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Skate Skis | 2024 Gear Guide

We tested 2024’s new offerings for all levels of skate skiers, from racers wanting World Cup–level performance to recreational enthusiasts still dialing in their V2.

Peltonen Supra X
$850 | | 1,200g/pair (188) | sidecut: 44/44/44

For the first time in more than a decade, Finnish company Peltonen is distributing skis in the U.S. and based on the enthusiasm for the redesigned Supra X, at least, it’s a smart decision. This World Cup–level ski, with carbon laminates around its Nomex honeycomb core, features a stiffer front section for better glide uphill—so effective that one tester praised the “explosive capabilities to accelerate on climbs,” while another enthused, “I got twice out of this ski what I put into it.” A lower camber and new fluor-free nano base material give the ski exceptional glide on flats. With its thoroughbred pedigree, the Supra X can feel “skitterish,” but for those itching to sprint, it’s ready. The ski comes in three flexes and universal and hard-track profiles.

Fischer Aerolite Skate 90
$425 | | 1,190g/pair (186) | sidecut: 41/44/44

Aspiring racers may well find their match in this top-performing model (which replaces Fischer’s RCR) in the brand-new, four-ski Aerolite line. The construction combines a proprietary core that includes aramid fibers, along with basalite laminates, for a ski that’s light and responsive. It also has Fischer’s highest-end World Cup Plus base and grind. Testers deemed the Aerolite 90 both snappy and stable. “It accelerates well around corners,” noted one reviewer, with the ski doing “a lot of the work for you.” Said another, “Hits the mark well as an entry-level race or high-end rec ski,” while a third called it “an excellent citizen race ski.” One tester raved: “Did not want to stop skiing!” The Aerolite 90 comes in medium and stiff flexes.

Madshus Endurace Skate
$355 | | 1,094g/pair (187) | sidecut: 44/43/44 

If the new Endurace Skate were a person, it might blush at the praise our testers heaped on it: “quick edge to edge,” “great swing weight,” “responsive and fast,” “tracks well,” “excellent stability,”  “good snow feel,”  “smooth overall.” The ski has the same race-inspired geometry as Madshus’s higher-end Race Pro Skate, and weighs in at just 100 grams heavier. But it’s designed for training and everyday skiing—at almost half the price of the Race Pro. A new foam core material that Madshus calls AstaraLite succeeds in making the ski light, strong and nimble. Expert skiers won’t find the ski as lively as top-tier race models, but intermediate to advanced skaters would be well served. As one reviewer summed up, “Front of the pack for a recreational racer.”

Kästle XP30 Skate
$399 | | 1,196g/pair (187) | sidecut: 42/45/44

For the intermediate skier who wants a speedy ski without the high price, the XP30 Skate, part of Kästle’s mid-tier XP performance line, hits the mark. For this winter, the ski gets a new tip profile. What stood out for testers: the XP30’s excellent ability to set an edge, especially in icy conditions. “It almost felt like they had metal edges,” wrote one reviewer. A paulownia and poplar core tip the scales a bit (e.g., the ski is 116 grams more per pair than a comparable length XP20), and some testers noted the heavy swing weight. But those extra grams also translate into greater stability, which other testers appreciated. “Easy to keep under my center of gravity,” said one. The ski comes in medium and hard flexes.

Rossignol Delta Course Skating
$450 | | 1,150g/pair (186) | sidecut: 40/44/43/43

This new mid-price-point ski in Rossignol’s Delta Line provides a lighter option to the existing Delta Comp. Like the Comp, a Nomex honeycomb core extends along the middle two-thirds of the ski (tips and tails are air-channeled wood), but the Course shaves off weight via carbon laminates. Testers praised the ski for being easy to balance on. It displays “the classic Rossi stability,” wrote one tester, especially on well-groomed trails. The flex is more accessible to beginner and intermediate skiers than Rossignol’s higher-end X-ium line but has enough oomph to hold an edge. “For easy cruising,” wrote one tester, “it was just perfect.” The only tick against it: the Course is noticeably heavier than top-tier skate skis—but lighter than many other skis at this price point.

Fischer Aerolite Skate 80
$349 | | 1,270g/pair (186) | sidecut: 41/44/44

Another new addition to the Aerolite line, the 80 is a slightly stepped down sibling to the 90 and weighs in at, coincidentally, 80 grams more. It shares almost identical construction with the 90 but tails are reinforced to prevent delaminating and the base and grind are World Cup Pro. Testers picked up on the weight difference, noting the ski felt slightly heavier and slower up hills than the 90. That said, it earned praise for being lively and responsive with good edge-to-edge control. “I’m in love with this ski!” gushed one reviewer, adding “whether on soft snow or in the hard skate lane, the ski tracked very well.” Another tester summed up, “Ideal for a recreational to advanced skier who wants a light, inexpensive ski.”

