Winter is coming and the ski season have even already begun in some resorts. High time for an equipment test: are the old skis and boards still ok, or is time for newer models? If you are specifically looking for the new season trends before making a decision on what to buy, then you can profit from testing some of the new equipment in the ski areas – often even free of charge.
These are some of the larger test events:
Until 15th November: Zermatter Skitest
Atomic, Blizzard, Dynastar, Elan, Fischer, Head, K2, Movement, Nordica, Rossignol, Salomon, Scott, Völkl – the large brands are at top of the list when the Zermatt Ski Testing begins. Participation requires a fee of CHF 51 per day. A one-day notice via telephone is required to take part.
7th-10th November: SportScheck Gletscher Testival (Stubai Glacier)
The largest official testing of equipment in the Alps takes place in the largest glacier ski area in Austria: SportScheck brings along over 50 exhibitors and offers professional consulting and workshops. Participation costs EUR 30. If you have your tester card ready to present when shopping equipment with SportScheck you will receive the amount as a refund on your purchase in the corresponding percentage.
9th/10th November: White Start Games (Kitzsteinhorn)
Presented within the event of season opening, you can enjoy extensive opportunities to test new equipment in Zell am See-Kaprun – for free and with all the large producers, such as Nitro Snowboards, Alpina (helmets) and Go Pro (Cams).
6th-8th December: Country meets Snow (St. Anton)
At the valley station of the “Galzig“ lift there are around 20 suppliers presenting their new equipment for testing upon season opening.
16th/17th & 23rd/24th November: goodboards Tour
Goodboards – these are handmade snowboards from Bavaria. The producer presents more than 30 models during the 2-stop tour: on the 16th/17th of November they present at the Kaunertal Glacier and on 23rd/24th of November the Hintertux Glacier is their second stop. The allmountain and freeride skis of the brand name “goodschi” are of course there as well.
17th November, 8th & 15th December, 5th January: Radical Test Tour
The Zurich based producer Radical is putting its equipment to the test and presents the newest ski and board models on 17/11 in Laax, on 8/12 in Hoch Ybrig, on 15/12 in Arosa and on 5/1/14 in Pizol (Bad Ragaz).
23rd/24th November, 7th/8th & 14th/15th December: Ski Force Winter Tour
3 stops lay on the way of the Ski Force Winter Tour: testing and consulting can be experienced on 23rd/24th November in Val Thorens, on 7th/8th December in Le Grand Bornand and on 14th/15th December in Serre Chevalier. Skis and boards en masse – by Black Crows, Blizzard, Dynastar, Elan, Fischer, Head, K2, Kastle, Movement, Nordica, Rossignol, Salomon, Scott, Völkl and White Doctor.
30th November, 1st, 7th/8th & 14th/15th December: Rock on Snowboard Tour
A testing event like none of a kind for snowboarders: over 30 exhibitors present their newest equipment for testing. Further are free coaching sessions and a kid’s area. Producers include e.g. Burton, Oakley, DC, K2, Ride, Roxy, Nitro, Flow, Arbor, Go Pro, Nidecker and Apo. Tour dates: 30th November/1st December Val Thorens, 7th/8th December Isola 2000, 14th/15th December Avoriaz 1800.
14th/15th December: STS Testtage (Flumserberg)
Skis, touring skis and snowboards can be tried our here. On the edge of the Tannenboden piste there are also a number of specialists available who can give some helpful advice to winter sports enthusiasts.
21st December: Young Boader Day (Saalbach-Hinterglemm)
This event is specially geared to kids and youths from 6 to 14 years. There is free board tuition and freestyle coaching with pro riders, and there is free testing for Burton boards and boots.
27th December: Rossignol Démo Tour (Chamrousse 1650)
Rossignol is presenting the newest models at the valley station of the gondola in Chamrousse 1650. Skis and boards for the new season 2013/14 can be tested here for free.
23th February: Atomic X-Perience Race Day (Flachau)
200 pairs of Atomic skis can be found at the valley station of the Space Jet 1 ready for testing. A further highlight: in an exciting race you have the opportunity to try and beat the racing time of a ski celebrity.
Throughout the whole season the Swiss producer Stöckli lets the newest models tour through various ski areas. Some tour stops are for instance Davos (6th-8th & 13th-15th December), Saanen (4th/5th January), Lenzerheide (8th/9th February), Arosa (15th/16th February), Hasliberg (1st/2nd March) and Grindelwald/Männlichen (22nd/23rd March).
Have fun with all the testing!