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Armada Trace 98 Women’s Touring Ski 2021 – 2022 | Review

The Armada Trace 98 is your everyday backcountry that's light on the uphill and powerful on the down

Why we chose the Armada Trace 98: Manoeuvrable, powerful, light

Lengths (cm): 156, 164, 172
Sidecut (mm): 127 / 98 / 119 (164 cm)
Radius: 17m (164 cm)
Rocker Profile: Rocker-Camber-Rocker
Weight (per ski): 1,360g
Price: £540 / €600 / $700

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Armada released the Trace series, which sits alongside the men’s Tracer touring ski range, last year – offering a range of skis for women who look to head out beyond the resort boundaries. The series is developed out of legendary male models like the TST, Kufo and Norwalk, without the crazy-extreme shapes but, instead, packing premium materials.

These skis, the Armada Trace 98, look to keep performance high while not carrying too much extra weight for the climbs for women who look to slashing every corner of the mountain.

Armada Trace 98 Build

The Trace 98 sits in the middle of the range, between the Trace 108 and Trace 88. Made from Armada’s lightest core material (Caruba) the skis remain lightweight without compromising on performance. The skis make use of an additional metal-reinforced mesh weave running side to side underfoot to boost damping through less than ideal conditions.

Looking at the edges, Armada have skimmed some weight off these, cutting them down to 1.7 mm in thickness. This hasn’t been at the expense of durability, however, with a heat treatment giving them good old toughening up.

Armada Trace 98 Shaping

The ski has a rocker, camber, rocker profile and a partially twinned tail. A cambered section underfoot helps keep the ski stable and effective on hard packed and variable snow, while the rockered tip and tail keep the skis playful and offer float for when the snow gets deep.

This shaping works in harmony with the turn radius, which sits at 17.5 metres for the 172 cm length. This middle-of-the-road radius blends with the rockered tips and tails to make the skis manoeuvrable enough when things get tight (such as tree runs and couloirs), while the cambered section underfoot keeps things stable enough at high speeds.

Who Is The Armada Trace 98 For?

Intermediate to advanced female skiers looking to head into the backcountry will find a touring buddy in the Trace 98 (human buddies are also, quite highly, recommended). The skis remain lively, yet stable, easy to engage but still exciting. They’re essentially perfect for females wanting to shed some weight for the uphill without compromising too much on performance for the down.

If you are looking for a hybrid touring/off piste ski, fitting solidly in a ‘ski anywhere’ category, you’ve certainly found a good egg in the Trace 98.

Light enough to tour, powerful enough to charge and wide enough to float. As if we’ve not already made it clear, the Trace 98 really is a go anywhere everyday off-piste ski. The reinforced weave in the ski means they can handle a variety of snow conditions, easily encountered on a day in the backcountry.

Stick the Shift binding on this and you have a great hybrid touring and off-piste set up that’ll take on the lot. We’re big, big fans of these skis 

What Is The Armada Trace 98 Good At?

Versatility: 8/10
Carving: 7/10
Soft Snow: 7/10

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