Top Gun: The Six Industry Award Winning Powder Skis of 2015

SnowBrains | | Gear ReviewGear Review
Powder skis needed.  photo:  powdermania.com
Powder skis are a good idea if you’re headed to Japan this year.  photo: powdermania.com

2015 has already brought us a plethora of big, fat, burly powder skis.  There’s literally dozens of these things, so how do we know which are the best of the best?

The most efficient way to know which Powder Skis are the best is to compile all the Powder Skis that won awards from reputable sources who put in the energy to test every 2015 powder ski out there.  Just Freeskier alone tested over 350 skis last year.

We’ve aggregated the 6 best powder skis of 2015 according to the industry’s highest awards and displayed them here.  These are the best of the best.  The top guns of Powder Skiing.

THE AWARD WINNING POWDER SKIS OF 2015:

dynastar_cham_117_2015_editors_choice_1_210659

SKI:  2015 Dynastar Cham 117

AWARD:  OnTheSnow.com Editors’ Choice Award

Dynastar Cham 117
2015 Dynastar Cham 117

– OnTheSnow.com gave their Editors’ Choice Award to 5 powder skis this year, but the Dynastar Cham 117 got the highest rating of them all.

– PIck up a pair of Dynastar Cham 117s at evo.com:  2015 Dynastar Cham 117

  • Lengths :  180, 190cm
  • Turning Radius:  22m (190cm)
  • Sidecut:  147-117-127mm

What OnTheSnow.com had to say about the 2015 Cham 117:

2015 Dynastar Cham 117 ski review. OnTheSnow tested this ski as part of its Powder Category. You’ve got two length choices for the Chamonix-inspired Cham 117: 180 cm or 190 cm. “I can’t believe how easy it is to carve a 117-mm-waisted long ski,” says Stoeger. Testers scored the Cham 117 high marks across the board, most notably for float and stability. The unique shape comes from a five-point sidecut that’s widest at the forebody, a long rockered tip and a narrow tapered tail. Its traditional construction includes Titanal, a lightweight wood core, vertical sidewalls and camber underfoot. “It feels as at home making big pow turns in a wide open bowl as it does charging the hardpack,” notes Gaudet. “The tip feels soft but offers great flotation,” says Bristow. “Surprisingly quick in tight trees and stable through week-old, cut-up snow.” – OnTheSnow.com

Freeskier_EditorsPick15-620x553

Ski:  2015 Armada Norwalk

AWARD:  Freeskier Magazine Editors’ Pick Award

Armada Norwalk
2015 Armada Norwalk

– Freeskiing Magazine gave 16 powder skis the “Editor’s Pick Award”, but the Armada Norwalk out ranked the rest.

– PIck up a pair of Armada Norwalks at evo.com:  2015 Armada Norwalk

  • Lengths :  169, 179, 189cm
  • Turning Radius:  19m (179cm)
  • Sidecut:  140-115-131mm (179cm)

What Freeskier had to say about the Armada Norwalk:

One tester felt Armada should rename this ski “Charger McChargerson.” The Norwalk, with a rockered tip, traditional camber throughout the rest of the ski and a 115-mm footprint, is built to rip. “Hail Zeus and hold on to your hat,” said another tester. “I was flying through everything with this baby under control and with confidence. Floats great and performs well at high speed.” The tip rocker helps you rise above, while the aforementioned traditional tail and positive camber enable you to drive through your turns. Most testers found the Armada Norwalk agile enough to react efficiently no matter the environment. All-in-all stable charger. – Freeskier Magazine

SkiOfTheYear_Skg15-234x300

SKI:  2015 Head Big Joy

AWARD:  Skiing Magazine’s Powder “Ski of the Year”

2015 Head Big Joy
2015 Head Big Joy

– Skiing Magazine’s Powder “Ski of the Year” award was given to the Head Big Joy.  Clean and simple, we like it.

