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Review: 2012 Blizzard Black Pearl - Page 2

post #31 of 48

Trekchick,

Thanks for this review of the Blizzard Black Pearl 2012 and also the Blizzard Viva8.1 IQ Max 2012. I am a hard-charging skiier about your size and age and ski very aggressively while always aiming to improve despite skiing for more than 30 years now... I've been on Volkl G20 men's skis in 178cm for the past 12 years now and have always skiied men's skis as I couldn't stand the "concessions" to us girls. Alas, it's time to buy a new pair and I feel like a couple of these women's skis are worth exploring. I tried the Black Pearls yesterday and had a lot of fun, they put a big grin on my face. I found they started to chatter though a my normal rate of speed, although maybe that due to downsizing to 166cm.

 

I'm wondering if you care to do a quick compare/contrast of the Black Pearls vs. the Viva 8.1 for me. Also, curious if you've tried the Volkl Kenja and what you'd say about them up against the two Blizzards.

 

So you say you're at the 2013 show. Seriously, I can wait until next fall to buy at this point. What do I need to know? Buy one of these two Blizzards (or Kenja) or wait for 2013?

 

Thanks so much!

 

P.S. my view on the graphix-- aggressive, kick-ass women skiiers will like it as long as the skis rock too because it matches how they feel going AFTER IT.  Mellower, more feminine styles of skiiers maybe not.

post #32 of 48

If you get a chance I would recommend trying the Black Pearl in a 173 if you can find it (unfortunately a lot of stores don't buy women's skis in that length).  Due to the rocker profile the Black Pearls tend to ski short and especially if you're coming off a relatively longer stiffer ski the added length will probably fit your skiing style better.  If someone is coming off longer straighter skis I tend to recommend longer lengths as it will be more comfortable right away and you won't need to change your skiing style dramatically to adapt to the new ski.  Based on what you've been skiing I think you would like the Black Pearl over the Viva 8.1.  

post #33 of 48

Thanks so much for the advice, wasatchback. Much appreciated.

post #34 of 48

I'm kinda torn b/t the 166 (leaning towards 163) & 173 on the BP's.

 

5' 8"

under 145lbs

 

type 2 trying to get a bit more aggro

 

home mountain is mostly ungroomed/sidecountry in the Cascades. Lots of crud along w/ ice.

 

My back country set up(2012 coombacks) is 170 & my teaching/ everyday ski (2008 Lotta luvs) is 160 (though effectively 165) & I sometimes wished they were longer (not sure if I'm justified in feeling that way).

 

Any words of advice is greatly appreciated!


Edited by reddirt - 2/9/12 at 8:06am
post #35 of 48

I just bought Black Pearls yesterday after demoing at Mammoth. I had no intention of buying skis, just wanted to see if some of my issues were related to my Lotta Luvs. I demoed 3 skis--Salomon Lady, Rossi Temptation 82, then the BP's. I never went back.

 

I loved the BP's so much I ended up buying them!

 

These skis have given me so much confidence. And they are so much easier to ski than the Lotta Luvs--less fatigue, easier to turn, and a ton lighter!

 

I am on the lighter end and a bit petite. I never realized how much I was getting jacked around by the LL's.

 

The Black Pearls are FUN FUN FUN! I hope I get to try them in some powder during this dismal snow year. That early rise tip should make them a lot of fun there.

post #36 of 48
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by srbeack View Post

Trekchick,

Thanks for this review of the Blizzard Black Pearl 2012 and also the Blizzard Viva8.1 IQ Max 2012. I am a hard-charging skiier about your size and age and ski very aggressively while always aiming to improve despite skiing for more than 30 years now... I've been on Volkl G20 men's skis in 178cm for the past 12 years now and have always skiied men's skis as I couldn't stand the "concessions" to us girls. Alas, it's time to buy a new pair and I feel like a couple of these women's skis are worth exploring. I tried the Black Pearls yesterday and had a lot of fun, they put a big grin on my face. I found they started to chatter though a my normal rate of speed, although maybe that due to downsizing to 166cm.

