DPS Tour1 — New Line of Tour Skis — Used and Reviewed

Post by WildSnow.com blogger | January 15, 2015      
DPS series especially for touring.

DPS series especially for touring. 112RP2 Tour1.

Yes, the much anticipated, rumored and downright prayed upon new line of AT skis from DPS. Lou was supposed to be skiing these. Too bad Lou. While the cats away the mice will play. And play I have been starting with the 178cm Wailer 112RP2 Tour1. With Lou off in Europe I got my hands on the first pair hot off the presses. The line up consists of a Tour1 version of the Wailer 112, Wailer 99 and Cassiar 95. The profiles and dimensions are the same as their Pure3 cousins with available sizes as follows:
Wailer 112RP2 Tour1: 168, 178, 184cm
Wailer 99 Tour1: 168, 176, 184cm
Cassiar 95 Tour1: 168, 178cm

The fundamental difference lies in the construction resulting in a substantial weight savings and skiing characteristics geared towards an AT application. The estimated weights for the Tour1 skis are:
184cm Wailer 112RP2 Tour1 – 1500g per ski
184cm Wailer 99 Tour1 – 1410g per ski
178cm Cassiar 95 Tour1 – 1375g per ski

This represents a savings of 200-300g per ski over the already light weight Pure3 construction. As long as DPS keeps making their skis lighter I can avoid cardio training until at least my 60’s.

DPS Tour!

DPS Tour!

Construction of the Tour1 skis differs from the Pure3 in three significant ways. First is the change from a sidewall construction to a cap construction. Second is the choice of wood for the core going from aspen to balsa. Think Elmers glue and model airplanes from when you were a kid. Lastly is a proprietary new Tour1 specific aerospace carbon laminate. The resulting construction is intended to be torsionally softer and more forgiving than the very powerful Pure3 as well as less damp and with a lower top end speed to better mirror the performance of laterally softer AT boots. That said, this makes the 112Tour1 one of the lightest, widest skis on the market with DPS claiming greater torsional stiffness and power than other skis in it’s class. Their goal is fast ascents and performance descents.

Enough with the hype because ultimately the proof is in the skiing. I have spent the past three days on the 112Tour1. My first day was a family ski day playing Pied Piper to my 6-year-old as she chased me around the greens and blues of Buttermilk. The very first thing I noticed was the effortless turn initiation even at slow speeds seemingly due to a very low swing weight. The very low swing weight also made them feel shorter than the same sized Pure3 version. A variety of turn shapes was easily accomplished including shorter turns despite the wider waist. They especially excelled on tree trails.

DPS series especially for touring, 112.

DPS series especially for touring.

Yesterday I began my day with a few laps on the groomers of Aspen Mt. The first sensation I got was one of floating on a cushion of air as well as that classic carbon construction pop and quick lateral projection as soon as I released the edges. They tracked well and were more damp than I expected for such a light ski. I noticed having to use a bit lower stance and increased angulation vs.the Pure3 to accomplish the needed tip pressure to get the ski to track and optimize stability. I then headed out behind the ski area to tour for whatever powder I could find after a meager 3″ snowfall the night before. That said, I can sniff out powder like a pig hunting for truffles.The 112Tour1 is certainly oriented more towards soft snow which is no surprise given it’s dimensions. Even in powder, the above comments about a lower stance and increased angulation to increase tip pressure and improve tracking held true. Also,the more consistent the snow, be it powder or corduroy, the better the 112Tour1 performed.

I spent today guiding snowcat skiing on the 112Tour1. Even though I brought my trusty 112Pure2 along, I left them racked for the day while I continued my fling with the Tour1. There was a sense of jealousy in the air.

There is no question that the Pure2 and Pure3 are more powerful, stable and damp, track better and have a higher top end speed limit than the Tour series. Thus more suited to the ski area, other mechanized skiing and stalking aggressive freeride lines. But if your cup of tea involves the solace of human powered ascent and the benefits of carbon construction performance on the descent then DPS has developed a worthy contender in it’s first foray into the AT ski market.

(Editor’s note: And about those DPS ski boots that rumors are floating around about? I guess mum is still the word. Should be interesting, are bindings next after that?)


