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all-mountain ski help - volkl aurora or kenja

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

hey - looking for some help picking out a new ski.  have demoed and liked volkl in the past but have generally stayed narrower (tierra, fuego) and am looking to get a slightly more versatile ski in the 80-90 mm range.  has anyone given the volkl auroras or kenjas a try?  saw these were both popular in seasons past...i like to rip on piste (groomers and moguls) mostly but want to be able to keep up with the crew when we venture into the trees.  i am pretty advanced but could improve my technique a smidge, so i'm also curious about the stiffness aspect -- think volkl will be best at reducing chatter at speed, but also concerned by reports that these are typically more demanding for turn initiation...but maybe that's worth it?  thanks! -ash

post #2 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by ash tahoe View Post

hey - looking for some help picking out a new ski.  have demoed and liked volkl in the past but have generally stayed narrower (tierra, fuego) and am looking to get a slightly more versatile ski in the 80-90 mm range.  has anyone given the volkl auroras or kenjas a try?  saw these were both popular in seasons past...i like to rip on piste (groomers and moguls) mostly but want to be able to keep up with the crew when we venture into the trees.  i am pretty advanced but could improve my technique a smidge, so i'm also curious about the stiffness aspect -- think volkl will be best at reducing chatter at speed, but also concerned by reports that these are typically more demanding for turn initiation...but maybe that's worth it?  thanks! -ash



 

 

Hi Ash!  Welcome to EpicSki.
 
As luck would have it, I've skied many of the skis in that range.  Between the Aurora and the Kenja, I'd pick Kenja hands down, but for what you're describing, there are some other ski choices that you need to consider. 
 
My absolute first pick for something that will rip groomers and charge off piste/varied terrain, The Blizzard Black Pearl which is 88 under foot.  I've pretty much skied that ski as my daily driver since last last year and into this year, even with the snow drought.
 
I have a few other picks close behind like the Atomic Elysian( 95mm) , Salomon Lady (85mm), Salomon Geisha (97mm) and lastly, the Kenja.  
One of the reasons I don't think the two skis you are asking about are ideal for what you're asking is because they're a bit stiffer and may not be as forgiving in the trees and moguls.  But the Kenja is the best if you're specifically picking between those two.
 
 
IMHO the Black Pearl is the most likely to do what you're asking and put the biggest grin on your face.
 
 
 
I'll tag a few of theses options on the side of this page so you can access information easily.
 
 
post #3 of 7

Oh another ski I should follow up on that is worth a look in that category is the Rossignol S3W which is 96 under foot, but it has a really nice little sister in the 2012 S80 (which is 80 under foot).

 

IMHO the S3W is a bit more up your alley but not as narrow as what you're originally asking for.  But then neither are many of the choices I posted for you

post #4 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by ash tahoe View Post

hey - looking for some help picking out a new ski.  have demoed and liked volkl in the past but have generally stayed narrower (tierra, fuego) and am looking to get a slightly more versatile ski in the 80-90 mm range.  has anyone given the volkl auroras or kenjas a try?  saw these were both popular in seasons past...i like to rip on piste (groomers and moguls) mostly but want to be able to keep up with the crew when we venture into the trees.  i am pretty advanced but could improve my technique a smidge, so i'm also curious about the stiffness aspect -- think volkl will be best at reducing chatter at speed, but also concerned by reports that these are typically more demanding for turn initiation...but maybe that's worth it?  thanks! -ash



the best tree ski in Volkl Line up for skied out to moderatly tree/powder skiing is the bridge. Both the Kenja and the Auroras will be better on groomers and blast crud at speed but from the sounds of it your slightly less aggressive than expert the bridge may actually be better at crud skiing as well. I have skied on the men's equivelent of both the Kenja(Kendo),Auroras(9very close to the AC30) and the men's bridge.  Trekchicks recommendation of the Black Pearl is a great one but IMO for "Keeping up with your crew while they skis trees" the best skis in Blizzard line up is "the Crush". The Crush is a great skis that truly rips on all surfaces and is being over shadowed by the new flip core skis. Its is one of the best tree skis ever made for most conditions

 

(1-10) with 10 being best out of the comparo skis

 

Carving groomers that are not ice

 

Kenja = 8

Auroras = 10

Bridge = 7

Black Pearl = 8

The Crush = 8

 

Carving Groomers that are ice

 

Kenja = 7

Auroras = 10

Bridge = 5

Black Pearl = 6

The Crush = 6

 

Hard Bumps

 

Kenja = 10

Auroras = 7

Bridge = 8

Black Pearl = 9

The Crush = 8

 

 

Soft Bumps

 

Kenja = 9

Auroras = 7

Bridge = 9

Black Pearl = 10

The Crush = 9.5

 

Trees skied out IE not powder

 

Kenja = 7

Auroras = 7

Bridge = 8

Black Pearl = 10

The Crush = 9

 

Tree with more lots of powder

 

Kenja =7

Auroras = 5

Bridge = 9

Black Pearl = 8

The Crush = 10

 

 

If you ok with going to nearly 100mm underfoot which you should be if you keeping your other skis. Get the Bridge or "The Crush" or any of the great 90-100 mm low rise rockered all mountain twins out there. IF your think that is to big the black Pearl is the top of the class for 88 mm off piste skis. I own the mens verision and does indeed crush it on scraped off, off trail trails.

 

 

post #5 of 7

One thing we didn't ask is:

Where do you ski? 

What are your stats: Weight/Height?

 

Those do factor into this recommendation.

 

 

Bushwacker, have you skied all of those women's skis?  I ask because I know that you do some testing and may have some first hand knowledge.   I also know that you mosdef don't ski like a woman and may get different results from a test.

 

I'm a little surprised that you rank the Black pearl so low in skiing ice and hard bumps.  Those are areas that I'm most shocked to find them excelling.  Heck, with the drought this winter, I've been skiing the Black Pearl almost exclusively and love it.  Constantly grinning from ear to ear at how she holds up on the hard pack.

They don't call it Sierra Cement for nuthin'

 

 

 

post #6 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trekchick View Post

One thing we didn't ask is:

Where do you ski? 

What are your stats: Weight/Height?

 

Those do factor into this recommendation.

 

 

Bushwacker, have you skied all of those women's skis?  I ask because I know that you do some testing and may have some first hand knowledge.   I also know that you mosdef don't ski like a woman and may get different results from a test.

 

I'm a little surprised that you rank the Black pearl so low in skiing ice and hard bumps.  Those are areas that I'm most shocked to find them excelling.  Heck, with the drought this winter, I've been skiing the Black Pearl almost exclusively and love it.  Constantly grinning from ear to ear at how she holds up on the hard pack.

They don't call it Sierra Cement for nuthin'

 

 

 

 

If you read above I said I skied the men's equivalent the bushwacker and The one(both of which I own) are the same ski as the women's Black Pearl and the crush, I know blizzard claims different but source on the inside say that they are the same ski. With aurora I have skied the AC30 which is basically the same ski again except the Aurora is for sure softer.

 

To be fair on my ICE ranking you really do not see true ice out there and the Black Pearl has gobs of edge grip, but with that said "the crush" despite being wider IMO has the same amount of edge grip given an equal tune.
 

 

post #7 of 7

Yet, I've skied the Crush and Black Pearl with "like" tunes and felt that the BP excelled.

 

In most of these discussions, the true answer is "get good fitting boots first then demo skis because, as always....YMMV"

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