 

I'm wondering if you care to do a quick compare/contrast of the Black Pearls vs. the Viva 8.1 for me. Also, curious if you've tried the Volkl Kenja and what you'd say about them up against the two Blizzards.

 

So you say you're at the 2013 show. Seriously, I can wait until next fall to buy at this point. What do I need to know? Buy one of these two Blizzards (or Kenja) or wait for 2013?

 

Thanks so much!

 

P.S. my view on the graphix-- aggressive, kick-ass women skiiers will like it as long as the skis rock too because it matches how they feel going AFTER IT.  Mellower, more feminine styles of skiiers maybe not.


Hi, Sorry I missed this.  

I have tried the Volkl Kenja back to back with the Black Pearl.  IMHO the Black Pearl is more versatile.

While both skis are great on the front side and will carve really well and play around off piste, the BP is a bit more forgiving.

 

The 2013 Black Pearl  is no different in structure from the 2012 so if you're going to buy it, then go for the Bull!

 

As far as the compare of the 8.1 to the BP, the 8.1 is more of a front side ski that can go off piste, while the BP is more of an off piste ski that can carve up the front side. 

 

Hope this helps.

 

 

post #37 of 48

Perfect help. Thanks so much! One more demo head to head and then I'm ready to buy!

post #38 of 48

Perfect help, thanks so much!

post #39 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trekchick View Post

As far as the compare of the 8.1 to the BP, the 8.1 is more of a front side ski that can go off piste, while the BP is more of an off piste ski that can carve up the front side. 

 

Hope this helps.

 

 



I love this description (especially since it can be applied to my BWs as well).

post #40 of 48

TrekChick, you are right on track as usual cuz I second this :
 

I have the Black Pearls too (thx to TC again) and am weightier than either Contesstant or TC, and I love 'em too.  I am 5'2" and have the 159 length.


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DSloan View Post



I love this description (especially since it can be applied to my BWs as well).



 

 

post #41 of 48

Thanks for all the reviews which have me sold on the Black Pearls!  But now I'm stuck trying to figure out the right length, and I won't be able to demo anything here as no one carries Blizzards in our area (Western Montana).  I was a hardcore, aggressive skiier but while I was getting my kids into skiing, my gear aged so I can hardly compare my 10-yr old Atomics (170cm) to the current gear.  Any recommendations between the 159 and 166 Blizzards?

 

age: 47, ht: 5'4", wt: 155, expert ski-everything from bowls, trees, bumps on free runs to groomers & medium trees/bumps with the kiddos (6 & 9 yr olds).  I am leaning toward the 159cm because of my height, but 166cm because of my weight and aggressiveness.  I just don't want to get something that won't hold me at higher cruising speeds or non-stop quick bump runs in our upper bowl.  Sadly, I only ski about 10-15 days a year currently, but that's gonna increase as the kids get older.  Thanks for any ideas

post #42 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by sfglass View Post

age: 47, ht: 5'4", wt: 155, expert ski-everything from bowls, trees, bumps on free runs to groomers & medium trees/bumps with the kiddos (6 & 9 yr olds).  I am leaning toward the 159cm because of my height, but 166cm because of my weight and aggressiveness.  I just don't want to get something that won't hold me at higher cruising speeds or non-stop quick bump runs in our upper bowl.  Sadly, I only ski about 10-15 days a year currently, but that's gonna increase as the kids get older.  Thanks for any ideas



Weight and aggro level trumps height.  Get the 166.

 

Dennis

post #43 of 48
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Denny1969 View Post



Weight and aggro level trumps height.  Get the 166.

 

Dennis



X2. 

 

Get the 166 and report back on how much fun you're having.

 

post #44 of 48
I am definitely getting the 2013 BPs but need advice choosing the length. I am 5'2", 100lbs and an intermediate alpine skier. Have spent past ten years becoming expert tele skier and now getting back to alpine. Help!
post #45 of 48
Thread Starter 

Welcome to EpicSki!

 

I think you'd get a lot out of the 158 Black Pearl. 

To give you an idea, I'm on a 166, at 135 lbs.  

