The One Oh Somethings, are they 11/10th skis or charging crudbusters?The industry has pushed this segment hard in recent years, trying to create a class of ski that had no clear direction. In defense of these larger skis, there were actually several possible directions depending on a skier's needs, hence the confusion. In the wake of this confusion, one ski did rise to the top of the charts, the Blizzard Cochise. So, what will we pit against it? Völkl’s 100Eight, the younger and lighter replacement for the Gotama, which was the reference ski in this segment before the Cochise stole its title. Can the 100Eight avenge the family name?
This is not the Cochise that won “Ski of the Year” when it was introduced half a decade ago. The new carbon-enhanced Cochise scoffs at its predecessor, “I can’t believe you won Ski of the Year, I am so much better than you.” And it would be right. The addition of carbon at the extremities, some taper beyond the contact points, and, most important, camber underfoot makes for a much more responsive ski that does not require as much gravity as the first-gen ski, which felt like it needed to hit a certain speed to really get going. Almost the only similarity between the new one and the original is that they both say Blizzard Cochise and are 108 mm underfoot. Other than smearing turns, the new Cochise does everything better than the old one.
Just as I have never seen an episode of "Game of Thrones" or "The Walking Dead," I was never a Gotama fan: sacrilege, right? Not that the Goat was a bad ski, it just was never a ski for me; no matter which generation, it was just too much charge and not enough finesse for my liking. No biggy, I never took it personally, and I doubt Völkl did, either. I don’t think zee Germans missed one sale because of me. Now, welcome to the modern age: I believe once Völkl went to the 3D Ridge construction, its skis morphed from from being very good skis for a select group into great skis for the the masses without losing the personality and power that bigger or stronger skiers like. This shows just what a great construction can accomplish.
- Why choose the Blizzard Cochise? Power, pure and simple; you want to charge and the 27m turning radius will still challenge you to do so. This ski loves to run, and speed is its friend.
- Why choose the Völkl 100Eight? The 100Eight is not a finesse ski, but it can be finessed. This is a One Oh Something for the masses. If you want a ski in this range that can charge and play with the big boys but not demand you to, go this way.
- Other skis in the class: Armada Invictus 108Ti, Dynastar Cham 2.0 107, Kästle BMX105, Salomon QST 106.