2017-2018 Blizzard Rustler 10

Jonathan Ellsworth reviews the Blizzard Rustler 10 for Blister Review
Blizzard Rustler 10

Ski: 2017-2018 Blizzard Rustler 10, 188 cm

Available Lengths: 164, 172, 180, 188 cm

Blister’s Measured Tip-to-Tail Length: 186.3 cm

Stated Weight per Sk (180 cm): 1850 grams ± 50 grams

Blister’s Measured Weight per Ski (188 cm): 1950 & 1977 grams

Stated Dimensions: 135-104-124 mm

Blister’s Measured Dimensions: 135.2-103.5-125.4 mm

Stated Sidecut Radius: 19 meters

Tip & Tail Splay (ski decambered): 72 mm / 40 mm

Traditional Camber Underfoot: 3-4 mm

Core:

  • Poplar/Balsa/Beech/Paulownia/ISO (Synthetic)
  • Partial Titanal Layer
  • Carbon Tips / Tails
  • Fiberglass Laminate

Factory Recommended Mount Point: -7.25 cm from center; 85.9 cm from tail

Bindings: Marker Griffon

Test Location: Arapahoe Basin, CO; Sunshine Village & Lake Louise Ski Resort, Canada

Days Skied: ~13

Intro

As we noted in our First Look on the Blizzard Rustler 11, Blizzard discontinued the Peacemaker and Gunsmoke this season, and replaced them with the new Rustler 10 and 11. The Gunsmoke and Peacemaker were both skis that we thought provided an impressive mix of playfulness and stability, so as their replacements, the new Rustlers are receiving a lot of warranted attention.

Here is what Blizzard has to say about the Rustler 10:

“The new Rustler 10 with Carbon Flipcore D.R.T is the ski of choice for those looking to have fun while pushing themselves to ski better and explore all corners of the hill in any snow conditions. D.R.T. (“Dynamic Release Technology”) construction allows the skis to be playful, forgiving and versatile, with ultimate stability underfoot, letting today’s freeride skier play with the terrain and snow any way they want.”

This past spring, Jonathan Ellsworth, Sam Shaheen, Kara Williard, and I all spent some time on the Rustler 10, so we’ll be offering our initial impressions here, and will be updating this review as we continue to get more time on the ski this season.

Flex Pattern & Torsional Rigidity

The Rustler 10 has a solid platform underfoot, and softens progressively through the tips, and, to a slightly lesser extent, the tails.

We mentioned in our Winter Buyer’s Guide that we have been collaborating with professor Alexis Lussier Desbiens and his team at the University of Sherbrooke, Canada, to measure torsional rigidity and ski stiffness.

Looking at that data for the Rustler 10 and 11, they are very similar both in terms of flex profile and torsional rigidity (the Rustler 11 is about 10-15% more torsionally rigid through the middle ~50 centimeters of the ski, and the Rustler 10 is slightly stiffer through the shovels and tips).

We’d sum up its flex pattern like this:

Tips: 7
Shovels: 7-8
In front of Toe Piece: 9
Underfoot: 10
Behind Heel piece: 9
Tails: 7-8

Shape / Rocker Profile

The Rustler 10’s 19 meter sidecut radius (in the 188 cm) is fairly tight, and all of us felt that the Rustler 10 definitely preferred shorter-radius turns.

Like the Rustler 11, the Rustler 10 doesn’t feature a ton of tip and tail taper, which is also something it shares in common with its predecessor, the Peacemaker.

The Rustler 10 has a fairly deep tip rocker line, a lot of tip splay, and less rocker and splay in the tail. Though we haven’t skied the Rustler 10 in pow yet, we’d imagine that the softer tips and deeper rocker line will make the Rustler 10 float fairly well for its width.

Compared to the Peacemaker, the Rustler 10 has a fairly similar tip rocker line, but has significantly less tail splay than the twin-tip Peacemaker. This, combined with the Rustler’s slightly more traditional mount point of -7.25 cm, make it feel a bit more directional than the Peacemaker, but the 10 still has a pretty playful profile.

Weight

At less than 2000 grams per ski in a 188 cm length, the Rustler 10 is on the lighter side of the ~105mm-underfoot all-mountain category. But interestingly, Blizzard doesn’t explicitly talk about using it as a touring ski or 50/50 ski.