Atomic Redster S9 Gen-S
$855 (includes Prolink Shift Race bindings) | | 1,040g/pair (173) | sidecut: 47/40/47

This World Cup–level ski was a favorite among testers when we reviewed it two years ago. At the time, it came in a one-size-fits-all length (183 cm), with two flex options. This year, we tested the new 173-centimeter size, added for smaller skiers (from 100–165 pounds) and those who prefer a shorter ski. Atomic says that the platform created by a wider tip and tail enables a stronger push-off. Testers reported that the ski helped them climb more easily. Added one female skier, “Shorter than I usually use but stable and quite easy to turn.” A few skiers noted that they had to move the bindings forward of neutral to avoid tip drag, and heavier testers—admittedly, not the target market—thought the ski lacked playfulness.

Atomic Redster S8 Gen-S
$575 (includes Prolink Shift bindings) | | 1,240g/pair (183) | sidecut: 47/40/47

This new ski has the same radical sidecut as the S9 but comes in only the 183-centimeter length (with two flex options). And with a different core, it weighs 140 grams more per pair. Reviewers loved how well this ski edges and corners and praised it for being stable and maneuverable. In fact, the ski turns so well, reported one tester, that it could “initiate a telemark turn.” That turnability, however, comes at a price, as most reviewers agreed that when flat, the S8 doesn’t track as well as skis with straighter sidecuts. Nonetheless, recreational skaters and citizen racers may find this just the ski they’re looking for. “Manageable and fun,” reported one tester, while another noted that the S8 “absorbs mediocre form. Simply an easy-skiing ski.”

Atomic Redster S7 Gen-S
$530 (includes Prolink Shift bindings) | | 1,280g/pair (183) | sidecut: 47/40/47

Another new addition to the Gen-S line brings the same technology—deep sidecut, one length—to a ski at a lower price point. Testers found that the S7 has the same excellent edge control and steering of its higher-end siblings, and, in the words of one, is “very stable on downhills and good at cornering.” When not on edge, however, the ski can be a bit “squirrely.” It’s the heaviest of the Gen S skis, which, no surprise, made it slower on the uphills and affected swing weight. But for skiers looking for a performance-oriented skate ski at a lower price-point, this one checks most of the boxes. “Would likely withstand the insults of learning to ski,” quipped one longtime instructor and coach.

Madshus Active Pro Skate
$321 | | 1,148g/pair (187) | sidecut: 44/40/44

One level below the Endurace Skate, this new model is a good value for developing skate skiers looking for a solid, dependable tool and/or who want to work on technique. What sets the ski apart: the distinct sidecut (though not quite as deep as in the Atomic Gen-S series), designed to give the ski more stability and control through corners than straighter race skis. Testers found the ski responsive, stable and easy to keep flat while gliding. “Predictable and easy to handle,” noted one; “nice edge to edge,” wrote another. But what you gain in stability, you give up in pop. “While not the liveliest ski in the mid-performance field, this ski provided a solid performance with no surprises,” summarized a reviewer.

Peltonen Supra C
$550 | | 1,240g/pair (188) | sidecut: 44/44/44

Just below Peltonen’s top-tier Supra X, this well-rounded ski is suited for recreational racers and other advanced skiers. Our testers had plenty of praise. “Does a lot well, has a lively feel and is very responsive,” enthused one. Said another, “Aggressive, fast, corners were easy.” The ski also tracks and glides well, and is notably solid and stable on the downhills, though a couple of testers thought it climbed slowly. Like all Peltonen skis, the Supra C accommodates a wide range of skiers with multiple flexes; in this case, three (including extra-stiff) for each of the four lengths. Reported one reviewer who tested the 193 Supra C in the stiff flex, “For a large skater, 200-plus pounds, the ski did not lack in the fun category.”

Peltonen Acadia Skate
$550 | | 1,240g/pair (188) | sidecut: 44/44/44

Part of Peltonen’s “active” category, the Acadia Skate is a price-point model aimed at recreational skiers and those who want a comfortable ski that will serve them well over Loppet distances. With the same lightweight core as the Supra C, the Acadia shares the stability of its race-ready cousin but doesn’t have the same effusive personality. One reviewer found the ski “super easy to dig in and ride the edges,” while another enthused that for intermediate skiers, “it enables you to be playful.” On the other hand, most testers found the ski noticeably heavy on climbs and lacking the pop and springiness of higher-end skis. Nonetheless, as one tester wrote, “for beginner and intermediate skaters, it hits the mark well.” The Acadia comes in two flexes.

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