Back for 2016, the Icelantic Gypsy SKNY remains pretty much unchanged. Although we tested the 2015 version, the review still stands as is. The SKNY series from Icelantic takes some of their best skis and shrinks them down to a more manageable all-mountain type of ski. The Icelantic Gypsy SKNY is the little brother of the Gypsy. It has the same shape, length, and sidecut as the Gypsy, but is 99mm underfoot instead of 125mm. This makes this ski a little less of a powder specialist and more of an all mountain shredder.
2016 Icelantic Gypsy SKNY On Mountain Ski Review
Conditions: Hard Pack, Soft Snow, Crud
Boots: Rossignol Alias Sensor 120
Bindings: Marker Griffon
Set Up: Default mounting position
On the Snow Feel: The first thing you will notice about this ski, is how playful it is. It is fully rockered, bringing the contact point of the ski directly below the skier when not on edge. It has nearly symmetrical design with 590mm of rise in the tip and 510mm of rise in the tail. The Icelantic Gypsy SKNY feels quite “surfy” and “Playful”, but because the rocker is the same radius as the sidecut, it also feels stable on edge. The Gypsy SKNY is surprisingly stable, and yet really fun when you want it to be.
Powder: The Icelantic Gypsy SKNY has been narrowed to 99mm underfoot, making this ski a little bit more suited to other parts of the mountain than its big brother. Despite this, the Gypsy SKNY is still very capable of riding in deeper snow. It has a fully rockered design, allowing the ski to float in the powder better than cambered skis with the same width. It also gives this ski a really “surfy” feel, and since it has a symmetrical design it performs just as well going backwards and is does going forward.
Turn Initiation and Carving: The SKNY series has taken many of Icelantic’s best big mountain and powder skis, and made them more capable of riding on the days when Mother Nature isn’t producing tons of deep snow. The Icelantic Gypsy SKNY is no exception. It performs better on these days than its big brother does. When not on edge, the Gypsy SKNY is very playful. Roll the ski on edge, however, and you will feel the tip and tail engage, allowing you to rail turns. It carves surprisingly well, and at 99mm underfoot, it is much easier to get on edge than the Gypsy. However, if you’re not used to full rocker, getting this ski on edge can be a bit tricky. The sidecut is pretty mild, but the ski has a lively poplar core, giving you a lot of power when springing out of turns.
Speed: The core of the Icelantic Gypsy SKNY is overlaid with a couple layers of fiberglass, helping to make this ski stiff. Combined with rubber in the core, the ski remains pretty damp at high speeds. The ski does have a lot of rocker, and at high speeds some riders may feel like the ski is too loose. Keep it on edge, and you will feel more stable. Of course this ski will not perform as well at high speeds as something that is made specifically for racing or carving. Then again, this ski can do a whole lot more than just carve.
Uneven Terrain: The Icelantic Gypsy SKNY is a pretty stiff ski, and although it’s not really heavy it does a pretty good job of charging through the crud. You may get a little bit of bounce out of the tip in really bumpy conditions, but most skiers won’t really notice.
Edge Hold: The Icelantic Gypsy SKNY is very playful when not on edge. However, as you initiate the turn, the tip and tail engage, helping to increase grip throughout the turn. It has no trouble holding the edge on soft snow and powder. It even performed okay on hard pack. The tail isn’t tapered much, but has a heavy amount of rocker. This helps it release from the turn pretty easily, and allow you to scrub speed when you need to.
Flex: The Gypsy SKNY’s flexible poplar core is overlaid with fiberglass to increase stiffness. This enhances performance at higher speeds and on choppy snow. That being said, you are still able to butter pretty well on this ski, and I’ve even seen some people riding it in the park.
Switch: The Icelantic Gypsy SKNY has a very symmetrical shape that allows the ski to ride just as well backwards as it does forward.
Jumps: With its lack of camber and stiff construction, the Gypsy SKNY doesn’t have the pop that a lot of park skis have. That being said, it’s not impossible to get these off the ground. I wouldn’t buy this ski if all you’re planning on riding is park, but if you’re into bigger drops, or the occasional backcountry kicker, then this isn’t a bad option.
Jibing: I didn’t find the Gypsy SKNY to be much of a jib ski
Pipe: Probably not a good option for the pipe.
The Icelantic Gypsy SKNY is a great all-mountain ski if you’re looking for a playful powder ski, that can also handle the groomers surprisingly well. You won’t get the same float from the Icelantic Gypsy SKNY as you would from something that is wider in the waist, but with its fully rockered profile, most people won’t have too much trouble floating in the deep snow. Once on the groomers, put this ski on edge and feel confident making turns all the way down the mountain. Like most all-mountain skis, you will sacrifice a little bit of performance in each category, but many will be willing to make that sacrifice to have more all-around versatility.