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2023 Head Kore 105 Skis Review

By: Asa Redfield, Digital Content Editor | June 20, 2022

2023 Head Kore 105 Skis

The Lowdown

For the aggressive freeride skier looking for a do-it-all ski, the 2023 Head KORE 105 leaves little to be desired. Virtually unchanged from the previous iteration, except for a new more durable topsheet, these skis offer what used to be thought of as paradoxical characteristics — stiff and stable yet super lightweight and playful. After a few days on the KORE 105s, I felt just as comfortable going full speed on hardpack groomers as I did bouncing through tight trees and feature-rich terrain in softer conditions.

Switching over from my previous skis, the original Black Ops 98 (192cm), I was initially a little worried that the 184cm KORE 105 Skis would feel too short for me, but I’m pleasantly surprised to say that I never felt that way after actually getting to ride them. Leaning on the combination of a directional shape and mounting point, a stiff overall flex profile, and reduced tail rocker (as compared to most freeride-oriented twin tips), the 184cm KORE 105 never left me wishing I had more ski to rely on, neither in front of me, nor behind me. All that to say, if you’re like me and feel torn between sizes and/or just concerned about sizing down a bit, don’t be. These are stiff and powerful skis, despite their incredibly light presence on the scale.

Shop the Head Kore 105

Technical Details

As the middle child in the KORE family, the 105 is geared towards freeride skiers who spend the majority of their time exploring off-piste in pursuit of softer snow. With that, the KORE 105 has a little bit more surfy and playful feel compared to its narrower waisted siblings — the KORE 99 or KORE 93 — and Head achieved this by thinning out the materials throughout the ski, adding a bit more rocker, and incorporating a more progressive chamfer to yield a slightly softer flex and reduced swing weight in the tips and tails. That said, I’d still consider the KORE 105 to be a stiff ski with great edgehold on those days when I just wanted to open ‘er up on the groomers without worry of finding their speed limit or getting over the noses.

Under the hood, every ski in the KORE line is built upon a core blend of Karuba wood and Poplar wood that’s sandwiched between two layers of carbon. Graphene is then infused into the tips and tails to reduce swing weight and improve the ski’s strength and durability. The result is a ridiculously lightweight yet high performance ski that doesn’t feel “flexed out” and unlively after a full season of hard skiing.

Sizes (cm)  163, 170, 177, [184], 191
Dimensions (Tip, Waist, Tail - mm) 135 - 105 - 125
Turning Radius (m) 17.8
Weight per ski (g) 1895
Camber Profile Rocker / Camber / Rocker 

Ride Impressions

All in, I’d highly recommend the 2023 KORE 105 Skis for advanced to expert skiers looking for a go-everywhere, do-everything ski. Stiff and stable with a strong edgehold and versatile turn shapes, they’re a blast to rip on the groomers, even after the corduroy is relatively “skied out.” At the same time, however, their extremely lightweight chassis and big early tapered shovel make them super fun and playful in soft snow. Whether you’re a bell to bell skier looking for a ski to get you through the everchanging snow conditions that bless the PNW, or you’re going on a big ski trip and only have room to bring one pair of sticks, the KORE 105 is a versatile, high performance ski that won’t ever leave you thinking “dang, I brought the wrong sticks…”

Although these skis are only 105mm underfoot, they honestly outpunch a lot of other skis in this weight class. For instance, compared to my Armada ARV 106 Skis (188cm), the KORE 105 offered a much better float overall. I also never had any issues with getting too far over the tips and tumbling as often happens to me with shorter length skis in deep snow. The more rearward mount point (i.e. more ski in front of you) and stiff flex proved to be hugely beneficial here. With a combination of big, reduced sidecut shovels that are a girthy 135mm at their widest point, their super light weight, stiff profile, and generous tip rocker, the KORE 105 proved to float incredibly well in deep snow. They were also pretty easy to turn and maneuver so I didn’t have any hesitations going faster than I ought to through some of the tight, steep trees off the backside of Schweitzer. All in, if you’re looking for a super surfy powder ski for those once a year waist deep dumps, maybe look elsewhere, but if you’re just ripping 4-8” of fresh snow, these skis really don’t leave you wishing for more float.

On hardpack and groomers, the KORE 105 is a ton of fun. Not only do these skis have a confidence-inspiring edgehold, but they also really don’t have a speed limit. I was pleasantly surprised by the variety of turn shapes I was able to tease out of these skis too. Reduced sidecut in the tips allows for a wide range of carving shapes — trenched turns that lock in for the full natural turn radius, or quicker, snappier turns. Basically allows you to do what you want without feeling overly stiff or unforgiving. Just stable and fun! Are they slalom skis? Not at all, but at 105mm underfoot I had plenty of fun mixing up big, swooping carves along with quicker edge to edge turns. The only real caveat on groomers is that these skis come alive and perform best at higher speeds, so if you’re a generally fast skier, I’m confident you’ll love these!