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48 Responses to “DPS Tour1 — New Line of Tour Skis — Used and Reviewed”

  1. CalebfromMT January 15th, 2015 1:53 pm

    Dang it. Just bought the 112 pure. Had I only waited ……….

  2. Jeremy January 15th, 2015 1:56 pm

    The Tour sounds like another step on the DPS plan for Global Domination. Have they made a ‘bad’ ski yet?

    I just need to sit in a darkened room, and repeat the mantra “I don’t need anymore DPS skis” 🙂

  3. hairymountainbeast January 15th, 2015 2:02 pm

    Any chance the tour version of the 112 has a flatter tail?

  4. Bob Perlmutter January 15th, 2015 2:24 pm

    The tail on the 112Tour1 is not any flatter nor does it have any kind of skin notch. There is a flatter tail on the 95Tour1 similar to the Cassiar95. DPS skis with a flatter tail and wider footprint would be the Wailer105 and Lotus120 but they do not come in the Tour1 construction. Still pretty light though.

  5. Louie III January 15th, 2015 8:45 pm

    those look rad! thanks for the review Bob

  6. marshal January 16th, 2015 6:55 am

    for those that are wondering about weight, of the first 50 pair of 178 wailer 112’s run in this construction, the heaviest pair of skis ave’d 1415g ea, the average amongst this sample set is 1370g, and they have a 1420g claimed weight in the catalog.

  7. Eric Steig January 19th, 2015 12:49 am

    I’ve skied with people that spent tons of money on DPS skis, only to have to wait while they gripe about the snow conditions and while they try to get their skins back on, which keep falling off owing to the lack of a skin notch. One of these guys sold em and replaced them with K2 Coombacks (which I had advised in the first place), and couldn’t be happier.

    I’ve skied with others that think they are the best skis ever.

    Just saying: DPS skis are not necessarily for everyone.
    Try ’em before you drink the koolaid.

  8. Lou Dawson 2 January 19th, 2015 1:49 am

    And cut a skin notch in your $1,000 skis…

  9. Kyle January 19th, 2015 11:14 am

    Or get a pair of G3 twin tip connectors. I haven’t had a tail clip slip yet.

    Thanks for the review. I’ve owned a pair of the pure2 RP112 for a about a season and a half and I agree with Eric’s comment. I’m certainly not thrilled with my pair. I use them exclusively for touring and the one thing I’ve learned is that you really have to charge hard to wake them up, and that’s not something you often get in the backcountry (safely at least). In my opinion a lighter, more forgiving ski, would definitely be an improvement for touring.

    Bob – could you guess at how they might compare to the pure2’s in crust/crud? I need to replace my volie vectors and the wailer 99 tour1’s look interesting.

  10. Ed January 19th, 2015 11:58 am

    I vote for the G3 twin tip connectors too – used ’em with my Dynafit skins on my 112RP’s for years with not a problem. These new touring skis with Dynafits removable brake bindings look like they’d be a really cool setup – maybe enough to start to replace the old pile of Verticals accumulated over the years. Hmmm.
    My RP’s seem to have a sweet spot which when you hit it makes em unlike anything I’ve skid before. But they are not hard-pack resort skis, nor have they been any good skinning up boiler plate windpack, even with ski crampons – Movement Logic X’s rule at that for me (the old ones which had less early rise and more camber).
    Actually can’t wait to try these out. But we need more than the 1st 50 pairs out the door . . . . DPS website doesn’t list them as available yet (19-Jan-14) it seems!

  11. Brian January 19th, 2015 8:41 pm

    Ah, fear not the Dremel tool applied to your pricey boards. I carved a skimo style notch in the tip and a nice flat section in the tail to do the trick. It’s a naughty pleasure, admittedly not for the faint hearted but solves the skin problems elegantly.

