Snow Zone

Fall Lines

Rare skis will make you the hippest “Birdo” on the

colin cathrea /

Do you like to be different? Stand out from the crowd? Well, if you’re
craving differentiation in the skis you use then there are an incredible
number of obscure ski manufactures out there, most of which I had never heard
of until I stumbled across Thanks to the folks at Exotic
Skis, you can find out about a vast array of skis made all over the world in
backyards, garages—maybe even converted meth labs.
They list 176 different items with a short bio and country of origin for each
product. With some additional research I found some very interesting facts
about some of these companies. Some of them are used by World Cup Ski racers
because they were involved with design, testing and ownership in the
companies. There are all sorts of telemark, cross-country touring and even
sky surfing (parachute skiing!) skis. Many for obvious reasons have very
limited production, often only pushing out around 100 pairs per season. Some
sell for over $15 000. That would be the day! For many of these skis you can
specifically design your graphics, so if you want your favourite gal
laminated on the topside, you can go for it.
Some of these skis are so obscure they can’t find anything out about
them. Very cool. Here’s a short list of just a few great names:
Blossom, BumTribe, Claw, Igneous, Phantom, Revolution, Royal Chamonix.

?Black diamonds are forever

jeremy derkson /

Ski hills and environmental advocates have a dubious, sometimes difficult
relationship, but occasionally the two come together and make some magic.
Robert F Kennedy’s Waterkeeper Alliance—where A-list celebs
descend on Sunshine to promote water conservation efforts—is one such
event, raising over $1 million in 2007 for the cause. This year’s
event, taking place Jan 17 – 20, promises to be another good one.
Last year, roving reporter and hobnobber extraordinaire Colin Cathrea
finagled an invitation to the event and ended up skiing with (and giving some
of his trademark tips to) 30 Rock’s Alec Baldwin. This year, Pierce
Brosnan joins the cast. As we all know from On Her Majesty’s Secret
Service, James Bond is an accomplished skier, so hopefully the former Bond
Brosnan can manage without our expert, specialized assistance. Of course,
that’s not to suggest we aren’t willing to rent ourselves out at
a reasonable rate if any of the folks on the guest list—such as Kelsey
Grammer, Leslie Neilson or Daryl Hannah—need a few pointers. On second
thought, Hannah can have her lessons free. Tickets to the gala event (the
only event open to the public) are $500 per person or $10 000 per table. A
table nets you a celebrity guest and seats for you and eight friends, and
you’ll be doing a solid by helping protect watersheds in North America.
After all, that’s where snow comes from. Live and let ride.

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