Objects Database

Firngleiter Short Skis

Accession Number


Object Name

Firngleiter Short Skis




Hermione Cooper

Accession Date


Brief Description

Pair of 'VB Firnblitz' metal short skis. Red leather foot bindings with metal eyehooks and white nylon cord laces attached to two hooks and a bar at rear of ski.


metal, leather, nylon


55 (l) x 12 (w) cms

Number Of Objects

1 pair

Inscription Description

"VB FIRNBLITZ" in red and yellow lettering with red and yellow arrowheaed shape.


brown, red


VB Firnblitz


'Firn' is the German word for spring snow so these 'Firnblitz' skis are spring snow blasters and date from around 1960. We found a wee article about a very similar pair of skis in the 1964/65 Scottish Ski Club Journal:-

Spring Snow Gliders
Mike Kenneth

FIRNGLEITER are not new, though not a great deal is known about them in this country. Resembling ultra short ski, they are used in the Alps in the late spring and early summer on steep narrow slopes and gullies. They are designed to run on spring snow with or without a new snow overlay.
The pair complete weighs only 3½ lbs. so is easily carried in, or tied to a rucksack.
Running is said to be much easier than on ski— one can turn and swing with ease, and even wedel. The important difference, however, is that on firn-gleiter you lean back, not forward, and you can control your speed with downward heel thrust.
Thus controlled braking is possible whilst running straight, and this combined with the ultra short length facilitates the descent of steep ribbons of snow. Ex¬perienced runners are said not to need sticks.
The only maintenance necessary is a wash in the burn after finishing a slide over shingle, peat, or heather.
These short skis were quite popular with mountaineers who could ski, as the simple binding could be attached to a mountaineering boot.

Acquisition Method

Donated by Rod MacLeod

Acquisition Date


Condition Check Date



Spectrum : UK Museum documentation standard, V.3.1 2007



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