Expert Review: Head Kore 93
This review is my own honest opinion of the skis, which I bought with my own money in December 2020.
About this review This review is my own honest opinion of the skis, which I bought with my own money in December 2020.
The Head Kore 93 is an all-around ripper, capable of handling most conditions up to ~10" of freshies. While durability is an issue, the ski is fast, holds an edge, and can be as playful or as stiff as I need it to be. This is ideal for advanced skiers who will be able to get the most out of these skis, however, strong intermediates could also do well using them to get to that next level.
- Height: 5’11”
- Weight: 180 lbs
- Model: 2021 Head Kore 93 Skis
- Size: 180 cm (Note: This ski only features a 93mm waist in the 180cm length - it goes up and down along the size chart.)
- Boots: 2020 Dalbello Panterra 120
- Boot Size: 27.5
- Bindings: Tyrolia Attack2 13 GW, 95 mm, Flash yellow
- Experience: 10 years skiing & snowboarding
- When I bought these: December 2020
- Days tested: 20+
- Where I’ve used it: Montana, Utah & the East Coast
- Terrain: Everything from boilerplate ice to 20” dumps, including bumps, trees, chop, corduroy, and corn.
How it performs
What I was looking for
I ski three-quarters of my season in the East, so I needed some sticks that let me cut through New England’s hard and icy boilerplate conditions. Previously, I had been on an 84mm-wide pair that performed well out East, but couldn’t hold their own when heading West. The Head Kore 93 was already super popular and being hailed as an effective “one-ski quiver,” meaning that it was a pair that can handle a lot of snow types well. So I thought I’d give it a try as I also wanted a light ski that had a partial twin tip profile.
Why I chose this gear
I’ve been a fan of Head skis for a long time. I like to ski fast, and Head’s racing heritage is very appealing to me. When I started looking for a new setup, I knew that the Kore series was taking the market by storm, so I had to see what all the fuss was about. Further, the 93mm waist was extremely attractive because of its versatility to excel in a variety of situations. Choosing between the Head Kore 93 and Kore 99 was tough, but I decided to prioritize the Kore 93’s hardpack over the Kore 99’s modestly increased flotation, given that most of my skiing is not in the deep stuff – though I wish it was!
After looking for a few weeks, I had effectively narrowed things down to the Kore 93 and the Nordica Enforcer 94 – both essentially the same width, the main difference being materials and weight. The Enforcer 94 is an awesome ski, and actually may even hold better on hardpack than the Kore 93, but I am a very “creative” skier and wanted something a little less stiff and a little more willing to do what I want it to. Eventually, I decided the Kore 93 was the ticket – and I haven’t looked back since!
What I love about it
- Speed: The Kore 93s like to go fast – it’s a Head ski after all! These feel great, even at very high speed. However, I do notice a fair amount of tip chatter at the top end of things. It’s not enough to worry me and I recognize that there’s no metal in the ski. It’s not a dealbreaker, but if I had a wishlist, fixing that would be on it.
- Edge hold: My first day on the Kore 93s was an icy day that hovered around 5 degrees. As soon as I put these on, though, I was locked in. I skied my first run launching huge arcs with a massive smile on my face. I knew I’d made the right call going with the 93mm waist.
- Turns: These are wicked easy to turn, though that’s expected for just about anything under the 100mm waist mark. They sport an average turning radius, though because they’re so light, I have no problem making a series of short, tight turns with them.
- Groomers: The Kore 93s are right at home on groomers, particularly ones with little stashes and side hits along the edges. The versatility of the ski means that one second it can be arcing a huge turn, while the next, it’s crushing steep, moguled glades. Really, the only limit to these skis is where I decide to take them.
- Trees & Moguls: These skis are excellent in both trees and moguls. They are snappy and give me a fairly satisfying bounce back to help between trees and bumps, while their edge hold is good enough when I find an icy section. They also feature an extremely low “swing weight,” meaning it’s easy to flick these around without being too tiring.
- Weight: I’m not a big touring guy, but with the low weight of these skis (and wider widths in the Kore series) I believe they would make an excellent touring plank.
- Playfulness vs. Stability: The Kore 93 strikes a perfect balance for me between a) allowing me to smear snow, generate pop, and launch side hits, and b) keeping things stable when I am really in the driver’s seat. Typically, non-metal skis use light wood cores, which make them very playful and easy to flex, but lose stability. The opposite is true for metal skis. The Kore 93s, with their multi-material construction, including graphene, koroyd, etc., are pretty much right in the middle.
Issues I’ve encountered
- Powder: You know, I wasn’t expecting a 93mm ski to perform super well in powder, and that certainly ended up being the case. I caught the better end of a weather pattern in Utah’s Big Cottonwood Canyon and ended up putting these to the test in nearly 20” of light, dry UT fresh. Needless to say, I was working in them, doing whatever I could to ski fast and “plane out” on top of all that snow. I hesitate to call this an issue since I knew it going into things, but yeah, definitely not a powder ski.
- Durability: In order to save weight, Head Skis eliminated the top sheet on this ski and I absolutely detest that decision. After my first day using these skis, the top sheet was chipped and nicked all over, and that’s gotten progressively worse over the 20 days I’ve used them. The bases are doing great, especially after taking me over a number of landmines in Montana, but the tops are in less-than-ideal shape. While I don’t really care about aesthetics – most of the chips don’t affect performance, they’re just ugly. I do worry that I could end up with a pretty nasty gash that exposes the core of the ski since it’s so vulnerable up top.
Favorite moment with this gear
In early March 2021, Montana was getting some unseasonably warm temps, meaning the snow was wet and heavy. I took the Lone Peak Tram up at Big Sky Resort and was a little unsure how the skis would do in the heavy snow since they’re so light. I started my descent a little cautiously to get a feel for how dialed in they’d be, but pretty soon was letting it rip when I realized even dense corn snow wasn’t going to stand in the way.
Value for the money vs. other options
Head skis are decidedly in the middle of the road when it comes to price, and for that price, these are some of the best skis in the industry. The all-mountain/frontside category – which a 93mm waist would fall into – is pretty crowded, I’d even go a step further to say it’s commoditized. This means manufacturers have to differentiate themselves on price while trying to introduce new tech to sway buyers, both of which I think Head nailed with the Kore 93.
If you’re an East Coaster looking for a darn-near-one-ski-quiver, then the Kore 93 might be right for you. If you’re a West Coaster, looking for more of a daily driver, but have a dedicated set of powder boards, then the Kore 93 might be right for you, too. This is a great all-around option for almost any skier. These are most suited for intermediate to advanced skiers, as top-end experts will likely prefer a burlier ski that has metal and more stiffness in it, while beginners may want to opt for something even less stiff, with a more rocker-focused profile.
If you want to see these skis in action, check out the video below by our Curated experts for more information.