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Help me with a bet: Who supplies Canadian army troops with skis?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 

Fairly random question: Was skiing at Lake Louise in early April, noticed guys wearing what looked to be military issue parkas and helmets skiing in a group on perfectly white skis, AT bindings. Skis looked to be in high 70's or low 80's, not a hint of an insignia or brand name. Local confirmed they were army snow troops. So curious if anyone knows who supplies the gear and what it was. Given popularity of Head and Rossignol up there, would suspect one of those; my bet with my buddies was Head. 

post #2 of 21

Like with any military purchase it all comes down to the bid. They send out a purchase order for X amount of skis or boots that meet certain specs then open the bids to suppliers that comply with NATO and UN regulation. I have supplied product for both US, Canada other military's in the UN. Lot of hoops for very little gain on the suppliers side, other than supporting our guys and gals out there on the front line. Most do not care at all about quality or ski-ability as the people doing the purchasing are not the ones using it. Cost is the key factor.      

post #3 of 21

None of the North American Armed forces will work with anybody producing in China. Sorry Head is out. I know not all of Heads skis are made in China but the Military does not care. 

post #4 of 21
To the best of my knowledge, none of Heads hardware is made in China. Maybe the rental gear? Hmmmm.
post #5 of 21

HEAD - sandwich models made in Austria, cap/PU skis in Slovakia or China, Not many but the military does not care. 

post #6 of 21

These guys were likely British Forces based in Suffield, not Canadian Forces, if that gives you anymore information. My brother used to guide and teach avy terrain travel/skiing/winter camping/survival to the British Forces but the CF did relatively little of this type of training.

post #7 of 21

I believe most NATO forces fallow the same set of standards. I have worked mostly with the USMC out of the Winter Warfare Training Center in Bridgeport Ca and the US Army for various things. All NATO forces must meet the minimum standards where the US and British Territories have a more stringent vetting process. Again I am no military contractor, just a guy slinging skis and boots. I know what we have had to do to comply and its not easy.    

post #8 of 21

I saw the same thing at Garmisch many years ago when Germany was still divided.  There was a group of West German troops in winter splinter-camo smocks skiing on unmarked gear.  I have a few pics, but I would have to dig them out of boxes somewhere.

post #9 of 21

It's been a few years, but US troops were on Karhu.   The Finn's probably know something about winter warfare.

post #10 of 21

These are Elan made in Yugoslavia. Never found any information on them. Bought them in the US from a liquidator.

 

      

post #11 of 21

HA! From 2008  but no real info   http://www.epicski.com/t/64686/elan-military-skis

 

Here are some on ebay, he says made by Elan in Canada.                                                                                                                        

 

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Military-Surplus-Snow-Skis-For-Downhill-Cross-Country-All-Terrain-200-cm-Long-/281222315077

post #12 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joal View Post
 

HA! From 2008  but no real info   http://www.epicski.com/t/64686/elan-military-skis

 

Here are some on ebay, he says made by Elan in Canada.                                                                                                                        

 

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Military-Surplus-Snow-Skis-For-Downhill-Cross-Country-All-Terrain-200-cm-Long-/281222315077

 

My guess is that Elan makes skis for the Canadian military just because Elan makes so many different cheap skis for other ski companies, fleet rental skis etc.

 

The ebay seller is wrong. Elan does not build skis in Canada. The ad should say Elan builds skis for Canada

post #13 of 21

Hmmm, just noticed one of the pictures show a sticker "made in Canada". Maybe he is mistaken about them being made by Elan.

 

Processed By eBay with ImageMagick, z1.1.0. ||B2

post #14 of 21

if they were brits and the same skis i used to tune when they swung through Calgary  they were Karhus

post #15 of 21

Thought you might find it of interest, I skied at Portillo, Chile about 8 years ago, which has a military base right at the bottom of the Pass (which is the border). My wife and I rode the chair with soldiers in full gear several times, including automatic rifles.  They were on old Volant Super Carves with Silveretta bindings.

post #16 of 21

Again this brings us back to the point. Its cost and who can fill the order. Its not like the military puts in an order at SIA. When they need skis they call different companies tell them what they are looking for and if they can meet the specs that they need. If the cost is correct they get them. No real product testing and building for the military.    

post #17 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanoT View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joal View Post
 

HA! From 2008  but no real info   http://www.epicski.com/t/64686/elan-military-skis

 

Here are some on ebay, he says made by Elan in Canada.                                                                                                                        

 

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Military-Surplus-Snow-Skis-For-Downhill-Cross-Country-All-Terrain-200-cm-Long-/281222315077

 

My guess is that Elan makes skis for the Canadian military just because Elan makes so many different cheap skis for other ski companies, fleet rental skis etc.

 

The ebay seller is wrong. Elan does not build skis in Canada. The ad should say Elan builds skis for Canada

 

A little follow-up. I contacted the seller and asked how he knew they were made by Elan.  His response:

 

"There is no Elan logo. I looked up the skis national stock number (8465011707301) in our parts database & it shows the manufacturer."

 

I suspect though Elan may have won the contract and sub-contracted to a jobber in Canada.

 

post #18 of 21

Wait, Canada has an army??????

post #19 of 21

Why yes, yes we do.  Haven't you seen them before?

 

 

:D

post #20 of 21

CREATOR: gd-jpeg v1.0 (using IJG JPEG v62), quality = 336

post #21 of 21

If you troll through the Canadian governments online tender notification system, MERX, you can occasionally come across some interesting stuff and other stuff that you wonder why the hell would they be buying this.

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