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Cross-Country Skin Skis

Skin skis are gaining popularity amongst US skiers, and for good reason.  Although they don't completely replace waxable skis for most skiers, I think they are a great choice on days when kick wax would otherwise be difficult.  I own a pair of Salomon S-Labs (traditionally waxed classic skis) and a pair of Rossignol R-Skins that I purchased in 2019.

Here's a link to a post of my skin skis review.

In general,

You may want to consider skin skis because:

Skin skis almost guarantee that you'll have good kick, no matter what the conditions are. Think of them as the next generation of fish scale skis.


If good kick is "guaranteed," then why doesn't everyone use skin skis?

A perfectly waxed traditional ski is usually going to be faster than a skin ski.  However, if you're like me, you don't always have the time, money, or expertise to ensure that you have a perfectly waxed pair of skis.


When do skin skis work best?

Skin skis are great in difficult conditions.  When the tracks are icy, or when the temperature is well above freezing, I find that my skin skis still work well.


Can you race with skin skis?

Yes, especially if you're not in the elite class.  I raced the City of Lakes Loppet in 2019 with skin skis, and they performed well.

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