Salomon QST 99 Ski Gear Review
While I type this the Salomon crew has been smashing steep pow lap after steep pow lap just across the river in the Tantalus Range, Squamish, BC. It’s the closest big mountain gnar to Doglotion’s world headquarters, and somehow I ended up on a computer while most of Whistler and Squamish are up their racing the Salomon Team to lines. I’m guessing a few of the rockstar shredders have the Salomon’s new QST skis under their feet, and it’s probably doing them proud.
We’ve taken the new Salomon QST 99 for some test spins to get a sneak peek at this frontcountry/backcountry crossover line that will hit shops in Fall 2016. The QST 99 is the midway ski in a series of five QST skis that vary by width; 118, 106, 99, 92, 85. Doglotion scored some 99’s in hopes of getting an all-around ski anywhere machine, fat enough for some freshies and skinny enough for spring shredding. It panned out well at first, but when Magic March kicked in with 3+ meters of snow, those 118s started to look pretty tasty, and are rumoured to be the best of the bunch.
So back to the QST 99, apart from poaching Gretzky’s retired hockey jersey number, here’s some intel on the skis…
- Good Weight – Not too crazy light or heavy, the QST series is a good fit for performance resort shredding and reasonable backcountry missions. The QST 99 is listed at 1700g (single, 181cm) which is beefier than ultra light carbon skis but lighter than the tanks out there.
- Performance Shape – The shape/camber/feel of this ski isn’t as playful as the Rocker2 100, but seems better suited for more techy skiing. It makes the Rocker2 feel more like a fun resort bashing ski, and the QST better suited for backcountry (IMHO).
- Sexy Simple Graphic – Nothing fancy schmancy, just some subtle variations of colour and topsheet treatments. Looking’ good.
- Spaceframe 3D!! – We barely know what this is, but it has a rad name. Here’s Salomon’s boast “This ski utilizes Salomon’s Spaceframe concept, the right material in the right place to ensure optimum performance on both hard snow and soft snow. Spaceframe includes a 3D woodcore for ski to snow contact and rebound, and a Ti Power platform under the foot for power and edge grip on hard snow. Combined with a full 360° ABS Sidewall construction and lightweight Koroyd inserts in the tip and tail, and QST Skis also deliver outstanding terrain adaptation and maneuverability in soft snow.”
- CFX Superfiber – Our favourite Salomon ski technology word, as seen in many past Doglotion gear reviews. CFX is a combination of Farbon and Flax, shaped into ribbon fiber and laid up like glass. The intent is to increase stability and decrease weight, but the obvious benefit is if you get lost in the woods, you could eat your skis and get some great hipster health benefits from the flax.
The Salomon QST 99 specs are:
- Length options: 167, 174, 181, 188
- Sidecut (181cm): 138/99/120
- Radius: 19.0, 19.2, 19.4, 19.6
- Weight per ski (181cm): 1700 g
Stan Rey’s QST’s are so burly they just cause avalanches wherever he goes…
The only downfall so far was mounting these babies with alpine bindings. Oops. Again the QST 99 isn’t as fun as a Rocker2 100, nor as bad-ass a straight-lining ski as the LAB 105. Meanwhile, big frame touring bindings would negate the good weight of these QST’s. So long story short, these QST 99’s are going to get a remount with some lightweight tech bindings so they can get some more play time this spring.
Watch for these babies to hit shelves this coming fall, and hopefully we’ll see some rad action of the Tantalus crew slaying steep and deep lines on their QST skis while I slay keyboards.