Get skinny. Isn’t that what everyone wants? Perhaps not always, but try dropping a kilo or two sometime. You might like it. Case in point. We pulled in a pair of Blizzard Zero G skis at 85 mm waist 164 length. Not a Hokkaido powder slayer, but what a fun ski for spring dense-snow tours and resort uphilling. Literally a “one kilo” plank at 1063 grams each, in the top 12 on our weight/surface chart. These trim little guys asked for lightweight bindings so we mounted a pair of Dynafit Speed Radical and went after it (an even lighter binding would do the Zero G even better, in my opinion, depending on end use).
Zero 85 is definitely what I’d call a rockered ski, what with about 260 mm measured from the tip and 160 from the tail (measured with one ski on flat surface). Yet that’s not excessive and is combined with a truly cambered midsection; shaping that Blizzard calls “rocker camber rocker.” On hardpack, we found the rocker to be hardly noticeable, in a good way, as the ski was easy to initiate but without the “washy” feeling of a heavily rockered plank when using somewhat lazy edge sets. In soft snow the 85 felt as expected: not the joy of a wider underfoot platform, but enough width to have fun unless conditions got really challenging. In that case, a more rockered and wider ski was clearly superior.
I was amused by the info Blizzard prints on the Zero G topskin: 0.69 g /cm2. That’s weight per square centimeter, and exactly matches our own “weight score” of 69 derived by our spreadsheet and published here. That’s pretty good, about the 14th lightest ski on the chart as weight/surface. I would have like to see it a few steps lighter. On the other hand it skis well and is clearly durable (mounting screws went in solid, wood core carbon construction inspires confidence, edge steel wraps tip and extends to tail protector).
As for recommended lengths, if you’re after a resort uphilling or pure ski mountaineering ski, you might be able to go short on these. At my height of 178 cm and weight of 72 k, I was happy with single runs on hardpack after uphilling on our 164s, but the ski did feel short (as it probably should have). Lisa found them to be perfect as she is the right height and weight for 164 cm as a bit short, but not too short. Next length up is apparently a 171 cm version, which is what I’d probably use if I wanted to stay on the compact side but be a bit more comfortable.
From Lisa: Often with super lightweight skis, performance is somewhat compromised. Not so much with the Blizzard Zero G 85. I love these skis because they feel like feathers on the climb and wings on the down.
During long backcountry tours I didn’t get distracted by what I was hauling on my feel; instead the weightless Zero G’s let me revel in the beauty of the wilderness around me. And while skiing, they performed well enough to give me confidence to cruise thru spring corn and dense powder. Albeit, something wider is sometimes nicer, but the mid-80 width in a touring ski has been proven all over the world. Works for me.
Certainly, Zero G 85 is a fine choice for a fitness uphilling ski. Light enough to save our body from repetitive motion abuse, yet robust enough to keep downhills fun instead of terrifying. Along those lines, would it be good for “citizen” skimo racing? Perhaps, though something more specialized could be more fun for competition.
In summary, we’d call this one of the best “80 mm” touring skis out there. If you like that kind of width, definitely consider.
Size tested: 164 cm
Weight: 1063 grams per ski.
Dimensions (measured): 115/84/99, sidecut 31 mm, 19 meter radius
Binding offset for our 164 cm testers: 210 mm
WildSnow.com publisher emeritus and founder Lou (Louis Dawson) has a 50+ years career in climbing, backcountry skiing and ski mountaineering. He was the first person in history to ski down all 54 Colorado 14,000-foot peaks, has authored numerous books about about backcountry skiing, and has skied from the summit of Denali in Alaska, North America’s highest mountain.