Like The wind

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All the skis we tested are light enough for even big ascents, but if you want to win a randonnée race, or outpace that partner with the Goodyear-blimp lungs, you've got to geek out and get weight-conscious.

Try slapping your skins on Dynafit's 9'14 ($500; At four pounds, eight ounces, they're more than a pound lighter than any of the skis we tested, and a slim profile (92/64/80) makes them great boards for corn (of course, they'll flounder in deep snow). Choosing a binding is just as easy: At one pound, eight ounces, Dynafit's Tourlight Techs ($300; are the lightest available. Complete your setup with the new five-pound, eight-ounce Scarpa F1 ($498;, which features custom-moldable liners and telemark boot—inspired toe bellows—and your total package weighs 11 pounds, eight ounces (nearly half as much as some set-ups). Even multiplied over a million steps, that's still damn light.


The Skinny on Skinning

Skinning is crucial in the side- or backcountry because it’s more efficient and less tiring than hiking in deep snow. The fur-like surface of skins flattens as you move uphill, allowing your skis to glide, but it grips to keep you from sliding back after each step.