(Ski News 1 October, 2015)
Most skiers need a pair of skis that can perform in any and all conditions. From hardpack to soft snow, ice, on and off-piste, etc., we want a multi-tool that can handle anything that Mother Nature throw at us without having to carry around ten pairs of skis. The options are plentiful, indeed, so the guys at Freeskier have made it easy for you by compiling a list of the newest, best all-mountain skis of 2016. They they tested more than 300 pairs of skis all together and we compiled the top ten list for you for the 90-99 mm waist-width category.
These ten skis ranked above all others at Freeskier ’s annual mega test they’re also featured in thier excellent Buyer’s Guide!
90-99 mm – waisted freeride skies
You might enjoy these skis if… You’re spending as much time in the powder in the backcountry as you are flying down steep groomers or testing your technique in icy pists you don’t shy away from ripping it up in the crud.. and wherever you can step it up with the best of them!
Rank # 1 Fischer Ranger 98TI
Testers celebrate the all-new Fischer Ranger 98 Ti Skis as a powerful tool in an ultra-light package. This ski employs a milled wood core to shed some lbs. Carbon fiber in the tips provides lightweight strengthening, while titanial inserts underfoot bolster torsional rigidity, yielding a smooth ride at high speeds.
“These bad boys are so quick and light,” claimed one tester. “Slam it down and hold on, these things just wanna rip.”
For those seeking an ultra-versatile offering – just gander at the score of 9.66 below – be sure to consider the Ranger 98 Ti as your next all-mountain shred machine.
Dimensions: Tip: 132, Foot: 98, Tail: 122
Rank # 2 Kästle FX 95 HP
“This ski is a high-speed power carver that crushes groomers and cuts through crud like a boss,” claimed one tester about the Kästle FX 95 HP Skis. Its 95 mm waist is versatile, allowing you to transition from the frontside to the backside with ease. An early rise tip and tail provide for a catch-free ride and ensure you’ll float above the chop and the fresh. A mid-density silver fir core is responsive and forgiving, while two layers of Titanal up its torsional rigidity.
“This ski is for kicking ass, charging hard and arcing turns,” noted another tester. “Strap on a pair and witness the sickness.”
Dimensions: Tip: 126, Foot: 95, Tail: 115
Rank # 3 Folsom Trigger II
“The Folsom Trigger II Skis are such a fun ski for everyday conditions,” asserted one of our testers.
“It’s a total carving ski that bombs down the entire mountain—front, back, wherever.” With a 99 mm
waist, the Trigger II is a sturdy and stable offering. Its 21 meter turn radius is ideal for big, highspeed
turns. A subtle reverse camber profi le runs the length of the ski, ensuring these puppies are able to fl oat atop modest pow with ease and schmear down the steeps and through the trees. Take it from one tester who exclaimed, “Dust off the credit card and pull the trigger
on the Trigger II.”
Dimensions: Tip: 131, Foot: 99, Tail: 121
Rank #4 Ski Logic Rave TT
Our motley crew of testers emphatically applauded the SkiLogic Rave TT Skis. “Patrol is currently looking for me after tearing the mountain to pieces with these skis,” noted one member of the team. SkiLogik utilizes Black Locust — an extremely strong and durable wood — in its sidewall construction for increased torsional stiffness. Layers of carbon fiber and fiberglass around the hardwood core also aid in this regard. A full camber profile makes this ski your go-to, whether you’re ripping groomers or blasting variable terrain—just take a look at that versatility score for evidence.
Dimensions: Tip: 141, Foot: 92, Tail: 125
Rank # 5 Armada Invictus 95 TI
If railing turns is a regular pastime, you’re going to want to take the Armada Invictus 95 Ti Skis for a test drive. “The edge-to-edge transfer is super fast and controlled,” remarked one tester. “So much fun. It’s incredibly stable in variable conditions and at any speed,” chimed another. New to the Invictus family this season, this ski features an early rise tip for added float when the going gets choppy. Carbon inserts and Kevlar stringers provide lightweight reinforcement, while Titanal enhances torsional rigidity. We know you want to get from point A to B in a flash — the Invictus 95 Ti will take you there with a smirk on your face.
Dimensions: Tip: 132, Foot: 95, Tail: 123
Rank # 6 Völkl 90Eight
Völkl knocked it out of the park with its new Völkl 90Eight Skis. Constructed with the brand’s 3D.Ridge technology — a raised, central ridge that levels out towards the ski’s edge, fore and aft of the binding—the ski is both nimble and ultra-lightweight. Still, these skis maintain top-notch stability thanks to a composite fiberglass sheath surrounding the core, boosting strength and torsional rigidity. “They’re a smooth, reliable thing of beauty,” noted a member of our tester squad. Jump on the 90Eight wagon and open a can of whoop ass all over the place.
Dimensions: Tip: 133, Foot: 98, Tail: 116
Rank # 7 K2 Pinnacle 95
Hop on the K2 Pinnacle 95 Skis, and its extremely lightweight character will have you jumping for joy. The ski utilizes K2’s Konic Core Technology, where denser core materials are utilized along the edge while lighter components comprise the center. Specifically, aspen wood and a fiberglass/Titanal laminate line the edges, providing a damp, strong nature–great for turning on the afterburners with confidence. Utilization of Nanolite, a low-density, aerospace grade composite keeps weight down, allowing you to maneuver variable terrain with ease. From the front to the back, the Pinnacle 95 will have you cheesin’ all damn day.
Dimensions: Tip: 132, Foot: 95, Tail: 115
Rank # 8 Head Monster 98
New for 2015-16, the Head Monster 98 Skis cater to those who spend the majority of their time ripping hardpack. “An awesome pair of boards for an aggressive skier,” confirmed one of our testers. Its mid-density silver fir wood core is complemented by Graphene; utilization of this crazy-light, megastrong material frees up space for extra Titanal, yielding top-notch torsional rigidity. A bit of early rise in the tip allows you to be quick and nimble when the time calls. “These bad boys hold a very strong edge, lending great action throughout the turn,” remarked another tester. Go HAM on those top-to-bottom gondi laps, folks.
Dimensions: Tip: 135, Foot: 98, Tail: 120
Rank # 9 Blizzard Bonafide
Grab life by the horns and tear the s#it out of the mountain with the Blizzard Bonafide Skis. “They just let you rip with confidence,” raved one tester. “They hold an edge with the best of ’em on groomers and with a 98 mm waist, they’re groovy in the soft stuff.” A poplar core keeps weight down and provides for a smooth, damp ride, while a rigid beech wood contributes to strong stability and torsional rigidity. A rockered tip and tail yield a playful and insanely responsive pair of sticks. Make sure to have your “Permission to Rip” slip signed before you load up the lift for all-day domination.
Dimensions: Tip: 133, Foot: 98, Tail: 118
Rank # 10 Atomic Vantage 95C
The Atomic Vantage 95 C Skis are celebrated as a lightweight offering that more than holds its own in the power department. “[This ski] has incredibly strong edge grip and swings easily,” exclaimed one tester. An ash and poplar core provides a balance of comfortable weight and great dampening. A layer of rigid, woven carbon-fi ber mesh complements the wood core, providing lightweight strengthening. Titanium inserts run from tip to tail,
yielding superb torsional rigidity. “Cuts very hard and holds up well at speed. Super stable,” said another tester.
Dimensions: Tip: 134, Foot: 95, Tail: 121