2nd Look: Line Sick Day 110

Noah Bodman reviews the Line Sick Day 110 for Blister Gear Review

Line Sick Day 110

Ski: 2015-2016 Line Sick Day 110, 186 cm

Stated Dimensions (mm): 142-110-125

Sidecut Radius: 18 meters

Actual Tip-to-Tail Length (straight tape pull): 182.3 cm

Blister’s Measured Weight per Ski: 2101 & 2100 grams

Mount Location: factory recommended line: – 9.65 from center; ~81.5cm from tail

Boots / Bindings: Salomon X-Max 130 / Marker Jester (DIN at 10), Marker Baron (DIN at 10)

Test Location: Whitefish, MT

Days Skied: 3

[Editor’s Note: Our review was conducted on the 13/14 Sick Day 110, which was not changed for 14/15 or 15/16, except for the graphics.]

Intro

We reviewed this ski two years ago, and since the Sick Day remains a staple of Line’s offerings, we thought it would be worthwhile to do a fresh review. By and large, I agree with Dana’s initial review on the Sick Day, but if you haven’t read his review yet, you might want to.

While I only have a few days on the Sick Day, I’ve managed to get them into a pretty broad range of conditions. We’ve had everything from light and dry pow, to super-dense pow, to the mess that results when the previous day’s powder gets a bit too warm. The Sick Day was fun in almost all conditions, but it is most in its element when things are still soft.

Flex Pattern

As Dana noted in his review, the front third of the ski is fairly soft. It doesn’t move into floppy noodle territory, but it’s certainly not stiff. Underfoot, the flex pattern of the ski ramps up, and the tails are also relatively stiff.

I’ll get into how this plays out in specific situations below, but right from the start it became apparent that the flex pattern was going to take a little while for me to get used to. The Sick Day’s stiffer tails encourage a more forward, driving position in order to break the tails loose, but the soft tips don’t always provide the support for that type of skiing. A more upright stance worked well, but it meant that the tails felt far more locked in than I was expecting from this ski.

A Quick Note on Mount Location

I started with the binding mounted on the factory recommended line, but I felt like there was a bit too much tail on the ski. I typically prefer a more traditional mounting location, and don’t tend to be a big fan of skis that have a more forward mount.

Noah Bodman reviews the Line Sick Day 110 for Blister Review.

Noah Bodman on the Line Sick Day 110, Whitefish, MT.

The Sick Days were no different in this regard. I liked them better with the bindings at -1 from the factory recommended line, and I think I might have liked them even more at -2 or -3. I spend a lot of time skiing in the trees, so having less ski behind the binding made the ski feel less cumbersome in tight spots. And since the tail on the Sick Day is relatively stiff, a more forward mount made it even harder to break loose when needed. I spent some time on them at +1, and while this didn’t reveal any horribly negative attributes, the “too much ski behind the binding” issue was even more pronounced.

All this to say, if you’re considering the Sick Day, think about the type of skier you are, and if you prefer a more centered stance, consider detuning the tails. And if you prefer to drive your shovels, I can vouch that the ski works well mounted behind recommended.

Untracked Powder

This is where the Sick Day does best. The soft and relatively wide shovel planes up easily (and this remained true even with the mount at +1) and I never got any hint of tip dive.

In heavier snow at higher speeds, I’d occasionally feel those soft shovels start to fold up a bit. This wasn’t hugely problematic for most of the skiing I was doing, since I was mostly skiing in the trees where long, high-speed turns weren’t really possible.

The Sick Day is also a bit unique in that, even in bottomless, soft snow, it wanted to carve turns rather than smear them. The combination of relatively stiff tails and minimal tail rocker mean that the Sick Day isn’t an especially loose, smeary ski. I don’t want to overstate this point though: the Sick Day doesn’t carve powder like it’s on rails, but it’s more locked in than I was expecting, and breaking the tails loose feels like a lot of work compared to something like the Moment Deathwish. This was most noticeable in tighter trees where I felt like I had to put more effort into keeping my speed in check than I would on a “looser” ski.

