Ski: 2020-2021 Fischer Ranger 99 Ti, 181 cm
Test Locations: Crested Butte & Summit County, Colorado
Days Skied: ~11
Available Lengths: 174, 181, 188 cm
Blister’s Measured Tip-to-Tail Length: 179.5 cm
Stated Weight per Ski: 1950 grams
Blister’s Measured Weight per Ski: 1994 & 2011 grams
Stated Dimensions: 130-97-121 mm
Blister’s Measured Dimensions: 129.4-96.4-120.4 mm
Stated Sidecut Radius (181 cm): 18 meters
Measured Tip & Tail Splay (ski decambered): 58 mm / 28 mm
Measured Traditional Camber Underfoot: 4-5 mm
Core: poplar + titanal (2 layers) + carbon nose + fiberglass laminate
Factory Recommended Mount Point: -8.85 cm from center; 80.9 cm from tail
Boots / Bindings: Dalbello Lupo SP I.D.; Dalbello Lupo Pro HD / Tyrolia AAAttack2 13 AT
[Note: Our review was conducted on the 19/20 Ranger 99 Ti, which returns unchanged for 20/21.]
Fischer overhauled their Ranger Ti series for 19/20, with brand-new shapes, molds, and constructions. We discussed many of the updates in our First Look of the Ranger 107Ti, but now we want to take a closer look at the middle ski in the new lineup, the Ranger 99 Ti.
Shape / Rocker Profile
In terms of shape, the main difference between the Ranger 99 Ti and the Ranger 98Ti that it replaces is in the tips. The Ranger 99 Ti has a bit less tip taper, and its tips are a bit blockier and don’t taper to as much of a point as the Ranger 98 Ti.
The previous Ranger Ti skis all used the same mold as the Ranger 108 Ti, which meant they all had essentially the same rocker profile. The new skis have new molds tailored to each model, and while that difference does appear subtle, it’s worth touching on.
The Ranger 99 Ti has slightly shallower tip and tail rocker lines compared to the Ranger 98 Ti. The Ranger 99 Ti still has a fairly deep tip rocker line for a ski of its width, but it’s not crazy. Like the Ranger 98 Ti, the Ranger 99 Ti has a moderately shallow tail rocker line, though it’s deeper than some skis in its class like the Blizzard Bonafide and Volkl Mantra M5.
Here’s how we’d characterize the flex pattern of the Ranger 99 Ti:
In Front of Toe Piece: 9-9.5
Behind the Heel Piece: 9.5
Like the new Ranger 107 Ti, the Ranger 99 Ti is a very strong ski. It’s not quite as stout as the 189 cm Ranger 107 Ti, but the Ranger 99 Ti is still stiffer than a lot of other ~100mm-wide skis on the market.
Compared to the Ranger 98 Ti, the Ranger 99 Ti is significantly stiffer in the tips and shovels, and a bit stiffer in the tails.
The old Ranger Ti skis were pretty light for their respective sizes. The new skis are much less so.
While its weight doesn’t stand out as much as the 189 cm Ranger 107 Ti’s, the Ranger 99 Ti is significantly heavier than the Ranger 98 Ti, and now comes a bit closer to other metal-laminate skis in its class when it comes to weight. The Ranger 99 Ti still isn’t as heavy as more traditional skis like the Nordica Enforcer 100 and Blizzard Bonafide, but it comes in at a similar weight compared to some of the other new metal-laminate skis like the Armada Invictus 99 Ti and Atomic Vantage 97 Ti.
For reference, here are a number of our measured weights (per ski in grams) for some notable skis. Keep in mind the length differences to try and keep things apples-to-apples.