For context, here are the respective weights of a number of other skis of a similar length and width:

Weight per Ski (grams):

1843 & 1847 – Head Kore 105, 189 cm
1848 & 1903 – Line Sick Day 104, 186 cm
1950 & 1977 – Blizzard Rustler 10, 188 cm
1957 & 1958 – Salomon QST 106, 188 cm
1970 & 1979 – Atomic Backland FR 109, 189 cm
1980 & 2016 – Liberty Origin 106, 187 cm
2042 & 2069 – Rossignol Soul 7 HD (16/17), 188 cm
2075 & 2143 – Blizzard Peacemaker, 186 cm
2318 & 2341 – J Skis The Metal, 186 cm

So, one of our main questions coming into the review was how the Rustler 10’s fairly low weight would affect its stability, and if the addition of the partial sheet of titanal would do much to counteract the lack of mass.

And now, here are our initial on-snow reports from me, Jonathan Ellsworth, Sam Shaheen, and Kara Williard.

NEXT: On-Snow Performance

29 thoughts on “2017-2018 Blizzard Rustler 10

  1. Apart from being lighter than the Enforcer 100, how else would you compare these two skis? I like big, fast, carvy turns, and am about Jonathan’s size, albeit an inch taller. I ski in the east, and am looking for something for days when we get 4-12+ inches.

    My current 97mm skis are some G3 Infidels which are quite damp, I’d like something livelier with a bit of dampness.

    • I mean, as I note in my review, I personally didn’t find this ski’s strength to be “big, fast, carvy turns” — certainly not while skiing off-piste terrain. So to be honest, at no point did I think of the Enforcer 100 at all, and I don’t think the Rustler 10 could be described as a similar to the Enforcer 100, just lighter. As I note in my Enforcer 100 review, that ski is pretty comfortable making both shorter turns at moderate speeds as well as big, fast turns. (It isn’t the best at either, but few skis do both so well.) Again, you should certainly take into account Luke, Kara’s, and Sam’s takes on this ski, but I’m not sure that Sam or I would say that the Rustler 10 is obviously the ski you’re looking for?

  2. Given the (unexpected and somewhat disappointing) experience you had on these, my first thought probably should have been to move the bindings back a bit, say 1-2 cm. Did you ever try them with different binding positions, and if so, what were your findings?

    • Hi Ola,

      We did not get a chance to try them with different binding positions, but that’s something we’ll definitely be experimenting with this season, and will report back when we can comment on how the Rustler 10 feels at different mount points.

      – Luke

        • Hi, thanks for the great review I demoed this a few weeks ago in Crested Butte in the 188 length and there was a lot I liked about them, the swing weight made tight turns and jump turns super easy. For as light as they are, they felt stable and solid in poor conditions when making short turns as described. I liked how you could drive them off the tips. However, the tails felt sort of sluggish, excessive and seemed to get in the way, I found myself wishing the tails were somehow different. I’m a directional skier so I’m really curious also if moving the binding back on the ski would change things for the better.

          And, on paper at least, they have some similarities to the Atomic Vantage 100 CTI, have you done a comparison of these two skis?

  3. Dear Blister team,

    I’d like to know your opinion about two different skis I’m looking at.There’s the Blizzard Rustler 10 in 172cm and the Salomon QST 99 in 174cm.
    I’m skiing in Quebec, than will start to go ski at Jay Peak this year and we are planning a trip out west in a year or 2.
    My main ski actually is a Atomic Redster Double Deck 3.0 SL in 159cm. I have to say that I’m not good in the woods (glades) and in moguls.
    I want to have a ski that will bring a lot of pleasure and that will help me grow into what I’m not good. It’s sure I would like one that can hold on hard surface too.
    You can give me your own suggestion.

    Best Regards

  4. I have about 25 days on this ski and I agree 100% with the review.

    These skis are fun, but they don’t make me feel very confident at long high speed turns. I find myself making quicker turns and changing my ski style to fit this ski.

    Great ski, but I wish I would have gone with the Enforcers as it fits my ski stlye a little bit more.

  5. Thanks for a great review! I am looking for a 100-105 mm underfoot touring ski in that weight range and was looking at the Rustler 10 at a shop today. I am fairly advanced, but my skiing style is still playful and I like a poppy tail. I ski a Liberty GPO 116 mm underfoot on deeper days (and the lighter G3 Synapse 101 for longer spring days), so I was a bit disappointed when you say the Rustler 10 is hooky in variable conditions. What ski would you recommend for me that is still playful and has a poppy tail, but also is more stable in variable out of bounds conditions and through backcountry wind slabs?