  12. Bob Perlmutter January 20th, 2015 10:49 pm

    Hi Kyle, I’ll address a couple of your points and questions. I have for the past few years and continue to ski the 112RP Pure2 extensively though primarily for guiding cat skiing. I have toured on them as well. I have never felt that they only perform when charging hard though they are quite capable of doing so. I have always thought they perform at the highest level across the broadest possible spectrum of backcountry terrain, snow conditions, speeds and aggressiveness.
    Based on my experience to date, the Pure2 is more damp and stable, tracks better and has a higher top end speed limit than the Tour1. That said, my next experiment with the Tour1 will be to try different mounting positions to see how that affects the skis performance. Can you say ski a la Swiss Cheese! I’ll report back.

  13. George January 22nd, 2015 6:09 am

    Perl-Please compare the DPS Tour 1 to BD C-Convert for touring. The weights are similar, but the C-Convert sits between 112 and 99 waists. How do they ski in comparison?

  14. Lou Dawson 2 January 22nd, 2015 6:14 am

    Good comparo for Bob, as he’s got both skis rocking. But comparos are always hard so let’s be careful. Lou

  15. Bob Perlmutter January 22nd, 2015 11:56 pm

    Hi George, a very fair comparison due to similarities in construction, profile, weight, etc. I’m sure the individual manufactures will take exception and have a field day with why their product is better than the other guy’s but as far as I’m concerned it’s close enough for who it’s for. I’m having the Tour1 remounted 1cm forward as we speak. I’ll defer answering until I have skied them with the new mounting position. Stay tuned.

  16. See January 23rd, 2015 8:37 am

    I think the comparison could be interesting because the Tours and the C Converts represent two different approaches to touring ski construction— cap with superlight core on the Tours vs. sidewall with denser but sculpted core on the Converts. Layup is a wild card. (For what it’s worth, I bet they’re both good.)

  17. Bob Perlmutter February 7th, 2015 12:44 pm

    What a difference a day makes(OK, two weeks) as well as 1.5cm and a Wintersteiger. Since my last comments I first had the 112 Tour1 remounted what I thought was going to be 1cm forward but ended up being 1.5cm forward to maintain the integrity of the skis. The difference was immediately noticeable. The skis tracked better, were more stable with a more manageable tip and no longer required such an exaggerated lower and heavily angulated stance. The Tour1 still has a speed limit that does’t exist on the Pure models They still felt a bit grabby so the next step was to get them tuned. Initially at the shop they appeared to be flat with no bevel but once on the diamond stone it became apparent they were a little edge high. Back on the snow the skis were now making a clean, smooth arc from tip to tail. The only conditions I found them lacking was on icey or glazed snow. Now I’m happy with a ski that is instantly recognizable for all of the traits that DPS is best known only in a lighter weight package oriented to the backcountry, touring environment.
    The comparison to the Carbon Convert(which I also had tuned) is appropriate. Due to the narrower waist(105mm) of the Convert, I found it to be a bit quicker from edge to edge. Correspondingly, the Convert also performed better on hard snow but that is not the best and highest use for either. Interestingly, I also found the Convert to be the damper of the two skis. That said, the Tour1 generates more power and energy out of the turn, tracks better and is the more stable of the two. They both excel in soft snow. Please know that to some degree all of the above is splitting hairs.
    In the end, if I had to choose a one ski quiver(a fate worse than death) I would probably go for the versatility that the narrower waist of the Convert affords. Under “normal” circumstances, the additional width of the 112Tour1 for mid winter coupled with one or more narrower skis for spring, fitness uphilling and technical descents would make for a very compelling combo. I hope all of the above proves useful.

  18. Bob Perlmutter February 7th, 2015 12:56 pm

    Oops, I almost forgot to mention my thoughts on mount points for the 112Tour1. Based on my experience, I would not mount any further back than +1cm, am glad I ended up at +1.5cm and would be very curious to see the results at +2cm. I would think for the ladies that an additional +1cm could be added to the above comments. Certainly talking to DPS would be prudent before mounting your bindings.

  19. George February 7th, 2015 4:17 pm

    Thanks for comparison of the DPS Tour 1- 112 and C-Convert. I will put the DPS on my demo list.