1629 & 1684 Elan Ripstick 96, 180 cm (17/18–19/20)
1734 & 1750 Renoun Endurance 98, 184 cm (18/19–19/20)
1807 & 1840 Atomic Bent Chetler 100, 188 cm (18/19–20/21)
1863 & 1894 Blizzard Rustler 9, 180 cm (18/19–20/21)
1894 & 1980 Black Crows Daemon, 183.6 cm (17/18–19/20)
1896 & 1919 Dynastar Legend X96, 186 cm (18/19–19/20)
1921 & 1968 Head Kore 99, 188 cm (18/19–19/20)
1925 & 1937 Liberty Helix 98, 186 cm (18/19–19/20)
1928 & 1933 Moment Commander 98, 178 cm (19/20)
1931 & 1932 DPS Foundation Cassiar 94, 185 cm (18/19–19/20)
1937 & 1945 Fischer Ranger 94 FR, 184 cm (19/20–20/21)
1966 & 1973 Liberty Origin 96, 187 cm (18/19–19/20)
1976 & 2028 Parlor Cardinal Pro, 182 cm (19/20)
1985 & 2006 Parlor Cardinal 100, 185 cm (16/17–19/20)
1994 & 2011 Fischer Ranger 99 Ti, 181 cm (19/20–20/21)
1998 & 2044 4FRNT MSP 99, 181 cm (17/18–19/20)
2007 & 2029 Armada Invictus 99 Ti, 187 cm (18/19–19/20)
2049 & 2065 Volkl Mantra M5, 177 cm (18/19–20/21)
2050 & 2080 ON3P Wrenegade 96, 184 cm (18/19–19/20)
2053 & 2057 Atomic Vantage 97 Ti, 188 cm (18/19–19/20)
2062 & 2063 Rossignol Experience 94 Ti, 187 cm (18/19–20/21)
2085 & 2096 Dynastar Menace 98, 181 cm (19/20–20/21)
2101 & 2104 Fischer Ranger 102 FR, 184 cm (18/19–20/21)
2114 & 2133 Nordica Enforcer 93, 185 cm (16/17–19/20)
2115 & 2149 J Skis Masterblaster, 181 cm (16/17–19/20)
2124 & 2137 Blizzard Bonafide, 180 cm (17/18–19/20)
2131 & 2189 Nordica Enforcer 100, 185 cm (15/16–19/20)
2218 & 2244 Volkl Mantra 102, 184 cm (19/20–20/21)
2233 & 2255 Nordica Enforcer 104 Free, 186 cm (19/20–20/21)
2311 & 2342 K2 Mindbender 99Ti, 184 cm (19/20–20/21)
2324 & 2359 Kastle MX99, 184 cm (18/19-19/20)
2325 & 2352 Folsom Blister Pro 104, 186 cm (19/20)
2326 & 2336 Nordica Enforcer 100, 186 cm (20/21)
Some Questions / Things We’re Curious About
(1) The Ranger 107 Ti is a very heavy ski, but the Ranger 99 Ti’s weight sits more in the middle of the spectrum. So how will the Ranger 99 Ti, as a narrower, more firm-snow-oriented ski, fair in rough conditions?
(2) We found ourselves recommending the old Ranger 98 Ti to people who were looking for a 50/50 ski that they could use in the resort and in the backcountry due to its low weight. Now that the Ranger 99 Ti is notably heavier, will it stand out more as a dedicated inbounds ski?
(3) The Ranger 99 Ti sits in the diverse and often versatile category of ~100mm-wide all-mountain skis. So how well will it serve as a 1-ski quiver, and how will it compare to the (very good) competition?
Bottom Line (For Now)
With the new Ranger 99 Ti, Fischer seems to be saying “screw you” to industry trends by adding weight to the ski, rather than taking it out. This makes us excited and we’ll be getting the ski on snow very soon, so stay tuned for updates as we spend time on it.
Sam Shaheen (5’10”, 145lbs): The current Fischer Ranger lineup has really impressed us here a Blister. The Ranger 102 FR is one of our “Best Of” winners and both the Ranger 94 FR and Ranger 107 Ti have serious fans within our reviewer base.
So I was extremely excited to get some time on the Ranger 99 Ti — and it hasn’t disappointed. This ski stays true to the Ranger line with plenty of family resemblance, and it’s a very strong contender in the ~100mm-wide category for the right skiers.