    • Hi Andreas,

      That’s a good question, and it sounds like you and I are searching for a similar ski! Unfortunately, I have yet to ski something that really fits that description.

      That said, I’d recommend taking a look at Jonathan Ellsworth’s reviews of the Faction Candide 3.0 and Black Crows Atris. I haven’t spent much time on those skis, but from what Jonathan says, I think they’d be less hooky in variable, are quite poppy / playful, and are still reasonably light.

      I’m also just starting to get time on the 182 cm Atomic Backland FR 109, and have high hopes for that ski, so stay tuned for an update on that.

      Cheers,

      Luke

      • Thanks for a quick reply. Yeah, I have been looking av the CT3.0, but would prefer something less wide, as I have the 116 for deeper days. I am also afraid it is “too much” a freeride ski, and not as playful as I prefer (i am only 5’9”/145 lbs). Same for Atris. I also looked at the CT2.0, but I am afraid it is too much a park ski and thus too weak on edge on hard pack bc. I have also looked at the Black Crows Navis, but think it is too stiff in the tail, and has a too long set back for my preference.
        It is of course difficult to find something with the perfect balance between stability and playfulness… I will try the Rustler 10 next weekend, and hope it suits me ok with my weight and skiing style. If not I have to continue the search…

        • Hey Andreas

          How was it?
          I was looking to buy the Rustler 10 and put Salomon Shift on it, and use it for touring aswell. Your skiing description sounds pretty similar to how I ski :) And can you recommend it for someone who wants to play all over the mountain, with touring as an option.

          Was it a nice fun ski?

          • I didn’t like it at all. It was very soft and forgiving, so much that I felt it really didn’t “give me anything”. It felt like a very cheap ski. I went for Armada Tracer 98, a bit more demanding. I also tried the Salomon qst99, which I really liked.

  6. hi
    thanks for review
    I am looking for a ~100 mm underfoot one quiver telemark (to replace my scott venture 188, now not enouth powerfull for me anymore)
    I am 210 lbs and 6.2″

    bonafide 187 seem too much heavy (and stiff maybe), so i was thinking about rustler 10 188
    i prefere big turn but telemark turn are not big as alpine ski turns ;) (I am riding cochise 185 2014 when “locked heel”)
    rebound is also important
    and I am riding “french east coast” ;)

    is it a stupid idea ?

    Fabien@sorryformyenglish ;)

    • Hi Fabien,

      Unfortunately I cannot offer much advice for telemark skis as I’m only experienced with “locked heel” skis, but compared to the Bonafide and Cochise, I think you’ll find the Rustler 10 pretty different (poppier, less damp, less stable at high speeds, and definitely more small-turn oriented).

      I don’t know much about the Scott Venture, but “powerful” isn’t the word I’d be inclined to use to describe the Rustler 10. I’d call it “playful”, “snappy”, and “energetic” before calling it “powerful”

      Hope that might help a bit.

      Cheers,

      Luke

  7. Hi friends,

    I’ve been skiing on Blizzard Peacemakers for a few years now. I like it, but I could use a little bit more power in cut up snow. I had heard the Rustler 10 was a bit stiffer than the Peacemaker.

    What would you recommend in the 100-110 for a more powerful ski than the Rustler without entering into “Full-On–Charger” territory.

  8. Hey guys,

    Very insightful and well done review, thanks!

    I’m looking for advice on whether I should get the 172 or 180 Rustler 10’s. I’m 171cm tall and weight 154 pounds.

    What I most enjoy about skiing is moguls, trees and hitting some steep chutes / terrain. Given this, I’m leaning towards the 172, but would love to hear your opinion.

    My current quiver is a 175 masterblaster, but I’m planning switching it for the Rustler 10. Any thoughts here? I ski on Colorado, Tahoe and Whistler.

    Best,
    Mario

    • Hi Mario,

      Are you happy with the 175 cm Masterblaster? If so, I think the 180 cm Rustler 10 might be the better choice. The Rustler 10 has significantly more tip and tail rocker compared to the Masterblaster (i.e. the Rustler 10 has less effective edge), and it’s also lighter and a more forgiving / easy ski overall, so I don’t think you’ll have much trouble with the extra 5 cm’s.