  20. Lou Dawson 2 February 7th, 2015 10:36 pm

    Thanks Bob, good stuff. Lou

  21. Erik Erikson February 7th, 2015 11:06 pm

    Bob (and Lou), having almost no experience in different mounting positions I´d like to ask: How subtle or not to feel is a difference of 1,5 cm really? Can it even make the difference if one likes a ski or not? I hear very variant opinions on that: Some say to “feel” a difference of 1 or 2 cm is all just delusion, some say it´s very noticable in fact…
    That question is of relevance even if you change boots: I guess a change from a regular 4 buckel boot to lets say a TLT 5 or 6 forces you to move your heel-peace forward for at least 1,5 cm (cause the TLT is that short), so the effect would be something like “mounted more forward”…

  22. Erik Erikson February 7th, 2015 11:09 pm

    …heel-PIECE of course, not heel-PEACE.. sometimes I can´t help to laugh at my own english 😉

  23. Lou Dawson 2 February 8th, 2015 12:50 am

    No worries, am happy to edit-correct when I get a chance. Lou

  24. Bob Perlmutter February 8th, 2015 11:42 am

    Hi Erik, I find anything less than 1cm difference forward or back in the mounting position to have little noticeable effect. That said, a change in mounting position can have a great effect on the performance of a pair of skis. Certainly there will be some skis that no matter where you are mounted you just simply are not going to like them. Your example of remounting a binding due to going from a more standard boot to a TLT5/6 effectively moves you forward is correct if all you do is remount the heel while leaving the toe in the same place. The proper way to remount a binding in that situation would be to move both the toe and heel to ensure the midsole mark on the new boot lined up to the midsole mark on the ski(assuming no conflict with the old screw holes). A good experiment would be to rent a pair of demo skis for a day that have a binding with both a moveable toe and heel allowing you to try different mounting positions throughout the day.

  25. Erik Erikson February 8th, 2015 1:03 pm

    Bob, thank you for taking the time to answer! I actually did move the heel-piece forward on my waybacks when changing to a shorter boot (of course cause the heelpiece is designed to be moved without havin to drill new holes). And, surprisingly, I found the ski HARDER to turn – I guess most people say standing a little forward makes turning easyer? But maybe it was just cause I generally was not used to the new position in the beginning.

    And at this point I´d just like to say once: I really appreciate on wildsnow the forthcoming and positive way people who are more experienced in a certain topic communicate with less experienced. So I myself for example gained a lot of information here over time I can use to help others out again. Thats good.

  26. Greg Louie February 8th, 2015 4:05 pm

    @Erik Erikson: Erik, if all you did was move the heelpiece forward by 1 cm your effective balance point on the ski probably only changed by something less than .5cm (depending on where your foot sits in the shell).

    Very few people will be able to detect a difference in ski performance with this change – chances are it’s due to moving to a less powerful boot.

  27. Erik Erikson February 8th, 2015 10:24 pm

    @Greg Louie :Probably you are right, did not think of that! Though I guess a change to a TLT normally means more than 1 cm diff, cause the TLT is very short and additional does not have that extra-lenght before the toe (cause not desigend to fit in another binding than the Dynaft) so your foot is even more placed forward in the shell compared to were the boot sits in the binding.
    And at least the TLT 5 P feels noticabel stiffer to me (with tongue) than an old, well used Zzero PX.

  28. Herb Jones April 10th, 2015 11:55 am

    Bob, Lou, Erik,
    Years ago all skis were mounted with the toe at at mid cord regardless of boot size. So a size 22 and 32 would have the toe piece at the same point! K2 used to have graduated marks on the sidewall of its skis (K2 Explorer for ex.) which were scaled to sole length, I assume to compensate for how sole length affects where your weight is centered over the ski. Now only mid sole is marked on most skis and with the radical sidecuts and shapes we are dependant on excellent websites and people like Bob and Lou to find the sweet mounting spot. Hopefully their boot sizes (sole ;lengths) are similar.
    The point being , if you reduce sole length and remount your binding, the toe will be further back and the heel further forward. This could negate some of the effect of mounting 1 or 1.5cm forward. Or would it?? How does sole length affect our weight center on the ski? Should someone with a size 30 put the binding at the same point as one with a size 27 or 23, etc.

