Line Soulmate 86 (2017)

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Rating: / 5
Price: $500.00
Year: 2017
Gender: Female
Waist Width: 86
Tip/Tail/Waist: 125-86-111
Lengths: 151, 158, 165

The Soulmate 86, which returns unchanged for 2017, is the narrowest and least expensive women's ski in the Line collection. With a soft flex, economical cap construction, it's well suited to lesser-skilled but adventuresome women who split their time on-trail and off. Traditional camber and its relatively narrow waist give it secure edge grip on hardpack, so it's a likely choice for Eastern resort skiers. With an MSRP of $500, it'll sell for a "street price" of about $400 in many shops. Line offers 18 models for men, but for women it keeps things simpler, with just four models. Women's waist widths range from 115 down to 86. For soft-snow freeriding, the Pandora models, the 110 and the 95, are generously wide and amply rockered for powder and crud flotation in typical Western conditions. To keep things light, both Pandoras are built with Line's Maple Lite core: dense maple underfoot for sturdy edge grip, airier aspen fore and aft, for reduced swing weight. The narrower models, Soulmate 92 and Soulmate 85, are quicker and edgier, better suited to Eastern snow conditions. They get Line's denser Maple Macroblock cores: full-length maple stringers sandwiched by lighter aspen-for extra edge power, durability, and responsiveness. Constructions vary, from economical cap at the low end (Soulmate 86) to full-length/full-height sidewalls, for hard-snow grip, on the midfat models (Soulmate 92 and Pandora 95), to a mix of the two-soft-flexing cap riding on low, medium-edgy sidewalls-in the top-end Pandora 110. All have slight-twin tails, for smeary turn finishes, quick direction changes, and easy speed control. Line Skis, founded in 1995 by early independent ski-making entrepreneur and twin-tip inventor Jason Levinthal, is a subsidiary of K2, which, along with Volkl, Dalbello, and Marker, is a subsidiary of the Jarden Group, which was itself purchased by the Newell Rubbermaid consumer-products conglomerate in 2016. Based in Seattle, Wash., Line manufactures its skis in China. Sister brands include K2 and Full Tilt. -J.C.