2019-2020 WNDR Alpine Intention 110

Ski: 2019-2020 WNDR Alpine Intention 110 – Camber, 185 cm

Available Lengths: 171, 178, 185, 192 cm

Blister’s Measured Tip-to-Tail Length: 184.2 cm

Stated Weight per Ski: 1810 grams

Blister’s Measured Weight per Ski: 1787 & 1806 grams

Stated Dimensions: 138.8-110.2-128.6 mm

Blister’s Measured Dimensions: 137.1-110.1-128.8 mm

Stated Sidecut Radius (185 cm): 22.6 meters

Measured Tip & Tail Splay (ski decambered): 66 mm / 32.5 mm

Measured Traditional Camber Underfoot: 6-7 mm

Core: Aspen/Paulownia + WNDR Algal Composite + Carbon Stringers + Fiberglass Laminate

Factory Recommended Mount Point: -6.6 cm from center; 85.5 cm from tail

 

Ski: 2019-2020 WNDR Alpine Intention 110 – Reverse Camber, 185 cm

Available Lengths: 171, 178, 185, 192 cm

Blister’s Measured Tip-to-Tail Length: 184.3 cm

Stated Weight per Ski: 1795 grams

Blister’s Measured Weight per Ski: 1853 & 1873 grams

Stated Dimensions: 138.8-110.2-128.6 mm

Blister’s Measured Dimensions: 136.9-110.4-128.8 mm

Stated Sidecut Radius (185 cm): 22.6 meters

Measured Tip & Tail Splay (ski decambered): 53 mm / 28 mm

Measured Traditional Camber Underfoot: <1 mm

Core: Aspen/Paulownia + WNDR Algal Composite + Carbon Stringers + Fiberglass Laminate

Factory Recommended Mount Point: -6.65 cm from center; 85.5 cm from tail

Blister reviews the WNDR Alpine Intention 110
WNDR Alpine Cambered Intention 110
Blister reviews the WNDR Alpine Intention 110
WNDR Alpine Reverse-Camber Intention 110
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Review Navigation:  Specs //  First Look //  Bottom Line //  Rocker Pics

Intro

WNDR Alpine is a new ski brand with an origins story unlike any other.

You can hear the whole story of WNDR’s creation in our GEAR:30 podcast below, but in short, WNDR was started when a biotech company teamed up with 4FRNT Skis founder, Matt Sterbenz, to experiment with new materials — particularly bio-based materials — in order to create both higher-performance and more sustainable skis.

Currently, WNDR makes one ski — the Intention 110 — but offers it with traditional camber underfoot, as well as a full reverse-camber profile. We now have in hand both versions of the Intention 110, and there are a lot of unique and interesting things going on with these skis.

What WNDR says about the Intention 110

“The Intention 110 is the most balanced backcountry ski in the world. We shaped our sidecut to rip and grip in a wide array of snowpack at varied levels of speed. The semi cap sidewall construction provides incredible dampness and stability over edge. Upon descent, you may find yourself looking down to make sure they are still there, as the tapered sidecut symmetry precisely intersects the early rise splay in the tip and tail curvatures, creating a weightless, buoyant and nimble sensation.

We offer two camber profiles for each length. Choose a shape for your skiing style – positive camber for versatility or reverse camber for the ultimate in playful, off-piste charging and slashing.

At the core of our ski is our proprietary Algal Composite, which we vertically laminate along the stringer, reinforcing stability typically only found in a heavier ski, but at a weight that makes long tours and big ascents a breeze.”

WNDR is very clearly positioning the Intention 110 as a do-everything backcountry ski that’s supposed to handle a very broad range of conditions. Of course, this is something that many brands claim about their ~110mm-wide skis, but we’ll get into the rest of the specs below, and we’ll first touch on what makes the Intention 110 truly unique — its algal composite construction.

Construction — Why is There Algae in These Skis?

WNDR’s algal composite tech, developed by its parent company, Checkerspot (listen to our podcast with Checkerspot’s CEO and Matt Sterbenz) is something that no other brand is using. The goal of the algal tech is two-part: (1) to work to decrease petroleum-based composites in the skis, and (2) to increase downhill performance without adding weight.

