Soft snow and powder have met their match in the Salomon QST 106. Unchanged for 2021, the 106 got an update last year and will casually roll with it into this year. Good thing, we say, as the ski is one of the more stable and versatile skis in its class. From deep powder to crud and whatever may lie in between, the QST 106 is a soft-snow pro that has little to no boundaries. Equally at home with a touring binding in the backcountry as it is ripping resort laps, the QST 106 crosses a lot of lines and boundaries for today's modern freeride skier who's looking to do a little bit of everything. Probably not the best carver of the ~105 ish underfoot skis, but also not the worst. It does, however, have more of a floaty nature than its competitors, and this is mostly due to the rocker built in to the tip and tail. It's pretty abrupt in comparison to other skis, and this makes it extremely surfy and able to release from a turn in soft snow with ease and playfulness. Like last year, most of our contributors and testers loved the overall friendly nature and versatility of these fantastic skis. Lots of love out there for the QST 106, and it will continue into 2021.
Rocker / Camber / Rocker
Powder, Big Mountain, Touring
Marcus Shakun skied on the appropriately sized 188-it's always nice when our taller testers can get on the long lengths and really get a sense of how the ski performs. Unsurprisingly, Marcus scores the ski a 5 out of 5 for flotation. 4's were given for playfulness, forgiveness, versatility, and overall impression. These are the high scores that we come to expect from these wider Salomon skis, and the 106 is no exception. Marcus notes that the "Salomon QST 106 is a little bit of everything for everyone. A little more damp and forgiving than the Stance models. More for that all-mountain skier seeking adventure off the groomers. I have always found these skis easy to ski and perform well, while not overly shining anywhere." We'd agree, that other than flotation, this ski doesn't really stand out in one particular area, but that's okay!
Jeff Neagle got to ski the 181 and found that to be just about right. Like Marcus, a 5 out of 5 for flotation was given. 4's for the rest of the categories including versatility and overall impression are also echoes of Marcus' scores. Jeff states that "the QST 106 is a great ski. In my opinion, it works best as an east coast powder ski or a west coast daily-driver. Here on the east, our powder days are shallower and conditions tend to get tracked out more quickly than western terrain and conditions. The QST 106 does just fine on those first few runs when it's untouched powder, but really shines the rest of the day through variable, choppy conditions." When a ski is a bit more forgiving, it is allowed to flex and bend with the conditions and terrain, and it won't eat you for lunch like some stiffer and heavier skis in this shape tend to do. Jeff continues: "The ski has an excellent blend of stability and maneuverability. Really aggressive skiers who love speed may want more, but that's a pretty small segment of skiers. The QST 106 can handle higher speeds through choppy snow, but is also highly maneuverable and has a distinctly surfy feel in deep snow." Again, that floaty nature of the QST 106 keeps popping up. Perhaps there's something to that...
Resort skiing, touring, or anything you can think of will be easily handled by the well-rounded and nicely rockered QST 106. Whether you're using it as a powder-specific ski or something to just handle the softer and more broken up days, the QST 106 has a winning formula that a lot of skiers will love.
Age: 33Height: 5'10"Weight: 150 lbs.
Age: 39Height: 6'5"Weight: 225 lbs.
Age: 44Height: 6'"Weight: 230 lbs.
Age: 23/24Height: 6'1"Weight: 190 lbs.
Age: 50Height: 6'3"Weight: 215 lbs.
Age: 31Height: 6'"Weight: 160 lbs.
Contributors: George Merrill.