Cage Match Comparison 2019 Head Kore 105 vs 2019 Elan Ripstick 106

Philpug

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Here is a Cage Match that could have happened last year, but no one requested it. It is hard to argue with what Head is doing right now. It is hitting on all cylinders, and the Kores are no exception. Head has been able to produce a light yet powerful ski with the Kore, and it’s a winner ... but Elan brings the Plake inspiration to this Cage Match. As with many of the comparisons, the best option might not be what you expect. Glen is not just a weatherworn face under a mohawk: he is becoming a pretty good engineer and understands what makes a ski ski well. One of Glen's areas of focus is adding lightness to the design.

With taper at the tip and some shape at the extremities, the Kore’s profile excels in three-dimensional snow and still works on the wind buff. At 105 mm, it is is not a powder ski but it's still enough in any single-digit snowstorm. It is amazing how a light ski like the Kore can be so solid and retain a warm analog feel rather than getting pingy or digital in feedback.

The Elan Ripstick is like a Australian Shepherd puppy, it needs to be doing something fun, an unusual trait for a One Oh Something. Just like you can throw a puppy tennis balls until your arm falls off, the Ripstick wants to make turns, porpoise in and out of the snow, and just play. These characteristics have a lot to do with the tip shape and Elan’s unique amphibio profile with a tad more rocker on the outer edges.
  • Why choose the Kore 105? You want a bit more power and want to charge.
  • Why choose the Ripstick 106? You put a premium on playfulness but want a ski with a traditional tail, not a twin.
 

Crank

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Well now I am going to have to try the Elan Ripstick before I buy a pair of Head Kore 105's. I love a playful ski.
 

Lorenzzo

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My Kore 105-s are on KSL. I get why some people like them but for me they have mediocre at best tip action in deep snow and after the novelty of their being light wears off there are better choices on groomers. After that ringing endorsement, if you want them PM me if you're in the area. 316 BSL Attack 13 on the centerline. 189. Used 4 days.
 

Ken_R

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I really need to demo the Kore 105 again. Last year I demoed the 189cm in VERY cold conditions but with a foot of fresh powder that was a touch wind affected and they just were not willing to turn. Zero surfiness. Other skis were much better that same day.
 

DanoT

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Well now I am going to have to try the Elan Ripstick before I buy a pair of Head Kore 105's. I love a playful ski.
New for 2019 is the Kore 99. It has a more hourglass shape than the Kore 105 so it might be worth checking out. Myself, I liked the Kore 105, but I loved and bought a pair of 180cm Head Kore 93.

A few days ago I mentioned to my boss at the demo centre that I did not really like any of the Elan Ripstick models as they are too lively for me. (I think I used the term "jittery"). He laughed and said that none of the staff are very fond of them but our customers sure are, both in terms of purchases and day rentals. They are light weight and nicely priced.
 

Crank

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New for 2019 is the Kore 99. It has a more hourglass shape than the Kore 105 so it might be worth checking out. Myself, I liked the Kore 105, but I loved and bought a pair of 180cm Head Kore 93.

A few days ago I mentioned to my boss at the demo centre that I did not really like any of the Elan Ripstick models as they are too lively for me. (I think I used the term "jittery"). He laughed and said that none of the staff are very fond of them but our customers sure are, both in terms of purchases and day rentals. They are light weight and nicely priced.
Good to know. I plan to try the 99mm Kore this winter. I have a pair of 93 width skis and am looking to go a bit wider.

BTW, when I skied the Kore 105 it was for 3 days at Sun Peaks last February. We were staying at the Sun Peaks Grand Hotel and got the skis from the shop on the ground floor there. Conditions ranged from a couple feet of untracked in the hike-to terrain up top, soft crud with some freshies in the trees, soft bumps and more high speed groomer zooming than I normally do. I was being guided around by one of Sun Peak's marketing guys. Fun trip and a really nice place you have there.
 

DanoT

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Good to know. I plan to try the 99mm Kore this winter. I have a pair of 93 width skis and am looking to go a bit wider.

BTW, when I skied the Kore 105 it was for 3 days at Sun Peaks last February. We were staying at the Sun Peaks Grand Hotel and got the skis from the shop on the ground floor there. Conditions ranged from a couple feet of untracked in the hike-to terrain up top, soft crud with some freshies in the trees, soft bumps and more high speed groomer zooming than I normally do. I was being guided around by one of Sun Peak's marketing guys. Fun trip and a really nice place you have there.
That hike to powder stash is called Gil's Hill and while it is only 400 vertical feet, it sure can deliver some quality powder turns.

The shop that you rented skis from is Elevation Ski & Bike, where I work part time. @Crank, send me a PM if you ever make it to SP again.
 

Crank

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That hike to powder stash is called Gil's Hill and while it is only 400 vertical feet, it sure can deliver some quality powder turns.

The shop that you rented skis from is Elevation Ski & Bike, where I work part time. @Crank, send me a PM if you ever make it to SP again.
Yes Gil's. We hiked it 3 times. I was there on subsidized FAM trip with some officers from other ski clubs in the greater NYC area. Our Metro Ski Council is running a trip out there this year but because they are bringing a lot of people they are flying into Seattle (I think) and taking about a 6-hour bus ride. Seems they don't want to deal with smaller planes to get into Kamloops. We flew out and back through Toronto/ Kelowna and it was not a good way to go. It is kind of hard to get a big group there.

I will definitely come back one of these winters!
 

Viking9

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When ever I see videos of Plake he’s always turning, I’m sure someone will show a video of him making big turns but for me he’s always turning, I think it’s a great compliment to him that the Ripstick’s like to turn.
A little off topic but I think more of the regular’s on Pugski like skis that are burlier crud busters than lighthearted turnier skis,not that there’s anything wrong with that.
 

markojp

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My Kore 105-s are on KSL. I get why some people like them but for me they have mediocre at best tip action in deep snow and after the novelty of their being light wears off there are better choices on groomers. After that ringing endorsement, if you want them PM me if you're in the area. 316 BSL Attack 13 on the centerline. 189. Used 4 days.
FWIW, they ski better mounted aft... try -2.
 

markojp

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Sometimes not.
 

GregK

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FWIW, they ski better mounted aft... try -2.
Couldn't they figure this stuff out BEFORE putting the line on the ski?
Most skis you can move up or back a cm or two from the recommended line to better suit your style or preference.

Freestyle/Free Ride skis usually have a recommended range with a “freestyle” mark closer to center and then an “all mountain” mark further back.
The Kore line has a recommended line and then marks forward of that line for more of a free ride feel and marks behind the line for those who like more of a traditional mount.

No right answers, just right answers for that skier.
 

Joe Strummer

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I have three pairs of Elan skis. They're a super innovative company but this year they have trimmed back on the number of skis they offer. Park n Pipe and twin tips have gone. As has accessories such as helmets, poles and skins.

I wouldn't consider a 106mm ski to be all mountain, but no Ripstick has any metal. I think an all mountain ski should have some metal to deal with groomers/hardpack. In powder, the amphibio profile doesn't matter since it is not engaged. Not sure if Elan has thought this one through.
 
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