Vista Bahn Ski Rentals staffer Barclay Rabin had the honor of being invited to the annual Skiing and Ski Magazine testing this past month in Deer Valley, Utah. Every season 12 men and 12 women from around the country are invited to spend a week putting next year’s equipment to the test, literally, by skiing as hard as they can. The results are compiled after each day and discussed, and at the beginning of next season are printed and put into the highly regarded Ski Magazine Buyer’s Guide edition, often referred to as “The Gear Bible.” Barclay has a lot of experience pushing the limits here at Vail Mountain.
“Each day I skied from bell to bell, using as many as 25 pairs of different skis, all the brands you see at Vista Bahn Ski Rentals including Rossignol, Volkl, Salomon, K2, HEAD and Nordica to name a few. The categories included ‘Men’s Deep,’ ‘Men’s Hard,’ ‘Men’s Mixed East,’ and ‘Men’s Mixed West.’ The categories were the same for the women as well, with a nearly equal number of products. While the testing was much more physically taxing than I could have imagined, it was an opportunity that I wouldn’t have passed up; the personalities and amazing skiers I met were fantastic, and many I’m sure I’ll stay in touch with for years to come.”
Types of Skis
In all Barclay skied on 85 different types of skis, and had the pleasure of a foot deep privately guided day of first tracks, which happened to be on his birthday! Of course there were some real standout skis, and some of the usual suspects made their way to the top. Sadly Barclay said:
“I’m not allowed to say, you’ll have to buy the Buyer’s Guide and find out for yourself!”
The trip was entirely funded by Skiing Magazine, including clothes from top to bottom, helmets, gloves, poles, backpacks, goggles etc. There is an “Independent Ski Test” hosted by and arranged for Skiing Magazine before the end of the ski season which Barclay has been invited to work as well, should be a blast.
For more pictures and entertaining stories regarding the test people can go to www.skinet.com select Skiing Magazine and search for “The World’s Greatest Boondoggle.”
Don’t forget to drop in to see us at VBSR in Vail Village next season and try out the skis for yourself. Nudge Barclay for his memory of testing the ski!