123-72-105@176 cm | R 16 | $949 w/b
116-65-104@160 cm | R 12 | $849 w/b
The woman you marry might not be the prettiest, most talented, or most dynamic girl in the class, but she’s a lifer, always there for you. The Waveflex 14 is that kind of ski — nothing jaw-dropping but utterly dependable as an all-mountain carver. “Nice, light and dynamic,” wrote one tester, but another called it “very docile,” meaning a real hammerhead skier might overpower it. Forget the thrills of a hot, one-night stand; this is about every-day, all-day reliability.
For some people, love is a simple, three-letter palindrome with an exclamation mark. “Wow !” gushed one tester, giving the Speed Magic perfect 10s across the board. A brilliant carver in long or short turns, the ski still has enough versatility to explore the mountain — rare for a ski this svelte (65 mm) at the waist. Also rare is a ski praised for both energy and forgiveness; energetic skis are often hard to rein in. Three letters say it all: Wow !
WAVEFLEX 78 Ti
123-78-105@176 cm | R 17 | $799 w/b
123-73-102@158 cm | R 13 | $649 w/b
At slow to medium speeds, the Waveflex 78 Ti is Clark Kent — reliable but unassuming, decent but nothing special. But open up the throttle, and the suit comes off and a superman emerges. “The ski likes long-radius at high speed,” was one tester’s assessment; and others agreed — a relatively stiff flex makes slower turns a bit cumbersome. Strong men who like spending time in the passing lane, strip down and climb aboard. You other guys, check out the Waveflex 82 XTI.
Work is something you do in your 9-to-5 job, not something to wreck your precious playtime on the mountain. The Mystic Magic makes skiing as easy and work-free as a magic-carpet ride. That might disappoint hardcore skiers who see skiing as a discharge of stored-up aggressions. Instead, this is a ski, wrote one tester, “made for women who like to ski without working hard.” Remember the old Eagles tune, Peaceful, Easy Feeling ? That’s the song the Mystic Magic sings.
WAVEFLEX 82 XTi
126-82-109@176 cm | R 17 | $949 w/b
123-78-105@158 cm | R 14 | $729 w/b
The Waveflex 82 XTi is like the dancing bear at the circus — one tough beast that is surprisingly nimble. “Handled snow transitions like an all-wheel-drive with Cadillac shocks,” wrote one tester. Big, sweeping arcs might be the preferred turn shape, but the ski still negotiates all terrain, snow and turn types with a rare combination of power and ease. Despite its width underfoot, it can carve a sweet turn when called on to do so. As one tester put it, “Fatty can move.”
When is skiing, to use the words of one tester, “like being on a cloud”? Answer: when you are riding aboard the Pure Magic. This is a ski that links turns with such feathery ease that all aspects of skiing, regardless of terrain or snow conditions, become easier. Put another way, this is a ski without weaknesses that responds well to skiers of a wide range of abilities. “Gentle,” “light” and “easy” were three words testers used regularly.
128-88-108@177 cm | R 21 | $899 w/b
128-88-108@159 cm | R 17 | $729 w/b
Just because you’re not a power player doesn’t mean you don’t want a ski with a little muscular oomph. While the biggest tester, at 225 pounds, was a bit too much for this ski, a smaller tester called it “very lively and snappy in all kinds of turns.” This is a light ski that still packs a punch, especially when making fast, big-radius turns. A good ski for those seeking to cross the bridge from intermediate to advanced skiing.
Stand and deliver! If your idea of freedom is blasting through high-speed turns with watering eyes and windblown hair, the Free’s the ski for you. One tester conceded that the ski “needs a lot of work in short turns.” But open up the throttle, she wrote, and “Wow! Allows you to go really fast in long turns.” Think of a rock-stable Mack truck with a rocket engine, and you get the picture. For speedsters, the Free delivers.
122-73-102 @168 cm | R 15 | $699 w/b
117-85-112@166 cm | R 15 | $529 w/b
Phew ! After all the stress and hard work that comes with real life, it’s nice just to ease back into the fantasy world of skiing. The Waveflex 10 won’t give you the thrills of a rodeo ride; instead, its one-word mantra seems to be “relax…” Descriptive words that appeared in testers’ reviews: honest, predictable, nice, easy. Or as one tester wrote, “Easy like Sunday morning; turns with almost magical ease.” Aahhh…
There is more than one way to make a ski turn. You can use a lot of sidecut on a stiff ski for carving yourself silly. Or you can play around with a reduced sidecut and softer flex, complemented by reverse-camber rocker on the tip and the tail. The result? Easy, pivot-like turns, especially for those who occasionally like playing in the park or riding fakey. For those who are more playful than powerful when it comes to turning, the Twist might make you shout.
123-78-105@168 cm | R 15 | $699 w/b
119-72-100@158 cm | R 14 | $599 w/b
Yo, bro — back off. If you’re amped up with adrenaline and ready to attack the mountain, you’re picking a fight with the wrong weapon. The Waveflex 78 is all about turning things down a notch and finding peace with yourself and the mountain, rather than charging forward like a hothead. Excitement? Maybe not. One tester compared the ski to “a family sedan.” But let’s not knock dependable, unassuming transportation. For relaxed, non-aggro skiers, this relaxed, non-aggro ski could be a perfect match.
Sure, the Wave Magic has limits, but hey — so do you. You’re a happy cruiser who occasionally ventures into moguls and trees, so you don’t need a stallion of a ski that needs to be ridden like a racehorse. Keep the speedometer at Sundaydriving speed, and the Wave Magic can take you pretty much wherever you want to go. “It surprised me,” wrote one tester, wary of the ski’s limits. “It can do a lot.” Almost sounds unlimited.
130-98-120@181 cm | R 23 | $979 w/b
122-104-114@165 cm | R 24 | $759 w/b
Big. That’s the Spire in a three-letter nutshell — a big ski meant for big turns in big snow on big terrain. Try to get it to make tight, little squiggles on hardpack, and the three-letter word becomes… nah. But let it loose in its element, and it can produce some mighty big results. Certainly no ski for a one-ski-quiver guy, this is a specialist, a fast floater when the snow is deep and soft. The ski’s credo: go big, or get another ski.
When training a puppy, sometimes nothing works better than a good tug on the leash, just to let him know who is in charge. The Deep can be like a curious pup, its attention apt to wander if you don’t assert your authority. Testers agreed that this is definitely a powder ski, but who would expect a carver in a ski tapering just 18 millimetres from tip to midsection? As the name implies, this doggie wants to go deep.
7 | SkiPress Ski Test’ 11
Powered by the Quebec Subaru Dealer’s Association