Three days, 15 testers and an endless number of skis later, the 2012/2013 OnTheSnow Ski Test is over. It was a great week in [R25R, Aspen] filled with plenty of sunshine, and lots of laps on the Ajax Express Lift.
Night Before the Test:
Gear Test Editor Krista Crabtree talks about the type of snow testers will be skiing at Aspen Mountain. Photo by Tim Shisler.
Loading the cat to take the skis up to the top of Aspen Mountain. Photo by Tim Shisler.
Each tester was outfitted with a package of gear provided by our sponsors including Scott, Dakine, GORE-TEX® Brand, H20 Overdrive, Nalgene and Good n' Natural. Photo by Tim Shisler.
The test was administered on Ajax Mountain and we focussed on frontside, all mountain and powder skis. Testers filled out a test card for each ski they tested—rating things like the ski's versatility, playfulness and carvability. In addition, the testers used several lines to expound on their ratings.
Each day the testers met at the base of the Ajax gondola for an 8:15 a.m. ride up the mountain. Photo by Tim Shisler.
After riding to the top, it was time to unload the skis for the day's testing. Photo by Tim Shisler.
Each day, testers skied upwards of 25 runs ensuring they tested out every ski they had on their list. Photo by Tim Shisler.
The testers had an endless supply of snacks at their disposal while filling out test cards. Photo by Tim Shisler.
Our testers—ranging from a 21-year-old Swiss speedster straight off the World Cup circuit to an adventurer that was on the Everest trek chronicled by Jon Krakauer's best-seller, "Into Thin Air"—were amazing at giving us unbiased and accurate assessments of each ski.
Our home away from home for the week, The Limelight Hotel, also deserves a big shout out for keeping us rested and restored thanks to comfy beds, toasty hot tubs and hearty breakfasts. Our daily lunches from the The Big Wrap also kept us going strong until last chair every day.
The folks at Aspen Sports were critical in keeping us on the slopes by adjusting bindings all day, everyday. Photo by Tim Shisler.
Finally, the test wouldn't have been possible if it weren't for so many helpful people at Aspen Skiing Company. There are too many people to list here, but the work of Jeff Hanle, Christian Knapp and Meredith McKee went above and beyond the call to make sure the 2012/2013 OTS Ski Test went smoothly.
Now we're off to crunch the numbers and write the reviews of each and every ski we tested. Check back at the end of the summer for our 2012/2013 Gear Guide and all of the secrets from the test that are under lock and key until then.
Our great group of testers worked hard, played hard and drank a few beers on us. Photo By Tim Shisler.
Ski Test Overview Video