Be sure to report back after you get a chance to ski them. icon14.gif

post #46 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by Living Proof View Post

Ahhh, the eternal question that sits between my friend Finndog and me: Is it the skill of the skier or the ski. Given the choice, I stand with the skills of the skier. Finn, the dog, stands with the ski.

 

In learning theory¸ one theory is there are 4 stages
unconsciously incompetent (most people who have never skied big trees or pow)
consciously incompetent (I know I can’t do it)
consciously competent (I can do it if I try real hard)
unconsciously competent (Hell, no problem, just do it)

 

My sense is this that year Trekchick, has moved into the unconsciously competent level of skier. Trish has taken a lot of lessons in the past, always worked to improve, moved to a major ski area, skied a lot more and is just skiing at a much higher level. I am very happy she can just jump on a new pair of skis and make pronouncements like the Black Pearl just rocks in new pow. I would not have judged her ski reviews as highly 3 years ago when she purchased a lot of skis, living more in the consciously competent area….thinking that if she had better equipment, she would be better skier.

 

My beliefs are that sweat equity counts. Work at it, always get expert advice on improving, and keep trying to be the best you can. 2 weeks ago, at Stowe, I skied with Epic. We were both on skis that get great reviews¸ made by the same company¸ his 10 mm narrower at the waist than mine. Epic’s skiing blew me away, no comparison. Compared with Epic, I am consciously incompetent, yet, he told me he still works with higher level instructors to improve his own skiing. Keep working to improve skills or regress. I wish I could buy the ski that would make me his equal. Few, if any, get to his level on their own, we all have teachers or have walked the paths of others and learned from their efforts. And so, my thoughts about the contributions of Bob Barnes and the work TC has done on her skiing skills are not offered to diminish the new Blizzard Black Pearls, but to honor those who really make a difference. I’m a fan and owner of a pair of Blizzard Sl’s.

 

Finndog has spent much time in powder and trees. I hope someday to spend some time with him at the ‘boat and learn tricks about skiing where he ventures. Not say'in the right ski does not count for a better experience, only, that right ski is subjective.

 

I appreciate good equipment, no matter what I’m doing – cutting meat with a good knife, driving nails with a hammer, or trying to rip on skis. But, make no mistake, if I had the choice of spending a day with Bob Barnes to pick his brain about how to ski better or buying a new Blizzard ski, I’m riding the chair with Bob.

 

Trish, enjoy the new skis. See you and the Black Pearls at the Gathering! Bring a similar amount of pow with you. We can all yell "yahoo"!

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post


Mike, you are way off the mark.  Not true at all, I just don't obssess over "skills" and I understand that a good ski, one that optimnizes the experience that you have is important. Bottom line is once you get into a line or whatever, I try to turn everything off and just make it happen. I may not have all the skills I need but I will improve with time on the snow, In the mean time, I am having fun and seem to be able to get through most terrain. You may enjoy the focus on drills and precise skills and that's cool for you.  But please don't imply I Think you can buy a turn, you can't but you can maximize it and dial in the experience to what kind of skiing you want. Otherwise there would just be one kind of ski. Like BWPA said above, I prefer wider skis and playing around with different designs to experience the different ways the ski's feel. It's more about the feeling of the snow; surfin' easy, smooth mindless...... I don't think about skills when skiing.  I'd raher take a day with bob on a ski I like and can ski well vs. a day with bob on a ski that is more than I can handle or skis in a way I don't. icon14.gif
 

 

Its easy to see why these two disagree, they are both right. 

post #47 of 48

Hi Guys! I was wondering if any of you could help me.  I am an intermediate/advanced skier looking to get the BPs for this season.  I am 5'8'' and 140 lbs.  Should I go with 166 or 173? ALSO I do not have access to demos

post #48 of 48
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ekmanly View Post

Hi Guys! I was wondering if any of you could help me.  I am an intermediate/advanced skier looking to get the BPs for this season.  I am 5'8'' and 140 lbs.  Should I go with 166 or 173? ALSO I do not have access to demos

To give you a comparison, I'm 5'6" 135 lbs and ski the 166. 

 

With your height, you could go with the 173, but I think its unnecessary and as an intermediate/advanced skier, the 166 will probably help you grow as a skier. 

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