9/3/2014
 
Overall: Assigning a rating is both difficult and somewhat pointless, since if you want to use the Alien 1.0 (or the “0.0” before the 2013-14 version added an internal gaiter) for backcountry skiing in anything but your lycra race suit, you have no choice but to buy the matching gaiter. So Four Stars for ingenious effectiveness at near weightlessness, with the missing star for poor durability from rocks and crampon straps. (And subtract another star for inconvenience if you plan to deal with this every m...
9/3/2014
 
Overall: A caveated Five Stars for a very lightweight ski that floats far above its 87mm waist. The two caveats are that I haven’t skied it in very firm conditions (since I used it almost exclusively for backcountry powder), and that some skiers might not like the narrow tail (although it is being stiffened up somewhat for the 2014-15 season). Background on product familiarity: I used the 2013-14 version in a 173cm for almost 44,000 feet of earned vertical, plus a couple long runs back through the res...
9/3/2014
 
Overall: A full Five Stars for a highly competitive race ski with additional versatility for “real” backcountry skiing. Check out the Hagan Ascent if you want the same design but with a different wood core to save some $ at the penalty of a few trivial ounces. However, both of these models are still full-on race skis – for a more all-around yet still very light ski, within the Hagan line-up check out the Cirrus. Background on product familiarity: I used the 2013-14 version for just over 90,000 feet of...
9/3/2014
 
Overall: Four Stars for an incredible ratio of surface area to weight, with float in unconsolidated snow far above (both literally and figuratively?) what would be expected from the 89mm waist. But minus a star short of perfect for firm-snow carving that is less than what I had hoped – perhaps unrealistically, especially given my alpine racing background (and given all the other entirely positive reviews), but I feel like the Response-X skis like a much wider ski, for both better and worse. Background on...
1/7/2014
 
About how much vertical do you estimate to get them reasonably fast?