Blizzard Goes Back to the Future

The cult classic Cochise 106 is fully redesigned to deliver an experience more like the original.
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WEST LEBANON, NH (January 16, 2020) – Blizzard is proud to announce the redesign of one of the most coveted skis in the brand’s history, the Cochise 106. The iconic ski— the widest model in their all-mountain/freeride collection—has been completely re-engineered to deliver a similar experience as that of the original, which first launched in 2011, but with an even higher level of maneuverability and performance. The new Cochise strikes the ideal balance of precision, efficiency, and all-mountain versatility that initially made it so beloved by committed skiers all over the world.

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The origins of the Cochise began in 2009, when Arne Backstrom, ski alpinist and overall skiing phenomenon, approached the Blizzard development team with an inspiration for a new way to design and build rockered skis. Backstrom knew that while rocker was key for floating through deep, powdery snow, it failed to perform in all other conditions. A gifted athlete with a talent for envisioning how engineering and technology can improve product function, his insights led to the development of Flipcore technology, which utilizes wood’s natural shape to create a more even flex and improve snow contact on groomed. The technology revolutionized the performance of powder skis and catapulted the Cochise to the top of the ski-test rankings, praised for its unequivocal combination of power and maneuverability.

“The Cochise was the ski that first led me to Blizzard,” says Blizzard athlete Marcus Caston. “It was just so much better than any ski I had been on before. It allowed me to approach challenging lines with confidence, while still being able to carve on hardpack.”

However, as the Cochise evolved over the years that followed, redesigns caused it to lose some of that maneuverability and become a more demanding ski. Simultaneously, Blizzard’s Rustler freeride series emerged and, along with it, new technologies that allowed engineers to fine-tune flex in the tip and tail for a more playful experience. The new Cochise combines the best tech from both lines, resulting in a ski that weaves through tight spaces, surfs in the deep, cuts through crud, and trenches on hardpack—all with relative ease.

“This is a tough category of ski to do right, but one that is core to the Blizzard brand, so we spent a lot of time fine-tuning it,” explains Jed Duke, Blizzard’s director of product marketing. “It has to be able to perform from top to bottom in every condition. We introduced a new core for rest of the all-mountain collection that achieves the ideal balanced flex, but because the Cochise is wider, we needed to make adjustments to the construction and ultimately developed a different core. We remained laser-focused on designing a ski that will do exactly what you want it to do, when you want it to.”

Over the last month, Blizzard athletes, reps, retailers, and media have had the opportunity to test the new Cochise, confirming that the new version achieves those goals. “It’s a damp ski, but one that still releases easily at any speed and feels easy to control,” says Conor Brown, Blizzard Tecnica sales rep. “We’ve logged in a lot of hours from Jackson Hole to Big Sky in every imaginable condition and type of terrain. In every situation, it allows you to ski confidently and have a lot of fun from top to bottom.”

“Seeing and hearing the positive reaction of the new Cochise means a lot to us because of its roots,” says Frank Shine, Blizzard’s North American marketing director. “It’s not just a ski. It’s a part of our heritage. It’s what put us back on the map. And it’s tied to a person who, years after his passing, still has so much influence and meaning to our brand. We think this one would make Arne proud.”

The Cochise 106 will be available at retail in the fall of 2020.

For more information, please contact Maro LaBlance at maro@campfire-collective.co

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