With some of the prettiest mountain graphics out there, we were really hopeful we'd get to flaunt the Liberty Genesis 96 on the chairlift (and from the chairlift, since the graphics are mirrored on the bases) every day. Unfortunately, after a few days on the Liberty Genesis, we were ready to pack them up in storage. While we have a soft spot for independent ski companies, the construction of this ski seemed unable to compete with the big dogs. They disappointed us in most metrics, excluding bumps, where they were decently matched to some of the other average skis. An important reminder not to judge a book by its cover, or a ski by its pretty face.
Liberty Genesis 96 - Women's Review
Compare prices at 2 resellers Pros: Gorgeous graphics both topsheet and bases, very affordable, light and quick
Cons: Erratic at speed and in steeps, only good in light powder
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Liberty Genesis 96 - Women's
|Price||$548.95 at Amazon|
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|$679.99 at Amazon|
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|$549.96 at Amazon|
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|$699.99 at Amazon||$599.95 at Backcountry|
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|Pros||Gorgeous graphics both topsheet and bases, very affordable, light and quick||Incredibly versatile, easy to ski, fun and quick, only 92mm makes it nimble||Great float in powder, playful, decent stability||Unparalleled stability at speed, crud-buster, lends you strength||A blast to ski, easy to turn, relatively stable, fantastic in powder|
|Cons||Erratic at speed and in steeps, only good in light powder||Not the perfect powder partner||More expensive, slightly lumbering in bumps||Very pricey, prefers faster straighter lines||Not perfect carvers, some deflection in crud|
|Bottom Line||If you're a beginner or intermediate skier looking for something affordable that's pretty to wear, these skis could be appropriate.||One of the most versatile skis on the market, this new Volkl is a Goldilocks ski - strong enough to battle in the crud, but soft enough for lighter mellower skiers to bend it.||A great choice for a West Coast woman who loves getting out in the soft snow.||If you like to go fast and want a one-ski quiver, this ski is absolutely worth the extra funds.||Ripping skis for ripping chicks, or those on their way to becoming one, so fun and flexible.|
|Rating Categories||Liberty Genesis 96 - Women's||Volkl Secret 92||Rossignol Soul 7 HD W||Kastle FX95 HP||Elan Ripstick 94 W|
|Stability At Speed (20%)|
|Specs||Liberty Genesis 96...||Volkl Secret 92||Rossignol Soul 7...||Kastle FX95 HP||Elan Ripstick 94 W|
|Intended Purpose||On-piste||All mountain||All mountain powder||All mountain stability||All mountain play|
|Ability Level||Beginner/Intermediate||All Levels||All levels||All levels||All levels|
|Available Lengths||151, 158, 165, 171||149, 156, 163, 170||156, 164, 172, 180||173, 181, 189||156, 163, 170, 177|
|Rocker||Tip rocker, camber underfoot||Tip and tail, camber underfoot||Tip and tail, camber underfoot||Tip and tail, camber underfoot||Tip and tail, cambered inside edge|
|Weight Per Pair (Pounds)||7.6||8.16||7.7||9.62||6.725|
|Construction Type||Full sidewall||Sandwich||Sandwich||SST sidewall|
|Core Material||Bamboo & Poplar||Beech & Poplar, multi layer||Paulownia wood||silver fir, beech, Titanal, fiberglass||Tubelite wood|
Our Analysis and Test Results
While beautiful to look at, the Liberty Genesis was inconsistent in nearly every metric. There seems to be something about its flex pattern which makes it bend in funny ways, and at unexpected times. This makes it unpredictable, and we didn't feel confident trusting the them in most conditions.
Stability at Speed
None of our testers felt confident going fast, in any terrain, on these skis. They did not hold their edges on firm snow, and would shudder and shake when we tried to put on the brakes. If we could manage to make a perfectly rounded, smoothly arced turn, they would be OK, but when we wavered for a moment they got freaky. The flex pattern across the length of the ski is unusual; they seem to bend and release frantically in the middle of a turn, without the skier's consent. While they are able to make a tighter, quicker turn in steep terrain, they felt unstable underneath us, making them an unreliable companion.
This ski is definitely more adept at buttering a turn rather than carving one. It prefers to skid (and sometimes skitter) rather than rail a smooth edge. Because of the strange flex we mentioned, we felt we couldn't rely on the edges maintaining their course in a carved turn. One tester called them, "Bendy in a bad way".
We made a few good turns in a few inches of powder on the Genesis, but anything deeper and we were all over the shop. They feel noodley both at speed and under the fresh snow; even the flex and rebound we felt against the packed powder platform under the surface was unpredictable.
The Liberty's just can't hang here. They bounced us around like kids in a blow-up castle, but with less giggling. They're light, so they try to skim across the surface, but get bucked into separate (from one another) trajectories along the way. Not confidence-inspiring.
One tester told us this ski was "playful like an angry puppy". You know, the one that would be really cute if they'd just stop tearing at your socks and fingers? It is lighter-weight and easy to get airborne - it's just what happens when you land that's concerning. We didn't have very much fun on these beautiful skis, sadly.
In soft slush bumps, they are fairly flexible and maneuverable. They like to make a shorter turn, so they performed the best in this metric of any. If you're getting into firmer, bigger bumps though, the Genesis is better traded for something more reliable.
They sit in the middle of the pack in terms of cost, but one tester told us that she wouldn't ski these every day even if they were free.
There are certainly skiers out there who love the Liberty Genesis, but our panel did not. They're aesthetically stunning, though, and could make fabulous wall art.
Also, if you are a beginner or lower intermediate skier, and you mostly plan on cruising around at slower speeds on green and blue groomed terrain, they may not be a bad first ski purchase.
— Renee McCormack