With winter quickly approaching here in Ellicottville, there’s no time like the present to get into some of your favorite local, specialty retailers to get outfitted for the pending snowfall. One of the mainstays in our community, Mud Sweat N’Gears, is located on the corner of Washington and Monroe Streets in the heart of the village. Recognized by the industry as an ‘America’s Best Bootfitters’ shop, as well as home to the only Montana Speed Factory around, MSG’s passionate, knowledgable staff is ready to get you dialed in. We caught up with owners / operators Kimberly Reading and Miguel Azcarate, to talk about the products they’re most excited about for the coming season.
If you’ve read our articles here in SNOWED-IN before, you’ve heard us mention how Kim and Miguel go to great lengths to hand-select the equipment stocked in their dynamic store. Whether Miguel’s vast experience in ski racing or Kim’s skills at sourcing unique items are called into play, one thing is for certain - it’s the best of the best if it’s found in MSG. These words couldn’t ring more true, in introducing one of their favorites for the 2016-17 season, the Nordica Enforcer ski.
In 2016 Nordica launched their redesigned Enforcer line, and simply put - it took the industry by storm. Netting rave reviews from practically every gear review and ski publication on the planet, it all culminated with the 2016 Ski of the Year award from SKI Magazine. The backstory of the ski revolves around the original model - a 100mm ski, which despite its width, was immensely popular and was noted for its powerful carving ability. However, everything can be improved, so Nordica added the Enforcer 93 for this season, with the same camber under foot / low rise rocketed tip and tail, yet much more nimble due to the 7mm waist difference.
Azcarate noted how exceptional these skis performed even on the variable east coast terrain. With their smooth, yet powerful and playful ride, he instantly knew both needed to adorn the vast ski wall at MSG. With such high accolades coming in, this ski became nearly impossible to keep in stock, selling out throughout North America, and without a doubt looks to be a recurring theme this season. For the time being, MSG has them in stock, but Reading cautions that they’re already moving fast - don’t delay!
Helmet use and safety is of course a hot topic in the ski and snowboard industry these days, and let’s be real - if you’re going to kick into the aforementioned skis, speed is going to be a part of the equation. So, why not protect that noggin of yours with some of the best offerings out there? MSG has always focused on helmet safety, whether it’s high-end, full face protection for its racing customers, or a stylish yet still highly protective model. This season they’re proud to add the Giro Range and Stellar models, which have some revolutionary features. Reading explains, “Fit is taken to a whole new level with these helmets. Instead of a traditional single piece shell, these offerings from Giro feature a 2-piece shell, leading to a fully integrated fit system.”
What does this mean, without all the buzzwords? A helmet that literally forms to each and every skier’s head shape, with the simple turn of a dial. To top it all off, these helmets also feature MIPS Technology, the standard for head protection in this day and age. MIPS stands for Multi-directional Impact Protection System, which is comprised of a three-layer foam medley, bound together by an elastometric system. Essentially, all three layers can operate independently in the event of an impact, which can greatly reduce rotational forces that can cause serious injury or death.
No helmet is complete without the perfect goggle pairing, to which Reading recommends the Giro Contact model featuring a magnetically interchangeable lens. With uncertain lighting often found here on the east coast, the ability to switch your goggle lens for the conditions is paramount. Gone are the days of fussing with clasps, latches, and attachment points which never seem to align properly. Simply click these lenses in, and you’re back to your regularly scheduled run. One of their most popular goggles in stock, Reading urges anyone out there to stop in and try them on for size and ease.
Last but not least, no trip to MSG would be complete without browsing their expansive clothing, accessory and outerwear offerings. New this season, and unique to MSG is a company called SYNC, a fairly new kid on the block, so to speak. SYNC started as a kickstarter based campaign dating back to 2015, when a group of industry veterans realized something was missing in performance wear with the ski racer in mind. You see, with ski racing, movements can be much more aggressive and dynamic, which many other current companies don’t take into account when designing. Thus, SYNC was born! Featuring Prima Loft down insulation, 20k waterproofing, yet still maintaining breathability, the brand caught the eye of Kim and Miguel at the SIA show in Denver, after seeing it on hill at the summer ski camps of Mt. Hood. MSG also carries their athlete pack, which boasts expandable features for gear and boots, and a sturdy aluminum internal frame, ensuring no matter how rugged your trip is to the hill, your equipment will stay protected and intact.
While these are some of the spotlighted items from the crew at Mud, Sweat N’ Gears, it by no means even scratches the surface of what they have to offer. Whether skiing, snowboarding, or simply looking for comfortable yet stylish apparel and accessories, MSG has something for you. Looking for top notch tuning and bootfitting service, chock full of local knowledge? They’ve got you covered there, too. Give them a shout at 716-699-8300 or stop on in and see for yourself all they have to offer!