Sam: This ski is strong, powerful, and intuitive on groomed snow. I instantly clicked with this ski and was able to make high-speed GS turns on icy groomers with confidence. The tail is strong and the ski provides a ton of energy out of each turn. The harder I pushed the Ranger 99 Ti, the more the ski came alive and the more I liked it. I haven’t yet found the upper speed limit of this ski on groomed snow.
That’s not to say that the Ranger 99 Ti must be pushed hard on groomers. It’s pretty easy to just slide it around at moderate speeds, but you really get the most out of this ski when skiing aggressively.
Like the other Rangers, I’d describe the Ranger 99 Ti’s groomer performance as “precise.” It tracks extremely predictably and feels very solid on edge for its width. This ski kicks ass on groomers.
Luke Koppa (5’8”, 155 lbs): Yep, for how wide it is, the Ranger 99 Ti is a ton of fun on groomers. Despite its fairly tapered and rockered tips, it still initiates turns without much input on my end, holds an edge very well for its size, finishes turns powerfully, and gives back tons of energy when you bend it.
Of the ~100mm-wide skis I’ve used, the Ranger 99 Ti is one of the best on groomers. If you prefer to only make Super G or Downhill-size turns, you’d be better off on something with a longer radius. And if you’re just learning how to carve, you’d be better off on something with a softer flex pattern. But those are about the only drawbacks I could think of with the Ranger 99 Ti on piste. It’s solid on edge, super snappy, and just fun.
Crud & Chop
Sam: At ~2000 grams per ski, the Ranger 99 Ti sits right about in the middle of the pack in terms of weight. That weight translates to a fairly stable ride in variable snow.
However, this comes with a caveat. The Ranger 99 Ti is a very strong ski and has a pretty punishing tail. The result of this is not a very forgiving ski — if you get backseat, that stiff tail will take you for a ride quicker than many other skis in this category. That means that, especially in variable snow, I find myself skiing very aggressively and with a strong, forward stance on this ski. The more aggressively I ski it, the less I tend to notice the suspension / stability of a ski because (I imagine) my body and skiing style end up contributing a lot to the suspension of the ski in that case.
I feel like the Ranger 99 Ti performs around the middle of the pack in terms of softer chop. It doesn’t have much taper and it has very stiff shovels that feel comfortable plowing through lighter chop piles. If the chop piles get a bit heavier / more consolidated, the precision of the ski makes it really fun to carve through the chunder and slash turns in smoother snow patches.
Luke: Yep, agreed.
In soft chop, I had very few complaints about the stability of the Ranger 99 Ti. It’s quite strong and does a good job of blasting through soft, cut-up snow, provided you’re driving it through the shovels (it will get knocked around if you try to ski it backseat in these conditions).
As the snow consolidates and gets nastier, I take the same approach as Sam — carve the Ranger 99 Ti hard through moderately rough snow, burn speed in the good snow, and try to avoid the really big, firm piles of snow (or just use them as takeoffs). Like the Ranger 102 FR and Ranger 94 FR, the Ranger 99 Ti does not feel “glued to the snow.” In fact, it feels like a ski that loves to get off the snow.
That’s not to say that it’s not damp — compared to the many lighter skis in this category, the Ranger 99 Ti does offer good suspension. But while it has pretty good suspension, it’s also quite stiff and super energetic, which means it’s much more comfortable being skied with an aggressive, yet light-on-your-feet style, especially compared to the heavier options in this category that are better suited to a much more planted, destroy-everything-in-your-path style. When I am really pushing the Ranger 99 Ti, it pushes back, which makes it super fun for seeking out little airs and transitions, rather than just trying to ski straight through everything.
So if you prefer skis that provide very little feedback when skiing fast through rough snow, you’d be better off on something heavier. But if you want a strong ski that’s pretty damp but also very nimble, that’s where the Ranger 99 Ti makes a lot of sense.
Sam: Though I haven’t been on this ski in more than about 6” of powder, I’ve been happy with its performance. Often, with stiff skis, moving your stance back a little bit to ski pow can be very challenging (if not nearly impossible). On the Ranger 99 Ti, I was able to gently shift my weight back to keep my tips planing in fresh snow without much drama (in contrast to how stiff and punishing its tail can be on firm conditions).
