Few things keep my feet warm in the winter. I never thought one of the best would be my cross country ski boots. The BC X6 FW Boots that come in the set by Rossignol are amazing. I’ve only felt the comfort and ankle security in one other boot – my professional firefighting boots. That’s saying a lot for the quality of the ride you’re going to get in these boots as you glide.
Now I will admit whole-heartedly that I am no Kikkan Randall. But, when I’m gliding in style and my equipment is working WITH me, I’m that much closer to my personal bests. I can still get out there, with my kiddo and be a great role model simply showing him how to be active and have fun. Not everyone is an Olympian but if you show your kids you have the heart of one, you’ll be their hero anyway!
I’ve used old-school boot/ski combos – you know the ones that looked like bowling shoes strapped onto a plank with a two-inch long nose on front? Yeah, those. I’ve also tried universal bindings mounted to skis and my own snow boots – not a bad option; I was actually a fan before trying out this set.
Now, as a mom with a budding cross country skier that I need to break trail for (and the fact that we live in the middle of nowhere and the closest thing to a groomed trail we have is the local snowmobile route) I have found that I needed something different. I needed something that allowed me to tackle the rolling topography of our farm, pull our Thule Chariot Cougar 2 Child Transport System on skis, and trail break for my little boy on his fit-for-toddler Snowflake skis. I can do all this with the Women’s Rossignol BC 70 Ski Set.
These skis are intended for almost exclusive use out-of-track – which is perfect when you are blazing your own trail. If you’re near a big trail system or you are going to want to be on the groomed trails, this ski will be too wide for you to have a good time consistently. But, if you’re like me and you want to get out there as a family and you’ll likely either be pulling a load or cruising’ ahead of a kiddo, then this is a great option.
There is good spring to the ski as you hit diverse terrain and your weight shifts (camber) to enjoy a smooth ride and the boots provide the structural soundness required while trail-breaking. They also keep me very warm! I’m now a convert. I used to wonder why there weren’t more universal bindings available so that you could just use your own darn winter boots – how could any ski boots keep you warm enough, even working hard pushing and gliding across the snow. Well, it turns out these boots are better than some of my snow boots. You would have never convinced me of that until I had tried it myself and convinced I am.
These skis have a textured bottom to help give me the control that I need to avoid wipeouts and all the extra work of waxing. They are rated for beginner to advanced skiers, so you can say it’s a very versatile set. Poles come with the combo, with the L.L. Bean label of quality. They also have comfort grips and straps for convenience. The bindings came pre-mounted for free from L.L. Bean (if they don’t just pay attention to NIS vs. NNN monikers and make sure your gear is matching up. L.L. Bean also graciously includes a “Bean’s Nordic Ski Pass” with most of their sets—this particular set also included a Maine Huts & Trails pass.
I like the ‘set’ availability because you can be sure that all of your gear from your skis to your bindings to boots and poles will be perfectly matched. I’ve never been good at mixing and matching and I didn’t want to start with my skis! (If mama isn’t happy with her fit and function, it will be harder to tend to the littles!) You also save a bit of money most times when buying a combination set.
Some things to consider when picking out your skis:
Where will you be skiing? Backcountry? Groomed trails? High speeds?
Height and weight.
Wax or Waxless?
How much time will you spend skiing? Rent vs. own?
If you are thinking racing or skate-skiing, you’re going to need to look elsewhere – touring skis are likely NOT what you are looking for.
– Disclosure: I received a complimentary ski set for the purposes of this review. I was not compensated in any other way and all opinions are of course my own.
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updated: March 06 2014 by will1494