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Xalibu skis, a sliding experience with a Quebec soul

Xalibu skis

Talk practically buried under the snow. With rays of sunshine warming our faces. Here we are with Alexandre Vézina, owner of Xalibu Skis . A true enthusiast of the design of the perfect pair of skis, from the nose to the tail.

Before becoming a hobby, skiing was above all a means of transport for humans whose daily lives took place in mountainous and snowy territory. Today, we are a long way from two-meter long wooden skis and primitive bindings made of leather straps. We have practically a science and an art at the same time: each step of a complex and almost secret process is studied under its smallest and multiple facets. The quest for a ski that floats, grips and pivots continues forever.

Beginnings in a barn on the North Shore

Alexandre brings with him in his luggage training in violin making, industrial design and adventure tourism: a kind of amalgam that explains his trajectory well when you think of the recipe that will have led him to where he is today. This is also where the story of a common love for skiing began with his accomplice Maxime Bolduc. Both advisers at MEC at the time, they observed each other well to come to a conclusion: "instead of constantly blubbering about how we would do this or that, we should maybe try to make skis out of it, the rest of us”.

Some time later, Alexandre and his family moved to the North Shore. There, he will meet Michel, the “patenteux” par excellence. Strange coincidence, a barn is on his land. It will therefore become the playground and seasoned experimentation for Alexandre for three years. It is also in these places that he will design his own traditional press.

Xalibu skis

The sandwich technique

Surrounded by friends who are just as passionate as them, Maxime and Alexandre have no difficulty finding testers who like to experiment with their prototypes. After three years of research and development, a single model emerged victorious in 2012, the year when Xalibu Skis officially came to life. Currently, they have five models under their belt, which are strong, durable and fun to ski. The objective is always to offer the least expensive ski with the best quality.

All of them are subcontracted to Utopie in Rimouski. How? Thanks to a bonding-molding technique of various materials: plastic base/cosmetic, metal edges, fiberglass composite, plywood core. Everything is assembled like a sandwich with epoxy resin and a powerful air compressor. Although other species, such as Maple, Ash or Yellow Birch, are used by other companies, they opted for Trembling Aspen, since its long fiber distributes the load better.

Once expressed using a fabric dotted with patterns and prints, the graphics that can be seen on their skis today are instead achieved by sublimation. It is Sébastien Larose who, as a friendly collaborator, reflects on them and sketches them.

Xalibu Ski your life

Every year, designers try to develop a new model. The little new one in production has until now been called “the white ski”. Until its identity takes shape more, we can follow the guys from Xalibu Skis on their winter tour, where it is possible to try different models that make up their range.

What's more, you can also rent it at the Caroune Ski Shop in Saint-Anne-des-Monts, as well as at Roc & Ride in Val-David , if you're not quite ready. to engage. Otherwise, they take orders through their website (and sometimes even funky , custom project ideas). Obviously, a few retailers hold their products, you can check if one of them is in a radius near you.

Having shipped their skis all over Canada, the two acolytes intend to “conquer the world” by extending their market to Europe, Asia and South America. Must dream! During this time, we may run into some of their ambassadors somewhere in the mountains of this vast world!

Xalibu skis

To learn more about this exciting company, check out their member profile .

Reviewed by Louise

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