ProView – Liberty Skis Origin 106
It can be scary to buy a ski you haven’t tried before, but trust me, this one is worth checking out.
Liberty Skis Origin 106
Product Description: The award-winning Origin series is the new freeride benchmark in skiing; Origins are designed with a playful personality but retain the power and edge grip for varied and hardpack conditions. The target skier is someone who seeks the ideal blend of resort and powder but wants a playful freeride ski.
Offer price: MSRP: $800.00
Soft Snow Performance
Firm Snow Performance
The Liberty Origin 106 are an all-mountain ski that can be used anywhere, anytime. Keep your other skis in the garage, these handle a variety of conditions during the day, but still want a lightweight touring ski that can carve and handle powder – these have become my one-ski quiver.
- A one-ski quiver that does it all
- Can be used for a variety of conditions
- Bamboo construction for lightweight touring
- Great edge control for carving on groomers and hard-packed snow
- Eats crud for breakfast
- Great flotation in fresh snow
- Great option for backcountry skiing/ touring
- Super durable top sheet
- 3-year warranty
- Not my favorite graphic of all time, but not the worst
Recently I moved from Colorado to Montana, and it was a bit of an adjustment period, to say the least. The skies can be grey and gloomy, the resort can have terrible visibility (the other day was a 3-chair day), fog, inversions, and ice buildup on the goggles was an unexpected challenge. Both states have their upsides and downsides, but I figured I could trade the glorious sunny bluebird days of Colorado for the soft powder of Montana.
I’m a bit of a mixed bag when it comes to skiing. You’ll most likely find me at the resort, and when snow is deep — in the trees. But don’t count me out for a corduroy day, I sure do love ripping a groomer. Other times, I’ll be skinning up the face of the resort, exploring the side country, or venturing into the backcountry.
I used to have two completely different setups depending on whether I was skinning or not. I loved my Atomic Benchetlers at the resort, and Black Crows Corvus Freebirds with Dynafit ST Rotation 10 bindings for touring. Not to mention, I had two different boots, SCARPA Geas, a lightweight touring boot, and Langes, a stiffer and much heavier resort boot.
When I made the switch to a boot that works for both (K2 Mindbenders, which I highly recommend), I wondered if I could do the same with a pair of skis. I was very skeptical that I could find a ski that does it all in a variety of conditions.
Until I tried the Liberty Origin 106, my new one-ski quiver. I never thought I’d leave the Benchetlers in the garage, but every time I’m packing up, the Origins end up in the truck.
If you are an all mountain skier, skiing lots of soft snow or skiing in a variety of conditions – ice, powder, bumps, trees, and corduroy, you’ll find that these things can handle anything you throw at them.
Liberty describes them as “Charging big-mountain lines but still want a performance driven ski for the days between storms? With our signature bamboo, poplar, and carbon fiber construction, the Origin106 is ready to crush whatever you’re feeling. The Origin106 is legendary for versatile performance in a lightweight package.” and I find this to be a completely accurate description.
|SIZES||171cm, 176cm, 182cm, 187cm|
|CORE PROFILE||Speedcore Carbon|
At 5’8”, 140 lbs I went with the 171 length, a bit shorter than I normally choose, but I wanted to be able to make quick turns with speed while in tight trees. Some reviews recommend sizing up, but I’m very happy with the 171.
This ski features a full tip and tail rocker, with a positive camber underfoot, which makes for maximum flotation, and in my opinion a really playful feel. There’s definitely a freestyle influence with the twin tip shape. With a little bit of a longer rocker profile, which gives it really nice smoothness through the snow.
The Origins have 20% tip rocker and 15% tail rocker, and is constructed using Liberty’s Speedcore Carbon construction techniques. Mostly, even flex throughout the ski, with a strong middle section and mid-tail area. Which I found to be very forgiving.
The Origin is constructed with Bamboo and Poplar and a carbon strip, making the ski really light, which is great for touring – something that’s very important to me while traveling in the backcountry. Liberty Skis are leaders in bamboo innovation, and understand that even fatter skis need to be able to carve and rip groomers. Because we all love to have the best of both worlds!
Fun story, Liberty actually introduced bamboo to their construction in 2005 after noticing the difference bamboo made in terms of flex and performance in hand-made fly rods.
When testing these on groomers and firm snow, you won’t get a hard edge grip and they don’t accelerate through turns as much as a dedicated frontside ski would, but still does an amazing job of holding an edge, and feeling really stable. The carbon allows for “snaps and pops” throughout the turn, giving you a fun and really rhythmic feel throughout groomers. I can attest to no chatter, turns that hold, and feel secure.
Often I find skied out trees, even in my favorite spots. The construction of the ski gives it that really flexible feel, allowing quick turns, and snappy reaction. See the flex in action below.
The 106 width gives these skis great flotation in deeper, softer snow. Although we didn’t get as many powder days as I would have liked, I still felt I had a good understanding of what this ski is capable in deeper snow.
Touring in the Backcountry
In my opinion, the weight makes a huge difference when it comes to going uphill. And while these aren’t lighter compared to a backcountry specific ski (previously on Black Crows Corvus Freebird with Dynafit ST Rotation 10 bindings), I do blame the Atomic Shifts I mounted on them. Overall, I never felt like they were too heavy, and was able to maintain the same speed on the uphill.
About Liberty Skis
For me, it’s important to support a local, smaller company, and Liberty skis is just that. Ultimately they are skiers who make skis, who love making skiing that much more fun. HQ is in Avon, Colorado, allowing their staff to test their skis in the mecca of variable conditions, which directly reflects in their products.
In terms of friendliness to the earth, Liberty runs their entire production on 100% wind power and has done so since 2006. This is the first ski company to do so, and I’m really stoked to support a company that values sustainability at the core of their business.
Liberty stands by their skis, and offers a three-year warranty under normal use of course. The top sheet of the Origins is super durable, and won’t as easily scratch or de-laminate.
If you’re a woman, sometimes you can be drawn to a women’s-specific ski (which can definitely benefit some ladies), but I advise you not to shy away from the Origin 106. I absolutely love them!
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About the Gear Tester
Jess Villaire is the Marketing Manager at Outdoor Prolink. You’ll typically find her out with her doggos skiing, mountain biking, hiking, SUPing, drinking beer, or rearranging furniture. Follow her on Instagram @jessisupsidedown.
Hello, great detailed post. I was wondering what ski boots and bindings you use. Do you just use one set of bi dings/boots for both backcountry and resort skiing?
Hi Court – thanks! Yep, I use this pair of skis both in the backcountry and at the resort. My bindings are the Salomon Shift touring bindings, and my boots are the K2 Mindbenders, which is a hybrid boot. I use the same set up for backcountry and resort days – it works great! Hope that helps 🙂