(Last Updated On: March 10, 2009)
Over on the TGR forums, where I spend entirely too much time, an Austrian inventor is trying to sell people on his new ski idea, known as “RAX skis”. Basically, it’s a short ski with a change in angle right behind the heelpiece of the binding with an even shorter piece complete with “fins”. Here’s a photo from TGR:
Everyone on TGR bashes the idea roundly, and looking at the ski and the videos posted on this thread, it’s hard not to agree that these skis look pretty silly. However, change is seldom accepted right at the start. The first time I ever saw a snowboard in the late 80’s, I certainly wasn’t very impressed (actually, I’m still not very impressed) . 😉 But the thing that really kills me is the first time I ever saw a pair of fat skis. I was probably still in high school, about 1992, when I saw a pair in the back bowls of Vail. I remember joking to my friends about how lame those skis were, and how the only people skiing them were people who couldn’t put the time in to learn how to ski powder. If only I could go back and embrace those skis, which were probably Atomic Powder Pluses (an excellent ski that I actually own). I could have entered the Crested Butte and Valdez “Extreme”/big mountain competitions of the day and absolutely crushed the likes of Kent Kreitler and Doug Coombs on the way to becoming a famous ski star.
So, back to the point, don’t dismiss these RAX skis just because they look so different and seem so silly. They might be the next big thing, or they might be a footnote in the files of an Austrian dumpster. I’ll at least give them a try if they end up demoing them in Crested Butte, though.