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Blizzard Spur Review

Blizzard Spur 2017/2018
Price:   $1,100 List | $1,099.95 at Backcountry
Compare prices at 3 resellers
Pros:  Floaty, stiff, damp
Cons:  Boaty, low pop
Bottom line:  Dialed in to deliver high-speed float and steadfast crud-busting.
Editors' Rating:   
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Manufacturer:   Blizzard

Our Verdict

With its enormous dimensions and a flat-cambered rocker profile, the Blizzard Spur is made for those momentous powder days of your dreams. While it's not quite the same as other superfats we've reviewed, the Spur features a progressive sidecut that allows carving and smooth turns in powder. The huge radius prefers aggressive skiing straight down the fall-line. Despite its weight-in-hand, it remains predictable and responsive thanks to Blizzard's Carbon Flipcore technology. Ridiculously smooth and consistent, the Spur is blazing trail as a deep-powder destroyer.

Product Update
The new surf-inspired Blizzard Spur, pictured above, is completely re-designed for the approaching season. Continue reading to learn more about the update.


RELATED REVIEW: The Best Men's Powder Skis of 2017/2018


Our Analysis and Hands-on Test Results

Review by:
Rob Woodworth

Last Updated:
Tuesday
October 10, 2017

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New Blizzard Spur vs. The Previous Version


For 2018, Blizzard implements a design overhaul, completely changing up the shape of the board to replicate the feel of surfing (on pow that is). The new dimensions result in a wider tip and tail. Blizzard maintains the flat rocker profile and carbon flip core technology. You'll notice a difference in the aesthetics, but not much. Where you will notice a difference is with the cost: the new model retails for $1099.

Check out the side-by-side comparison below, with the latest version of the Spur pictured on the left and the older version shown on the right.
Blizzard Spur 2017/2018
Blizzard Spur Ski
 


Here's a summary of the key differences between the New Blizzard Spur and the prior model:
  • New Shape — The new Blizzard Spur is inspired by a surfboard shape. Its new dimensions are 150 - 124 - 140 (compared with 146 - 125 - 134).
  • Updated Graphics — Though they look somewhat similar in style, the graphics are polished up for this new iteration.
  • Price — The updated planks retail for $1099 which is a skip, leap and a jump more than their predecessors ($800).

We're stoked to try this surf-ey new version of the Blizzard Spur. For now, the review below paints a picture of the prior version.

Hands-On Review of the Previous Blizzard Spur


Aside from topsheet graphics, Blizzard didn't change anything for the 16/17 Spur. It seems they got it right the first time. Being Blizzard's heaviest, fattest, most pow-specific ski, our testers preferred to take the Spur out when tackling deep snow on high-angle terrain. For skiers that actually enjoy absurdly huge turns and a bit of extra weight underfoot, this ski will feel comfortable and confident. However, at slower speeds and on harder snow, you may find yourself working harder to bring it together. That's not to say the Spur won't get you safely back to the lift; It's just unabashedly specific to deep snow.

Slaying tree lines on the 189 cm Spur.
Slaying tree lines on the 189 cm Spur.

Stability at Speed


Stiff, heavy, and damp, there is no better performer when it comes to high-speed stability. The Spur uses carbon, titanium, and a multilayer woodcore to provide unrelenting steadiness and snow contact when driven at speed. While some skis have a tendency to 'top-out' when pushed to their limits, the Spur's top speed is only curbed by the skier's ability level. That being said, there is virtually zero learning curve on this ski. Just point 'em straight and let 'em run. Pretty straightforward, which allowed this ski to take home a near perfect 9 out of 10 - the highest for this metric. Following closely behind was the Head A-Star, Volkl Confession, and Moment Bibby.

The Spur likes to go fast  no matter how chunky the snow is.
The Spur likes to go fast, no matter how chunky the snow is.

Carving


Not surpisingly, the Spur was a lackluster carving tool on firm snow. What would you expect when you combine a 125 mm waist with a rocker profile that is completely devoid of traditional camber? The tapered tip and tail are more conducive to sliding out of turns rather than arcing into them. Slow to initiate and lacking in true exiting power, there are certainly better choices for slaying groomers, as this contender scored a 4 out of 10 - the lowest for the metric. However, once the Spur is engaged, you can expect a very solid and reliable edge hold. But you might have to get up to speed first. Better carving performance can be found in contenders like the Rossignol Soul 7 HD, Elan Ripstick 116, and Volkl Confession.

