Blizzard Power X8 (2016)

2016 Blizzard Power X8

Rating: 2.99 / 5
Price: $1080.00
Year: 2016
Level: 4
Gender: Female
Waist Width: 81
Tip/Tail/Waist: 125-81-108
Lengths: 160,167,174,181

Stability at speed: 3.69 / 5
Hard snow performance: 4.16 / 5
Crud performance: 2.33 / 5
Flotation: 1.03 / 5
Forgiveness: 2.89 / 5
Overall: 2.99 / 5

Testers continue to be amazed by the solid edginess manufacturers are building into wider waists these days. Case in point: the Power X8. All agreed it's hard-snow appropriate-as exciting as almost anything in the category when it's edging hard snow at speed. But it has a measure of soft-snow versatility as well. With its 81-mm waist width and tight turning radius, it's like a fat slalom ski. Elling: "Comin' through! Go as fast you can, tip it as high as you dare. A great hard-snow assault vehicle."

NOTES: The Power X8 is Blizzard's widest All Mountain ski, with a 125 mm tip and 81 mm waist. This tip is designed just big enough to crush through light powder and corn, but the waist is built skinny enough to hold an edge on hard pack snow with ease. Its 16 meter sidecut radius is also right in the middle of most models from Blizzard (many are either around 13 meters or 20 meters), offering the capability to make both wide-open turns and quick snappy ones depending on terrain. For something similar, but slightly skinnier with a shorter radius, check out the Power X8's little brothers, the Power X7 and Power X7 Ti.

The Power X8 is part of Blizzard's All Mountain series, which specializes in skis designed to rip groomers like a race ski, but also hold up well on varied terrain thanks to slightly wider dimensions. Rocker Camber Rocker technology features a cambered middle section that is built for smooth turns on groomers and varied hardpack, and a rockered tip and tail designed for floating on powder and getting over not-so-smooth conditions with ease. This is used in many of Blizzard's freeride skis, intended to take on all types of terrain. 3 Matrix technology aligns the camber profile, sidecut, and construction of the ski so they lie perfectly aligned on top of each other, designed for extra stability at high speeds. Sandwich Compound Sidewalls featuring durable ABS and phenol plastics are designed to keep edges safe and locked down on the snow. Lastly, Dura-Tec integrates aluminum tip protectors, thicker top sheets, tail protectors, and more, designed to keep the ski as durable as possible over time. If you rip turns down groomers most of the time, but also like to tear through power and other varied conditions every once in a while, this is one of the best series Blizzard has to offer you.

Blizzard, based in Mittersill, Austria, was founded in 1953. Its U.S. headquarters are in West Lebanon, N.H.