South American Ski Selections: Fischer Watea 106

2012-2013 Fischer Watea 106 – 190cm (138-106-124)

Hate tail rocker? Then you might want to pay special attention to our next two selections.

Fischer is addressing the freeski market pretty aggressively this season with two dedicated lines: the Big Stix series of twin-tipped, tip and tail rockered freeride skis and the Watea series.

In the interest of seeing what Fischer is bringing to the freeride scene, we decided to select one ski from each series: the Big Stix 110, and the Watea 106.

Like “Big Stix,” the Watea name isn’t new to Fischer. In fact, last year “Watea” was tacked on to nearly every ski in Fischer’s freeski lineup.

But with the Big Stix series now fully dedicated to the tail-rocker crowd, the Watea series exclusively holds Fischer’s “sidecountry freeride” skis. The new Watea 106 is the fattest ski in the lineup, and though it does look something like the discontinued, tour-friendly Watea 101 of last year, it doesn’t merely seem like an updated version of an intermediate/advanced level ski.

Fischer has ditched the funky looking “Powder Hull” in the Watea 101’s shovel and gotten rid of the recessed swallowtail construction in the tail. And while the word “sidecountry” is still being used to classify the 106, this ski is far from a flimsy, foam-injected noodle tweaked for the ascent.

The shovels of the Watea 106 have a solid, stiff flex that gets even stiffer underfoot. And its non-rockered, slightly turned up tail looks like it’s going to be locked down on firm snow, and ready to provide some high-speed stability and feel in chop.

One of our favorite crud-busting, hard-charging skis, the Moment Belafonte, is also 106 underfoot and has a similar camber profile to the Watea. And while we’re not ready to throw the new Fischer in the same class of burl as the Belafonte just yet, the comparison doen’t seem unfounded.

Long and short: the Watea 106 looks like a serious ski that, alongside the very promising Big Stix 110, ought to serve as a great entry point to see what Fischer is bringing to the table.

 

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