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Alpine Touring/Telemark Skis

Top Picks

How we choose: The best alpine touring/telemark skis highlighted here were selected based on 54 reviews of 23 products. Our top picks are those that are readily-available in the United States and have received the highest overall ratings from reviewers.

How we test: Trailspace is powered entirely by our community of readers. The reviews posted here reflect the real-world experiences of outdoor enthusiasts just like you.

If you've used a alpine touring/telemark ski that you think should be listed here, please share your experience.

Disclosure: Trailspace never accepts payment for gear reviews, product placement, or editorial coverage. When you buy through affiliate links on our site, Trailspace may earn a small commission, which helps cover the costs of running the site.

Black Diamond Convert Ski

user rating: 5 of 5 (1 review)

Go anywhere, do anything ski comfortable in the backcountry as well as on the groomers. A one quiver ski that is capable of taking you anywhere within your ability level.

Reasons to Buy

  • Lightweight
  • Great floatation
  • Moderate width comfortable in powder and on ice

Reasons to Avoid

  • Chatter during high speed turns on hard surfaces

The Black Diamond Convert skis are the Jeep of touring skis. They are comfortable anywhere in any conditions. I have ridden them on fresh powder, breakable crust, icy New England resort trails, and freshly groomed corduroy runs and enjoyed every turn. Front Country Their performance in the front country, on groomed resort trails, is adequate but you need to be a confident skier to feel comfortable taking these down steep high speed runs. The rocker tip and tail, which are helpful in the powder, cause the ski to chatter on hard packed snow and decrease turning and stopping abilities.

Read more: Black Diamond Convert Ski review (1)

Åsnes Rabb 68

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1 review)

A high-performance, lightweight, and wide mountain ski that tours well enough for hut-to-hut adventures and turns well enough for some summits on the side. Best in friendly snow conditions, but can handle some degree of crust and crud. Requires some driving rather than just riding in difficult snow.

Reasons to Buy

  • Broad tip and deep sidecut for good turning performance (for a mountain ski)
  • Lightweight wood core carbon-reinforced construction
  • "Nordic rocker" for staying on top of deep heavy snow
  • Cambered mid-ski for touring performance
  • Skinlock system for short skins, tip and tail notches for performance skins
  • Suitable for backcountry-weight boots and bindings for an overall light system

Reasons to Avoid

  • Can require more aggressive technique in difficult snow (than a big rando or telemark ski)
  • Not your friend on hardpack

Me and my Rabbs doing our swing  Here's the deal: you’re coming to Norway for a multiday hut-to-hut ski tour, with side trips to big slopes and summits, in late March or April when the mountain gods may offer up anything from fresh powder to creamed corn to nasty crust and ice. One pair of skis, boots, and bindings for the whole show. What’s your choice? I asked that question on a backcountry skier's forum and got suggestions ranging from old school leather boot/3-pin binding/skinny ski setups through to lightened-up plastic rando or tele boots and bindings on no-compromise fat skis with rocker.

Read more: Åsnes Rabb 68 review (1)

Volkl Attiva Aurora

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1 review)

"Strong enough for a man, but made for a woman" just like SECRET deodorant used to be! Ha Ha.

Reasons to Buy

  • Fast
  • Confident edge
  • Very stiff
  • Integrated MARKER bindings
  • Titanium-laminated wood core

Reasons to Avoid

  • Very stiff
  • A little heavy

If you read my intro and thought "Oh no, he's reviewing women's deodorant", you'll be sadly mistaken. In fact, I'm reviewing a pair of alpine (downhill) skis. Full disclosure: I'm a 6'1" and ~230lb adult man who proudly and confidently rides this pair of Volkl women's skis. I'll start with a little backstory for context: in the fall of 2014, I was not yet an alpine skier. I had attempted to ski on ONE occasion the previous winter, and I decided to buy myself some gear. So I showed up at a local ski swap, and a retailer was selling this pair of skis that had been used as a store demo.

Read more: Volkl Attiva Aurora review (1)

Armada Magic J

user rating: 5 of 5 (1 review)

This is hands down one of the best big mountain powder slayers on the market. It is extremely versatile given its width, and Armada nailed the flex profile in the 190cm length.

Reasons to Buy

  • Stiff(ish)
  • Fat
  • Perfect amount of taper
  • Perfect amount of rocker
  • Durable

Reasons to Avoid

  • Slightly heavy

For years I was begging Armada to make a super JJ (fatter, longer, stiffer, modified rocker, etc.)...They finally came out with the AK JJ, but it was just longer and only slightly stiffer. I was bummed... until they released the Magic J.... and it was everything I ever wanted and more! I always felt that the regular Armada JJ in a 185 was slightly too short considering the camber profile. I always wanted it to be 189-191cm. Armada nailed it by making the Magic J in a 190cm length. Second, the turn radius always seemed slightly short..

Read more: Armada Magic J review (1)

Salomon Rocker2 108

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1 review)

Awesome lightweight, extremely versatile, stiff touring ski that you can use all day inbounds.

Reasons to Buy

  • Stiff(ish)
  • Lightweight

Reasons to Avoid

  • Could have slightly more rocker in tip

These are an awesome touring ski for someone that is looking for a ski that can charge inbouds as well as out of bounds. I use this ski about 40% of the time as an inbounds crud crusher, and 60% of the time as a backcountry powder ski.  Extremely stable at speed, stomp landings hard and easily, but extremely versatile. I used to spend about 90% of my days on the Armada JJ, which has to be one of the most versatile skis on the market...but I wanted something stiffer and longer and fatter. When Armada came out with the Magic J...

Read more: Salomon Rocker2 108 review (1)

Black Diamond Aspect Ski

user rating: 3.5 of 5 (4 reviews)

My daily quiver. This ski is perfect to get everywhere every day. You can't go wrong: powder, crud, wind pack, ice, skinning. It's more than a touring ski, it's surprisingly stable at good speed. Honestly, one ski that does everything perfect doesn't exist. This is close. Just a fun ski, day in and day out.

Reasons to Buy

  • Nimble, light, can go far
  • Stable through uneven terrain
  • Floaty for its size, the big tip floats.

Reasons to Avoid

  • Lightness comes at a price, side edge is beveled which could be more fragile should you hit a rock on the wrong spot

176 cm. Mounted with BD O1. I'm 6'2" 180 pounds. I ski everything. Pro patrol for 10 years now. When I got the Aspect, I thought I would only use it outabound. It ended up being my favorite everyday ski at work and on my days at the mountain, riding a lift or going far in the backcountry. I still have a 95mm and a 115 mm ski. Those just don't get as much days out. Had them for 3 years now and still very satisfied. I ski the East. Disclosure: The reviewer received a sample of this product from the brand or its representatives in exchange for a review.

Read more: Black Diamond Aspect Ski reviews (4)

More Reviews of Alpine Touring/Telemark Skis

Trailspace reviewers have shared 54 reviews of 23 different alpine touring/telemark skis.

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Other Types of Alpine Touring Gear

Find more alpine touring gear reviewed in these related categories:

Alpine Touring Boots

Alpine Touring Bindings

Alpine Touring/Telemark Poles

+2 more types

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