An Expert Guide to 4FRNT Skis

Published on 11/06/2023 · 9 min readOur expert guide breaks down the latest models from 4FRNT, their unique features, and how to select the perfect pair to match your downhill ambitions!
Chandler Bakken, Ski Expert
By Ski Expert Chandler Bakken

Photo by 4FRNT

TL;DR: 4FRNT is a brand that is known for its innovation and rider-driven design. Its ski categories range from all-mountain, powder, touring, and freeride. You’ll want to consider your ability, preferences, and terrain when choosing products from 4FRNT. Technology features to look out for are the 4-LOCK skin system, Neotip, UHMW Sidewalls, and unique materials to level up the performance.

When it comes to ski brands, there are a lot of them! It is easy to get lost in all the different models, technology, and fancy words you see when choosing your next ski. In this article, we are going to break down a ski brand at the forefront (pun intended) of the industry: 4FRNT. With 20 years of experience skiing on the mountain, I’ve had the pleasure of testing numerous different brands and their products in the real world, and this brand has always stuck out to me for its innovation and rider-focused attitude.

Who is 4FRNT?

Photo courtesy of 4FRNT

4FRNT is an American brand that was founded in 2002. Professional skier Matt Sterbenz had a vision to bring skis to the industry that would allow other riders like himself to tackle the mountain terrain how they wanted. It was this drive that led 4FRNT to be a pioneer in the freeskiing movement. Throughout the years, the brand kept bringing innovation and unique technology to the ski industry, allowing 4FRNT to be at the top of the list for high-quality products.

What to Consider When Buying 4FRNT Skis

So, 4FRNT caught your eye, huh? I’m not surprised! From the amazing graphics they use to the advanced construction and technology within, you’ll be able to find the best pair of skis for your liking. Let’s take a look at some questions to consider when purchasing your new skis.

1. What type of skiing are you planning to do?

Answer this question: Where do you find yourself when you go skiing? Some skiers stick to the groomers and focus on carving, while others find themselves off-piste, deep in the tree trails, or touring the hidden backcountry lines. Your terrain will determine the right ski for you!

2. What is your skill level?

4FRNT offers different skis to suit your ability level. Whether you are a beginner, intermediate, or expert skier, you’ll want to choose the right skis to help you perform and progress. Advanced technology may hinder a new rider, while entry-level designs may limit an experienced rider.

3. What size 4FRNT skis do you need?

Ski length is an important factor to consider when choosing the product you need. The length of your ski will aid in stability, control, and performance. 4FRNT has a handy size guide to help you find the ski you need based on your height and skill level.

4. How much should 4FRNT skis cost?

4FRNT skis typically range from $400 to $1,000. On the low end, you’ll find solid performance and durability for beginners or occasional skiers, as well as young skiers. As the price increases, you’ll find advanced technology and construction using high-end materials to keep these skis light, strong, and performance-driven.

What Are the Different Types of 4FRNT Skis?

4FRNT makes a variety of skis that fit into four simple categories. One thing I like about 4FRNT is that they don’t make your choices complicated or overwhelming. Three to four skis in each discipline help buyers easily find the best ski to suit their style, terrain, and ability.

1. All-Mountain Skis

Designed to take you from the groomers to fresh powder and everything in between, these skis focus on versatility and intuitiveness to benefit the skier who finds themselves all over the mountain, all the time!

  • Benefits:
    • Able to handle a variety of terrain, giving the skier the infamous “one-quiver” ski to conquer all.
    • Construction focused on versatility and forgiveness to be used by any skill level, from beginner to expert.
  • Keep in Mind:
    • Being able to handle all the terrain on the mountain may not help in specific disciplines like racing or freestyle parks.

Examples: 4FRNT MSP 91, MSP 99, and MSP 107

2. Powder Skis

Photo by 4FRNT

Powder skis are wide underfoot to increase flotation on deep snow days. Typically constructed with lots of rocker and splay in the tips and tails to help keep you above the snow and carving with ease. The rocker is an upward curve towards the tip and tail of the skis, while splay is the total amount of rise the rocker has over the snow surface (usually measured in mm).

  • Benefits:
    • The width and long length of these skis can’t be beaten on deep powder snow days, effortlessly floating on top of snow to provide a great experience.
    • The large platform underfoot can give support and stability in a variety of conditions, aiding in landings and natural terrain jumps.
  • Keep in Mind:
    • The width of these skis can be a downside when it comes to maneuverability and quick turns.
    • Not a great choice for groomers, hardpack, or ice.

Examples: 4FRNT Renegade

3. Freeride Skis

Photo by 4FRNT

Designed for skiers who enjoy jumps, rails, and natural terrain features, these skis perform differently with their twin tip and playful construction.

