What do YOU look for in a +/- 100 wide ski?

tromano

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In Europe, a 100 mm ski is considered 'freeride'. The 100 mm front side ski (Bonafide, Mantra M6, Enforcer 100, etc.) are therefore much more popular in the US than they are in Europe. According to our Blizzard & Nordica rep at least. And that would make sense. Most Europeans use a 88 mm as an all-mountain ski (not necessarily as a daily driver, that could be much narrower) and a ~100 mm ski as a freeride ski. Only in the snowiest places (St. Anton, Verbier, Val d'Isère, Serre Chevalier, etc.) you find daily drivers over 90 mm.
I agree with 100mm being free ride. I just don't think free ride means deep powder. It means crud to me.

Edit to add: I wouldn't call Bonafide, Enforcer 100 front side skis. But I guess it depends on what the back side looks like.
 
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Cheizz

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Haha true. Freeride is more often crud than bottomless powder, I agree. Still, you can get a 100 mm ski that will ski through it rather than over it. I suppose that is a big choice. Bonafide and Mantra ski through it, IMO, whereas something like the QST 99/98 will ski over it. Both might be able to carve a decent turn and hold a great edge on hard snow. But for the softer stuff, that would be my main choice. And that choice really depends on what I have in the rest of my quiver.
 

Cheizz

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Yeah I have been in similar conditions with Bonafides. I would get something floatier, personally.
 

Tim Hodgson

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Pete: I tried to find a video of One Man Chute for you on youtube but the one that is misnamed "one man chute" is actually Two Man Chute. They would have needed to cut right through the trees to hit One Man Chute. Yes that rock wall choke point at the end of One Man is really a pucker point, no? However, watching them drop into Thunder Saddle really got me ready for Winter. . . This is one of my most favorite Kirkwood video compilations. Not me and I haven't done every one of the chutes featured:


As far as the topic of this thread, I still prefer my clown feet Rossignol Super7 powder skis when it gets 2-3 feet deep new powder (I should really buy the DPS Wailer 112RP Alchemist), but I can ski deep powder with the DPS Wailer 100RP Alchemist no problem. I would not call them crud-busters. That is not their function for me. They are soft enough to float (although I would think that most skis at speed will rise to the surface if they are long enough) and their side cut tip and tail rocker profile and light weight makes them quick in the trees. Perfect for what I am looking for. Busting crud back to the lift line is not the terrain feature I am looking forward to slay, so crud busting comes in second to nimbleness in the left over powder stashes in the trees IMHO. Your conditions may vary and your ski choice will too.
 

François Pugh

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Tree skiing in powder. No mention of Elan Ripstick/black 96 which is a really playful ski in the trees. Can't believe Bonafide is mentioned as a tree ski. That would be next to the bottom for me.
It's all relative. Compared to ANY of my full-cambered skinny carving skis Bonafides are pretty easy to ski in glades.
 

tromano

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I have skied my head m98s in the trees a bit. With commitment, a bit of speed, pressure and edging charger skis will respond and rail turns even in powdery trees.

Imo charger skis like these really don't care what type of snow you have. They are made to rail turns at speed and will do that in any snow conditions. When I want to ski another way that's when the Salomon quests come out.
 
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Pete in Idaho

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Pete: I tried to find a video of One Man Chute for you on youtube but the one that is misnamed "one man chute" is actually Two Man Chute. They would have needed to cut right through the trees to hit One Man Chute. Yes that rock wall choke point at the end of One Man is really a pucker point, no? However, watching them drop into Thunder Saddle really got me ready for Winter. . . This is one of my most favorite Kirkwood video compilations. Not me and I haven't done every one of the chutes feature

Tim, it was there, thanks been about 25 yrs since I skied that.
 

ski otter 2

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A big consideration for many with a ~100 ski is travel, the need to have one or at most two skis on a plane that can do as much as possible. This width ski for many fits the bill. For non-flyers, that ski width has to do more specific things that vary from person to person a bit, I gather.

For some years I avoided this width, as too wide to be a very top carver, and too narrow to be a top powder ski either.

I've had ~100 skis that floated well in powder of most any depth, up to almost bottomless. But their relatively narrow width made them either now and then less stable or less able to rise up enough to be optimal fun in the deepest snow.

And I've had ~100 skis that didn't really float, but busted through instead, more in than on the snow. The best of these floats enough to work and be playful and easier for powder, but also is stiff enough to crud bust, and be top fun in up to, say, 6 inches of fresh. And it rails on groomers.

To me, the K2 Mindbender 99 works for this, and the Bonafide almost works: it is stiff enough to be optimal fun crud busting, but not flexible enough to really rise up enough in more than, say, three to four inches.
Those are my top two at this width. (I have them both.)

I'd have said that for me the Enforcer 100 was best in class for the off piste and powder of most any depth, and it is a super crud best bet, maybe the best at this width; but for me its tail up to the most recent change has been too vague carving, especially on the day after powder, or on groomers. Nordica has solved that weak tail problem and to me the Enforcer is now a strong candidate here, but I've heard that it has lost some of its versatility off piste and in bumps with so much new precision, so not sure.

The Stöckli SR 95 is good too, and better at what it does, but different: it is on the bottom carving in up to 4-6 inches, busting crud carving perfectly. But it is down in the snow, not rising up as much, not that kind of playfulness to it. To me it almost wastes the powder: it's a bit as if it wasn't there for this ski.

