The SnowVenture ski kit is a great product for climbers with some skiing ability or for ski mountaineers who don't want to destroy their expensive alpine touring skis on some rough Highland hillside. They are lighter and cheaper than full skis and very easy to use when the snow isn't perfect. At 2800g/pair they won't weigh you down and are ideal for approaching climbs in winter when snow conditions allow.
In downhill mode they are fairly easy to ski though they do chatter a bit compared to full length skis and you have to be careful not to lean too far forward or back as you'll be over if you do!
They are a real alternative to snowshoes because they make travelling so easy. The climb is faster and less strenuous and you ski back downhill and have some fun! Their light weight has taken them far: they have been used at both the North and South Poles.
On the piste, Snow Venture are comparable to other fun carving skis of similar length, or maybe even somewhat better!
They feature a simple adjustable binding. Mounted on a 99cm long, quite wide ski with a strong side cut it enables easy movement in the uphill position. For downhill ski-ing, the binding is pushed backwards using the handle where it automatically locks in place. This downhill position and the short ski allows even modest skiers to enjoy powder skiing. A safety binding is not required for this length of ski so the binding can be adjusted to fit any shoe size (up to ca size 47) in seconds.
The self-sticking skins required for uphill ski-ing are included and putting the ski into uphill mode is a very simple operation. There is a heel lift for steep ascents.
Harscheisen (or ski-crampons) for ski-ing uphill on icy crust are available as an extra.
The binding fits ski-touring boots, snowboard hard boots, downhill ski boots, and B3 type mountaineering boots which will take a full step-in binding. With an add on binding they can also be used with soft boots.
Manufactured by STC (the same product was previously sold under the name Free Venture and marketed by Rossignol a few years ago).
Please note: Skiing with alpine boots or soft snowboard boots is very difficult because these boots don't give much ankle support. The less ankle support a boot has the weaker the edging ability and this makes it very difficult to control the skis unless you are a very good skier. We recommend ski boots or ski touring boots for the descent. It is easier to climb in ski boots than ski in climbing boots!
NB These mini-skis do not have quick release bindings and are not suitable for children or people under 1.5m tall - please read the Safety Instructions.