Crud / Leftovers
While these skis shined in both pow and on groomers, I’d say their biggest weakness comes about in heavier, chunkier, bumpier snow conditions... Whereas a lot of damp, heavy metal skis thrive in chunder, the combination of lightness and stiffness in the KOREs just proved to be quite pingy feeling. The tips of the skis tend to just deflect off of the chunky snow and the light chassis had a hard time settling in and cutting through deep enough to feel secure and powerful. Now do you really even want to be skiing when things are so chunky and refrozen? Probably not, but for what it’s worth, this is the biggest area where the KORE 105 can’t keep pace with some of the damp, heavy, metal-infused sticks that often get thrown into this class of freeride skis.

Mount Point
I mounted my KORE 105s on the factory recommended line. I do know folks who’ve elected to mount their KORE 105 at +1 from the recommended line, and had no regrets, but I don’t have any real qualms to speak of either. I suppose if you’re coming from more of a freestyle, trick-oriented background, you might benefit from the +1 mount point, but if you’re more of a directional skier nowadays and not anticipating a whole lot of wizardry, might as well go with where Head recommends. 

Similar skis
Salomon QST 106, Atomic Backland 107, Nordica Enforcer 104 Free/Unlimited, Volkl 100Eight, Rossignol Black Ops Sender Ti, Dynastar M-Free, K2 Mindbender 108Ti, Blizzard Rustler 10

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆

2023 Head Kore 105 Skis


  • Stiff, directional shape allows you to size down without losing stability or float
  • Super lightweight and surprisingly playful/poppy
  • Noticeably more durable topsheet — way less prone to scratches & sidewall nicks.
  • Would make for a really fun 50/50 resort/touring ski — just mount ‘em up with Kingpins or Shifts!
  • Flatter tail means you don’t kick up spray and sandblast your buddies behind you…


  • Bright green accent colors are a little “Euro” for my liking…
  • Stiff flex throughout is unforgiving and not ideal for beginners.
  • Not as damp as metal skis… Can feel a little “pingy” after a PNW freeze-thaw.
  • Flatter tail means you can’t kick up spray and sandblast your buddies behind you…

Who Are They For?

The Head KORE 105 is an ideal ski for intermediate to advanced skiers who want a stiff and stable yet lightweight and playful freeride-oriented ski. The KORE 105 is a do-everything ski that can transition from harvesting fresh turns through the trees to going mach 10 and laying trenches on groomers. For the Sam Kuch and Cole Richardson wannabes, like myself.

Although stiff skis like the KORE 105 are often geared towards advanced to expert riders, the lightweight feel and easy turn-initiation characteristics of these skis make them a good choice for the burgeoning skier who’s looking to progress quickly in the coming seasons and doesn’t want to outgrow their soft skis.

The Bottom Line

Stiff and stable yet also somehow lightweight and playful… The Head KORE 105 is a paradox with characteristics that many Boomers (like my father) will tell you just can’t simultaneously exist. At 105mm underfoot, these skis are an incredible choice for someone looking for a single ski to see them through the gamut of snow conditions. Ripping groomers with your old racer buddies? Grab the KORE 105. Harvesting the latest reset with 6-8” of fresh? Grab the KORE 105. These skis offer nearly all the benefits of a burly, hard charging Ti ski but without any of the exhausting weight! If you’re an aggressive freeskier looking for your new daily driver, you really can’t go wrong with the 2023 Head KORE 105 Skis.

Shop the Head Kore 105

From the Brand

As the ultimate lightweight freeride ski, the KORE 105 has versatility for all mountain adventures. The new KORE construction reduces weight without sacrificing performance, thanks to a combination of Graphene, Karuba wood and multi layers of carbon. The sandwich sidewall construction adds responsiveness on hardpack snow and tip and tail rocker provides flotation for deep powder days. HEAD's new topsheet shape adds durability for hard-charging freeride skiers.

2023 Head Kore 105 Review

About the Reviewer

Name: Asa Redfield
Age: 28
Height: 6'0”
Weight: 180
Size Reviewed: 184cm
Location(s): Schweitzer, ID with conditions ranging from 6-8” of fresh to hardpack groomers and everything in between.
Mount point: Factory Recommended
Bindings:  Tyrolia Attack 14 GW
Boots:  Dalbello Lupo SP ID
Riding Style: All-Mountain Freeride. I like to ski fast and am always looking for opportunities to duck off-piste and find soft snow and natural features.

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