A full length skin, great for uphill, exhausting everywhere else.
However the trade-off is that to reach this level of competency each soldier must receive severalmonths of instruction. With training budgets being subject to constant scrutiny it can be all too easyfor a bean-counter to declare that this is an unnecessary extravagance, without realising the hugetactical advantage trained skiers have over those using snowshoes in winter warfare
as theRussians discovered when they tried to invade Finland in 1939.
A middle ground that has been adopted by some nations is the use of “intermediate” s
kis & bindingswhich bridge the gap between snowshoes & proper skis. These have a plastic strap binding, similarto that found on a snowboard, so that it can be used with a normal boot and the ski base is texturedlike the scales of a fish
same principle as the skins; this makes the ski base rough in one directionand smooth in the other
so that she skier can slide on the flats & downhills, while being able togrip on the uphills. They are also much shorter and wider, therefore requiring less skill to controlthem.
Trials skis, a compromise between the time it takes to train and the speed of travel allowed.