  29. Lou Dawson 2 April 10th, 2015 12:02 pm

    Herb, the operative principle here is that you want the boot midpoint located in a specific location on the ski, usually arrived at first by engineers and product development team, then by on-snow testing done by a crew of very good skiers. Each ski is different, there is no hard formula for it. It’s true that perhaps boot sole length could influence exact location as well, but in my experience that’s usually not the case and the “mid sole” mark method of mounting compensates just fine for boot length. Lou

  30. Jim July 8th, 2015 9:20 pm

    I found mounting +2 on the DPS pure to make a huge difference. At 0, they would not turn for me,and threw me backwards without my arms way out in front.. AT+2 they carve, initiate, and slarve and float in pow on the steeps. I almost sold them until I remounted. Definitely big difference. The DPS instructions mention this for smaller feet, and racing stance.

  31. Nick September 3rd, 2015 5:49 pm

    how do these skis perform in short radius turns?


  32. Lou Dawson 2 September 3rd, 2015 6:08 pm

    Hi Nick, perhaps Bob can chime in. I skied the DPS tour version of Wailer 99 quite a few times last spring. Just like a normal DPS, these are not skis designed for short radius turns. Lou

  33. Bob Perlmutter September 4th, 2015 12:26 am

    Hi Nick, certainly the 112 is less suited to short radius turns than the 99. That said, the above mentioned change in mounting position to +1.5cm helped the ski initiate, engage and track better allowing for greater control over the desired turn radius. Also, soft snow which is the highest and best use for the 112 allows for greater creativity and playfulness in turn shape, speed, etc. In the end, short radius is not the 112’s calling. Think more medium radius.

  34. Clive Saleman September 5th, 2015 6:01 am

    Hi Bob and Lou. Close to pulling the trigger on Carbon Convert 180 when I was distracted by availabilty of DPS Tour1 researching them found this thread, Very interested in your comments re mount point on the DPS…so where would you recommend the CC’s? Read the thread on the CC’s already one comment there was +2 cm. Bob you have spent the most time on the CC’s albeit in a shorter length any recommendations on mount point for the 180’s? I am 5’10” 170 lb. Heading into spring skiing down here in NZ best touring time, but still very cold and stormy so getting fresh snow regularly. I already have Soul 7’s if you were me would you add in the CC’s or the DPS? We ski less pow down here but lots of off piste ungroomed and spring snow.
    Thanks Clive

  35. Bob Perlmutter September 6th, 2015 9:52 pm

    Hi Clive, my Carbon Convert were mounted on center to a 297mm bsl(old boot) but I have only skied them with a boot with a 294mm bsl(newer boot). That puts me very slightly ahead of center which I see no reason to change. Sure, it would be interesting to try some more forward mount points but I’m not willing to start drilling more holes in a perfectly good ski just cuz. Are your Soul 7 mounted for AT? If so, the dimensions are pretty similar to the CC. The CC will be noticeably lighter and I suspect a better pure powder ski. The Soul 7 will be more powerful and better on firmer snow. Given, as you say, you ski less pow(I’ve skied in NZ), the greater versatility of the CC sounds tempting unless that is just redundant with the Soul 7. In which case, to increase the diversity of your quiver, the DPS would create more departure from what you already have in hand.

  36. Clive Saleman September 6th, 2015 11:38 pm

    Hi Bob, Thanks for your comments reassuring about the recommended mount point. My Soul 7’s have binding freedom inserts I can run Griffons and Radicals but I don’t find them to be a great touring ski they are a lttlle heavy and kind of clumsy for touring and the tight turn radius I find most suitable for bashing about on my local hill which is steep and tight…been up there today it was too icy for the Souls though. I loaned them to a 60 yr old friend who took them to Japan in January and they were the perfect one ski quiver there for him.. I want something longer radius so the Wailers are perhaps not right. I have been chatting with someone who had the CC’s and quit them so now I’m a little hesitant on them. Currently I am down to 6 skis and feeling a little undergunned especially at the bigger wider end of the spectrum. I am touring on Nanuq’s but it would be great to have a powder ski that can tour hence my interest in the CC’s. I am going to demo some C6 skis (C6 skiing.com) in the next few days made locally The Judge 180 cm 136 105 132 1550 grams per ski the turn radius of 17 m might put me off and steer me back to the Carbon Converts….your review of the CC’s is very positive thanks. Cheers Clive

  37. DavidB September 8th, 2015 11:08 pm

    Hi Clive, if you are around the Queenstown area, I suggest you go and see Darryl at Small Planet Sports.

