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Kästle TX87 Touring Ski 2021 – 2022 | Review

The Kästle TX87 is one of the highest performing sub-1,300 gram touring skis we've come across

Why we chose the Kästle TX87: Lightweight, powerful, grippy

Lengths (cm): 150, 158, 166, 174 & 182
Sidecut (mm): 124 / 87 / 111 (174 cm)
Radius (m): 15.5 (174 cm)
Rocker Profile: Rocker-Camber
Weight (per ski): 1,160g
Price: £669 €749 / $949

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The Kästle TX87 isn’t short of ski building heritage. Founded in 1924 by Anton Kästle, Kästle Skis has a strong history of creating World Cup winning race skis – winning a total of 132 Olympic and World Cup medals (all of which were produced in their factory in Hohenems, Austria).

These days, Kästle is dedicated to drawing this experience creating World Cup winning race skis, and turning that into downhill-focused all-mountain, touring and freeride planks. Case in point, the Kästle TX87 – an extremely well-considered and innovative touring ski that’s a joy to ski both on the uphill and downhill.

Kästle TX87 Build

Coming in at a weight of 1,260 grams per ski, the TX87 hovers between that fine line of high performance and lightweight construction. What’s usually the case for skis in this weight class is that they’re extremely lightweight, yet frustratingly twitchy. However, the TX87s are an impressively capable pair of skis, given that lack of weight.

This balance is first of all thanks to a Paulownia / Poplar core that has a fibreglass layer sitting above it. This fibreglass has carbon weaves wound within the layer to help beef up the stiffness. There’s also an additional fibreglass layer in the binding mount location, for direct power transfer where it’s needed most.

“Kästle Skis has a strong history of creating World Cup winning race skis – winning a total of 132 Olympic and World Cup medals”

Kästle’s Hollowtech is a simple, yet ingenious, way of removing material from the tipswhile also reducing the swing weight and overall weight of the ski. The classic Hollowtech cutaway at the tips of their skis is a feature the brand has become synonymous with, and,  given it’s survived the test of time, we know it’s not another marketing gimmick.

The (proven) theory behind Hollowtech is that if you remove weight from the end of a ski, there’s less mass at the tips for unwanted vibration when skiing at speed. The difference Hollowtech 3.0 brings over that of the older Hollowtech 2.0 is a claimed 30% increase in dampness. According to Kästle, it means the ski is “more stable, edge-grip is more powerful, steering is more precise”. All thanks to this chatter free tip.

Perhaps the most interesting feature of Hollowtech is reserved for the TX series of skis, where a luminous material has been added to the Hollowtech section for increased visibility for all the nighttime tourers out there.

“Given it’s survived the test of time, we know it’s not another marketing gimmick”

Kästle TX87 Shaping

Kästle have paired this build with a pretty traditional shape that touches that sweet spot between soft snow flotation, and hard snow bite. Of course, being a 87 mm waist, the TX87 leans on the side of firmer conditions. The stiff fiberglass and carbon build blends well with the traditional camber to give the TX87 amble bite on the firm stuff.

A touch of taper in the tips and tails is what Kästle are calling their ‘Hook-Free Tip And Tail”. By pulling the contact points closer to the centre of the ski, and combining it with tip and tail rocker, the TX87 manages to remain (relatively) playful in 3D snow.

Who Is The Kästle TX87 For?

The Kästle TX87 is an extremely well thought out touring ski. One that should only be mounted with a similarly high-spec touring binding, like the Plum Pika or Marker Kingpin M-Werks.

Yes, it comes at an eye watering price tag. However, if you are serious about ski touring and ski mountaineering that’s money well spent in this writer’s opinion. The TX87 strikes one of the best balances between ski performance and low weight we’ve seen on a touring ski.

What Is The Kästle TX87 Good At?

Touring: 9/10
Hard Snow: 8/10
Soft Snow: 6/10

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