Gear

SKI Magazine Gear Tester: Mark Syrovatka

Meet the tester known for digging deep trenches.


SKI Magazine Gear Tester Mark Syrovatka
SKI Tester Mark SyrovatkaPhoto credit: Keri Bascetta

You don’t need to sit down and get to know Mark Syrovatka to learn that he raced competitively on the FIS alpine circuit for seven years—you can learn that by simply watching him ski. Raised on the slopes by his father, former Canadian National Ski Team Coach Mike Syrovatka, Mark learned at an early age how to tip his skis on edge and dig in hard. Racing took Mark all around the world for skiing, and even after hanging up his race skis, he spent two years coaching in South Korea. Mark now calls Park City, Utah, home, where he works alongside Ted Ligety as a business consultant for SHRED.

Vitals

  • Age: 30
  • Height: 6’1″
  • Weight: 195 lbs. 
  • Home mountain: The Wasatch, Utah
  • Avg. days per season: 31-50

Skiing Style & Terrain Preference

  • Ex-racer
  • Aggressive, strong, precise
  • Loves to carve above all else
  • Prefers corn, powder, corduroy
SKI Tester Mark Syrovatka at Taos Ski Valley
Mark Syrovatka getting edgy with it while testing skis at the 2021 SKI Test in Taos, N.M. Photo credit: Keri Bascetta

Ski Preference

2021 Armada Declivity 102 Ti Men's All-Mountain Wide Ski
The 2021 Armada Declivity 102 Ti was entered into the men’s All-Mountain Wide category of SKI Test and ranked second in the category, right behind the Nordica Enforcer 104 Free. Photo courtesy of Armada

Mark’s Gear 

Skis

Völkl Kendo, 184cm length; “It’s a super versatile ski that can carve and still let’s me have fun in pow!”

2021 Volkl Kendo 88 Men's Frontside Ski
The 2021 Völkl Kendo 88 was entered into the men’s Frontside category of SKI Test and won high praise for Stability at Speed and Hard-Snow Integrity. Photo courtesy of Völkl

Ski Boots

Dalbello DRS 140, 98mm last; “Direct feel of a race boot without the race boot pain.”

Dalbello DRS 140 Ski Boot
The Dalbello DRS 140 is a men’s high-performance ski boot with a very stiff flex. Photo courtesy of Dalbello

Ski Kit

  • Stance Socks 
  • Flylow Baker Bib
  • Haglofs Nengal Parka 
  • Patagonia Micro Puff (if it’s cold) 
  • Mons Royale Base Layer
Mons Royale Temple Tech hoodie baselayer
Mons Royale Temple Tech hoodie baselayerPhoto courtesy of Mons Royale

Biggest Gear Epiphany

“Last year, my co-tester Todd Casey gave me some advice that I should go back to a more race-oriented boot from a more freeride-oriented boot. When I quit racing back in 2011, I practically threw my race boots away in exchange for something more comfortable, and I thought the Lange’s skied fine. However, I feel like they definitely made me complacent and started inhibiting my performance on the hill, it was like night and day when I started skiing on race boots again… The direct feel is just unmatched compared to a pseudo 130-flex freeski boot. Also, you don’t necessarily need to compromise comfort as they make a slightly wider last “intro to race” boot now. I did zero boot work on my out-of-the-box Dalbellos and had a blast on them during the entire test at 20 runs a day.”