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Episode Info:

On this episode, I speak with Jonathan Ellsworth, Founder of CEO of Crested Butte’s Blister review website. He has made it his mission to test and review the latest gear, in order to pass on knowledge to other skiers.

Tune in to hear us talk about Blister and how Jonathan approaches his reviews.


[02:05] Jonathan grew up in the Chicagoland area, not anywhere near a ski area.

[02:50] He thinks his late start in skiing is key to Blister’s success.

[03:00] When an injury ended his football career, he threw himself into his studies in kinesiology.

[04:14] Jonathan went to New Mexico to work on his dissertation, which gave him access to the mountains.

[04:47] He took a year off of school to do everything he could in the mountains and never went back to Chicago.

[07:04] Blister does not accept money from gear manufacturers that they review, which is in contrast to a lot of ski publications.

[08:50] He wants to make sure his revenue streams don’t undermine his work.

[09:30] Integrity and credibility is everything.

[11:15] Blister employs 6 or 7 reviewers to do most of the ski gear reviews, but employs 50-60 freelancers.

[14:10] By coming late into skiing, Jonathan has a greater appreciation for gear that improves performance.

[15:24] Skiing and ski design stole so many good ideas that came from snowboarding.

[18:26] Jonathan has spent a lot of time telling people lightweight skis suck.

[21:50] Making lightweight gear is such a thing now.

[22:00] Manufacturers try to say that you don’t lose performance, but this isn’t 100% true.

[25:08] There are still hundreds of thousands of skiers out there in incorrectly sized boots.

[26:45] If you’re an intermediate skier, get yourself to a boot-fitter.

[27:24] Heat-moldable shells are becoming more common for ski boots.

[27:55] If you have trickier feet, heat-moldable shells are the way to go.

[30:15] Jonathan has to be intentional with his workouts, because his time is limited.

[30:40] You absolutely must stretch your hamstrings.

[39:15] Crested Butte has a lot of steep terrain.

[39:45] Jonathan thinks the more scared you are of the terrain in front of you, the more forward you should be on your skis.


“Institutional trust: right? That’s not just a problem in the world of outdoor sports reviews, that’s a problem at the biggest levels of government…”

“Tip and tail rocker...has really opened up the sport in a super significant way.”

“Do not buy your ski boots online and have them show up in a box...go to an experienced boot-fitter…”



Wagner Skis

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