Gear Review: Teton Tested, Unofficial Approved | Elan Ripstick 106 [Ski Touring]

Gear Review: Teton Tested, Unofficial Approved | Elan Ripstick 106 [Ski Touring]

Gear

Gear Review: Teton Tested, Unofficial Approved | Elan Ripstick 106 [Ski Touring]

Photo (+Cover): Elan Skis

This past January I had the pleasure of testing Elan’s new breakout ski, the Ripstick 106, while ski touring on the west side of the Tetons.

Related: Daily Drivers Of The Future | The Best “Do Everything” Skis Of 2018

With the Baldy Knoll yurt booked, I set out on our 3 day shred mission with 5 others to test these new planks which Glen Plake claims are “the one ski I can just grab go anywhere in the world and be fine.” 

Overall Setup: 188 Elan Ripstick, Dynafit TLT Radical bindings, Dynafit Radical CR Ski Boot, and Black Diamond Ascension STS Climbing Skins

Uphill Performance:

Gaining 2 miles and 2,200′ on the skin in, Elan’s latest offering held up beautifully thanks to ample camber underfoot. The camber allowed the ski to hold a very strong edge when kick turning even when wearing a 40lb pack. I’ve found that flat or reverse camber skis lack the same edge hold underfoot and can turn into a nightmare of slipping and sliding backwards down the skin track.

The “Ripstick” was here… | Photo: Barclay Idsal/Unofficial Networks

With a lighter pack, the ski’s edge hold becomes even stronger and I was able to hold icy kick turns on a slope that ranged between 30-35° while my other backcountry partners floundered and slid back down the track.

Elan’s Ripstick also boasts an extremely light core that employs carbon tubes laid into the ski’s wood core. Each ski weighs just under 4 lbs and with the exception of carbon touring skis, this ski has great uphill performance for not being specifically ‘ski-mo.’

Uphill Features:

  • Vaportip Inserts – Reduce weight in the tips and tails of the ski
  • Tubelight Woodcore – Wood core with carbon tube inlay
  • Notched tail keeps the skins’ tail clip from sliding off

Uphill performance grade: 4/5

Downhill Performance:

The Ripstick 106 is an absolute beast on the downhill. A full sidewall ski with early rise in the tip/tail and camber underfoot, the 106 floats conquers soft and variable snow conditions without losing a turn. That said, the mid-fat Elan ski handles unbelievably well on hard snow.

Putting the Ripstick through its powder paces | Photo: Barclay Idsal/Unofficial Networks

With a specified right and left ski, the semi-asymmetric build puts skiers on a stable turning stance that encourages perfect, parallel turns and optimizes edge to edge transmission of energy. Just remember to have the right shoe on each foot before dropping in…

Downhill Features:

  • Early rise tip/tail
  • Amphibio Profile
  • Full SST Sidewall construction

Downhill Score: 5/5

Overall Score: The Elan Ripstick 106 completed its tour of duty with high commendations and received a 4.5/5 score for its capabilities as a touring specific ski.

Buy Here: Elan Ripstick 106

Find out more here: Elan Ripstick Series

 

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