6 comments on “2020-2021 Parlor Skis Cardinal 100”

  1. This is nearly a bang-on sidecut duplicate of the old Enforcer/Hell & Back, with a more modern camber/rocker line. I do love me some fat tails! I will be watching for a chance to try a demo pair, though that seems unlikely “out west”.

    Great summer reading. Best of luck to these guys.

    • Thanks, Tom. And funny – your bringing up of the Hell & Back really caught me off guard, because I never thought of that ski once while skiing the Cardinal 100s. Which to me, really is evidence that fat tail / reverse camber creates a distinctive ride.

      And now, with Parlor’s option for traditional camber, those pining for the Hell & Back will be able to Bring it Back.

  2. I skied the Cardinal at a Taos demo day last year, where I spent most of the day on my Rossi E100s. I compared the two skis at EpicSki, and here’s my post. Bottom line, I friggin’ LOVED the Cards.

    I skied Taos yesterday, where there was a small demo day going on. All the usual suspects were there: Rossi, Salomon, Volkl, etc… I was skiing my Rossi Experience 100s, which were about the perfect ski for the conditions, so I had no desire to waste my ski time by trying out a bunch of demos… Until I noticed the Parlor tent. I had never heard of the brand, but they billed themselves as custom, hand built skis — how could I pass up taking a pair out? (I’m a sucker for bespoke goods)

    Anyway, I opted for a ski that had virtually the same dimensions as my E100, so I could really compare two similar skis. (The model was called Cardinal 100 in a 178, r=19m). Well, to cut to the chase, the Parlors were the most exciting pair of skis I have ever been on, flat out. There’s been an ongoing discussion on this board lately about the difference between “lively” and “damp” — this ski was massively damp but had more “pop” out of a turn than any other all mountain ski I’ve been on. The edge grip left the E100 in the absolute dust — no comparison, and that’s saying quite a bit because the E100 is no slouch when it come to railing turns.

    The Cardinal is not for everyone — it is a very demanding ski that will simply not let go of its tail. But for bombing down crud, soft bumps, and other variable terrain, and then making hero arcs on groomers under the chair lift, I have never been on anything better.

    So, with that said, I want to give a shout-out to Parlor skis. Here’s there website . Apparently, for about $1,000, they’ll make you a custom pair, which is expensive but not ridiculous for what you get, based on my limited experience.

    As for my E100s, I’m still very pleased with their performance, and I still think that they’re the right ski for where I ski and how I ski, but when held against the Parlor, I’m afraid there’s no comparison…

  3. With regards to Parlor Card 100 with traditional camber… heard from them and they indicated that there is no slight tip rocker or tail elevation/rocker. I don’t know why but there must be a reason ? I do like a little of tip / rocker for initiation and release of turn.

    Maybe next year they will meaning 17/18

  4. Hey Jonathan, I listened to the podcast and chatted with Mark about the Cardinals. With the RIP ff the Xdrive 8.8, what would you think of the comparative top end performance if the flex of the Parlors was stiff thoughout? Ballpark?

    • Hmmm, interesting question, though it’s hard for me not to view the X-Drive 8.8 & Cardinal 100 as a fairly apples-to-oranges comparison. The X-Drive 8.8 is a GS ski that can be used off-piste on the feet of a strong skier. (Keep in mind that I only skied the 184 cm X-Drive 8.8.)

      The Cardinal 100 is a true all-mountain ski (that I would be more comfortable skiing across a broader range of conditions off-piste than I would the X-Drive 8.8) that you can carve the hell out of.

      On roughed-up, end-of-day groomers, I still think the 184 cm X-Drive 8.8 beats most / all skis I’ve ever been on. On the fatter end of things, I’d say the same about the 184 cm Head Monster 108.) I think with a stiff flex, the Cardinal 100 could fare quite well, but the limiting factor would be the weight and lack of metal. They would do “well / fine” … but they aren’t going to have the absolute-best-I’ve-ever-skied stability & top end of skis like the two I’ve mentioned. And no surprise.

      Then again, if we’re not really talking about absolutely raging, then don’t worry about the difference. And if we’re talking about off-piste stability at speed in variable conditions, there are *many* instances where I would rather be on the wider Cardinal as opposed to the X-Drive 8.8. I’d only prefer the 8.8s on steep ice and windscoured terrain.

      On clean, even-slightly-soft groomers, I would happily ski any of these skis, and would probably want the 8.8 or Monter 108 only if we were nuking down very steep, very firm pitches, where metal and more weight are your friends.

      And finally, to offer one very apples-to-apples comparison … I would rather ski the Cardinal 100 over the Rossi E100 in any & all of the situations your describing. Both skis have awesome tails. But I’ll take the Cardinal’s tip, where (unlike the Rossi) weight was not removed to help ease turn initiation. When we’re talking about top-end stability, I don’t give a damn about ease of turn initiation, and I see it at odds with that top end stability.

      Sorry for the convoluted answer, but I hope it will let you triangulate in on the Cardinal 100.

Leave a Comment