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Best 85-90mm Ski for East Coast Steep/Trees/bumps

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

Suggestions are appreciated:

(I have Rossi B-3's, and like them, but think some rocker in tip/tail would be nice, also have Atomic Access/BC Scratch for Powder Days)

 

200 lb. Expert/Quick, East Coast, quick/easy turning/short radius for tight (packed/mixed) trees/Bumps:

One ski quiver, playful, float into turns in lieu of knife edge into them= no huge sidecut (bumps) 

Some rocker in tip/tail, some give or flex so I'm grounded and not getting kicked around 

mostly sidecountry if possible= packed powder with stashes

Light(wgt.), nimble, unclick after 8 hrs. and hug them...

~85-90 underfoot

 

Line Prophet 90?

 

Thank you!

post #2 of 28

Bushwackers 

post #3 of 28

^^^^ Not for a 200 lb guy. I weigh 165 and liked the longest length they come in. And mdcraig, you need to get past the 90 mm mark if you want sufficient float in trees to keep from catching E.C. junk underneath. I like a 94-105 mm for trees, I'd say you should start at 95. 90-somethings do just fine in bumps, BTW, unless you plan to compete in the tour. Also, a deep sidecut is not your friend in bumps, or in most trees, since you're pivoting, not carving. 

 

IMO some skis to look at: Atomic Alibi or Ritual, Kastle FX98, Line Influence 105, Stockli Stormrider 95, Blizzard Bonafide, Rossignol E98. 

post #4 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by beyond View Post

I'd say you should start at 95. 90-somethings do just fine in bumps, BTW, unless you plan to compete in the tour. Also, a deep sidecut is not your friend in bumps, or in most trees, since you're pivoting, not carving. 

 

Meh, not disagreeing actively, but not totally on board either. Personally I don't like wide skis in moguls, because I find that I do better with a SLIGHTLY narrowed stance in the bumps, which is harder to to with big honking tips flying around like Canada Geese. (Trees may be a different matter, if there is soft snow in there.) Also, since you already have a wide ski and live in the East, your bump / tree ski might well double as your carving ski, right? So why go big?

 

Unlike the OP, I'm not a heavy guy, so bear that in mind. The best bump skiing I've done in the last few years was on a pair of Rossi S86s that I was demoing. I was really not at all wild about the ski overall (no spunk or personality) but I did ski bumps awfully well on them (for me). Characteristics (as someone pointed out in a closely-related recent thread here): Fairly damp, not too stiff in torsion, moderate width, and balanced flex (i.e., not too stiff in the tail). I would add that I also think it makes a big difference to have a kick tail with rounded corners. I hate the way the flat, square tail of my race-carvers hangs up in the bumps. If I were you, I would definitely try to demo a pair of the Dynastar Outland 87s, as I always love the Dynastar flex for moguls.

post #5 of 28

Rosi 88's
 

post #6 of 28

Since you have skis for deeper snow, width beyond ~~ 90mm is unnecessary so you are on the right track there. The Line P-90 is a nice ski but outdated and there are any number of better choices in this width range. While keeping in mind that most skis in the 85-90mm range have at least a little tip rocker, most don't have tail rocker. If rocker at both ends is your agenda there are still a few really good choices. The above mentioned Bushwhacker in 180 would not be out of whack unless you prize groomer stability over nimbleness in bumps. If you do prize stability highly enough that the BW is not enough ski then the Blizz Mag 8.5 would give you that but at the price of some of the nimble feel in bumps and tight spots. However, the overall winner could well be the aforementioned Outland 87. It has basically the same build as the Rossi Exp 88 but has a far more versatile shape, a more nimble feel and a great variety of turn shapes in it's arsenal.

 

SJ

post #7 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraJim View Post

The above mentioned Bushwhacker in 180 would not be out of whack unless you prize groomer stability over nimbleness in bumps

 

I'll go out on a limb here and disagree with SJ. First, because the Bushwacker is an unusually light, unusually fling-able ski. Doesn't feel or handle like any other 180 cm ski I've ever been on. Second, because if OP is 200 lbs, assume he's at least 5'10", maybe a lot taller. So at 173 you're talking about a soft snow ski that at best reaches his eyebrows. Sidecountry??? eek.gif Third, because OP mentions trees and sidecountry, and in the opinion of not just careful me (who enjoyed the 180 in tight trees as well as groomers), but folks like Josh - who seriously rips trees - length is important because you can need it to deal with a shifting CM. Put another way, trees away from the groomers aren't just nice flat alleys between nicely spaced large pines, they're full of unexpected shifts of terrain, pillows or lumps or bumps or downed trees, plus the odd patches of ice under fresh that can throw you around, and if you have the knees for it, you have lots of chances for small/medium air. The 173 Bushwacker will be quicker carving groomer bumps than the 180, but not as useable anywhere else for someone OP's size IMO. Especially in the sidecountry.  

 

Last, the width thing is philosophical. You can see your mission as creating as little overlap as possible. And since you already have a "soft snow" ski, why get another? Respect that POV. Or you can go for specializing according to what you are most likely to face/most value. If you get a lot of light powder and softer snow days, why not have several skis that handle that, but from different angles, with different strengths and weaknesses?

 

Oh yeah, buzz killer addendum: At your size, an 88 mm ski will sink like a stone in the woods (go do PhysicsMan's surface area calculator sticky), and you better like porpoising or you'll be  collecting the remains of your skis from under that last submerged limb. Seriously, unless the sidecountry you have in mind is fairly steep, or you ski at silly speeds in trees, an 88 will not give you adequate float in powder. Just math, not opinion. 

