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60 skis tested by professionals

Ski Review 2019

All Mountain 70/30


Click on the name of a model to view a full review

Völk Kendo [click]
Type of ski : All Mountain 70/30
Testers' ChoiceRecommended by our reviewers!
The Kendo from Völkl, which (just) missed out on the "Best Ski" medal last year in harder snow conditions, got it back this year. This year, we reviewed a longer model (184 cm against 176 last year) which improved its stability and flotation in powder. The ski has once again consolidated its excellent reputation and the professional reviewers gave it rave reviews: "Super ski", "Perfection!", "Excellent ski", "Perfect"... Its behaviour on the groomers is excellent and the Kendo could teach many piste skis a thing or two. The ski will amaze you not just for its performance and the quality of rides as by its grip and stability that are simply magic. It's quite stiff, significantly reinforced by two Titanal plates. Here, we'd just like to remind our readers that Titanal (whose presence is generally signalled by the "Ti" added to the models' name) is not the same as "titanium", contrary to what most people think, but is the commercial name given to an alloy with an aluminum base. Despite its 22-metre radius, this "very well-balanced" ski is still remarkably versatile. Obviously, it prefers long turns and speed, but it proved quite capable of rapidly changing radius despite the size of the model reviewed. It smoothly alternates between skid and carve turns, and the latter are especially instinctive. Its consistent behavior and fantastic stability make it a great ski for intermediate riders who can up the pace with confidence and relatively few technical skills. Off-piste, the reviewers felt the ski had "great potential." It's especially good in powder where it glides very well, and its stiffness allows it to cut a path through the crud with ease. The Kendo is one of those skis that's become a real benchmark in its segment. "Very good trail ski with great off-trail potential", it will please a wide range of riders from intermediate to expert. The size reviewed is perfect for heavier riders.

Liked: Good on piste behaviour Great skid turns Intuitive carving Consistent behaviour, reassuring, remains accessible Good off-piste behaviour Float...

Disliked: Needs some technical skills Not so comfortable in short turns ...

Stöckli Stormrider 88 [click]
Type of ski : All Mountain 70/30

Kendo's main rival, the Stormrider 88 lost its "Best ski" medal this year but remains a benchmark in the highly competitive All Mountain ski market with emphasis on the groomed runs. On piste, the Stormrider 88 performs incredibly well. It's a docile, "consistent and enjoyable" ski that makes no demands of the rider, doing what it's told and giving its owners total confidence. It will perform well in every type of ride but is a bit more demanding in sliced short turns. Off-piste, the ski does its job. It will literally go anywhere and is even happy in the crud. It glides very smoothly in powder, giving the impression of riding a wider ski. The Stormrider 88 from Stöckli has once again confirmed its position as one of the best skis in this segment. We recommend it for all intermediate to expert riders who want a smooth-performing and extremely versatile ski.

Liked: Consistent, predictable, reassuring Efficient and nimble Versatile Behaves well off-piste Cuts through the crud Good float in powder ...

Disliked: Lacks agility A good performer but has a slightly neutral character ...

K2 Pinnacle 85 [click]
Type of ski : All Mountain 70/30
Best Accessibility/Enjoyment!Best Accessibility/Enjoyment!
Our professional reviewers loved the Pinnacle 85 from K2: "a ski with a soul", and "has a real personality". "Very versatile and closer to an all mountain/freeride", the ski displays excellent off-piste behaviour, helped by a large rocker. Accessibility is excellent. Its behaviour is consistent, forgiving and it remains docile in all circumstances, while the rocker assists turn entry. The ski is very lively and playful, especially at medium speeds. Its short radius (15 m at 177 cm), fast and intuitive turn initiation and good grip make it a particularly dynamic tool. Playful and agile, riders will get a lot of enjoyment from it. The Pinnacle 85 is an excellent choice for intermediate to very good riders who want an agile, lively ski for all snow conditions and all terrains.

Liked: Good fun Lively and playful Good grip Versatile Great off-piste behaviour Enjoyable up to medium speeds ...

Disliked: Limited at high speed...

Dynastar Legend 88 [click]
Type of ski : All Mountain 70/30

The reviewers were impressed by the Legend 88's qualities but found the bindings too central. The ski has many qualities and the reviewers found it accessible, with easy turn initiation and rotation. However, the central positioning of the binding made it impossible to add forward pressure in aggressive rides. The imposing tail in uneven snow conditions and heavy snow hampers rotation. We tried mounting the bindings 4cm further back and this helped improve the ski's behaviour. The Legend 88 is a very good ski that we recommend for intermediary to good riders. It's probably worth trying to mount the bindings a bit further back than the central positioning recommended by the maker.

Liked: Good overall behaviour An easy and enjoyable ski for cruising Behaves well off the groomed runs (except for our comments below) ...

Disliked: Central positioning required Long tail due to the centralisation of bindings, hampering rides in the crud and even in powder ...

Head Monster 88 Ti [click]
Type of ski : All Mountain 70/30

While the Kore 93 from Head shone in the all mountain/freeride category, the more piste-oriented Monster 88 found the competition stiffer in the midst of more versatile skis. The reviewers praised the Monster 88's excellent behaviour on the piste. The ski was judged to be "a good piste ski", proving docile and grippy, and especially happy in short turns. The ski is accessible and very user-friendly. Off-piste, its behaviour is correct with good flotation in powder, but it doesn't do quite as well as the Kendo, Pinnacle 85, Stormrider 88... Despite its size at the waist (88mm) and its rocker, the Monster 88 can't hide its piste ski DNA. It's the perfect ski for intermediate to good riders who love whizzing down the groomers but would like a ski that can handle all snow conditions and that they can also use off the beaten track from time to time.

Liked: Well behaved on the piste Versatile User-friendly Good overall performance Comfortable in short turns Good float in powder ...

Disliked: Behaviour deteriorates at high speed Less convincing freeride behaviour compared to some of the models reviewed Turn initiation is not very intuiti...

Nordica Enforcer 93 [click]
Type of ski : All Mountain 70/30

While the Enforcer 100 regularly does well in the all mountain/freeride category, the Enforcer 93 finds it more difficult to do well in this programme. Its overall behaviour is good, both on and off the groomed runs and it performs well in every situation. We got mixed reviews for the Enforcer 93's behaviour at low speeds. Our expert (non professional) reviewers had a very positive opinion of the ski, while the professional reviewers were less enthusiastic, pointing to a certain degree of inertia. We recommend this ski for fast and sporty riders who want a versatile ski that's extremely happy at high speed.

Liked: Good overall performance Stable and comfortable at high speed Loves long turns Great in the crud ...

Disliked: Lack of response and agility, especially at lower speeds Rotation and skid turns Needs some physical engagement ...

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