Rating: / 5
Waist Width: 97
Lengths: 166, 172, 178, 184
At the 97/98-mm waist width, Dynastar offers a choice. The 2017 Cham 2.0 97 is the narrowest ski in the three-model Cham series of full-fat freeriders. Compared to the similarly wide Powertrack 98, it offers a little more rocker and more pronounced tip and tail taper for a surfier, looser, smearier feel in soft snow, where the grippier Powertrack is better prepared for edgy performance and high-edge-angle arcing on hard snow.
It’s part of the men’s Freeride collection, which includes three Cham 2.0 models with waist widths of 117, 107, and 97 mm. The long-familiar Chams, which were updated last year and return unchanged for 2017, are adventuresome newschool freeriders designed for modern powder skiing technique. Generous width and moderate tip/tail rocker give them powder-ready buoyancy. Classic camber through much of the ski combined with sturdy construction gives them power, carvability, and rebound energy. But the Chams’ trademark burliness is tempered by Dynastar’s Five-Point Sidecut, which gives them a dose of newschool, freeridey slashiness: The tip and tail are not only rockered but also tapered (ie., the widest points are closer to the foot), making them looser in the snow, easier to pivot and foot-steer-good for huge sprays, emergency speed checks, and creative line selection. All are sturdy laminate constructions, built on lightweight paulownia wood cores, with edgy, full-height vertical sidewalls tip to tail.
Dynastar, along with sister brands Look, Lange, and Kerma (poles), is part of the privately owned Rossignol Group. It’s factory headquarters are in Sallanches, France, “in the shadow of Mont Blanc.” It was founded in 1963. -J.C.