2013/2014 WildSnow Girl Ski Quiver


Post by WildSnow.com blogger | September 24, 2013      
Caroline

Bella of the backcountry, WildSnow Girl Caroline Gleich having fun at Vahalla Mountain Touring, Selkirk Mountains, Canada.

Some girls have a gown for every red carpet gala. Lucky WildSnow Girls have a ski for every condition. Let us introduce our ultimate quiver divas for 2013/2014.


La Sportiva GTS
Length tested 157 cm
Weight 1210 grams
Shape 121/88/109

GTS

Women's specific GTS by La Sportiva - sweet!

Uphilling for strudel...no problem

Uphilling for strudel...no problem.

Fitness uphilling — skinning up a ski resort or a backcountry peak — is the best all around exercise. Cardio, core, cellulite, all get worked and even batwings flee as nicely shaped triceps take shape from poling. But early season jaunts can feel tortuous no matter how fit from a summer full of hiking and biking. The solution? The women specific La Sportiva GTS is the ease-into-skin-fitness machine.

At 1210 grams, 157 cm La Sportiva GTS’s take much of the pain away from those first few backcountry outings. Do a few stretches by the car and start the uphill ski season with these light planks — you’ll get in condition without risk of muscle pulls. And later on it’s fun to yo-yo skin on these for a good cardio workout.

157 cm is short but I’ve experienced good edge grip on hard packed snow in narrow runs, where it’s handy to have a small but solid ski. The flat notched tails slip easily onto my pack when booting. The minimalist precut La Sportiva skin, glidey and light, attaches to holes in the top and tail.

Stiff but snappy, La Sportiva GTS carve beautifully on resort groom or backcountry corn. Perhaps because they’re short, I found it harder to find their sweet spot in wind affected snow, and they aren’t as surfy in powder as my wider skis. As Lou says, every quiver should have a skinny ski and trim gals are my “sub 90” ski of choice.

Karuba wood core with reinforcement plates under bindings.

Available and on sale now, La Sportiva women’s specific GTS backcountry ski.


Dynafit Huascaran
Length tested 167 cm
Weight 1690 grams
Shape 133/110/122

Huascaran

Dynafit Huascaran, not women specific but works for women.

Dynafit Huascaran is one of the skis that consistently “floats” to the top of our Ultimate Quiver evaluations. We’ve published previous reviews, but got this female take last winter from Piglet, a well known Aspen Powder Tours Guide and gal-about-town who’s one of the mountain women who makes our valley here in Colorado such a wonderful alpine community.

Piglet: I was excited to ski the Huascaran, having heard they are designed as a lightweight but wide ski for backcountry conditions. This past March, I took the planks to Aspen Highlands where we happened to have plenty of natural and semi-natural soft snow. I skied a few runs in Highland Bowl, then headed for Steeplechase, No Name and more. I skied them in a variety of snow conditions: firm refrozen, forgiving slush-corn, spring glop. I also hit a variety of ski lines that demanded some sort of commitment and a firm edge, or a quick turn and fun mogul skiing.

Huascaran has a huge sweet spot. It loves to turn (as I do also) but will hold and carve for a nice long turn. Actually will leave railroad tracks though you need to be patient getting it on edge. Skiing down Highlands G4 was firm in spots and the ski held an edge with ease. I looked for the weirdest snow I could find on the hill and let the skis slice right through seamlessly. If I committed the ski would perform. Love the tip rocker on the ski. It initiates the new turn flawlessly.

Perhaps the only drawback was that the skis felt a bit planky. In other words, not a finesse ski. But that’s okay so long as the performance/width/weight ratio is there, which it is.

Overall, impressive! Anyone wanting a wider ski that’s suitable for human powered vertical should consider Huascaran.

(WildSnow weight vs Surface score of 81 places Huascaran below average in mass. Weight of our 167 cm testers (width 133/110/122) is 1576 grams, 55.6 oz per ski.

Available now, Dynafit Huascaran and skins.


Rossignal Soul Seven
Length tested 172
Weight 1774 grams
Shape 135/104/125

Soul

Ravishing Rossi Soul Seven

Like a buxom gal in a Hofbrauhaus dirndl, Rossi Soul 7 is voluptuous… the heaviest in our quiver… but she’s a fantastic ride. On days when I don’t mind a harder workout, I lug these up the hill. Every time I’m rewarded and often will turn uphill again for another lusty lap down. In every condition these skis rock and they’re speedy. My fastest, most surfy runs have been on the Soul 7. Solid and fun, these gals are worth their weight. Rocker tip and tail quickly initiates turns and excels at plowing through backcountry snow of any type. Honeycomb air tip technology in the top and tail makes these skis float on powder and crud, and cuts down on unnecessary heftiness.

The Soul 7 lacks skin tail notches. Our remedy was to insert a screw for the rat tail mod, rather an inelegant scar. Rossignol Savory 7 is the “women specific” version — same dimensions, different topskin.

Available here, Rossignol Soul 7.


K2 SideKick
Length tested 174 cm (tester is a 6′ gal)
Weight 1885 grams
Shape 139/108/127

SideKick

K2 SideKick

Sister to Gotback, the women specific K2 SideKick comes into our spotlight. She’s the ski quiver pick of choice for Alaskan, Amy Heuer.

sidekick

Amy's BFF, K2 SideKicks.

Amy: K2 SideKicks are bomber. Wider and longer than I’m used to, they are perfect for the variable conditions Alaska throws my way. The width and length do add weight, which I feel when I shoulder the skis to hike up steep icy sections, but it’s a price I’ll pay. Whether it’s a perfect powder day, a slush-fest, or chatter through ice biscuits, these skis take it. I have never felt so solid before and at the same time had the sensation that I’m floating. Accessing side country with steeper pitches and trees, the SideKicks react to every movement as if saying, I want more! The agility created by the all-terrain rocker makes turns easy.

