BSSC took a day trip to Loon Mountain on Sunday, December 13th and met up with Mark Wallace, Co-founder of Parlor Skis to try out all that Boston’s only custom ski builder has to offer. The day started off with some spring-like weather and some challenging early season conditions, but everyone was excited to start their 2015-2016 ski & ride season.


BSSC Trip Leaders ranging from beginner to expert skiers headed out in groups to put their Parlor Skis to the test and ski with Mark for some instant feedback. Parlor Skis are designed and built locally in East Boston, specifically for each individual customer. Whether you are looking for an all-mountain ski like the Cardinal 90, or a tree and bump experience with the Sparrow; Parlor has it covered.


Skiing directly with Mark was a valuable experience. Any tweaks or ideas the leaders had, Mark could translate that feedback directly to the shop for a future custom skiing experience for each individual. You could tell Mark knew every detail of every pair by the excitement Leaders displayed when they hopped on a new pair recommended for them.


Make sure to check out to start your custom ski building process, grab a brew at their shop night or learn more about what goes into each custom ski.



- Leaders with their Parlors (left) and Parlor Co-Founder Mark Wallace (right)


Check out what the BSSC Trip leaders had to say:


“I had the opportunity to try my first set of Parlor skis on Sunday.  Conditions were very varied with a bit of everything thrown in… Ice, frozen crud, soft grabby piles of snow and some packed machine made.  A tough set of conditions to throw at a new pair of skis the first time on them.  I tested the Parlor King Fisher skis and right out of the gate I knew these were great skis.  I’m a long-time skier and ski quite aggressively and I pushed the skis hard to see how they performed and where their limits might be.  For me, I like a ski to be really snappy under foot, and I tend to ski a lot of short turns, bumps and trees with faster cruising sections thrown in for good measure.  There weren’t many bumps and the trees were a bit slow (as in no snow in them), so I was confined to what was available early season, but I was able to get a good idea of how they would perform overall.


The King Fishers were quick under foot… held the edge very well on the ice and crust… were very responsive whenever I needed them to be… and they cruised at speed easily with more stability than I would have expected.  I’m very picky when it comes to skis.  I’ve tried lots of different ones and it’s exceedingly rare to jump on a pair and have them feel this good right out of the gate… particularly when they are a different style of ski to what I’m accustomed to.  But, they really rocked.  The only critique I had was that at higher speed with really high edge pressure, the torsional stiffness caused the ski to chatter a bit.  I spoke with Mark at Parlor about this and he said they are working on softening that a bit to dampen that reaction.  That’s such a huge advantage for a custom ski company!  Where else can you tweak your skis to meet your own skiing style?  Parlor makes a really great, high quality ski.  I can’t wait to test more of their line!”


-Michael Oldham

“It was great spending time with Mark of Parlor, during our demo session at Loon. I thoroughly enjoyed skiing on the Cardinal 90's in some challenging early season conditions.  Was able to turn quick while still being able to confidently hold an edge on a longer carve. 



The Cardinal 100's were great for getting some wide high speed turns, without chatter.  Personally believe that the 90's were a better fit for my skiing style, but it was pretty incredible to witness the versatile range of the Parlor ski family. No matter your skiing style, Parlor seems to have it covered!”


-Nikki Visnick





                              -Nikki on her Cardinal 90's!   


“With some skis, it takes a few runs to decide if you like them or not. With others, you know you want them immediately. That was the case with Parlor's Cardinal, which I had the good fortune to try on a recent BSSC trip to Loon.

We found classic early-season New England conditions at Loon: some hard pack on the steeps, some loose snow in the sun and mid-afternoon flat light, when we really just had to ski by feel and touch. I have to admit I'm not the greatest skier on hard pack, despite living here for quite a few years now — rarely am I completely comfortable and confident.


The Cardinal changed that — the skis held their edge so well that skiing scraped slopes and patches of ice actually became fun. The ski (tested at 90mm underfoot but also available at 100) also easily absorbed bumps and let me rocket through crud, slop and every other type of condition on a very variable day.

True, we did not have powder, moguls or tree runs to test the Cardinal's other potential abilities. But I wouldn't be surprised if the ski can handle whatever is thrown at it — the Cardinal is Parlor's flagship model, designed for everyday East Coast skiing. While it may not be in my budget this season, it's definitely on my radar.”


-Michael Morton