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The 8 Best All Mountain Skis of 2020-2021 - Men's & Women's

For years, skiers have chased the elusive “one ski quiver” - something that can perform in the powder, and rip on hard snow. To most skiers, that means looking at skis in the “all mountain” category. But, what does that mean? In general, the best all mountain skis are versatile - giving you a platform that is confidence inspiring no matter the conditions.

Most of these skis fall somewhere in the 95-105 mm wide underfoot realm, and have a combination of some rocker in the tips and tails, with camber underfoot. This allows them to float well in powder, but still trench strong turns on groomed snow. Within the category, there’s a lot variation as well. For example, some all mountain skis are playful and poppy, while others are stable and damp. Neither is necessarily better, as long as they suit the way you like to ski. So if you want to just get one pair of skis that you can depend on all season long, check out these recommendations for the best 2021 all mountain skis on the market.

Dynastar M-Pro 99

Best 2020-2021 all mountain skis

It’s pretty easy to make light, easy to turn skis, and it’s also pretty easy to make damp, chargy skis that like to go fast. But it’s really hard to combine those characteristics in one ski. Somehow though, Dynastar has managed to do it with the M-Pro 99. They’re pretty light, weighing less than some touring-specific skis, while still featuring a metal construction that makes them very damp and stable. This combination makes the M-Pro very versatile. They’re happy noodling around in deep snow on lower vis days, but when the sun comes out and the groomers are crispy, it’s hard to find the M-Pro’s speed limit. Novice skiers will get along just fine with the M-Pro, but experts will be surprised at how hard they can push it. If you like having the option to go fast in bigger terrain, but don’t want to haul around the heavy skis that you’d traditionally need to do that, the M-Pro 99 is a great option.

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Blizzard Bonafide 97

The best 2020-2021 all mountain skis

Blizzard uses the term “race-inspired” describing the Bonafide 97, and we’d have to agree. This is the all mountain ski for folks who view the mountain through the lens of the racecourse. They’re much less demanding, and are much easier to get along with than a true race ski, but they still have the same powerful edge grip, and numbing stability in chopped up snow you’d expect from a race-inspired ski. This isn’t some one-trick groomer-only pony though. A wider waist and tip and tail rocker mean the Bonafide is still fun in fresh snow, and its flip-core technology makes it surprisingly poppy and playful. That said, this isn’t an “easy” ski, novice skiers may appreciate something softer and more approachable. If you can’t help imagining gates to carve down every groomer run, and want a ski that brings that kind of energy to every lap, the Bonafide 97 is the ski for you. And for women and smaller skiers, there's the equivalent Black Pearl 97, too.

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Rossignol Black Ops Sender

The best 2020-201 all mountain skis

Rossignol completely revamped their Black Ops line this year, and the Sender is their new directional all-mountain ripper. At 104 mm underfoot, they have the float to make deep pow days a blast, and its light weight makes them easy to maneuver at lower speeds and in tighter terrain. But, when you want to go fast, the Sender’s layers of Titinal make for a smooth, damp ride, and the stiff, less rockered tail loves to bite deep in aggressive turns at higher speeds. This isn’t a ski for folks who like to noodle around the mountain, making small turns and sliding a lot. Instead it’s got the shape and support to help you go fast, making big turns, and absorbing smaller turbulence. If you ski somewhere that gets plenty of pow days, but you also want to make the most of firmer days in between, the Black Ops Sender won’t let you down.

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Salomon Stance 96

The Best 2020-2021 all  mountain skis

The Stance series is Salomon’s new all-mountain line, and the Stance 96 slots neatly into the daily driver category for a lot of skiers. The Stance 96 is pretty focused on hardpack and variable snow performance. They have some tip rocker, and just enough tail rocker to help you slarve turns when you need to, but are not designed to be a deep pow destroyer. Instead, they’re meant to provide a fast, energetic ride on all kinds of variable snow. In order to accomplish this, it combines a few sheets of Titinal metal with a carbon fiber weave to give you a stiff, and damp layup, that’s still pretty light. That means it’s easy to turn, without having to get far up on the edges and lean way over, but when you do decide to drag a hip through some GS turns, the Stance 96 is ready to rage. The Stance 96 isn’t quite as racer-oriented as the Bonafide, but it’s close, and is a little more forgiving at lower speeds and in tighter terrain thanks to its lighter layup. This makes it one of the best all mountain skis for intermediate to advanced skiers - meaning as you progress, they will still be just as much fun, and they’ll help you do that, with confidence.

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Black Crows Justis

The best 2020-2021 all mountain skis

Black Crows sponsors a team of hard-charging freeride skiers, and the Justis is their weapon of choice for firmer, inbounds days. A 100 mm waist, and plenty of rocker mean that it’s a blast in powder, but a layer of metal, and a stiffer, heavier build mean that it’s got a very high speed limit when the conditions are less than perfect. Want to drop into a mogul field and then smash a straight line out? The Justis was born to perform. This ski might be overkill at smaller mountains, as it really shines in more wide-open terrain and higher speeds. However, if that sounds like your kind of terrain, the Justis might be right up your alley. The Justis aren’t the most approachable ski on this list, so more beginners skiers may find it to be a handful, but for strong skiers who want a ski that won’t hold them back, the Justis are perfect.

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Nordica Enforcer 94

The best 2020-2021 all mountain skis

The Nordica Enforcer has long been one of the best all-mountain skis that all new offerings are judged against, and the new 94 version builds on that legacy. A poppy carbon layup means the ski has plenty of lively energy, while a re-worked tip shape makes it more maneuverable, without sacrificing stability. The Enforcer bats above its width in pow, it’s much more floaty than any 94 mm ski should be, while also holding up well to aggressive skiing in less optimal conditions. That said, it’s very approachable, even beginner skiers will have no problem jumping on the Enforcer 94 and feeling comfortable. The Nordica Enforcer 94 is a classic for a reason. If you want something consistent and reliable that gets the job done every day on the hill, the Enforcer 94 is the ski for you.

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Nordica Santa Ana 104 Free

The best 2020-2021 womens all mountain skis

If you like the sound of the Enforcer 94, but ski a lot of pow and want something wider, the women’s Santa Ana 104 Free (or its men’s counterpart, the Enforcer 104 Free) will be right up your alley. The Santa Ana 104 Free takes the proven all-mountain performance of the Enforcer 94 and scales it up a little for western skiers who just need more float. Nordica managed to do this while sacrificing barely any of the Enforcer’s hardpack performance, so the Santa Ana 104 Free is still a great option if it hasn’t snowed in weeks. These are some of the best all mountain skis in powder conditions - making it a great one ski quiver, or “daily driver” for skiers in places like Colorado or Utah where storms are frequent. If you’re lucky enough to get regular pow days, and want a ski to make the most of them, while also performing well when things aren’t fresh, the Santa Ana 104 Free and Enforcer 104 Free offer a great blend of soft and firm snow performance.

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Armada ARV 96

Best 2021 all mountain skis

Are you an ex park-rat looking for an all mountain ski that can still hold up on rails and jumps? Or maybe you’re a more directional skier who’s looking to learn how to jib and spin? Either way the ARV 96 is the ski for you. It’s wider than the average park ski, with tip and tail rocker, so it holds up fine in fresh snow, but it’s got the twin tip and park heritage that playful skiers need. These skis are supremely versatile, rip some zipper lines through moguls in the morning, and then head to the park to perfect your 360’s, the ARV 96 was built to keep up through it all. So if you want a ski that’s just as much fun outside the terrain park as it is in it, the ARV 96 is a great choice.

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