Do I even need a caption here?
My goal is to carry either my lightweight cross country skis or carry my heavier, wider alpine touring skis on my bike and be able to bike 10-20 miles roundtrip. I came across a couple of solutions online, one being carry them on a pack A-frame style. I have done this before and not only do I hate having a pack on while I'm riding, but the skis make it additionally annoying. The other idea that someone posted somewhere online (I cannot find it again) was to mount them vertically alongside your rear rack with a PVC pipe holder. This sounded great except for one thing: it would only take one low branch or one forgotten doorway to truly mess up your experience with the skis sticking up that high. Another thought that came to me was to carry them on my BOB trailer but once I was trying to maneuver this on snowy fire roads it might be really tricky.
The only thing that I have seen commercially made that could fit the bill might be a surfboard carrier made for bikes, but it cost $100. Since I apparently have a lot of time on my hands, building my own solution would be cheaper and more desirable. This weekend I set about building a proof of concept. It turned out to be fairly heavy since I used 3/4" plywood and 2"x4" scraps that I had lying around. Nevertheless, I succeeded in making my ski carrier. It holds the skis at approximately a 45 degree angle to keep the overall height to about 6' and would theoretically allow low branches to sweep up and over the skis rather than stopping me dead in my tracks. Initial tests showed that while my bike had the wobbles as if I had it fully loaded, the skis were held securely and quietly. I also used a lash strap to keep the skis in place in the holder.
After a bit more testing, I may seek to build a lighter model with PVC pipe. After that, I will begin mass producing them in carbon fiber for the vast market that my friend, Jeff, insists exists. I am accepting advance orders. Just write your bike and ski specifications on the back of a blank, endorsed check and mail it to me.