We’ve been testing the Dynastar Cham High Mountain (HM) 107’s for the better part of the season and are happy to now share our impressions. If the Dynastar name rings a bell, it’s because they’ve been building skis for 50 years—no young upstarts here. As we are reminded by looking at the ski’s sidewalls, they are “born in the Chamonix/Mont Blanc Valley” and Made in France. Though Chamonix is perhaps only now getting the recognition it deserves as the birthplace of extreme skiing, its rich history and ski culture are undeniable. Chances are pretty good that skis made there would kick ass. And I’d love to visit.
Within the “Freeride” category for Dynastar, the Cham High Mountain (or HM, for short) comes in 87, 97 and 107 mm widths underfoot. They are little brothers to the Cham (no HM) skis which are 25% heavier, beefier, and less conducive to long days of touring. It seems like some European ski brands (like Moment, Rossi and Dynastar) are trying to figure out where their skis fit in the spectrum of freeride/ski touring/ski mountaineering. Perhaps, in the case of the Dynastars, part of the answer has to do with where they are made. Chamonix is more about steep hikes up and skiing down couloirs (readers, please correct me if I am wrong) than long ski tours with more up and down. Regardless of how they are positioned, the Cham HM 107, paired with the Plum Guide binders we have on them, make for an excellent touring ski here in the BC interior where we roam.
Dim the lights and let’s look at a few pics and, first, a video.
Tips are well rockered and have holes for skins, tie-down or creating an emergency sled.
Flat tails with more skin attachments. Slight pintail design make the ski tips rise and the tails sink. But not too much.
Fairly long, progressive tip rocker. No precise numbers provided in the literature but I never really understood what those numbers meant anyway. This rocker, combined with the 5-point side cut, allow the ski to float like a butterfly in the pow. They refer to the overall ski shape as a “levitation profile” ‘cuz it helps you raise up above the snow. And shred.
Close-up of the tails, standing at attention. No rocker here—which is great for jabbing you tails in the snow. Nice skin cam slots and holes for skins and what-have-you.
Traditional camber. Good on the up track.
Ready for roll out.
We mounted the Dynastar Cham High Mountain 107 Skis with the Plum Guide Bindings which are a light weight tech binding made of aerospace grade aluminum material. The heel piece of the Plum Guide Binding can be rotated in both directions to achieve the desired heel lift. There's also a 15mm distance between the ski boot and the top of the ski which allows for a natural flex and eliminates the 'dead spot' between the toe and heel piece. The mounting pattern of the Plum Guide Bindings is 100% identical to the (non race) Dynafit touring bindings so no need to re-drill those skis if you are looking to change brands, easy-peasy. The Plum Guide bindings retail for $620 CAN and weight in at 22.65 oz / 670g (per set w/o screws), the DIN range is from 5.5 to 12.
The Dynastar Cham HM 107s are best suited for powder days in the backcountry. They hold an edge OK on the groomers but if the surface gets a little hard, you may want to look at the regular Cham -model. The holy grail of one-ski quiver is being acknowledged, more and more, as a bit of a pipe dream. I mean, if you have the option and ski in lots of different conditions, wouldn’t you want a couple pairs of skis? The Cham HM are an excellent touring ski—not a hard, chunder-busting charger. Looking closely at the Chams, it’s clear that they are a well made ski. Tight construction that’ll likely service a skier for seasons to come. In terms of skiing, the big shovels and slight pintail make for a directional, straight ahead ski. One that works best, in the powder anyway, with a little speed under your belt.
Price: $699 CAN
Dimensions: 137/107/122 (184)
Weight: 2100g (per ski)
Structure Core: 100% Fiber Paulownia
Well made, lightweight, super fun touring skis. Easy on the up, fun on the way down.
Not the best on hardpack, the wide shovel up front takes a little getting used to.
Powder Performance 2/2
Groomer Performance 1/2
This is only our opinion. Do you disagree? Did we miss something? Are we totally out to lunch? Join the discussion in the forums here, and let us know what you think. People like/dislike gear for different reasons so chime in and we'll get a well-rounded evaluation.