The M-Free 108 isn’t a twin-tip by accident, but by intent: it expects its pilot to break the bonds of gravity at every opportunity, and doesn’t want to limit his options. When one is taking off and landing in loose, uneven snow, the instinct to smear is essential to survival.
The M-Free 108 is able to stay calm while tearing through crud in high gear because it wraps its unusual PU and poplar core in a fiberglass torsion box, which is essentially a giant, coiled spring. Just because there’s just a touch of Titanal in it underfoot – a lesson learned in the Cham series history – doesn’t mean it’s some sort of dainty pixie. It has some heft to it, enabling it to stand up to crispy crud.
The 3 sizes of the M-Free 108 couldn’t be more different. If you want it to feel “extremely stable for the amount of tip and tail rocker,” as Sawyer X. from Bobo’s found it, you’d best be on the 192cm. Don’t worry about the M-Free 108 losing its capacity for short turns, as its progressive shape and short platform underfoot can always be twisted sideways.
As long as this son of Cham has a cushion of snow to push on, it’s a secure ride with “surprising hold on hard conditions,” according to Robbie from Footloose. America’s youth will probably gravitate towards the 192cm, but in its shorter sizes its suitable for designation as a Silver Skier Selection.
Over the past two seasons, Dynastar has completely transformed its collection, tackling the freeride sector with the M-Line last year, and re-positioning its on-piste S-Line for 21/22. The E Lite models form the women’s division of the Speed series, meant for carving up corduroy. As is often the case, the top model – the E Lite 9 – resides in the Technical genre, while its wider and softer siblings are Frontside fillies. Note the “Lite” in its name: the E Lite 9 definitely emphasizes lightness and quickness over heft and power.
Dynastar’s signature traits of agility, lightness and subtle snow feel are largely attributable to its poplar and PU hybrid core. In a genre that usually uses a generous allotment of Titanal, the E Lite 9 stands out for its light, peppy responsiveness.
Dynastar has completely rebuilt their product line over the last two seasons, focusing on its Freeride collection last year and reconfiguring its On-Piste clan for 21/22. The constant across both the M-Line and S-Line is Dynastar’s signature hybrid core, comprised of milled PU and, in the case of the Speed 963, poplar.
The Speed 963 gets its power from a sculpted Titanal laminate that’s sidewall-to-sidewall underfoot and runs along the edge as it extends towards tip and tail. The overall sensation is one of security that doesn’t need a lot of mass to feel stable. Its deep sidecut and high taper angle makes for slalom turns that are quick both on and off the edge.
The M-Pro line that Dynastar introduced last year is hierarchical, with the M-Pro 99 and 99 W sitting on top of a 3-model range. This means the M-Pro 99 W isn’t just the widest ski in the range, it’s the also the best. Women who’ve attained advanced ability should probably on the M-Pro 99 W even if they’re likely to spend half their time on groomed terrain.
I make this suggestion despite the fact that the M-Pro 99 W’s baseline and build are clearly intended for off-piste terrain. It’s topsheet of Titanal peters out about half way up the forebody so the front of the ski stays loose and free to conform to uneven conditions. It’s the Ti in the mid-section and tail that calm the M-Pro 99 W down on groomers, earning the admiration of Lara Hughes Allen, who filed this dispatch: “I really liked this ski. I don’t usually ski anything much over 90 underfoot, but I was really impressed with this ski on groomers and off piste. I skied it on a day where we had gotten about a foot of new snow over crud/ice and it had a lot of float through the soft snow, but also charged through the crud. Surprisingly grippy on the groomers as well.” Meghan Ochs agreed that it “performs well in all categories despite the rockered tip.”