Boutique ski manufacturers are like micro-breweries, while there seems to be more and more of them popping up each year, these small run ski manufacturers provide a handmade alternative to the mass-produced skis that large ski corporations churn out. 93 North Skis is one such boutique ski manufacturer who’s located in Canmore Alberta Canada. They offer up a small selection of handmade skis and since they aren’t a large scale operation they’re able to ensure quality control is maintained for every ski they produce.
The 93 North Andromeda Skis in all their glory.
Both owners of 93 North, Sam McEwen and Max Flowerday are Mechanical Engineering, they grew up ski racing and later spent time ski touring together along the 93 North Highway that runs through Kootenay National Park just east of Calgary Alberta. The pair quit their lucrative Oil and Gas jobs to pursue their passion for skiing and the quest to make a better ski. The duo has been at it since 2016 and the company now offers up two versions of their flagship Andromeda skis, there’s the 166 version and lighter, regular Andromeda version that we’ll talk about here.
A super durable top sheet and cool graphics.
Early rise in the tips, camber under foot and a slight rise in the tails.
The early rise in the tips is much more substantial than that found in the tails and helps float the ski through deep pow.
93 North’s Andromeda Ski’s offers up a durable, well-built ski for a very reasonable price (especially for you Americans). I spend a few months putting the Andromeda Skis through the paces, skiing a variety of terrain in all sorts of snow conditions from hard pack to knee deep pow. They were a solid workhorse underfoot both in bounds and out. While there four-kilogram weight is higher than most other skies we’ve reviewed, it comes in handy for taking on crud and chunder. On the skin track, you could notice the additional weight but it was not a deal breaker, they just aren’t the typical three to three and a half kilogram skis we’re often reviewing here on the site. Most people, however, won’t even notice the additional weight underfoot given their 104mm width. To keep things on the lighter side I decided to mount the Andromeda Skis with the Fritchi Vipec binding which is a lightweight full tech set up. This kept the weight in the reasonable range and allowed me to ski the resort as much as the backcountry.
While the Andromeda’s played well on the deeper snow days I did find that they lacked the amount of grip I was hoping for on hardpack/icy descents which is surprising as this ski is touted as being specifically designed for the predominantly hardpack, icy terrain of the Canadian Rockies. Even with a generous amount of camber underfoot I thought the Andromeda Ski’s could provide more energy return and allow them to rebound more aggressively from turn to turn and be more fun and playful. The Andromeda is a pretty serious ski with a large amount of tip rocker, camber underfoot and subtle rocker in the tail—their dimensions are ideal for deep snowy days and side country laps but they didn’t put a huge smile on my face lapping groomers when fresh snow was scarce. They did, however, take on variable snow conditions with ease and when the going got tough, well, these skis plowed right on through.
If you are looking for durable skis that offer up a quality build at a reasonable price then you should check out 93 North’s handmade Andromeda Skis and see what you think. And, they’re Canadian made eh.
Lengths: 166, 175, 184
Dimensions: 133 / 104 / 129 (184cm length)
Weight: 4kg / 8.8lb (184cm length)
Radius: 20m (184cm length)
Guarantee: Full refund within 30 days and 3 days of use.
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