The most noticeable upside of that stiffer tail is that it makes for a good landing platform when jumping off of stuff. While I’m not a huge hucker, I found the Sick Day to provide for a good, stable landing every time I got them off the ground.

NEXT: Tracked Up Soft Snow, Moguls, Etc.

10 Comments

  1. D(C) March 13, 2016 Reply

    Very timely review. I was out on mine today for the first time in a while.

    I mostly agree with what you have said. The biggest thing to note is how these skis make me want to play and pop off everything. And they are smooth and fun in untracked pow, yet ski more in the snow than on top compared to a wider ski, which is fun.

    In addition to the areas you mentioned where the soft tips cause weakness, I would include groomers. I haven’t quite figure out how to best engage the skis. I find the tips are easily overpowered at turn initiation, feeling like they’re being stuffed. There is no gradual tightening of radius as the skis are tipped over; the flexed tips just pull the ski right into an arc, without engaging the full sidecut. In contrast, I found my previous S7s, while having a shorter edge length, behaved more like a traditional carving shape.

    In all, they’re a fun soft snow ski, but not one I’d grab on a day where I care about ripping groomers.

    • dbq April 6, 2016 Reply

      I agree that these are fun, playful skis. I personally find them very intuitive and easy to initiate and surprisingly stable in mixed conditions given how they light they feel and their flex (medium/medium soft ?). I am not sure why anyone would choose a ski that is 110 mm underfoot to rip groomers. A stiffer ski 70-85mm underfoot would be much better for that. The SD 110 will get you back to the lift just fine, but I don’t think it was ever designed with ripping groomers in mind.

  2. Squawbomber March 16, 2016 Reply

    Hi,

    This review certainly seems to place the ski in the “mediocre” category – given the tone of the review, it seems a better ski would exist for most types of skiers, whether playful or a charger. I think some comparisons would be helpful.
    I ski on the Blizzard Gunsmoke and find it does everything very well, but I don’t have a ton of experience comparing skis (well, I did like it better than the skis I demoed, Soul 7, Patron, Atomic Automatic and their 100m ski (can’t recall name), Rocker2 108 – I did like the Line SFB a too but too ). That said, it seems to do everything better than how the Sick Day is described: it’s great in pow, stable, is a great all-mountain tool for bumps, tracked out conditions, and is a fine on groomers. Comparison just for fun?

    • Hey, Squawbomber – You’re right that this isn’t the most “playful” ski out there, and it certainly isn’t a “charger.” It’s a directional tweener that was designed to work as a 50/50 inbounds and out-of-bounds ski. So it is, by definition, a jack-of-all-trades, a multi-tool. If that sounds “mediocre” to you, I think that’s fair, and you should look elsewhere. But others (including our reviewers Dana Allen and Noah Bodman and reader D(C)?) might call it “versatile.” See my reply to Willie below, but I truly think the best reviews accurately depict how a ski performs and in what conditions, then allows every individual reader to draw his or her individual conclusions. I think Noah’s done that pretty effectively. Unfortunately, I haven’t personally put time on the Sick Day (reviewers Dana Allen, Paul Forward, and Noah Bodman all did). But as for the Gunsmoke, I didn’t love the 186 cm — I wanted more stability (which the 193 cm Gunsmoke may / probably provides.) The other thing to keep in mind is that the Gunsmoke isn’t a 50/50 inbounds / touring ski — it’s a playful all-mountain ski with metal, while the Sick Day IS trying to be a 50/50 inbounds & out-of-bounds ski. Pretty apples-to-oranges. Anyway, sounds like you can safely pass on the Sick Day for what you’re looking for.

      • Squawbomber March 17, 2016 Reply

        Thanks for the reply Jonathan. I love your site and reviews. My post was just an honest reaction to how the ski was depicted, not intended to be critical of the review or reviewer. Please note that I wasn’t trying to be negative in any way and I don’t have a preference for types of skis. In this class of skis with all the choices, I think you don’t just want an average ski, you want an amazing ski, whatever qualify you are prioritizing (balance of use, charger, playful, etc.). If you read the review, there’s nothing in it which makes the ski sound very compelling to anyone, just average, and with a not very dialed flex pattern. So I was just reacting to that as a skier who really loves gear, thinking “well why would anyone want this ski based on this review?” And that’s completely ok, not every ski should be “the best ski ever.”
        Thanks again for your site and reviews, it’s a great resource for all skiers.

