2023 Head Kore 91 W Review
The runner-up in the women’s all-mountain category is a universal crowd pleaser
This article was first published by SkiMag.com.
The Scores (out of 10)
- Overall Score: 8.21/10
- Rank: #2
- Versatility: 8.6
- Crud Performance: 8
- Playfulness: 8.4
- Responsiveness: 8.2
- Hard-Snow Integrity: 8.2
- Quickness: 8.4
- Stability at Speed: 8
- Carving: 8.6
- Flotation: 7
- Forgiveness: 7.8
- Price: $800
- Lengths: 149, 156, 163, 170
- Dimensions: 130-91-113
- Radius: 14.7m (170cm)
- Level: Intermediate to Expert
In a Nutshell
- Pros: Versatility (#3), Playfulness (#3)
- Cons: Flotation (#4), Crud Performance (#5)
If we had to choose just one ski to universally recommend to women—no matter their ability or where they ski—the Kore 91 W might be it. Thanks to a lightweight caruba-poplar core, moderate tip and tail rocker, and slimmer waist, this ski is incredibly agile, energetic, and just so easy to swing around.
Testers found that this makes the Kore 91 W a particularly great playmate in moguls and glades, where you need a ski that’s willing to turn on a dime and doesn’t make you muscle your way through turns. Every tester described this ski as nimble and energetic, not just in bumps or tight terrain, but everywhere else, too, and awarded it high marks in Playfulness accordingly. But for a ski with no Titanal, the Kore 91 W holds its own under expert pressure, and testers say it won’t let you down even when conditions get sketchy.
“Surprised at how dependable this was for a ski with no metal,” said tester Avery Pese, an expert skier from the East. “I quickly trusted this thing to handle whatever terrain I pushed it on. Another one-ski quiver for an all mountain skier. Light and responsive in the trees with excellent float.”
The ski’s one little shortcoming: It does have a speed limit, and because it doesn’t have metal in it, it’s not the most natural carver on hard snow. You can get it up on edge, but you have to work a little harder to get there. “Not as easy to get on edge as some of the others in this category,” noted tester Ariella Gintzler, a 5’4” advanced skier. “Not a fast and furious race car ready to giv’er,” added Erika Northrop, who gravitates towards beefier skis that can stand up to her home hill of Taos, N.M.
But as a playful, user-friendly, and versatile all-mountain tool, this ski is hard to top, especially for those still working on their skills and gaining confidence off-piste. “This is a great ski for intermediate skiers who want to try a slightly heavier ski,” said Gintzler.
Other testers weren’t so quick to dismiss the Kore 91 W as an intermediate ski, claiming advanced and expert skiers could appreciate its easygoing nature while still getting a whole lot of performance out of it. “Advanced lady skiers will find it easy to lay into, but it also lets beginners take it easy,” noted tester Michelle Nicholson, a Jackson Hole ski patroller. “Super approachable and turn-friendly for an advanced intermediate, but powerful and stable enough for a hard-charging advanced skier looking for a ski they can whip around,” Pesce summarized.
Like the Blizzard Sheeva 9, the all-mountain category winner, this ski didn’t win the highest marks in any one skill department. But it came by its No. 2 ranking honestly after demonstrating its supreme versatility, arguably the most important trait in an all-mountain ski.
Jenny Wiegand is SKI’s managing editor. Born and raised in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, Jenny grew up exploring the Alps on skis, bikes, and her own two feet. She has since traded in the Alps for the Rockies to seek new trails, new adventures, and write about her favorite sport—skiing—in her new home of Boulder, Colo. Since joining the SKI Magazine editorial team in 2018, Jenny has written and edited stories for SKI’s print and digital outlets. A lifelong skier and former club racer, Jenny is also a self-proclaimed gearhead and puts that knowledge to good use as one of SKI Magazine’s official gear testers.