These skis fold in half!

Popular Science - - BEST OF WHAT’S NEW 2017 -

Ex­treme skiers who climb steep, chair­lift-less slopes only to swoosh back down them con­tend with a unique prob­lem: The long skis they’ve strapped to their back­packs make the as­cent even more dan­ger­ous be­cause the planks can get in the way of a swung ice ax or catch on an ob­sta­cle. Slove­nian ski-maker Elan solved this dif­fi­culty by cre­at­ing skis that do some­thing sim­ple but awe­some: They fold in half with­out com­pro­mis­ing per­for­mance. The key to the sys­tem is the 2-foot-long alu­minu­mal­loy base plate that swivels out of the way to let the skis fold, and locks them solid and flat when they’re ex­tended. Folded, they take up only about 3 feet on ad­ven­tur­ers’ backs. Or, for the re­sort and après-ski crowd, they’ll fit eas­ily in­side the trunk of a nor­mal car.

Pho­to­graph by Ted Ca­vanaugh

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