What type of cross-country skis should I buy?


What type of cross-country skis should I buy?

Knowing which cross-country skis to buy can be intimidating, especially if you’re relatively new to the sport. There are different sidecuts, lengths, widths, base patterns, colors, names, and categories to choose from.  

The two main factors to consider when making a purchase are your ability/style preference and the terrain you’ll be skiing in. Here is a breakdown of some of the various options in Fischer’s comprehensive Nordic line, including a ski for every single type of skier. 

Getting started: 

Beginners will want a ski that is primarily stable and easy to use. They’re most likely looking for a classic ski, as classic technique is typically easier to learn than skate skiing. New classic skiers will want a ski that is easy to “kick” and stable when gliding. Thanks to Fischer’s Efficient Forward (EF) technology - which can be found on many of the recreational classic skiing models - rookie skiers can choose shorter ski lengths that increase stability for beginners while simultaneously making it easier to grip the snow during the kicking motion of classic skiing.  Another factor when choosing a beginner classic ski is how the ski grips. Does it have a textured Crown base, a skin affixed into the base, or use grippy kick-wax? For beginners, we recommend choosing a ski with our proprietary Crown base, like the Cruiser EF Crown, Fibre Crown EF, or Orbiter EF

Beyond the backyard: Adventure skis 

The Spider 62 is the foundation of the adventure category, along with the newly re-designed Outback 68. With either of these options, you’ll have everything you need to enjoy light touring and easy access to a variety of mellow terrain options in whatever snow-covered landscape you may find yourself in this winter. The Outback 68 Crown/Skin Xtralite has the added benefit of being equipped with the Fischer Easy Skin system, allowing skiers to quickly affix a short mohair or synthetic skin to the base for added traction when skiing up a hill.  

Escape to the woods: Wide Adventure skis 

If getting away from the hustle and bustle of the work week means more than an afternoon jaunt, skis like the Traverse 78 and S-Bound 98 will enable you to go farther on more technical terrain. These wider options are still light, so you won’t become fatigued as quickly while you continue the path of extended moving meditation. These skis are so fun, you’ll probably want to disconnect from your social media feeds, text messages, emails, and all the vestiges of your hyper-connected life more often by exploring snow-covered landscapes. 

Fast fun: Recreational Race skis 

Have you classic skied before and want to level up? The Aerolite line is perfect for beginner skate skiers and fitness enthusiasts. With these skis, you’ll get access to Fischer’s award-winning ski technology, including AirCore, in an accessible and stable package. If you’re a proficient skate skier looking for a lighter and higher end option, the RCS Skate borrows even more features from its high-end siblings while still being reasonably priced.  

Toeing the Race line: Speedmax

The pinnacle of race performance is Fischer’s Speedmax skate and classic skis. These are the skis you’ll find on the feet of World Cup athletes and other elite racers who want the best equipment available. In addition to industry leading bases, cores, and construction, they incorporate more carbon fiber than any other ski in the Fischer line.  A step down from Speedmax, but still extremely high-performing, is the Carbonlite series. These skis incorporate many of the structural features of the Speedmax but at a lower price point. Either the Speedmax or Carbonlite skis are the best options if you’re looking for high-performance race skis that can hold up with the best in the world. Race skis are not as forgiving as fitness skis, however, and can be more difficult to ski without proper technique.  


Bottom Line: 

Choosing a ski depends on your ability and the terrain you’re looking to ski in. While a Speedmax ski is perfect on race day, it won’t be very enjoyable to ski on soft, ungroomed terrain. Similarly, if you bring an Outback 68 Crown/Skin Xtralite to a race, you’ll be able to kick up any hill with ease, but you’ll be at a significant disadvantage in terms of speed and efficiency. For the best advice on your personal needs, visit a Fischer retailer and explain what you’re hoping to get out of a cross-country ski for the best personal fit.