Yellow Snow Conditions (Wet, Slushy, Old Snow, +20°C to 0°C)

  • Friction Characteristics

    Physically, the wet snow crystal structure has the most rounded edges. This means kinetic friction is very low. The main source of friction in this snow type is suction friction from the vast amounts of liquid water between the ski base and the snowpack. The top priority for glide waxing for these conditions is getting rid of water from the bottom of the ski base. Waxes for this temperature range used to be physically softer (soft waxes are more hydrophobic than harder ones), but in recent years, glide waxes for this temperature range have become much harder to help keep ski bases free of dirt. Fluoro compounds are massively hydrophobic, so anything with fluorination will likely be an excellent choice. Adding aggressive structure to your ski base with a rill tool will have the biggest benefit to glide as the grooves and channels will give water an escape route. Often waxes with dirt-repellent compounds have a leg up on others since dirt builds upon the surface of the snow as it melts. Waxes with molybdenum or graphite tend to stay fast in yellow conditions over long distances.

  • Kick Waxing

    Snow crystals in yellow conditions have melted into round, wet blobs. This makes finding a grip wax that is able to stick to snow crystals very tricky. The water surrounding the snow crystals acts as a lubricant, which is the equivalent of having oil on your brake pads. This means in order to find a kick wax that gets grip in this kind of snow; you'll have to get something as soft and sticky as possible: hence, klister! Hard wax is a no-go when the snow gets this wet, but rub skis (hairys or zeros), skin skis, and fish scales tend to work quite well if Klister isn't your thing. Again, a klister with Fluoros or other dirt and water-repelling compounds will help your grip wax glide.