WNDR has done some internal testing to compare and quantify the performance benefits of their algal composite — here’s their data:

Blister reviews the WNDR Alpine Intention 110
WNDR Alpine's Lab Testing Data for their Intention 110

In short, WNDR is claiming that their Intention 110 is as strong, torsionally rigid, and damp as average competitors’ skis with similar dimensions but that are ~250 grams heavier.

So one of our main questions regarding the Intention 110 is how much WNDR’s lab tests translate on snow — will the Intention 110 be noticeable stronger, more powerful, and more damp than similarly heavy or even heavier skis?

Shape

Both Jonathan Ellsworth and I really like the shape of the Intention 110. It has a bit of early taper in the tip and a bit more taper in the tail, but we’d call the taper on the Intention 110 moderate by today’s standards. Overall, the Intention 110’s shape looks pretty similar to a few backcountry skis we like, such as the Line Vision 108, Renoun Citadel 106, Moment Deathwish Tour, and Armada Tracer 108. Those are all skis that are easy to pivot in 3D snow but that don’t feel super twitchy or unstable on firmer or variable conditions, and we think their shapes play a big role in that.

Rocker Profile — Cambered Intention 110

The cambered iteration of the Intention 110 again falls right around the middle of the spectrum, which will be a theme in this First Look, and is something that excites me. For a do-everything backcountry ski, I don’t often want a ski that has a really radical shape, rocker profile, flex pattern, etc. — while pushing the boundaries in any of those aspects can make for skis that excel in particular conditions, terrain, or for certain skiers, I often find that skis with less radical specs tend to be more versatile and intuitive across a wider range of conditions and tend to work for a broader range of skiers.

The cambered Intention 110 has fairly deep tip and tail rocker lines, but there are certainly skis with deeper rocker lines (and some with shallower rocker lines). For example, the Line Vision 108, Moment Deathwish Tour, and Moment Wildcat Tour 108 all have deeper rocker lines, while the Atomic Backland 107, Amplid Facelift 108, and Renoun Citadel 106 have shallower rocker lines.

In terms of splay, the cambered Intention 110 has pretty high tips (66 mm) and tails (32 mm), though its tail isn’t a true twin like the tails on the Moment Deathwish Tour & Wildcat Tour 108. But the cambered Intention 110 does have notably more tail splay than some more traditional, directional skis like the Blizzard Zero G 105, Black Diamond Helio 105, Atomic Backland 107, and K2 Wayback 106.

Finally, the cambered Intention 110 has a lot of camber (6-7 mm), particularly for a ski this wide.

Rocker Profile — Reverse-Cambered Intention 110

The reverse-camber Intention 110’s rocker lines are basically identical to the cambered version in terms of depth, but it’s much, much flatter in the middle (our fresh-out-of-the-factory pair has a smidge of camber — less than a millimeter).

Compared to the reverse-camber 4FRNT Raven (one of our reference skis in this category), the Intention 110’s rocker lines are much shallower and it has much less tip splay. Compared to the excellent, reverse-camber Volkl BMT 109, the reverse-camber Intention 110’s rocker lines are again much shallower, though the way its tips and tails rise up from the snow is very different. While the BMT 109 has really deep rocker lines, its tips and tails don’t rise abruptly at all, and instead stay pretty low throughout most of the ski. The reverse-camber Intention 110 has shallower rocker lines, but its tips and tails rise much more abruptly at the contact points and the Intention 110 has more tip and tail splay.