Proper carves are laborious on the flat-rockered Spur.
Proper carves are laborious on the flat-rockered Spur.

Crud


Thanks to the same design features that provide great stability at speed, the Spur is a crud-crushing tank that will bowl over all kinds of bumped-out, leftover snow (8 out of 10). The broad surface area and heavy construction have great plowing strength while the flat-rockered Flipcore will coast over death cookies and avy debris with ease. Burly enough to punch through wind-hammered crust, but compliant enough to pivot through bumps, there really isn't much that the Spur won't destroy and was beat out only by the Volkl Confession for the crud metric.

The Spur handles chop and variable snow with unrelenting power.
The Spur handles chop and variable snow with unrelenting power.

Float


It's not hard to get float out of a rearward-mounted, ~120 mm-wide ski. Add to that mix a flat-rockered tip and tail and you're looking at a purebred powder hound. While not as bouncy as other models, the Spur has effortless floatation that allows the skier to get in the front and bring it down the fall line. With a surprisingly decent swing weight, pivoting through low-angle fluff is entirely possible, though this ski really prefers to go fast and straight on steep terrain. It earned a 9 out of 10 for the float and was bested only by the Line Pescado.

Playfulness


Fully directional and tuned for revving its engine, the Spur doesn't quite fit the bill of an energetic, playful ski. The stiffness required for high-speed runouts doesn't afford much in the way of pop—this ski is designed to keep in contact with snow. We don't expect that tall-tee wearing steeze-lords would choose the Spur for stunting. Though, they'd be hard-pressed to find a better high-speed floatation device. Our testing indicated it scored a 5 out of 10 for this metric, with the Moment Bibby, Atomic Backland Bent Chetler, and Line Pescado taking home the gold.

The Spur isn't playful by design. But whoever tells you skiing powder isn't fun must be crazy.
The Spur isn't playful by design. But whoever tells you skiing powder isn't fun must be crazy.

Versatility


The Spur was built with a singular goal in mind: shredding the steep and deep. While it's maybe the best choice for an inbounds powder day full of big hucks and high-angle billy goating, it won't perform well as an all-mountain ripper. If you're looking for an all-mountain powder ski, we would recommend taking a glance over the Atomic Backland Bent Chetler, Rossignol Soul 7 HD, Moment Bibby, or Volkl Confession.

Best Applications


If you're fully committed to flying over deep snow at mach speeds, disregarding the possibility of traversing the fall line, then you'll find a friend in the Spur. There are more surfy, more damp, and more playful powder skis out there. But when it comes to shredding through deep snow and mangled chop, the Spur has not exhibited any weaknesses. Ranging from "excellent" at best and "okay" at worst, this ski is capable of handling a whole gamut of terrain and conditions—though it's most comfortable on steep aspects in ultra-deep blower.

The Spur will stop at nothing to deliver hard-charging floatation.
The Spur will stop at nothing to deliver hard-charging floatation.

Value


All things considered, the Spur doesn't offer an amazing value to the market. It's on the higher side of our price spectrum and has a highly specified purpose. Skiers looking for a more versatile, economical option might look elsewhere, like the Moment Bibby or Rossignol Soul 7 HD.

Conclusion


When the conditions were right, we really loved this ski. Preferred by our larger and more advanced skiers, the Spur might be unforgiving to some. We'd recommend something less substantial for beginner pow skiers. But for the most part, we found it to be very intuitive and easy-to-ski right out of the gate. Steady and predictable, this pair of powder skis will deliver a smooth ride regardless of what conditions you encounter.

Fat and fast  the Spur crushes through deep snow.
Fat and fast, the Spur crushes through deep snow.
Rob Woodworth

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OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews


Most recent review: October 10, 2017
Summary of All Ratings

OutdoorGearLab Editors' Rating:   
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 (4.0)
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4 star: 100%  (1)
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