5'10'', 180lbs, advanced intermediate, loves skiing powder and most untracked soft snow, medium turn size, moderate speeds, when conditions cooperate can go slightly faster but never drops cliffs or straightlines chutes - all in all a typical intermediate skier.
Previous skis: 192 Lotus 138, 186 Lhasa Pow. Loved the 138s because of their flotation capabilities and surfiness, disliked their limited application inbounds on tracked out or hard snow. Also, the skis seemed to encourage a more chargy, aggressive style.
Loved the Lhasa's for their performance in mixed resort conditions still found them not good enough for groomer/bump skiing while lacking the incredible surfiness and fun factor of the 138s.
Thus, I decided to make a pair of custom skis from Wagner. You can find more info here: wagnerskis.com Speaking of my experience with him I can only say that it is as good as it gets. Not only the customer service is fabulous but also the skis surpassed all my expectations.
187, 148-122-129, tip rocker (quite long something like 30 cm with a small splay), tail rocker (about two times shorter with about the same amount of splay), medium-soft flex throughout the whole ski, 35 m turn radius. Carbon stringers to save the weight and add snappiness.
It is worth saying here that we've had quite a bit of discussion with Pete regarding the flex. My ego was telling me stiff but Pete based on my skier DNA insisted on a really soft flex. Man, was he right.
The skis are the best powder skis of traditional shape i've ever been on. They have about 95% of powder surfiness of the Lotus 138. I do not know how to describe their feel in soft untracked but it was like you could make any turn shape at any time with absolutely minimal effort. Moreover, despite being soft they just crave to go faster and faster and make you feel all the more confident the faster you go. I have to say this again - in anything soft and utracked they kill it like no other ski and give me the kind of confidence i've never experienced before. They encourage you to stay centered and you can vary turn shape just by changing the balance. More weight on the toes and it makes faster GS-style turn. Then push the heels and the ski pivots with an unbelievable ease, kinda like a spatula-type ski.
In resort mixed conditions they are pretty manageable, hold edge on ice and eat up softer bumps and crud. Still I believe there are better skis for inbounds conditions. They are quite slow edge to edge and are more work than fun in marginal conditions.
One more thing that should be mentioned is the durability of the skis. I've hit a few submerged rocks on one of my first days on the skis and was shocked since all I got were a few smallish scratches. The bases are BOMBER and race stock fast at the same time.
So, would I use them for catskiing and heliskiing?
For sure, they are my number one choice, ahead of many R/R skis i've tried before simply because they are made right for me and I feel so right on them.
Would I use them for resort skiing?
May be, but only on the deepest days and when I know there will be no hard crud/bumps/ice since the skis clearly don't like these conditions.
Why did I write all this about a custom ski?
Just because I wanted to let people know about yet another small american based ski company that makes fabulous skis which are well worth the money. Also, this ski is what I believe is a great design for intermediate skiers seeking for the ultimate bottomless powder tool.
- 437 Posts. Joined 4/2006
- Location: Moscow, Russia
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