2023 Fischer Ranger 108 Review
When the fluff turns to crud, this is the ski you want underfoot
This article was first published by SkiMag.com.
The Scores (out of 10)
- Overall Score: 7.47
- Rank: #6
- Flotation: 8.07
- Playfulness: 7.07
- Responsiveness: 7.27
- Quickness: 7.07
- Crud Performance: 7.47
- Stability at Speed: 7.4
- Forgiveness: 7.07
- Versatility: 7.07
- Price: $950
- Lengths: 171, 178, 185, 192
- Dimensions: 143-109-134
- Radius: 18 (185cm)
- Level: Advanced, Expert
In a Nutshell
- Pros: Flotation (#7), Crud Performance (#3)
- Cons: Playfulness (#12), Responsiveness (#8)
Fischer reimagined their Ranger line this year after years of reconnaissance and experimentation—some loved the changes, while other testers weren’t so sure. It received a high Flotation score, the ultimate criteria for a powder ski. Beyond that, “balanced, dependable, and energetic” were the top words used to describe the Ranger 108. Ideal for an advanced to expert skier who prefers a more aggressive ski, the Ranger can be a little unforgiving if you are not over the front on the ski, because that’s where it likes you to be. That said, we found it to be a well-rounded resort ski for deep conditions but versatile enough to ski hardpack if you’re looking for a wider one-ski quiver.
“While made for powder, I felt confident on hardpack and crud too, even at speeds,” said tester Elyse Schreiber. “I had tired legs and was coming off a few tough runs, and this ski skyrocketed my mood.”
At 108mm underfoot, a few of us found it tough to whip around in the trees but agreed it floated much better than expected. “This ski isn’t the quickest to respond in super tight terrain, but still doesn’t take a ton of work to drive,” said Jackson Hole devotee Lily Krass. “I was surprised at how easy this ski was to drive given Fischer’s reputation for more challenging skis tailored to advanced skiers.”
Sandwich sidewall construction, meaning the sidewalls run along the ski length, gives the Ranger serious edge hold and makes it more torsionally rigid than others in the Powder category. The beech and poplar wood core combined with freeski rocker are designed to make this a more approachable ski, but a handful of testers bemoan the changes, feeling the new model was just loose instead of playful.
“I think this ski is a solid first-time wide ski for a customer who wants to venture off-piste but still needs that stability and balanced feel on the groomers,” said tester Avery Pesce, GM of Boston Ski and Tennis. “This is a very well-rounded ski for the emerging advanced skier to the pro who skis somewhere with consistently deep snow. It’s not a super easy ski, but it’s straightforward without any weirdness.” Essentially, this does what we expected. What more can you ask?
To sum it up, we’ll look to Krass, who described the Ranger 108 as a charging ski with an approachable vibe. “This ski is beefy enough to please ripping skiers but accessible enough for intermediate skiers to progress and feel confident, stable, and secure in challenging terrain.”