[ Pronounced: skuu-ed ]
This is the sport of skishoeing, a cross between skiing and snowshoeing.
The Altai Hoks are the skis to slide.
Altai hoks (hawks) are short, wide ‘skishoes’ that can climb uphill and slide downhill. Hoks give a whole new experience to playing outdoors on the rolling hills surrounding Georgian Bay!
From altaiskis.com: “The Hok is designed as an easy to use ski for the backcountry. Its short wide dimensions makes the ski incredibly maneuverable, and the integrated climbing skin gives the Hok great traction for climbing. The right balance of running base and skin material makes the ski’s downhill speed manageable and easy to control. Bridging cross-country skis and snowshoes, the Hok combines the maneuverability and ease of use found in snowshoes with the ski’s efficiency of sliding forward rather then lifting and stepping with each stride.”
Traditionally the Hok is used with a single pole or ‘tiak’. The tiak provides great support and balance going downhill as it spreads out your weight, like a tripod. The tiak also acts like a rudder to help in steering. It‘s great fun!
I do have some new Hoks in stock, contact me for details and pricing.
From altaiskis.com: The 145 has a little more “ski” DNA in it and works better for those looking to use the Hoks in a more downhill ski fashion. The 145 length has a bit more glide as well, but is less maneuverable in tight trees. The 145 has a bit more floatation for deep snow and bigger skiers. If you're looking for more ski then snowshoe, the 145 is the Hok for you!
From altaiskis.com: The 125 is better as a snowshoe substitute, more maneuverable, better in thick woods and brush, lighter, and a little better grip. The 125 is also easier to control and use for those unfamiliar with skis. The length affects the boot/binding you use as well, with the 125 being easier to ski with a light boot or the universal binding.
From altaiskis.com: Balla is the word for a kid or child in the Altai Mountains. The Hok is a playful ski even for adults, so we felt it was the ideal type of ski for a kid to learn to ski on. It is slower then a regular ski, but the Balla Hok is stable, easy to use, and can go up or down with equal ease. It is the perfect tool to just go out and play in the snow.
You can start out on flat terrain to get used to the slide and then move on to some slope. If you are comfortable on skis already - then point and go! You can use winter boots or solid hiking boots with the universal bindings on the Hoks. For downhill type skiing however, a stiffer boot with more support is needed.
You will want to use ski poles at first to get the feeling of sliding on the Hoks. Like xc skiing the heel lifts as you slide forward. I recommend trying the 'tiak' single pole once comfortable and ready to move on to slopes. It increases stability and aids in steering as well.
Contact me to setup a time to demo the hoks. I do not rent or loan the skis out at this time, but could possibly meet you. Of course the snow has to be decent!
If your interested in a Night Hok tour, I can let you know the next time we are going out skoeing! I take small groups out in our local hills when the conditions and time permit.
Some skishoeing fun in the hills surrounding Georgian Bay.