2023 Stöckli Stormrider 95 Review
Want an all-mountain ski that can rail off-piste like it rails on groomers? Here you go.
This article was first published by SkiMag.com.
The Scores (out of 10)
- Overall Score: 7.09/10
- Rank: #7
- Versatility: 7
- Crud Performance: 7.29
- Playfulness: 6.14
- Responsiveness: 7.43
- Hard-Snow Integrity: 8
- Quickness: 6.71
- Stability at Speed: 7.86
- Carving: 8
- Flotation: 6
- Forgiveness: 6
- Price: $1,199
- Lengths: 166, 175, 184, 193
- Dimensions: 132-95-123
- Radius: 19.4 (184cm)
- Level: Advanced to Expert
In a Nutshell
- Pros: Hard-Snow Integrity (#4), Carving (#6)
- Cons: Playfulness (#20), Forgiveness (#19)
They say you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but the Stormrider 95’s topsheet, shape, and profile is a good indicator of how it skis: it’s a high performance ski best suited to aggressive skiers looking to drive the ski from the front seat. Born and bred in Switzerland, Stöckli skis all have a racy look, and the Stormrider 95, though part of the brand’s all-mountain line, is no exception. The ski’s signature brushed Titanal topsheet has an ultra-refined aesthetic that tester Brady Newton described as “a superbly polished product that skis as well as it looks.”
Most testers found that the Stormrider, even at 95 mm underfoot, felt most at home on groomed terrain. “It delivered what I expected,” said tester Chad Jacob of the ski’s on-piste performance. But he also noted that this ski’s “turn variability was a surprise.” The construction of the Stormrider 95, featuring tip and slight tail rocker with camber underfoot, makes it easier to initiate and exit turns while still leaving enough effective edge to optimize edge grip when carving. With such great performance on groomers and firm snow, tester Adam Jaber, a skier from the East, pointed out the Stormrider 95 would be great for “a strong skier who mostly skis bulletproof conditions but wants to have a good time when that occasional storm hits—aka New Englanders.”
In addition to the rocker profile, Stöckli integrates its Freeride Tip Technology to lighten and stabilize the tip of the ski, allowing for better flotation and more effortless skiing in all snow conditions. The lighter tip helps the Stormrider 95 to adapt to conditions off-piste, but, as Jacobs points out, this is still a beefy ski underfoot that “will make for some tired legs.” “It’s stiff. It’s burly. It likes to go fast,” added tester Nick Loomans.
This sentiment was echoed by most testers; all agreed that the Stormrider 95 performs better the faster you ski it. This makes the ski a touch demanding in variable terrain and requires a skier with strong fundamentals and will power to stay balanced and in the front seat. “It’s not as playful as I’d like for an all-mountain performer,” said Loomans. Testers also scored the ski low in Forgiveness because it doesn’t forgive mistakes easily. While this ski handles soft snow just fine, its lack of forgiveness makes it more work in conditions that should be effortless.
Verdict: the Stormrider 95 is not a ski for intermediates or for skiers who appreciate playful, easy-going skis. It’s a refined all-mountain ski best suited to advanced and expert chargers who split their time evenly between groomers and off-piste, and crank the speed regardless of terrain and snow conditions. But if you have the technique and the fitness, you’d be hard pressed to find a better all-mountain option for the East or anywhere where the snow is firm more often than not.
A self-proclaimed gear nerd when it comes to skis and mountain bikes, Jon Sexauer grew up skiing in Northern California, spending the majority of his time getting loose and sendy in terrain parks. He now lives in Colorado and calls Copper Mountain his home hill. Though he still gravitates towards playful and wide all-mountain skis, he’s developed a more open mind when it comes to skis since joining SKI’s official gear test crew five seasons ago. These days, you’ll find him ripping around Copper on his trusty Nordica Enforcer 100s.