Like many in the outdoor industry, Mike Parris didn't intend, initially, to be building skis for a career. Instead, he was back home in Pennsylvania in a totally different career, building robotics parts for Mars rovers while skiing the state's small hills.
Mike used his mechanical experience to help a friend who'd started his own ski company, Jackson Hole-based Igneous Skis, put together better equipment for his factory. Now, Parris runs Igenous himself, shaping just 100 pairs of skis a year for discerning customers.
Mike purposely leaves his creations free of any logos – that, he insists, makes people physically stop and ask someone where they got their skis, giving Mike an organic word-of-mouth marketing campaign that often centers in the parking lot on Jackson's Teton Pass. Parris has his own appreciation for his craft and for skiing itself, and just might make you want to run your own custom ski brand.