DPS Wailer 106 Tour1 2019 – 2020 Ski | Review

The Wailer 106 is an all mountain package, with a soft snow bias, and weighs just 1,440g

Lengths (cm): 168, 178 & 185cm
Sidecut (mm): 133 / 106 / 122 (178cm)
Radius: 18m (178cm)
Rocker Profile: Rocker-Camber-Rocker
Camber Underfoot:
Weight (per ski): 1440g (178cm)
Price: £999


Why we chose the DPS Wailer 106 Tour 1: Astonishingly lightweight pair of planks.

You know that when a company has been born from one of the creators of the Volant Spatula – the first ski to incorporate reverse side cut and revolutionise the way many people skied powder – then the company is going to create some mighty fine soft snow skis. This is certainly the case with DPS skis.

DPS (Drake Powderworks) started out modestly, but have always had a core following with their progressive designs. They’ve now become the go-to independent ski company, most known for creating some of the finest powder shapes on the planet and one of the first to make use of carbon fibre technology in an effort to keep weight low and stiffness high.

“They’ve now become the go-to independent ski company, most known for creating some of the finest powder shapes on the planet”

To this day, DPS have followed their roots with an emphasis on powder performance skis. They are, however, slowly adding more and more versatile skis that are suited towards skiing the whole mountain in a range of snow conditions.

The Wailer series from DPS represents exactly this, with the current lineup of Wailers ranging from 99 mm – 112 mm underfoot; all including a unique blend of rocker, camber and tip-tail designs that make them great all-mountain performers.

At 106 mm underfoot, the Wailer 106 Tour1 sit in the middle of the Wailer range. This is a width that has fast become the go-to width for all-mountain performance.

If you’d asked for a 1440g 106cm waisted powder ski 20 years ago, hell, even just 10 years ago then you’d most likely have been laughed out of the nearest ski shop. Lightweight touring skis have come a long way in recent years though and, of course, DPS have been at the forefront of this with their carbon fibre development.

The Tour1 range from DPS is an example of this development. With the Alchemist construction from DPS utilising two sheets of carbon fibre to sandwich an Aspen core, Tour1 a single carbon fibre laminate to cap a lighter Balsa wood core – creating a uphill friendly build.

“If you’d asked for a 1440g 106 cm waisted powder ski … 10 years ago then you’d most likely have been laughed out of the nearest ski shop”

There aren’t many better skis in this width and weight class that offer the level of performance that the Wailer 106 Tour1 is able to uphold. They’ll be a great choice for someone looking for a pair of backcountry specific planks that slightly favour soft snow conditions.

Given their level of weight to performance, they do come with quite an eye-watering price tag (£999). However, if you’re spending the majority of your time touring uphill then you’ll soon be forgetting about that price tag and enjoying what a real pleasure this build is on the way up.

A 106 mm waisted ski at the weight of 1440 grams – welcome to 2019

Industry Insider

DPS Spokesperson

“Thanks to its two full layers of pre-preg carbon, the Tour1 Wailer 106 is lightweight for uphill ease in the skin track, yet pleasurable and predictably precise when descending at speed. An excellent choice for conditions that range from powder to firm spring snow. The Wailer’s versatile 106mm waist makes it an ideal central piece for your quiver.”

Expert’s Verdict

Donny Roth, AMGA Ski Guide

I am lucky to have a small quiver of skis, but if I had to pick just one pair to use all year, in all conditions, in every location, I would choose the Tour1 Wailer 106. It’s the safest bet because the camber profile in the tip allows it to perform like a wider ski in powder and crusts, while the construction and shape allows it to perform like a narrower ski on hard pack and ice. It can be forgiving and easy to ski, but it doesn’t get nervous when I want to let it rip”

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