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2014 Nordica Vagabond Ski


Pros: Really a great blend of soft and firm snow performance, agility and edge hold.

Cons: Not going to be around next year.

The Nordica Vagabond is a ski a wide variety of Start Haus ski testers have spent time on, from firm days to powder days, resort days to backcountry days.



In short, we've had more across-the-board positive feedback from a wider range of testers in a wide range of conditions that we've seen for a ski - particularly in this width category - than we have in a long time.


Pros: Stellar Versatility

Cons: Speed limit at the Nth, but that is who the El Capo is for.


2014 Nordica Vagabond






Initial Impressions:

The Vagabond is the middle child of Nordica's completely new 107mm trio of skis. But unlike most middle children, the Vagabond doesn't suffer from middle child syndrome. The new Vagabond stands on it's own merits and rightfully so it will not be in the shadow of it's beefier brother, the El Capo nor it's sexy little sister the Wildfire. Nordica is doing something unique with this series of skis, not solely unique, some manufactures do this but not enough but IMHO it is important to point out. Nordica is making this series of skis in proportionate sizes. Most manufactures concentrate on the two main sizes then just make the two bookend sizes just shorter and longer and call it a day. Nordica's designers stayed after class and took the extra time to make these models ski like the two core models by not only shortening the lengths but also changing the widths and sidecuts, this allows all the models to ski the same for the proportionate size skier.  


On Snow:

The Vagabond with it's light weight I-Core, Beach and poplar is one of the most nimble One Oh Somethings I have skied and after just hand flexing the ski, I knew I wanted a pair on my quiver. Camber is king, I know some will disagree with me but camber is what gives a ski it's connection to the snow and helps a ski pop across the hill. The progressive early rise in the tip along with the camber and the minimal rise in the tail makes the Vagabond (and it's siblings) ski with a feel that I have not experienced in a ski of this size. The compliance of the shape and flex allows the Vagabond bely it's dimensions in the multitude of snow conditions I was able to ski it on. Hard snow is where I usually find the shortcomings of a ski in this size, that shortcomings are usually felt in my ankles about 3/4 way through the day, I usually get a fatigue, especially in my right ankle which was broken 20 some years ago, I didn't get that discomfort on the Vagabond. The Vagabond, even without metal still performed to expectations of this mere mortal ski tester on conditions that weren't meant for the ski. On/in mixed and cut up crud is where the Vagabond excelled...and I mean in both speed and handling of the conditions. These conditions ranged from wind blown buff on the Sisters at Alpine and 15 plus inches in the trees on the backside of Northstar. The Vagabond skis amazing more nimble than it's 107mm waist and 25 meter sidecut would suggest. 



We know skis have changed over the years. In the 80/90's I had a two ski quiver, a 204cm SL and a 207-210cm GS and I was (mostly) happy. Now we are talking about a two ski quiver that contains a 90mm +/- ski and a 100mm plus ski and the conversation pinpointed these One-Oh-Somethings. The Vagabonds have that GS position filled. I am not saying the Vagabond is a GS ski (the El Capo is closer in feel) but it spiritually fits that big ski, long turn slot. 





Other Skis in Class:

* Blizzard Cochise

* Volkl Gotama

* Stockli SR107



Length Tested: 185cm

Dimensions/Turn Radius: 137/107/125 25MTR

Camber: Early Rise Tip & Tail w/camber

Binding: Salomon Sth2 16DIN

Mount point: Suggested 


Environment & Conditions:

Location of Test: Alpine Meadows

Number of Runs: Full Day

Snow Conditions: Week old packed and groomed

Demo or Own: Own


Tester Info:

Username: Philpug

Age: 49

Height/Weight: 5'10" 185lb

Ski Days/Season: 60+

Years Skiing: 35

Aggressiveness: Moderate (Finesse) 

Current Quiver: 

-Scott The Ski 175cm w/Look Pivot 15

-Blizzard Brahma 180cm w/Look Pivot14

-Blizzard Bonafide 180cm w/Salomon 997E 

-Blizzard Gunsmoke 186cm w/Look Pivot 15

-Nordica Vagabond 185cm w/Salomon Sth2 16

-various vintage skis

Home Area: Squalpine & Northstar

Preferred Terrain: bumps, off-piste, trees

2014 Nordica Vagabond Ski

Unbelievable performance packed into a super light ski will make the new Vagabond your favorite ski whether you are skiing on the front side or back country. With the I-Core sandwich construction and an All Mountain CamRock tip, this is your all mountain ski dominator

Lengths169, 177, 185, 193
Dimensions137-107-125 @ 177
Turn Radius23M
Constructiontip / tail rocker
Core MaterialEnergy CA I-Core
Binding IncludedNo
Recommended BindingN/A
Recommended useOff-piste
Binding TypeFlat
Recommended LevelExpert
Model Year2014
Model Name/TypeMPNEAN/UPC
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