      That said, if what you’re really looking for is a more maneuverable / easier ski in tight spaces than the Masterblaster, than the 172 cm Rustler 10 would definitely fill that role. But I would not expect the same level of stability out of the Rustler 10, and I think you might find them a bit short if you tend to drive the shovels of your skis.

      Hope that helps.

      Cheers,

      Luke

      • Hey Luke! Thanks so much for the prompt reply! I’m actually quite happy with my 175 masterblasters, so I think the 180s would be the best choice then!

        I was doing some night thinking last night and decided that I want a 2 ski quiver. One for every day charging (I love bumps, trees and hitting steeps and cliffs) that may handle the occasional powder days, while the other one to be a more jibby and all around playful ski.

        For the every-day weapon I was thinking on the Masterblaster I currently own, or switch it to the Rustler 10, Bonafide or Cochise. Any thoughts here? Would love your recommendation!

        For the “playful” ski, I was considering the armada arv86.

        My skiing style is shorter and quicker turns rather than big long GS turns.

        Thanks Luke!!
        Mario

        • Hey Mario,

          If you want to “charge” I’d probably stick with the Masterblaster, or if you want a more traditional ski, check out the Bonafide / Cochise. I’d describe the Rustler 10 as “forgiving,” “playful,” and “energetic” before I’d call it “chargy.”

          So in your potential 2-ski quiver, I think it’d make sense to keep the Masterblaster for your charging ski, and then the ARV 86 sounds like a fun, playful ski for more relaxed days. And FWIW, I would put the Rustler 10 more in your second category of playful / fun skis.

          Cheers,

          Luke

          • Luke, you are the absolute best, thanks!! And besides, just saved me a ton of money, because now I’ll stick with my masterblasters instead of buying a new bonafides / cochise hahaha.

            Sorry for spamming, but I promise is the very last last question. For the more playful ski, I’m between the armada arv86 or the faction candide 1.0. Can you advice me on here?

            Again, thanks a lot for your help and super prompt support!!

            Best,
            Mario

            • Unfortunately I have not had the chance to use either of those skis, so I can’t offer any direct advice. But with their nearly symmetrical shapes, touch of tip / tail rocker, and twinned tails, I can only imagine that both would be very playful, and would offer a noticeably different ride compared to the Masterblaster. Sorry I can’t provide any first-person advice.

              Cheers,
              Luke

  9. I am looking for a replacement for my 2012 Rossi S7’s, 178mm. I really loved these skis in varied conditions and even found them fun on hard snow as long as I really got them on edge. They unexpectedly became my go to ski for everyday when skiing whistler/Blackcomb.
    When skiing in the east I have a pair of 160mm Atomic Redster D2 SL, which I also love for, obviously, different reasons.
    Last season I spent a few hours on two separate days on a pair of 180mm Rustler 10’s, thought they were great. Felt as versatile as my S7s, but with better stability. Carved well when on edge, but could easily slarve out my turns when needed. To me, they felt solid, and predictable in varied conditions, capable of handling the two seasons in one run that you get on the west coast.
    Any other recommendations to look at this season?
    I am 5’5” 130lb, aggressive expert skier.
    Thanks.
    Joe.

    • Hi, Joe

      If you liked the Rustler 10’s when you demo’d them, then I think they’d be a safe bet. The Rustler 10 comes back unchanged for 18/19 apart from graphics, so the 18/19 version is essentially the same ski.

      If you’re looking for other options, I’d check out the Line Sick Day 104, Salomon QST 106, and maybe the Rossignol Soul 7 HD. We’ve made some detailed comparisons between those skis and the Rustler 10 in the article linked below, which I’d recommend checking out. If you have any other questions, let me know.

      https://www.blistergearreview.com/deep-dive/deep-dive-blizzard-rustler-10

  10. Thanks Luke, much appreciated.
    I did try the Soul 7s out last year. Found them good, but unexciting. For me they lacked any pop at the end of my turns, and were perhaps too predictable. I was very happy to get my S7s back on my feet with their chattery tips.
    Your reviews of the Fischer Ranger 102 FR have also piqued my interest. I will also check out the Line’s.
    My feet are still recovering from my Salomon rear entry boots I got mid eighties, and I have not yet forgiven them.

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