Originally Posted by Vitamin Ski
Josh says they have better edge hold and hard-snow capability that the 8.7. That says alot right there.
His review of the Bushwacker is one of the best ski reviews I have read on any ski.
If the snow is groomed down to a smooth surface with minimal chop, I'd use my race-stock GS or a race carver. If not, I want something more versatile. And from reviews on the Kendo and similar full-cambered mid-fats without rocker, the consensus seems to be they are just fat race skis, meaning alot of the mountain's skiing experience will be compromised.
The question is: are the Bushwackers better on the groomers and ice than the Kendo is in the bumps, trees, and pow?
I decided not to demo the Bonafide (demoed Bushwacker instead) because many reviews (which I read exhaustively) stated that the BW was a better groomer ski than the Bonafide. Given the skis contstruction, the only logical conclusion is that the waist width of the bonafide is so bad for groomer carving it can't be compensated by construction, and even get's beaten out by it's little brother 10 mm narrower, and without metal (and thus torsional rigidity).
I haven't skied the Bushwacker. I own the Bonafide (180cm). So feel free to discount what I have to say.
But I don't think you can make a general statement about one being better than the other on groomers. That's not granular enough. My take on the Bones is that when moving fast, on anything blue (as a general measure of steepness) or steeper, the edges lock on and rail. Hard. Last week I had one of my few on-piste skiing days, and all I did was basically lap the upper section of the Kandahar run at Garmisch (that's the ~3000 vertical black run Didier Cuche took first on for the Jan 28 WC downhill event). Snow was perfectly groomed, hard packed cords. No ice. No dust. And I was making big, long, fast turns all the way down... with air on some of the convex rollers (the run was more or less empty though the bottom of the mountain was a mess of people). And I'm light, around 135 lbs right now. I can't imagine the Bushwackers would have performed anywhere as well for this.
But the, sometimes-- as I'm getting used to in the Alps-- I have to traverse very not steep runs to get between sections of off-piste or black runs, or between lifts. In these shallow, slow, areas, the Bones kinda... die. On green runs (blue over here), there's just not enough uuumph to get 'em up to the speed they like. I think the Bushwackers would probably excel here, at a more leisurely pace.
So I think it depends on what kind of groomers, and how you intend to ski them.
And as Josh said, I bet the Bushwackers would be more playful in tracked out, tight trees, or tracked out runs on which you want to make lots of turns that take you more across rather than down the fall line. I've loved my Bones in the woods, and they slay on steep, heavy, deeper, cruddy bowls-- but only when they get moving, and they prefer to be pointed down rather than across the fall line in those conditions. Again, that's all from a light guy like myself-- I think someone heavier might fine the Bones too soft for that kind of charging...