The SideKick will not be in stores as a production ski for this season but can be found on sale. The new K2 Annex 108 has the same sidecut (139/108/127), but there are a number of significant differences between the two skis (weight, flex and core materials). Annex 108 comes in sizes ranging from 170 to 191, too long and heavy for the average women backcountry skier. The K2 SuperBright 102 (sidecut 135/102/121, in sizes 146, 153, 160, 167, 174), the new version of the K2 GotBack (one of our 2012/2013 Ultimate Quiver skis, is our recommended substitute.


DPS Yvette Pure3 Carbon Nano
Length tested 168 cm
Weight 1530 grams
Shape 141/112/128

dps

DPS, the ultimate diva

And who’s the gal in the hot little dress, who can accessorize down or up and be ready for any occasion? She has to be Yvette, DPS’s carbon nano queen. Wide, yet light and nimble with perky rocker tip and tail, she goes anywhere and skis it fluidly. If you like to float, she’s the one that makes you feel like your cruising down the clouds. The bummer about Yvette Pure3 is that she’s priced like Chanel gown. But as Coco said, “There are people with money and people who are rich.” Hot pink Yvette will make you feel rich.

Find a DPS dealer here. here.

Snow princess, Julie Kennedy, enjoying a fairytale kingdom.

Snow princess, Julie Kennedy, enjoying a fairytale kingdom.



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Comments

18 Responses to “2013/2014 WildSnow Girl Ski Quiver”

  1. Mary September 24th, 2013 6:14 pm

    i don’t know if this is an old review but there is no Sidekick this year. It has been discontinued which you fail to point in the article.
    “the women specific K2 SideKick comes into the limelight this year”

  2. Lou Dawson September 24th, 2013 6:48 pm

    Sorry about not being clear about available skis, we’ll edit

  3. Mary September 24th, 2013 8:10 pm

    Also just to clarify… the Soul is not a women’s specific ski which your article implies by calling them ” buxom gal and voluptuous”…

  4. Jay September 24th, 2013 11:31 pm

    Women specific ski Mary? Hmmmm…Please clarify.

  5. Mary September 24th, 2013 11:50 pm

    Why are you asking me Jay? That is the description/title of the article as posted on facebook… “The latest women specific backcountry skis” which to me says…. gee I don’t know maybe latest means THIS coming season not last years discontinued and a couple of mens skis. Why are you asking me? I didn’t write this piece of trash. Hmmmmm…whal’s the point of your post? I don’t need to clarify I’m asking the author. DUH.

  6. Mary September 24th, 2013 11:54 pm

    Jay you can ask Rossignol what they mean by women specific, I’m not the one who came up with that marketing crap, the Savory or the Soul you pick which top sheet you like or maybe the pink DPS’s are more your style:)

  7. Katie September 25th, 2013 6:14 am

    Good article. Thank you for the reviews! I will be trying the Huascarans this year.

  8. Sue September 25th, 2013 6:56 am

    Ditto Katie. I appreciate a review by women on what skis work for them. “Women Specific” is sometimes just marketing hype by the industry, sometimes the only difference is sizing and graphics. Most good skiers know that.

  9. Kerry September 25th, 2013 3:56 pm

    I always appreciate seeing the female, in this case females’, perspective. Thanks for the review. DPS is SWEET!

  10. europastrylover September 25th, 2013 5:16 pm

    I love the caption in photo #2. Could this be a new bumper sticker, Lou?
    “I SKI UPHILL FOR STRUDEL” maybe or “I SKIN 4 STRUDEL”

  11. Lisa September 26th, 2013 9:32 am

    Hey Europastrylover, great minds think alike! We have “Will Ski For Strudel” and “I Ski Uphill” stickers. Email us your address using the Contact tab above-right and let us know which one(s) you’d like.
    Miss those pastries!

  12. Amy September 26th, 2013 9:34 am

    Awesome to see what other available options there are for this winter, but I am definitely looking forward to some more turns on the Sidekicks. Pink isn’t really my style…

  13. Lisa Dawson September 26th, 2013 12:29 pm

    We updated the info about K2 SideKick. Those of you who got them scored.

  14. Lisa September 26th, 2013 12:38 pm

    Amy, pink isn’t my goto color either but that DPS magic makes them look pretty good. 🙂

  15. MVA October 2nd, 2013 12:45 pm

    Dan/Lisa,

    Where might one demo DPS? The better half is interested but she’s a try it before you buy it gal.

  16. Lou Dawson October 2nd, 2013 1:37 pm

    MVA, easy one to answer. DPS has a demo program. Inquire at their website:

    http://dpsskis.com/

    ‘best, Lou

  17. Bjorn Naylor October 2nd, 2013 2:42 pm

    Mary is skiing on the all new chartreuse and huckleberry colored Olin Sarcasms!

  18. Laura November 21st, 2013 5:46 pm

    Hi Ladies,

    I have a pair of La Sportiva Hi5’s and absolutely love them. They are super lightweight but also perform really well and they rip in the backcountry. I also have a pair of Rossignol S7’s and love them too. I’ve never tried the Rossignol Soul 7’s but would love to.

    Cheers and Happy Shredding!

    Laura

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  • Welcome to Louis (Lou) Dawson's backcountry skiing information & opinion website. Lou's passion for the past 50 years has been alpinism, climbing, mountaineering and skiing -- along with all manner of outdoor recreation. He has authored numerous books and articles about ski touring and is well known as the first person to ski down all 54 of Colorado's 14,000-foot peaks, otherwise known as the Fourteeners! Books and free ski touring news and information here.

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