Flex Pattern

Here’s how we’d characterize the flex pattern of the cambered Intention 110:

Tips: 6.5
Shovels: 6.5-7
In Front of Toe Piece: 7.5-9.5
Underfoot: 10
Behind the Heel Piece: 10-8.5
Tails: 8-7

And here’s how we’d characterize the flex pattern of the reverse-camber Intention 110:

Tips: 6.5
Shovels: 6.5-7
In Front of Toe Piece: 7.5-9.5
Underfoot: 10
Behind the Heel Piece: 10-8.5
Tails: 8-7

Again, “moderate” is the story here. Both versions of the Intention 110 have basically identical flex patterns. They have fairly soft (but not extremely soft) tips & shovels, a strong, but not crazy-stiff midsection, and a tail that’s just a bit stiffer than the tips. Like the Intention 110’s shape and rocker profile, Jonathan and I really like its flex pattern. It feels accessible at the ends, supportive in the middle, and its flex transitions very smoothly from tip to tail.

Compared to the 4FRNT Raven, the Intention 110 has slightly stiffer tips, its shovels stiffen up a bit slower, it’s a bit softer around the bindings, and its tail is very similar.

Compared to the Blizzard Zero G 105 and Volkl BMT 109, the Intention 110 is softer throughout.

Compared to the Line Vision 108 and Line Sick Day 104, the Intention 110 has stiffer tips and a very similar midsection & tail.

Mount Point

The 185 cm Intention 110’s recommended mount point is listed as 85.5 cm from the tail, which equates to a mount point of around -6.6 cm from true center. That’s definitely on the more progressive / forward end of the spectrum, but it’s not as far forward as some freestyle-oriented skis like the Amplid Facelift 108.

We’ve said this before, but many of us at Blister tend to get along really well with mount points around -6 cm from center — including our directional and more playful reviewers — since that mount point tends to make for a ski that you can ski both centered or forward. That can be particularly useful in the backcountry where you often encounter changing conditions throughout a single run, and consequently end up frequently shifting your stance forward and back.

Weight

WNDR is marketing the Intention 110 as a backcountry-specific ski, which we’re totally fine with, since it comes in at a pretty low weight of ~1797 g per ski for the 185 cm cambered version and ~1863 g per ski for the 185 cm reverse-camber version.

That said, there are a lot of backcountry skis that come in a few hundred grams lighter than the Intention 110, and there are several manufacturers who are marketing their ~1800-g, ~185cm-long skis for use in the resort. So we suspect that the Intention 110 will fall on the more stable end of the spectrum when it comes to dedicated backcountry skis, and we’re really curious to see if it could function as a 50/50 ski that you could use inside and outside of the resort.

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 to keep things apples-to-apples.

1476 & 1490 K2 Wayback 106, 179 cm (18/19–19/20)
1477 & 1482 G3 FINDr 102, 184 cm (17/18–18/19)
1547 & 1551 Black Diamond Helio 105 Carbon, 185 cm (17/18)
1562 & 1566 Scott Superguide 105, 183 cm (17/18–18/19)
1605 & 1630 Line Vision 108, 183 cm (19/20)
1606 & 1641 Blizzard Zero G 105, 188 cm (19/20)
1642 & 1651 Renoun Citadel 106, 185 cm, (18/19)
1642 & 1662 Atomic Backland 107, 182 cm (18/19–19/20)
1660 & 1680 Moment Deathwish Tour, 184 cm (19/20)
1692 & 1715 Moment Wildcat Tour 108, 184 cm (18/19–19/20)
1706 & 1715 Volkl BMT 109, 186 cm (17/18–19/20)
1733 & 1735 Blizzard Zero G 108, 185 cm (17/18–18/19)
1745 & 1747 4FRNT Raven, 184 cm (16/17–18/19)
1752 & 1771 Amplid Facelift 108, 189 cm (18/19–19/20)
1755 & 1792 Line Sick Day 104, 179 cm (17/18–19/20)
1787 & 1806 WNDR Alpine Intention 110 (cambered), 185 cm (19/20)
1806 & 1862 Armada Tracer 108, 180 cm (19/20)
1814 & 1845 Elan Ripstick 106, 181 cm (17/18–19/20)
1825 & 1904 Black Crows Corvus Freebird, 183.3 cm (17/18–19/20)
1843 & 1847 Head Kore 105, 189 cm (17/18)
1848 & 1903 Line Sick Day 104, 186 cm (17/18–19/20)
1849 & 1922 Elan Ripstick 106, 188 cm (17/18–19/20)
1853 & 1873 WNDR Alpine Intention 110 (reverse camber), 185 cm (19/20)
1898 & 1893 Armada Tracer 108, 180 cm (18/19)
1913 & 1943 Sego Condor Ti, 187 cm (18/19)
1923 & 1956 DPS Alchemist Wailer 106, 189 cm (17/18–18/19)
1941 & 1965 Fischer Ranger 108 Ti, 182 cm (17/18–18/19)
1950 & 1977 Blizzard Rustler 10, 188 cm (17/18–18/19)
1970 & 1979 Atomic Backland FR 109, 189 cm (17/18)
1980 & 2016 Liberty Origin 106, 187 cm (17/18–18/19)
1980 & 2019 Moment Deathwish, 184 cm (17/18–18/19)
1996 & 2012 Dynastar Legend X106, 188 cm (17/18–19/20)
2005 & 2035 Liberty Origin 106, 187 cm (19/20)
2011 & 2028 Moment Wildcat 108, 184 cm (19/20)
2013 & 2013 Moment Commander 108, 188 cm (18/19)
2022 & 2047 Faction Dictator 3.0, 186 cm (17/18–18/19)
2030 & 2039 Rossignol Soul 7 HD, 188 cm (17/18–19/20)
2036 & 2064 Salomon QST 106, 188 cm (18/19)

