tight trees.”
Length: 156, 168
MSRP: $590 Stoke: 6
The Nomad is Icelantic’s answer to an all-mountain, all-conditions, all-terrain ski. Not surprisingly, the 168 was our favorite. We just think that a 156 cm tool is still too short for all-mountain skiing, especially when you are charging at high speeds. The 168 has added stability but make no mistake, this is still a ski that “wants to turn, turn, turn,” and it can be “surprisingly stable when on edge.”
MSRP: $520 Stoke: N/A
The ski that started it all for Icelantic is short — very short. It’s also, according to both our testers and editorial staff, a highly specific tool, which is why it would be unfair to rank this ski on our stoke meter. If you ski a lot of backcountry, and find yourself climbing a ton, bushwhacked through trees and on wind scoured ridges, this unique ski has all the benefits of a pair of snowshoes (very light, easy to maneuver) and — unlike snowshoes —let’s you rip it up when you point ‘em down.
Length: 151, 169
MSRP: $570 @ 169 Stoke: 6.75
Jumps: 7 Pipe: 6
Playfulness: 7 All-Mtn: 8
For a ski company that has been focused on creating innovative tools to shred the backcountry, Icelantic stretches its mold a little bit with the Pilgrim. Designed to shred all-mountain and dabble successfully in the park, the Pilgrim gives skiers a more stable ride than the average park-specific ski. The traditional Icelantic shape, however, of being wider and shorter than the average bear, caused our true park riders a bit of concern. “The Pilgrim is great for riding all mountain,” said one tester. “But the response isn’t quite there for park.”
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