P.S. At my age, I'm not much of a bump (except in powder) or tree skier, in terms of time spent, so my preferences reflect that.
 
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tromano

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A big consideration for many with a ~100 ski is travel, the need to have one or at most two skis on a plane that can do as much as possible. This width ski for many fits the bill. For non-flyers, that ski width has to do more specific things that vary from person to person a bit, I gather.

For some years I avoided this width, as too wide to be a very top carver, and too narrow to be a top powder ski either.

I've had ~100 skis that floated well in powder of most any depth, up to almost bottomless. But their relatively narrow width made them either now and then less stable or less able to rise up enough to be optimal fun in the deepest snow.

And I've had ~100 skis that didn't really float, but busted through instead, more in than on the snow. The best of these floats enough to work and be playful and easier for powder, but also is stiff enough to crud bust, and be top fun in up to, say, 6 inches of fresh. And it rails on groomers.

To me, the K2 Mindbender 99 works for this, and the Bonafide almost works: it is stiff enough to be optimal fun crud busting, but not flexible enough to really rise up enough in more than, say, three to four inches.
Those are my top two at this width. (I have them both.)

I'd have said that for me the Enforcer 100 was best in class for the off piste and powder of most any depth, and it is a super crud best bet, maybe the best at this width; but for me its tail up to the most recent change has been too vague carving, especially on the day after powder, or on groomers. Nordica has solved that weak tail problem and to me the Enforcer is now a strong candidate here, but I've heard that it has lost some of its versatility off piste and in bumps with so much new precision, so not sure.

The Stöckli SR 95 is good too, and better at what it does, but different: it is on the bottom carving in up to 4-6 inches, busting crud carving perfectly. But it is down in the snow, not rising up as much, not that kind of playfulness to it. To me it almost wastes the powder: it's a bit as if it wasn't there for this ski.

P.S. At my age, I'm not much of a bump (except in powder) or tree skier, in terms of time spent, so my preferences reflect that.
My avatar is in mt ogden bowl skiing about 15" after a rope drop. I am on 184 cm Head Monster 98s. Both my tips are on the surface. Skis arcing and bending in the pow. It was a quiet spring day so we made a few more laps. I wouldn't say it was wasting the powder.

I agree on the travel ski angle. But the notion that charger 100 skis don't float, seems like it depends.
 

Cheizz

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In terms of conditions and terrain maybe, but the skiing by Marcus represents less than 1% of skiers, I think. That's also something to consider. If you're not charging like Marcus is in that video, those skis are not ideal.
 

Ken_R

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In terms of conditions and terrain maybe, but the skiing by Marcus represents less than 1% of skiers, I think. That's also something to consider. If you're not charging like Marcus is in that video, those skis are not ideal.
Yeah, totally. Terrain and conditions are really typical for western resorts mid-winter.
 

tromano

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You don't need to be a pro to enjoy a charger 100 waist ski.

Skiing the slow line fast is a thing.
 

BMC

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A big consideration for many with a ~100 ski is travel, the need to have one or at most two skis on a plane that can do as much as possible. This width ski for many fits the bill. For non-flyers, that ski width has to do more specific things that vary from person to person a bit, I gather.

For some years I avoided this width, as too wide to be a very top carver, and too narrow to be a top powder ski either.

I've had ~100 skis that floated well in powder of most any depth, up to almost bottomless. But their relatively narrow width made them either now and then less stable or less able to rise up enough to be optimal fun in the deepest snow.

And I've had ~100 skis that didn't really float, but busted through instead, more in than on the snow. The best of these floats enough to work and be playful and easier for powder, but also is stiff enough to crud bust, and be top fun in up to, say, 6 inches of fresh. And it rails on groomers.

To me, the K2 Mindbender 99 works for this, and the Bonafide almost works: it is stiff enough to be optimal fun crud busting, but not flexible enough to really rise up enough in more than, say, three to four inches.
Those are my top two at this width. (I have them both.)

I'd have said that for me the Enforcer 100 was best in class for the off piste and powder of most any depth, and it is a super crud best bet, maybe the best at this width; but for me its tail up to the most recent change has been too vague carving, especially on the day after powder, or on groomers. Nordica has solved that weak tail problem and to me the Enforcer is now a strong candidate here, but I've heard that it has lost some of its versatility off piste and in bumps with so much new precision, so not sure.

The Stöckli SR 95 is good too, and better at what it does, but different: it is on the bottom carving in up to 4-6 inches, busting crud carving perfectly. But it is down in the snow, not rising up as much, not that kind of playfulness to it. To me it almost wastes the powder: it's a bit as if it wasn't there for this ski.

P.S. At my age, I'm not much of a bump (except in powder) or tree skier, in terms of time spent, so my preferences reflect that.
Totally agree with the central message here. if I’m travelling with one pair of skis, a 100mm is the most versatile OSQ option, provided you’re not going somewhere with long intervals between snowfalls.
 

Cheizz

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You don't need to be a pro to enjoy a charger 100 waist ski.

Skiing the slow line fast is a thing.
'A skier' is more than just technical ability level. It is the speed, style, preference, physique, aggression, etc. The speed Marcus is skiing is not something I witness very often here in Europe. Especially not off-piste.
 

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