Some Questions / Things We’re Curious About

(1) WNDR is making some big claims regarding the downhill-performance benefits of their algal composite, so just how strong, stable, and damp does the Intention 110 feel compared to similarly heavy — and heavier — skis?

(2) The Intention 110 is supposed to serve as a 1-ski quiver for the backcountry, so how well will it handle the broad range of conditions you’d see during a typical backcountry season?

(3) WNDR is one of the few brands making their skis in two different rocker profiles, so how different will the cambered and reverse-camber Intention 110 feel, and which version should you pick?

(4) The Intention 110 is a light ski, though it’s far from the lightest ski in its class. So is this a ski that really feels most appropriate in the backcountry, or could you also use it often in the more challenging conditions typically found within the confines of the resort?

Bottom Line (For Now)

The WNDR Alpine Intention 110 combines a not-too-radical shape, rocker profile, and flex pattern with a very radical construction. It’s about to dump a foot of snow here in Crested Butte, so we’ll be skiing both versions of the Intention 110 ASAP, and will report back with updates. In the meantime, let us know below about any questions or potential comparisons you’d like us to consider during our time on the Intention 110.

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Rocker Pics — WNDR Alpine Intention 110, Cambered Version

Full Profile
Tip Profile
Tail Profile
Top Sheet
Base
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Rocker Pics — WNDR Alpine Intention 110, Reverse-Camber Version

Full Profile
Tip Profile
Tail Profile
Top Sheet
Base
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6 comments on “2019-2020 WNDR Alpine Intention 110”

  1. Cant wait to hear what you guys think.
    I’m also curious about the long term durability of the new composites and the scalability of algae based materials. Is checkerspot gonna sell these materials to other companies?

  2. Pretty misleading graphs for strength:weight ratio and torsional strength:weight ratio. WNDR chose starting points for the y axes that make it appear as though their ratios are much higher higher than the avg. competitor. Looking at the absolute values the difference is more like ~15% for both, which would be apparent if the y axes started at 0 (as they should).

    Also, the flex/weight charts are not useful without knowing what the “average” competitor is. Is it something like the J Skis Metal (heavy, relatively soft) or Head Monster 108 (heavy, very stiff)?

    • Fair question — main reason I wasn’t even thinking of that ski was the weight. 300 grams per ski is a substantial difference, especially when discussing skis like the Intention 110 that are targeted at backcountry skiing. But weight aside, the two skis are quite similar in terms of flex pattern (Primary has slightly stiffer shovels), shape (Primary is a bit less tapered), and rocker profile (similar overall, but the Primary has slightly deeper rocker lines and more of a twinned tail). So maybe the reverse-camber Intention 110 could be thought of as a lighter SRC Primary? We’ll see…

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