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Nordic ski performance questions

The question : How does skier weight affect performance in variable snow structures?It seems I ski more efficiently on older ,transformed snow than on newer fluffier material,keeping up easily ,while lagging behind in newer lighter material. 
I am on the longest skis I can buy,ski waxable,no wax mechanical base and the newer skin tech skis all would be rated as near the top of the scale in stiffness. All seem to have the similar characteristic of less grip on new snow. I’ve skied the skin ski on what was basically ice,getting good kick.

Any suggestions.......or am I doomed to be a slug on the prettiest days.





2 Replies

@HenryButler Thanks for reaching out Hank!

The weight of the skier will certainly have more impact on softer snow than on harder, so it could be that you are seeing your performance impacted by that. Softer snow and a heavier skier will equate to more surface area of the ski contacting the snow and creating friction. We touched base with a couple of our nordic skiers and all agreed that the issue may be that you are getting too much grip on the snow, in that the gliding part of your ski may need the attention. They have two suggestions:

1) Make sure you are using the appropriate wax for the temperatures you are skiing in. Additionally, using a higher fluorocarbon wax will help you glide faster.  Also, remember that you should wax the glide portion of your 'waxless' skis.

2)  Check the base of your skis and make sure that you are keeping them tuned, cleaned, and free of dirt and old wax. All of those things can adversely affect your ability to glide.

For more information feel free to check out these Expert Advice articles on How to Wax Skis for Glide and How to Grip Wax Cross-Country Skis. Here is an interesting Expert Advice article about Cross-Country Ski Base Structure that might give you some ideas as well.  Also, if possible, we recommend stopping by your local REI ski shop to talk with a ski tech about the bases of your skis.

Hope this helps!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

good advice

REI Member Since 1979