That said, I don’t expect this ski to punch above its width class in terms of float in deeper snow. It doesn’t have particularly deep rocker lines and the front half of the ski is quite stiff (so is the back half, for that matter).
All that is to say, I think the Ranger 99 Ti is a passable powder ski for moderate pow days (I’d say around 8” or less). But I would definitely grab for another ski in this width class (probably one with softer shovels) if I knew we were going to be skiing a lot of powder. The Ranger 99 Ti seems more at home on firm or shallow snow than in very deep snow.
Luke: I also have not skied this ski in any super deep snow, but in around 6” of fresh and pushed-around pow, I had few complaints. The only thing I’ll add is that, when conditions are soft, the Ranger 99 Ti is notably easier to slash and pivot around (vs. its very precise feel on firm conditions).
Moguls, Trees, & Tight Terrain
Sam: I think the amount that you’ll like the Ranger 99 Ti in moguls depends a lot on your skiing style. If you’re a technically proficient, aggressive, fall-line mogul skier, then I think the Ranger 99 Ti will work well for you. It is pretty easy to flick side to side (as long as you’re over the shovels) and won’t fold up on you if you push hard.
If you’re less aggressive or technically proficient, then I could see the stiff tips and tails really sending you for a ride — especially in tighter and / or steeper bumps. This is definitely a ski that I think of as an advanced or expert tool.
Luke: I really liked the Ranger 99 Ti in tight terrain when I was willing to ski hard. If I was tired and wanted to just casually and slowly work my way through a bump line, I would’ve much preferred something with a softer and probably more tapered / rockered tail. This ski is not super easy to pivot on firm snow and it is pretty demanding of a forward stance, or else those tails are prone to hooking up and taking you for a ride.
BUT when my legs were fresh and I was looking to really push myself, I really liked the Ranger 99 Ti. Its swing weight is quite low, but it’s stiff enough for me to never complain about it folding and I never once doubted its edge hold in firm bumps. This is not a very forgiving ski if you get backseat, and it’s not great if you prefer to slither your way through bumps from a centered stance (which is my go-to method when I’m tired). But for when I want to try my best Marcus Caston impression in moguls and trees, bashing hard into each bump and gapping troughs, the Ranger 99 Ti was a ton of fun.
This is a pretty game-on bump ski, but if you value quickness, strength, and energy, it can be a blast. And if you spend a lot of time in terrain and are between sizes, I’d recommend sizing down to maximize the Ranger 99 Ti’s quickness, and since it’s quite strong to begin with.
Who’s It For?
Advanced and expert skiers looking for a precise, energetic, and strong ride will appreciate the Ranger 99 Ti. There is a lot of competition in this waist-width class, but the Ranger 99 Ti stands out due to its notable energy and precision.
Beginners and intermediates should look for something that’s less demanding / with a softer flex pattern (see the “All-Mountain – More Forgiving” section of our Winter Buyer’s Guide). And if you’re an advanced or expert skier who values suspension, damping, and inherent stability over all else, you should look to heavier skis. But for those who have good technique, can get a ski up on edge, and push that ski hard, the Ranger 99 Ti has a lot to offer.
Fischer’s Ranger line continues to impress us here at Blister. The Ranger 99 Ti is the latest Ranger we’ve been on, and for experts and advanced skiers who prefer a strong and lively ski, we think Fischer did an excellent job with this ski. It is very strong and somewhat demanding, but also super quick, energetic, and precise. Technically proficient skiers, take note.
Deep Dive Comparisons
Become a Blister Member or Deep Dive subscriber to check out our Deep Dive comparisons of the Ranger 99 Ti to see how it compares to the Fischer Ranger 102 FR, Salomon QST 99, K2 Mindbender 99 Ti, Volkl Mantra M5, Volkl Mantra 102, Blizzard Bonafide, Nordica Enforcer 100, J Skis Masterblaster, Blizzard Rustler 9 & 10, ON3P Wrenegade 96, Atomic Vantage 97 Ti, Liberty Origin 96, Renoun Endurance 98, Moment Commander 98, and Dynastar Legend X96.