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Upgrading from K2 Raider

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

I've been reading reviews here and there on the forums, but wanted to try to get some personalized advice.  I'me 6'3" 180 lbs, and consider myself an advanced intermediate who skis east coast groomers.  I've been skiing the Apache Raider for 4 yrs now, and it was my first purchase of my own equipment.  I recently upgraded to new boots, and got he Dalbello Krypton Cross... I've noticed a big increase in control (and sore feet), but now I'm curious about where to go ski wise. 

     My local shop said suggested what look to be the usual suspects... Blizzard 8.1's, Volkl AC30, and the new K2 Rictor.  The guys said that all these ski's would be a step up in stiffness from what I have now, and as such would be the next step for me to take in improving.  I plan on continuing to get lessons, to not only improve my form and technique, but also to get a handle on basic mogul runs.  I would say I'm squarely looking at skiing groomers, but on the east coast here that means icy and often crud filled most times.  I'm most curious about the AC30's, since I hear so many good things from people who ski them.  My main concern is whether or not they are beefier than adviertised, as most reviews online seem to have a caveat that they are a work out.  I have tried to find a place to demo them, but cannot come up with one.  I'm going to Snowshoe for a weekend in a couple of weeks, so I will try there, but in the meantime advice would be appreciated. 

    I like that my K2's turn pretty easily, but also don't have much to compare to other than crap rentals from before.  I know demo'ing is the best way, but does anyone have similar experience and could lend a hand in giving advice on where to go next for a pair of ski's?

post #2 of 5

I can't comment on any of those skis, but I CAN comment on the Raiders, as I own a pair... they are most certainly NOT "carving" skis... they pretty much suck for that if you're going aggressive.  K2's website itself intimates they are designed to be skied "off-piste" 50% of the time, which means for east-coast skiing they are 50% useless.

 

(anyway, point of stating above which I'm sure you've figured out by now) You'll be much happier any ski built for hard-snow skiing/carving.

 

My advice: if money isn't a problem, just go all out... don't let equipment hold you back.  You're a big enough guy that I don't think any ski would be "too stiff" for you.

 

Good luck.

post #3 of 5

Although you are tall, you are about average in weight. When this is combined with your ability level, I'd suggest that you really don't need or want stiff skis. With this in mind, I would say that the Rictor is the better call of the three. It is very easy to turn and is forgiving of your trespasses in moguls. It also has enough grip for what you will need. The Mag 8.1 is a great ski. It is grippier and more energetic than the K2 but it is also somewhat more critical than the K2. The Mag 8.1 is also better at most things than the Volkl. The Volkl is fine for some skiers but is less forgiving than either of the other two and might just cause you more problems than it solves.

 

SJ

post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the advice guys... my follow up question would be length.  The Mag's only come in 172 or 179, and the AC30's are in 170 or 177.  I'm coming off of a 174 Raider, so would it be best to get the 172 in the Mag and the 177 in the AC?  I know it's only about in inch of change in either direction, but I guess my question is just that... is an inch a big step?

post #5 of 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drscott266 View Post

Thanks for the advice guys... my follow up question would be length.  The Mag's only come in 172 or 179, and the AC30's are in 170 or 177.  I'm coming off of a 174 Raider, so would it be best to get the 172 in the Mag and the 177 in the AC?  I know it's only about in inch of change in either direction, but I guess my question is just that... is an inch a big step?



I don't think an inch is that big of a deal, especially given your height (as all of these skis will be well-shorter than you are).  Based on your ability you listed, going to a stiffer ski in a 177 or 179 may be a little bit of an adjustment, but it will give you more room to develop your skills.

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