2020 Rossignol Black Ops 98

You won’t read much about the specifics of this ski online or anywhere else as Rossignol keeps the details under close wraps. What we do know is that they’re 98 mm underfoot and have a twin-tip shape. They’ve got some decent heft to them, so they should hold up to some strong use. Tip and tail rocker profile is pretty evident, but that’s about it as far as we know. We’ll let our testers tell you what they think!

Harrison Gorham skied the 182 and thought it was the proper length. He scored it 4’s out of 5 for flotation, forgiveness, and versatility. He calls the Black Ops 98 a “stable ski with good flex. They’re not stiff but they rip hard turns very quickly.” Continuing on, Harrison notes that it probably doesn’t have metal in it because “it chatters at high speed, but not to the point of no fun.” Nicely said!

Evan Caha also skied the 182 and loved the stability and playfulness of the ski. The rest of his scores were all 3’s out of 5, indicating that the skis are well-rounded and versatile. “Fluid,” Evan starts, “Good tip/waist/tail shape. Likes to go edge to edge smoothly.” Even without known dimensions or design specifics, it’s nice to hear how people liked them (or not).

Matt McGinnis knows a thing or two about freestyle-oriented skis, and he too skied the 182. It was a bit long for him, but he ripped it regardless. His top scores were for stability and torsional stiffness, so again we see a high score for stability in these skis. The wood core feels like a dense one, and that is a good thing for all-mountain performance. “These skis felt like a lot to handle. With a long effective edge, these skis like when you set a course and stick to it. For skiers who want a twin-tip ski that’s fast, powerful, and lays long carves, this is a good option.” Matt makes some great points here, and let’s also remember that this ski is a bit long for him.

Conversely, Shaun Roberts would have preferred a longer length than his 182 cm test size. That said, he loved the quickness and maneuverability of the skis, with that category scoring a 5 out of 5. He had scores of 4 for flotation, stability (another high score), playfulness, and overall impression. Shaun also found them to be quite versatile, and expands on his score with good feedback: “This is a park ski that can actually ski! It is playful and can be buttered around, but then can rip groomers and hold an edge.” Nice analysis from Shaun here, noting that the park personality of the ski should not outweigh its all-mountain versatility.

Annie MacDonald skied the 182 and found it long, but fun! She gave 5’s out of 5 for stability, torsional stiffness, and edge hold. These are impressive scores for a ski like this, and her overall impression of 4.5 out of 5 is also notable. “Great ski for an aggressive hard-stomping skier. Stiff in the tip and tail, so it’s super-stable. This ski charges hard!” It’s nice to see a solid technical skier like Ann get on a super-playful ski like this and take away a ton of positives.

Brooks Curran found the 182 to be on the short side, but he loved it anyway. His top scores were for quickness, maneuverability, and playfulness. His overall impression of 4 out of 5 is a strong indication that this is a high-performance and fun ski. His quotes back that up: “The life of the party, lives for the spring bump smash. Buttery smooth even on hard and chunky snow. Park skier’s all-mountain dream—jib the mountain.” Brooks does a nice job pointing out the all-mountain benefits of this ski, as it shouldn’t be pigeon-holed as just a trick stick.

Thanks to our testers for blowing the whistle on these covert skis!

Testers

Connor Gorham

Age: 29Height: 6'0"Weight: 150 lbs.

Ski Style: Creative and inviting and always with a smile

Brooks Curran

Age: 24Height: 6'2"Weight: 170 lbs.

Ski Style: Ex-racer, now backcountry freerider

Annie MacDonald

Age: 56Height: 5'7"Weight: 118 lbs.

Ski Style: Lots of style, grace, and power

Evan Caha

Age: 30Height: 5'10"Weight: 140 lbs.

Ski Style: Fast and adventurous with a love for high edge angles

Matt McGinnis

Age: 29Height: 5'9"Weight: 175 lbs.

Ski Style: Surfy freeride with a freestyle background

Harrison Gorham

Age: 34Height: 6'0"Weight: 170 lbs.

Ski Style: Heavily mustachioed and always watching out for the kids

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