Ski Review: Harvest Home Grown 181cm 2018-2019
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Any ski company offering a 3 year warranty on their products must really believe in the quality of its materials and the attention paid during the layup process. Eric Baker started Harvest skis in 2015 in Steamboat Springs, Colorado USA after taking a course in ski and snowboard design at Colorado Mountain College. Today, his workshop produces three different models of skis ranging from powder-specific to all-mountain and park 'n play designs. We were lucky enough to get to formally test the Home Grown all-mountain model in 181cm length and the park 'n play Root Down model in a 161cm length for ligher and smaller skiers.
The first review we're releasing is of the 105mm underfoot, 181cm Home Grown all-mountain ski in its really cool looking, optional black topsheet graphic. Eric has a thoroughly modern geometry infused in the Home Grown model complimented with early rise, tapered tip and tail framing a cambered midbody delivering a sporty, super-fun feel through a full-length poplar core enhanced with full 22oz triaxial fiberglass and three layers of VDS rubber damping. Full-wrap, 2.2mm edges and 4001 series dye-cut bases support the durability we like to see in a ski.
The Home Growns ski shorter than their measured length due to the amount of tip and tail splay providing the agile and surfy feel, yet grip packed surfaces with really good security when needed, with a bias toward more soft-snow, western surfaces than Eastern boilerplate surfaces. We ended up throwing the Home Growns into the Thule box any time there was a hint of fresh snow or cruddy conditions to be found on the mountain because they deliver a really sporty, easy-to-handle personality in mixed snow types without demanding constant vigilance from the pilot. The word to describre the Home Growns is "versatile" because they work all over the mountain. Lots of natural turn shapes come out of the Home Growns, and their only shortcomings are a slightly soft torsional rigidity when forced to crank hard turns on boilerplate (leading to a a bit of wash away if your edge angles are off a bit), and a bit of darty behavior in soft snow at higher speeds due to their short radius and short effective edge length. The Home Growns love tight tree terrain in fresh or cut-up snow, and are a blast through variable and real-time storm conditions. Buy these a size up from your typical length to get the best higher-speed stability. Harvest has built a really effective, really fun ski design in the Home Grown model which would be a great example to demonstrate what small, craft ski companies are creating for skiers these days. Add a three-year warranty to the equation, and you have a winner. Did we mention everyone thinks the black graphic is really cool?
Stay tuned for the review of the 161cm Root Down...Youths and adults weigh-in on Harvest's smallest ski.
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