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K2's touring range is built with adventure in mind; we put the WayBack 96 - the all-rounder of the range - to the test.

Level
Advanced
Flex Rating
0
Terrain
Touring
Best for
Adventure skiers
Season
2020/21
lengths
170, 177, 184
Bindings?
No
Float
8
Versatility
6
Up-hill
9
Energy
9
Value
8
Stability
7
Overall Score
8
+
A solid dedicated touring ski
Lacking in power and pop

For a brand known for fun and freeride, the WayBack range from K2 is surprisingly weight-conscious. Coming in at 1397 grams in the 177cm length, the WayBack 96 is lighter than some models from the lycra-targeting brands. So far so uphill friendly.

The range includes a fatter brother, coming in at 106mm underfoot, plus 88mm, 84mm and 80mm versions, all of which sport a fun retro graphic. The WayBack 96 is described as the all-rounder of the family. The mid-fat dimensions are certainly ideal for ski tourers who like to enjoy the backcountry descents, and the fairly straight sidecut is well designed for stability on steep descents (giving more contact with the snow when weighing up your next jump turn). The sidecut is also conducive to long radius freeride turns.

Skin clips, naturally, complete the backcountry-ready package.

In the backcountry context, the all-rounder tag is deserved. However it would be a stretch to call the WayBack 96 'versatile'. On the downhill it is a typical touring ski; it is very easily deflected in rough terrain (as most superlight skis are), and it is lacking the fun you expect from a K2 ski.

None of this is surprising in a 1397 gram ski, but it does need to be mentioned. On the plus side, the WayBack 96 suffers much less chatter than many comparable skis and is very agile - which for adventurous tourers will be a major plus.

 

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