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    Head Monster 88

       (1 review)

    • Model year: 2016 Gender: Men's MSRP: 800.00 MAP: 700.00 Radius: 17.4 Waist: 88 Sidecut: 133-88-114 Integrated binding?: No Core material: wood Laminate layers: 2 Lengths: 163, 170, 177, 184 Weight: 0 Construction type: Sidewall Camber profile: Early-rise tip Skill level: Advanced, Expert

    The Head Monster 88 is an excellent frontside-oriented all-mountain ski. These skis stick to Head's roots and are some of the most hard-snow oriented skis in the "all-mountain" category. Some readers will argue that we should have included these in the mixed snow category, but we disagree. There are better mixed snow skis out there. The Monster 88s want to be skied at speed on groomers with the occasional venture off-trail. You can feel the two sheets of metal in the Monster 88s, both in the stiff flex and weight. At low speeds they're not thrilling, but they wake up at irresponsible speeds. You need space to let these run and then you can flex them and ride along.

    Who is this ski for?

    These are heavy and stiff skis, but they don't flinch if you need to bust apart some bumps. They are a great choice on the afternoon of light powder days. They are an even better choice for spring skiing where the morning is refrozen hard pack softening in the afternoon.

    Who is this ski not for?

    The Monster 88s demanded a strong carving technique. Intermediate skiers will likely find themselves overwhelmed. If you like a slashing, new school feel you'll do better elsewhere. Skip them if you're looking for something forgiving or a ski for moderate speeds. This can be a very polarizing ski to someone without the skills to use them.

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    I demoed the Monster 88 over Thanksgiving weekend at Sunday River. Only had a few trails open, but the sides of the trails had some nice sugary snow and some sort-of-bumps forming.

    The Monster was a LOT of fun on the groomed. It went edge to edge a lot faster than I thought an 88 mm ski would and it also held the ice with a similar strength to my Atomic Redsters it seemed. It was a lot of fun to carve and it loved speed. 

    I was less of a fan of this ski on the sides of the trails. It didn't seem as burly as I was expecting. If I hit some chop when on edge it tended to bounce around a bit. I'm on the lighter side, so that may have contributed. I think the ski would handle better in wetter, stickier snow than the sugar crystals I was demoing them in (for ungroomed performance).

    I would definitely ski with this ski off trail, but it definitely feels at home on the groomed.

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