        • Thanks, Squawbomber. And I didn’t read your comments as flatly negative, I mostly just wanted to flesh out the idea of what this ski is, or why it exists. I’m someone who most definitely believes in a ski quiver — get the right tools for the right job — but many, many people can’t afford multiple skis or can’t store multiple skis, so are looking for that one “do-everything” ski. I’d love to hear from more readers who have been on this thing, get their feedback. But it sounds like D(C) and Noah have had a pretty similar experience. As to your (good) question, “Why would anyone want this particular ski?”, it seems like the answer is (1) because they like the particular flex pattern of softer shovels / stiffer tails, and (2) they want that 1 ski to do everything, both inbounds and out. It’s like picking one utensil for everything. I guess I’d go with a spork?

  3. willie March 16, 2016 Reply

    You guys are slipping at Blister, Squawbomber nailed it, it seems that a lot of the skis you guys review lately are mediocre at best, they are so soft snow oriented / or playful oriented that they become useless over much of the conditions that people run into on a daily basis, yet you guys try like hell to promote what little good if any you find. IF POWDER MAG. ever held their powder week on the west coast, half the skis would end-up in the trash can because they wont work in real daily conditions, PLEASE DONT turn into another powder mag.

    • Dear Willie: we get it. You like skis that excel in chop and crud. And you know what? I personally do, too. But there are other skiers in the world who like lighter skis than I do, softer skis than I do, or they have a different skiing style. You want grand pronouncements that this ski is GREAT! and that this ski SUCKS! And that would make you a pretty poor reviewer, actually. We have readers skiing in pretty much every corner of the world. And if 50,000 people read one of our ski reviews, our job is to make sure that every one of them gets a good sense of where the ski excels and where it doesn’t. I stand by Noah’s review, and believe that those 50,000 readers would all get a pretty good sense of what this ski is, and then they can make their own decision about whether the ski will make sense for them. We’re not slipping, we’re aiming for *accuracy* about how a ski performs, not just settle for solipsistic or lazy, blanket pronouncements. We now have two reviews up of this ski, and between those two reviews, I think we’ve provided a pretty accurate and fair picture of how it performs. We also have D(C) – two comments above yours – saying that he owns the ski and finds the review to be accurate. So … ?

  4. willie March 18, 2016 Reply

    Well by reading DC’s comment on the ski (and he owns it) it seems he thinks its mediocre also, just the kind of ski someone wants drop $600 on. So?

    • Bill C. February 15, 2018 Reply

      I purchased this ski 2 years ago based in large part on the review here by Noah, among other elsewhere. Although I’m not sure I would have purchased the ski if I read this most recent review without having read other positive reviews elsewhere ( that aligned with Noah’s), I will indeed say I think this review is an accurate review and note that I like the ski very much.

      I ski in Colorado primarily and wanted a soft snow, directional, technical ski that was versatile. I consider myself a very good technical skier but my preferred style is more finesse than unbridled power. I indeed wanted a ski with the flex characteristics this ski provided and as a lighter (160 lbs) shorter (5’6″) person it feels like its in the near ideal range of skis I like for my intended purpose.

      Great in soft, easy to ski tracked out steep and technical lines. Works great for me in trees (i’m not a smearer)…… I even like it on groomers including firm to even almost what Rocky Mtn folks call icy.

      I really have enjoyed this ski. I’ll admit its not a “crud” ski but in soft tracked out pow of even medium density I have fun. Ultimately I’d like a ski of this genre with maybe 25% more crud capabilities for where and how I ski but that’s next year…..I’m sure I wouldn’t even consider this ski if I was a PNW skier. I’d recommend it to any lighter finesse style skier looking for a very versatile and fun soft snow oriented directional ski who likes to carve vs smear turns.

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