Following on from last week’s look at Line’s Freestyle offerings, this week we turn our hands to the freeride options.
With the season all but over except for the lucky ones who are heading down to the Southern Hemisphere, thoughts will inevitable drift towards the new setup during those long, sunny summer’s days. With ideas of what could be landed next season, what spin could be brought around just that extra 180 degrees and that epic line that had been scoped but you never hit; ALL of this will be done on next season’s set up. One company that will always have your back is Line. Line are less concerned with podium finishes and big name comp skiers. They are more concerned with you having fun, because let’s face it; Skiing. Is. Fun. Whether you aspire to perfect your butters like Max Hill, rail wizardry like Andy Parry or think that hitting a moving jump is a great idea, Line skis will probably be able to help you out.
Want to ski everywhere? Sure you do! Freeride skis are designed to be as stable as possible, in as many conditions as possible. Whether you’re skinning up and hiking or hitting the trees in the side country after a blast down your favourite groomer, your freeride ski will take you there. This is Line’s 2014 freeride collection.
What do you do when you’ve used all your holiday up and it starts dumping down? Take a sick day and have a sick day! A new range from Line this year, the Sick Day enters into the freeride market. Aimed more at hiking and charging lines then freestyle, the Sick Day range aims to be more playful, light and nimble then their competitors. The tail profile has been reduced which means the tail should sink more, providing more stable riding and turning. The active edge has been increased to improve handling on groomers. There are three waist sizes in the range; 125mm, 110mm and the 95mm. The 125 waist size is Line’s widest ski and with a profile of 150-125-137 and a minimum size of 187cm, should offer some epic float in powder.
The women’s freeride range from Line seems to have had a bit of a shakeup this year. The award winning Soulmate model sees a second size added to the line-up. Last year’s original Soulmate 98 (132-98-123) makes a return but now a Soulmate 90 (125-90-113) has been added. Both skis feature the 100% Aspen design to reduce the weight but also feature the Metal Matrix to improve the stiffness of the ski. Also much like the Sick Days the tail profile of the Soulmate is reduced to improve the stability in deep snow.
The Celebrity model has been limited to just one size this year, 115-85-112, which has been designed to provide and incredibly light, responsive ski for ripping groomers.
Completing the women’s range is the Pandora, which sees a complete redesign for the 2014 season. The Pandora is by far the widest ski in the range, with a profile of 142-110-125. Again like the Sick Day range, the Pandora benefits from early rise, early taper but with reduced rise in the tail to help improve handling in deep snow, however it is constructed from 100% Aspen to reduce the weight of the ski.
There is just one offering this year in the popular Influence series. The model is back this year but returning with just the Influence 115 (145-115-131) this year. It is a ski that is designed to charge and hold its own at high speed in powder. A much stiffer ski than the Opus or SFB due to the use of Metal Matrix technology, this is a ski that is intended to rip the steep and deep. Last year’s model picked up huge a number of awards from Powder Mag, Freeskier and Skiing Magazine, with a Backcountry Magazine Editor’s Choice award noting it also performs well on hard snow as well.
Made up of the Prophet, this is a pretty all inclusive range with 4 models to choose from; Prophet 98, 90, 85 and Flite. The range is aimed more at the groomer and occasional off-piste skier but the option of going up to a 98mm waist means that those who require good powder performance will be satisfied, early rise is also included to help floatation in deeper snow. The camber underfoot increases down to the 85mm waist size, which means for fans of quick edge to edge response and fast turns should look at this size. The range is slightly stiffer than the freestyle offerings from Line which should improve performance at speed on hardpack. The Flite has been changed this year from a waist size of 85mm to 90mm but retains the Aspen construction to make it a super light alternative, with traditional camber throughout with the omission of early rise.
Words by Alex Greenwood.