Scott Nelson (see bio)
I. What’s your two-ski quiver (of currently available skis) for where you ski most?
I spend the majority of my ski days riding the park at Keystone. I like being able to hit big jumps (when the weather permits) and a variety of rails in the same run.
For my two ski quiver selections, I chose a stiff, jump-specific ski (Fischer Nightstick, 181cm) for sunny days when the wind dies down, and a playful jib ski (Armada Al Dente, 178cm) for hitting jib lines on most other days when it’s snowy and windy.
However, if I were to choose one ski for everyday riding at Keystone, I would go with the 181cm Armada AR7.
Compared to other park skis I’ve ridden in the past few years, the AR7 offers the most versatility. It’s adequately stiff and very stable on big jumps, but still retains a playful feel around the rest of the park. The AR7 has been impressively durable, too, which is incredibly important when you plan on beating the tar out of your skis every single day.
I’d also consider the Nordica OMW as a one-ski park quiver because of its playfulness and relative versatility. I don’t think that I would fully endorse the OMW as a competition-ready slopestyle ski, but it hold its own on jumps well enough. The OMW is simply a fun, medium-flex ski that will butter and press, and will generally behave predictably on both jumps and rails.
II. What’s your one-ski quiver for the next 2 years, regardless of location?
First, I honestly can’t remember the last time a park ski lasted longer than a few months before I broke them. Second, I plan on moving away from the competition scene after this upcoming season, so once I do, I’ll begin looking for surfy, more playful jib skis with less of an emphasis on jump stability.
With that transition in mind, the 184cm Moment Vice has been the most enjoyable surfy, playful jib ski I’ve ridden over the last few seasons. Moment’s mustache rocker design gives the Vice an extremely buttery, playful feel, while still providing enough effective edge that allows it to turn predictably and feel solid underfoot. Out of the box, the Vice is stiff enough to not feel like a noodle, has quite a bit of tip and tail rocker, and a relatively low swing weight.
As I mentioned in my two-ski quiver selections, the Al Dente is a wide, surfy, and extraordinarily playful park ski. It’s not an outstanding jump ski, but its wide platform can do well enough that I would be willing to compromise some stability for how fun it is for jibbing and hitting natural features around the mountain.
III. What ski was most difficult to leave off your list?
IV. What ski do you imagine has the greatest likelihood of making your list, if and when you get to ski it, or get to ski it more?
Line Blend, 185cm: The Blend is a fairly soft and wide (100mm underfoot) park ski that resembles the Armada Al Dente in a lot of ways. I have yet to put any time on the Blend, but from talking to many different skiers who ride it, the general consensus is that it’s an absolute blast as a park and all-mountain jib ski.
Next: Paul Forward’s Selections