  • Lengths :  158, 168, 178cm
  • Turning Radius:  17m (178cm)
  • Sidecut:  149 – 110 – 132mm (168cm)

What Skiing Magazine had to say about the 2015 Head Big Joy:

Rejoice, ripping chicks. The Big Joy has arrived to meet your already strong skills and then take you to the next level of powder pleasure. “Finesse ’em in the steeps or point ’em in the open bowls”said one tester. “It’s solid underfoot without feeling heavy.” Graphene, a Space Agey material that’s incredibly light yet stiff, is the secret sauce in Head’s new Joy line. Every tester loved the Big Joy for its power, forgiveness, and maneuverability. In short, a worthy and rad Ski of the Year. – Skiing Magazine

SKI_GoldMedal15-620x797

SKI:  2015 K2 Annex 118

AWARD:  Ski Magazines Gold Medal Gear

K2 Annex 118
2015 K2 Annex 118

– Ski Magazine gave 4 powder skis its Gold Medal Gear award, but the K2 Annex 118 received their highest ranking.

– PIck up a pair of K2 Annex 118s at evo.com:  2015 K2 Annex 118

  • Lengths :  177, 184, 191cm
  • Turning Radius:  23m (184cm)
  • Sidecut:  145 – 118 – 135mm

What Ski Magazine had to say about the K2 Annex 118:

The universally admired Annex 118 felt like a “new kind of K2” to testers, damper than K2s past, trading some traditional liveliness for speed-loving stability that rippers will adore. It’s the model of choice of K2 athlete Seth Morrison and, as one tester noted, especially well suited to the daring speeds and big-mountain lines he favors. And yet it still ranks No. 1 for Forgiveness, with a rocker and tip-taper shape that lends confidence in tight spaces and rebound energy that enhances that quickness. Elling: “So versatile. A hard-charging chameleon that can cruise quietly or bring on the horror as needed. Great new ski for K2.” – Ski Magazine

Powder_SkiersChoice15

SKI:  2015 Scott Scrapper

AWARD:  Powder Magazine Skier’s Choice Award

2015 Scott Scrapper
2015 Scott Scrapper

– Powder Magazine doesn’t rank their awarded Powder Skis.  We chose the Scott Scrapper from their 15 powder skis given the Skier’s Choice Award because the 2014 Freeride World Tour was won on Scott Skis.

  • Lengths :  180, 190cm
  • Turning Radius:  3D
  • Sidecut:  147 – 122 – 138mm

What Powder Magazine had to say about the Scott Scrapper:

I normally don’t like skis wider than 115, but these fatties altered my perspective. At 122mm underfoot (in the 180), this ski is perfect for the deep February we had in Jackson. The Scrapper is made for storms because of the aggressive twin-tip rocker profile, but it’s not one-dimensional. There’s no top-out speed while ripping down Rendezvous Bowl, and due to its 3D Sidecut (which blends a tip and tail radius with a straight profile underfoot) it has split-second turn initiation into stable edge control. What really made this ski fun was the energetic full-length wood core that allows playfulness and pop in creative terrain. – Powder Magazine

Backcountry-Magazine

SKI:  Black Diamond Carbon Megawatt

AWARD:  Backcountry Magazine’s Editors’ Choice Award

Black Diamond Carbon Megawatt
2015 Black Diamond Carbon Megawatt

– Backcountry Magazine’s biggest baddest ski that received the Editors’ Choice Award.

  • Lengths: 178, 188cm
  • Dimensions: 147/120/127mm
  • Radius:  27m (178cm)
  • Weight/Pair: 7 lbs. 6 oz. (188cm)

What Backcountry Magazine had to say about the 2015 Black Diamond Carbon Megawatt:

+ “Really light option for days devoted to going uphill with guaranteed powder.”
“Rocker and weight make it hard to hold a turn in the chunder.”
= A specialty ski for dedicated touring on the deepest days. –  Backcountry Magazine


Related Articles

3 thoughts on “Top Gun: The Six Industry Award Winning Powder Skis of 2015

  1. hmmm I’m quite dissapointed because the 2K14 FWT was won on Blizzard skis “the Gunsmoke” which is by the way far more efficient than the scott scrapper, scott stop doing good powder skis since STUNT and PURE…

  2. Cham 117 ?
    Glenn Plake didn’t have any fat boys skiing a 50 degree slope off the top of the Chamonix
    Aiguille du Midi tram . That’s a clip (up on the “former site”) from the film
    The Blizzard of Aahhh’s when he almost crashes to get killed in 1988 !

Got an opinion? Let us know...