    They demo DPS and FWIW practically his whole shop staff crew have changed to DPS skis. Really good for NZ skiing conditions. I was there skiing with Darryl a month ago on Wailer 112Pure3’s and we got the goods.

    This way you can get a feel for the ski before purchasing.

  38. Alan October 18th, 2015 1:41 pm

    Hi, a ski of similar dimensions and weight to the dps wailer 99 Tour1 is the dynafit denali. So I’m hesitating… Has anybody been ablw to ski both and compare their performance. What about turn radius and turn initiation? I’m looking for a versitile an light ski for the European alps. Best, Alan

  39. Lou Dawson 2 October 18th, 2015 4:06 pm

    Denali is a specialized ski that is not particularly strong, we only recommend it for times when weight is everything. The DPS is a Wailer in name only. It’s ok, it doesn’t ski like a real Wailer. But I’m pretty sure it’s plenty strong. Lou

  40. Alan October 18th, 2015 4:52 pm

    Ok, Dps is stronger, even though both skis weigh approximately the same and use carbon fibre in the construction? Torsional stiffness in traversing is of course welcome. Also: would you combine the Tour 1 99 with a light binding such as the dynafit superlight? Alan

  41. Lou Dawson 2 October 18th, 2015 5:45 pm

    Consumer and journalist testing seems to show DPS to be stronger, but I don’t have any lab tests. Both have torsional stiffness. Either ski can be paired with a lightweight binding, always depending on your style. Lou

  42. Silas Wild October 19th, 2015 12:05 am

    In late March 2015, a shop in the Colorado Rockies told me DPS had recalled all their Tour1 skis due to bindings pulling out easily. Has anyone else heard of this problem, and whether it has been remedied? The Kitten Factory Toors Light ski is similar construction, and their claimed solution is extra reinforcement material in the binding mount area.

  43. justin October 19th, 2015 8:48 am

    Silas – I had heard that as well and checked with DPS, this was their reply “We did in fact have some issues with testing late last season which we have since resolved so all Tour1 models that are being released currently are corrected and ready to rip. “

  44. marshal from DPS October 19th, 2015 10:14 am

    Hi Silas and Justin-

    Marshal from DPS here, just quickly confirming that DPS did have binding retention issues last spring on the first release for Tour1’s. DPS contacted each skier as quickly as possible, and warrantied each pair with skis that now have a more robust binding plate.


  45. Bob Perlmutter October 19th, 2015 10:29 am

    Hi Clive, another option would be to consider the DPS Wailer 99 in the Pure3 construction. Still relatively light compared to the Soul 7 but with more beef than the Tour1 construction.

  46. Lou Dawson 2 October 19th, 2015 11:00 am

    Thanks all for the input re DPS binding retention, while writing about the Tour series I’m of course referring to current retail version, not a former warranted early release. Luckily they didn’t have many skis out in the wild, and DPS has good customer relations system that helped with replacing all those skis, except a review pair I was supposed to send back and still have not gotten around to shipping (grin), which incidentally we never had any problems with. Lou

  47. db October 19th, 2015 1:08 pm

    Yup, last spring I had a pair of the Tour1’s on my bench all marked up ready to mount when I got a call from my rep saying I needed to return them ASAP. All my pleading to the effect that I’m a big (and now old) weenie and had never broken a ski in 53 years of skiing and I’d be a great tester anyway was to no avail. Sigh…

    DPS was and has continued to be great to work with. Mike C sent me a new pair in August and I just took possession of some Speed Radicals that will get mounted soon. I’ll be interested to see how they ski in comparison to my 112 Pure’s.

  48. Terje Krogdahl October 28th, 2015 5:55 am

    Anyone tried this in a telemark setup?

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