La Sportiva Vapor Nano

It’s the lightest ski you’ll find with legit downhill performance, saving your legs on long tours.
Price $1200.00

Specs

Weight 5 lbs, 4 oz

 

Agility No ski received as much praise for maneuverability. Credit the Nano’s weight and stiffness, a result of an almost entirely carbon construction. One lighter-weight tester called them “so springy, it felt like bouncing on a trampoline as I came around each turn.” Inbounds, the Nano “holds an edge, rails big arcs, and pops you between turns with the slightest weight shift,” another tester says. And one ski mountaineering guide, who pushed the Nano in chutes and couloirs on hard snow and ice, said he’d take them on even his most technical descents because of how precisely they turn in situations where a fall could be serious.

Weight In the backcountry, less weight on your feet equals more runs. “I skied eight laps with a 700-foot average drop,” another tester says, “and at day’s end I could have done eight more.”

Float The oversized shovel makes breaking trail easy. “They float well—I never got bogged down—and they definitely let me hover in that heady space between in- and out-of-control,” one tester says. Ouch: the price.

$1,200; 5 lbs. 4 oz. (180); 164, 172, 180, 188 (130-103-120); lasportiva.com