2018 Nordica Santa Ana 100 Women's Skis 2018 Nordica Santa Ana 100 Women's Skis

2018 Nordica Santa Ana 100 Women’s Skis

The Santa Ana 100 from Nordica is a women’s freeride all mountain ski that shares a shape with the Nordica Enforcer 100, but uses women’s specific construction. At the core of the ski is balsa wood, a super lightweight material. This is then augmented with two sheets of titanal (just like the men’s ski) resulting in plenty of power, stability, torsional stiffness, and energy, but in a package with an overall weight that’s less than the men’s version. The 100 mm waist width and tip and tail rocker is designed to deliver excellent performance in off-piste terrain, while still retaining the ability to carve some nice turns on groomers. What did our testers think of it? Each of these ladies tested the 169 cm length.

Maggie MacDonald “love love loved” it! She scored it 5 out of 5 for every single category on our test form, which is saying a lot as we didn’t see reactions like that very often across the entire ski test. Maggie described the Santa Ana 100 as a “versatile ski for all conditions. It’s fun, responsive, and handles both high speeds and tight slalom turns.” It really is one of those skis that can handle just about every type of terrain with its 100 mm waist width. Maggie thinks it would make a “great all mountain ski for an aggressive advanced skier” and we can concur.

Julia Gill felt that the Santa Ana is “definitely a lot of ski for a beginner, but still forgiving.” In fact, Julia scored the Santa Ana 100 5 out of 5 for forgiveness (as well as versatility). This makes a lot of sense to us as we often hear skiers refer to the Enforcer 100 as being impressively forgiving despite the two sheets of metal in the ski. The same can be said for the Santa Ana, but because it’s lighter than the Enforcer the feeling is somewhat accentuated. Julia went on to describe the versatility of the Santa Ana 100: “Held its edge great on the hard stuff and turned playful in the softer stuff.” Well geez, that sounds pretty perfect to us.

Karly Acker echoed this playful, fun feel. She described the Santa Ana 100 as a “fun ski overall. It’s light and easy to maneuver.” She found that it was “easy to change turn radius,” which is largely due to the rocker profile of the Santa Ana 100. It’s easier to manipulate than, say, the Astral series that uses a stiffer tail. Karly “would recommend to any advanced or intermediate skier who enjoys all conditions.” We don’t throw around the term “one ski quiver” very often, but this is certainly a ski that could fall into that category.

While Kristi Brown didn’t think the Santa Ana 100 was quite as forgiving as the 93 mm width version, she did think it had an awesome mix of performance from laying down carves on fast groomers to first tracks down fresh snow. Kristi had an interesting way to describe the ski: “if you’re an early morning skier that likes getting first chair the Santa Ana will reward you with either fast groomer skiing or fresh tracks in powder.” Having that kind of versatility in a ski allows you to confidently head out on the slopes no matter what the conditions are like.

Just like the men’s Enforcer 100, the Santa Ana 100 is one of the best and most popular women’s all mountain skis on the market. While there are skis that can compare and compete with it, there’s not really anything that outperforms them for what they are intended to do: offer a wide range of performance characteristics for relatively advanced skiers. If 100 mm sounds too wide the Santa Ana 93 retains a similar feel in a narrower ski.

Testers

Julia Gill Ski Tester Headshot Image

Julia Gill

Age: 27Height: 5'7"Weight: 140 lbs.

Ski Style: Developing intermediate surrounded by a bunch of ski enthusiasts

Tami Razinger Ski Tester Profile Photo

Tami Razinger

Age: 23Height: 5'4"Weight: 155 lbs.

Ski Style: Fast, aggressive, competitive big mountain skier

Karly Acker Ski Tester Headshot Image

Karly Acker

Age: 25Height: 5'9"Weight: 145 lbs.

Ski Style: Retired racer who loves to rip steeps

Caroline Kessler Ski Tester Headshot Image

Caroline Kessler

Age: 22Height: 5'9"Weight: 160 lbs.

Ski Style: Fast and aggressive, yet playful

Maggie MacDonald Ski Tester Headshot Image

Maggie MacDonald

Age: 39Height: 5'3"Weight: 135 lbs.

Ski Style: Advanced skier that loves woods and steep ungroomed terrain

Kristi Brown Ski Tester Headshot Image

Kristi Brown

Age: 48Height: 5'9"Weight: 136 lbs.

Ski Style: Energetic, precise, very smooth and skis with a lot of finesse

8 Comments on the “2018 Nordica Santa Ana 100 Women’s Skis”

  1. I have been skiing for over 40 years and have never owned a pair of women specific skis. I am 5’7″ and an athletic 160# woman. I am a aggressive and confident skier. I ski Mt Baker in Washington state almost exclusively which is known for variable conditions that often include deep, heavy, wet snow. I am wondering if the enforcer might be a better choice for my weight, strength, and challenging conditions?

    1. Hi Audra!
      With the Enforcer/Santa Ana, the men’s version has slightly more dense wood in the core, so it is a bit different, but other than that and the sizing, they’re the same skis. You’d do great with either!
      SE

  2. I am a 51 year old, former alpine racer who has also been an aggressive tele skier for 25 years but is now coming back to alpine touring. I can only swing one pair of skis so I want something I will put touring bindings on that can negotiate all the variability of backcountry but hang at the area. I am 5’8″ and 130 with all my gear on. My current skis are 172 but 177 seems way long. Should I think about 169? Thanksm

    1. Hi Heidi!

      Considering your weight and what you plan to do with them, I think 169 cm will be just fine. With your background, I’m sure you’d be able to ski the 177 cm length, but do you need it? That’s where I lean towards no. You mention variability of backcountry and that you’ll be touring, both reasons to go with the 169 cm in my opinion. It will be a little lighter, and it will be a little more maneuverable and forgiving in trick situations, tough terrain, etc. Really the only benefit of the longer length would be more stability, but the Santa Ana 100 is a relatively stable ski in general, so I don’t think you’ll lack anything with the 169 cm.

      Hope that helps!

      SE

  3. Recently I demoed the Santa Ana 161- in Powder, crud, bumps and groomers. I am 5″ almost 2 117# and 58 and felt I could use a little more length…

    Help

    1. Hi Amy!

      I’m guessing you’re a pretty advanced skier? There’s no reason you couldn’t go with the longer length, the 169 cm, although keep in mind that’s quite a bit taller than you. That being said, there’s not necessarily anything wrong with that as long as your an advanced to expert level skier and are comfortable on a longer length ski. Did you feel unstable on the 161 cm?

      SE

  4. I am seriously looking at the Santa Anna, 169. But Looking at all the testers weights, I am 5’6 and weigh 125. As an advanced skier, I don’t know now if I should go with the 161 (which seems short) or the 169.
    Thanks!

    1. Hi Sheryl!

      I think you’ll be fine on the 169 cm Santa Ana. It’s a forgiving shape considering how strong and powerful it can be. Most people who ski it find it pretty forgiving for its level of performance. The 169 cm is right around your height exactly, and I think that’s a perfectly reasonable length for an advanced skier on a ski like the Santa Ana 100.

      Hope that helps!

      SE

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