  • Benefits:
    • Forward and backward skiing is effortless, with symmetrical mounting points and twin tips.
    • Constructed with more durable materials to withstand impacts on rails and natural features.
  • Keep in Mind:
    • High-speed stability can be a low point on some freeride skis.
    • Might not be the best option for groomers or hard carving on hardpack conditions.

Examples: 4FRNT Switch, Devastator, and Inthayne

4. Touring Skis

Photo by 4FRNT

These skis are made for the adventurous – like those who enjoy hiking up the mountain in the remote backcountry to ski lines with no lift access. Lightweight and versatile, touring skis can take you anywhere, whether you want to go up, down, or both!

  • Benefits:
    • The lightweight design helps with climbing efficiency and the use of skins, the technical term for the layer skiers put on the bottom of their skis to increase grip for hiking.
    • Constructed with versatility in mind to keep a perfect balance of uphill and downhill performance.
  • Keep in Mind:
    • Not the best option for downhill-only skiers.
    • The lightweight materials mean durability can be decreased.

Examples: 4FRNT Raven and Hoji

Features to Look for in 4FRNT Skis

Photo by 4FRNT

4FRNT is designed by riders, and, in light of that, their technology features solve common issues and create skis that perform the way riders want them to! Let’s take a look at the technology featured on various 4FRNT skis.

  1. 4-LOCK Skin System: This technology features an inconspicuous 12x9mm hole placed at the tail of the ski. Placing the skin strap through this hole locks the skin in place, reducing tail clip slipping and complete ski failure while in the backcountry.
  2. Vibration Damping System: Unique to 4FRNT, this system utilizes vulcanized rubber filled into the tip to reduce vibration while skiing on firm or bumped-up terrain.
  3. UHMW Sidewalls: Standing for Ultra High Molecular Weight, this side wall technology is constructed with durable polyethylene material to absorb vibrations and side impacts. This advanced material disperses energy from impacts instead of cracking.
  4. NeoTip: Designed into the touring and powder skis from 4FRNT, this tip construction features a neoprene insert to drastically reduce vibrations, increase impact absorption into the ski, and eliminate tip delamination. The neoprene insert also keeps the tip weight down for quick turns in deep snow.

How to Choose the Right 4FRNT Skis

Photo by Camp of Champions

Brandon

Brandon is the type of skier who can’t define himself to one discipline. He finds himself in the terrain park, on green and blue groomed lines, and exploring the trees of the off-piste terrain. He is an all-mountain skier!

Features to look for: When choosing a ski to suit his skiing, Brandon should look for all-mountain versatility, durable construction, and enough width underfoot to keep him confident in every terrain on the mountain.

Skis to consider:

  • 4FRNT MSP 99 Skis: Fitting into 4FRNT’s all-mountain category, these skis offer versatility for all disciplines. The width of 99mm underfoot can take a skier anywhere while giving confidence and stability. UHMW Sidewalls keep this ski durable, and vulcanized rubber tips minimize chatter on groomers.
  • 4FRNT Switch Skis: An all-mountain ski with the free-rider in mind, this ski can lend a bit more help in the off-piste terrain with an early rocker in the tip and a more centered mounting point.
  • 4FRNT MSP 91: With the same construction as the MSP 99, the MSP 91 features a smaller width underfoot for quick transitions and better performance on hardpack.

Cecilia

Staying away from crowds and resorts, Cecilia finds herself in the backcountry, exploring hidden lines and natural terrain. The ski she is looking for needs to be lightweight, balanced for uphill and downhill performance, and has wide underfoot to help float on the deep snow she finds herself in.

Features to look for: Lightweight construction, wide enough skis for deep powder, and ease of use when transitioning between hiking and skiing.

Skis to consider:

  • 4FRNT Raven Skis: Featuring the 4-LOCK skin system for reducing skin failure or slipping, this ski can help get her up the mountain without issue. Lightweight construction using carbon fiber and an aspen core contributes to a lively feel.
  • 4FRNT Hoji Ski: With 112mm underfoot, this ski can float on deep snow while still being lightweight for climbing efficiency. The 4-LOCK skin system and the NeoTip construction help keep turns quick and fast on steep lines.

Find the Best 4FRNT Skis for You

Photo by 4FRNT

4FRNT Skis are rider-designed, innovative, and simply great for any type of skiing you are into. The categories keep things simple by offering three to four skis to make choosing the right ski easier and not overwhelming. Whether you are a free-rider, a backcountry enthusiast, or a resort skier, 4FRNT has you covered with technology and features to keep you skiing. Still not sure what ski is best for you? Chat with an experienced Curated Ski Expert at any time, and we will recommend the right gear so you can keep on shredding!

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