Pros: Easy to ski in challenging terrain
Cons: Doesn't respond well when you don't show up to ski.
Product: Blizzard Dakota
Length Tested: 170 CM
Dimensions/Turn Radius: 25M
Camber : Flip Core rocker, flat tail
Binding: Demo Griffon
Mount point: Suggested Boot Center
Environment & Conditions:
Location of Test:Squaw Valley
Number of Runs: Multiple (full day)
Snow Conditions: Varied from firm AM, to spring corn,
Demo or Own: Demo
Aggressiveness:Finesse skier with a desire to be more aggressive
Current Quiver: Kastle LX82 162cm, Blizzard Black Pearl 166cm, Blizzard Samba 166cm, DPS Yvette 168cm
Home Area: Northstar and Squaw
Preferred Terrain: Trees, moguls, and the occasional groomer
Blizzard Dakota 170cm
The Tahoe area is finally starting a nice Corn Cycle just in time for the final weeks of lift served skiing, so I asked the Blizzard rep if I could take the Dakota out for a spin. After all Flipcore Technology was the brainchild of Squaw's Arne Backstrom, and I'm sure Squaw terrain was what Blizzard skis had in mind when skis like the Dakota were designed.
The day started out with somewhat firm conditions, but with the 76 degree temps in the forecast, we knew that "firm" wasn't a word we'd be thinking of for long.
First turns off the top of KT22 heading toward the Saddle (Headwall Chair) firm groomers, it was pretty clear that the Dakota was going to be stable, hold an edge and get me where I wanted to go without a problem, but this is not where she would really shine.
Second run, off the top of Headwall Chair, we headed to North Bowl which has a fairly steep entrance, but goes into some moderate size bumps with a little crunchy snow on top, that would begin putting the Dakotas through their paces.
While grouping up with other friends, we took a few runs on Siberia which was already softening up nicely, which is where I played around with turn shape a bit. Its not surprising to know that small radius turns were not a strength, but in medium to long radius turns it was easy to make the transitions, find the sweet spot and bring it around. This made me
As the day progressed, we found ourselves skiing great spring conditions in chutes, bumps and steeps, I found inspiration and confidence to just go for it. (or as the Blizzard rep says - SEND IT!). To steal from Segbrown's description It was so perfect I don't know how to describe it except to say I didn't even think about the ski all day, really, it was just an extension of my legs. Mostly we skied soft and deep snow in trees and chutes, not super tight but definitely not much wide open. I had little trouble with balance or quickness, they just skied. Whether untracked or not, didn't matter. No tip dive, no backseat, easy in moguls.
The key difference being that she was skiing powder and I was skiing spring corn, but the description holds true and by the end of the day I said, "I want to own this ski."
If I were to pick one thing as a con, in the game of pros and cons, is that its not so much fun when you begin to get tired out, while the Dakota doesn't punish you, she just seems to be happiest when you're on your game.
All in all, women have been asking for real skis and Blizzard is delivering!!