Hang on and enjoy the ride!
Not Your Typical Ski Test
When most testers try out new skis it is on a busy ski hill with questionable conditions. They usually get a run or two and make their assessment. Not us. No, we took our Loken's right from the hand made factory to the peaks of Snowwater Heliskiing for a 4-day intensive test run. With the experience of testing the Skevik Oda and the Anton we were familiar with how the brand felt. The Oda is a big reverse sidecut, reverse camber fun stick while the Anton is a burly big mountain slayer. The Loken, as we found out, was as different animal all together.
The First Run
Stepping out of the helicopter on our first run we found ourselves on top of a wide open bowl to get warmed up on. After studying the skis for a few days my impression was that it would be quick and light edge to edge but also would break free easily in the pow. I was half right. After clicking in we all dropped into the bowl one after another. I thought I would pull a full speed long drawn out turn but the Loken had something else in mind. As soon as I initiated my turn it gripped and held like it was on rails! I was pleasantly surprised. This ski wanted to go. Three turns later I was at the bottom and I knew that the Skevik Loken and I were going to get along great.
The Rest of the Day
The entire first day at Snowwater was spent in open bowls, steep chutes and lots of time playing in the trees. It was in the trees where I really fell in love with the Loken. It is so nibble from edge to edge and has a very light swing weight. After a day of skiing I didn't feel fatigued from lugging a massive ski around. Yet is still hung on at high speeds. The Loken is a perfect blend of what a skier would want: light and nimble in the trees and a confidence inspiring powerhouse in the bowls.
Some Technical Background
The Loken comes in two widths: 106mm and 116mm. We opt'd for the 116mm since we do most of our skiing in the deep powder of the BC backcountry. Lengths range from 164cms to 188cms.We tested the 188. The ski design has a more traditional sidecut combined with a longer more subtle rise tip and a lower profile tail (to accommodate skins better). The Loken still has the same bombproof solid wood construction as the rest of the Skevik line up as well as the ultra fast base.
The quality of the Skevik Loken is top notch. They are constructed in a small shop in Vernon which is in the interior of British Columbia. Only the best hard maple wood cores are selected, hand routered and layed up for pressing. Skevik uses 4001 sintered bases – not often seen in the freeride world as companies want fancy graphic bases. The base material is lightning fast and hard enough to handle the odd rock scuff. The top sheets are tough as well which is good because all of the graphics are designed by local artists and really add to the story of Skevik. Our pair was layed up with the new futuristic looking Scheske design. Overall quality is excellent. Handcrafted skis at its best.
Buy a pair! If you are looking around at new skis consider shopping for something more grassroots. Skevik offers an excellent alternative to the big brands and has the quality and experience to it back up. The Lokens are a perfect one-ski quiver. They deliver float, pop, power and speed in the pow and chop. If you are skiing on piste they hang on to the hardpack and are fun to carve. Being lighter than most big skis in their category makes it so you can ski first chair to last without your legs dropping off. If you find yourself in a cat or heli, they will take on any feature the terrain can throw at them. Finally, if you are a granola crunching ski touring type, the skis are light enough to skin up without losing performance on the way down. For $649 and available in 2 sizes you can't miss with the Skevik Loken.