 

Solution, get 10 skis for all possible purposes. biggrin.gif

post #8 of 28

I will also add the Bushwacker as an option, while I am not 200lb, I am 190 and did like the BW a LOT in the trees and bumps. I do think the overall shape of the flip cores both longitudinally and profile lend themselves to being very good in these conditions. Other than the Cochise and Bodacious, the cambered models in this series work vey well in these conditions and terrain. If power is a concern, add the Magnum 8.5Ti to the list. 

post #9 of 28

I hate to be the VOR here but the OP already has two skis in the 98-100mm range both of which have a relatively soft snow bias. Neither of those are particularly stellar in the overall scheme of things as an Eastie DD (although both are passable). I suppose he could fetch yet another one of those or heck, get something even wider than that with even less DD capabilities. Then he would be able to better survive the frightening scenarios that Beyond has suggested.

 

However, he still wouldn't have the ski that he asked for in the original post.

 

SJ

post #10 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraJim View Post

Then he would be able to better survive the frightening scenarios that Beyond has suggested.

 

SJ

eek.gif And as we close in on Halloween, come back to VT and we'll show you what real woods, not nicely manicured slopes with a few 100 footers scattered around for photo ops, are like. Cut to shot of trees strangling the unwary skier as he loses his edges on a bit of nice New England granite that looked like it was covered with ice but alas was not.

 

Seriously, Jim and Phil, this guy doesn't ski Tahoe. Or Vail. And he foregrounds "trees" "mixed" and "sidecountry," not "icy bumps" or "trees alongside the groomers." You're so fixated on not overlapping with what he's got (and apparently reasoning that an 88 mm is not overlap with a 98?) that you're recommending a ski that's not only a bit narrow but too short for what he states he wants to do. On the one hand, he specifically titled this "85-90," but on the other, he's asking a very straightforward question about certain terrain and conditions that probably are not the best fit for a 88. What to say? Who's being more "VOR" here, you proceeding from what the title and what he already owns, or me proceeding from his size, the terrain he's talking about skiing, and some basic physics about float and chop that seem to be recognized by everyone back here. th_dunno-1[1].gif

 

In eastern woods, which tend not to be all that steep but can be very very dense, not many extended lines, and let's say 4" of settled, partly bumped and chopped, partly smooth, over rocks and refrozen, no one can go fast enough on 173 cm 88 mm wide skis to be on the top of the snow if they weigh 200 lbs before clothing and gear. Don't blame me, blame Newton. And the farmers who kept cutting down trees back here, followed by the the park service forbidding any cutting or clearing, so that most of the forests are secondary or tertiary regrowth with a lot of branches right at face level and a lot of downed stuff mixed in with our famous New England granite ledges. So that leaves more classic style porpoising in an out of the muck and fresh, which I think is great fun, but maybe/maybe not not his cuppa tea, or just ploughing along 3" under and assuming you won't hit anything you can't see anyway. Which you may think is a "frightening scenario," IME, it's just in touch with how skiers leave edges or knees behind in the woods here. Sh*t happens. Our choice of gear has some bearing. Ain't just about having proper distances between ski widths. Keeping up in the snow and handling stiff chop are two reasons that I see some very good skiers back here on skis like S3's, One's, Sickles, Mantras, etc even when it's not the morning after a  dump. 

 

OP: If you really want a ski for between storms, lift-served terrain in the east, no interest in sidecountry stashes, no fresh snow in several days, then strongly recommend something more like a 78-82 mm wide carver. That's one alternative I see on good skiers out and about on this terrain. Your title IMO suggests skis that are already compromises for back here, they won't have the maneuverability or bite of a narrower ski, but aren't quite wide enough for softer sidecountry snow and/or crud/settled crap. So I can see wanting an 85-90 if that's my only ski, and I prefer trees and soft snow. I cannot see wanting it if I am planning to use it sidebounds, which presumably you'll want to seek for softer snow, and I cannot see wanting it if I already own two skis that are 10 mm wider. My (obviously alarmist and unrealistic) .02...

post #11 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by beyond View Post

 

Seriously, Jim and Phil, this guy doesn't ski Tahoe. 

You forget that I am just three seasons removed from eastern skiing where i spent 30+ days/season at Kton, Sugarbush and MRG. I would have loved to have the Bushwacker for that skiing, if he wants something a bit more, the Magnum 8.5. 

post #12 of 28

 

Attempt at illustrating Beyond's post, for those from away. Some of the Saddleback trail crew working on a glade. Much of the slash stays in place. I'm told it's to help with erosion control. Better to go over a log than over a rock. However, better to go over a rock than under a log. Everything is a tradeoff, I guess. Beyond and the Starthaus guys both have good points. For the OP, maybe it depends on the ratio of slashy tree runs vs. open bump runs.

post #13 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by beyond View Post

eek.gif And as we close in on Halloween, come back to VT and we'll show you what real woods, not nicely manicured slopes with a few 100 footers scattered around for photo ops, are like.

Ummmm.............during the four years that I worked in Burlington, I lived in Waterbury Center. The guy that I rented from was one of the "unofficial" trail crew @ Stowe. That means that he was one of the outlaw guys that went into the woods during the summer and pruned limbs and slash such that we could ski it in the winter. I spent a lot of time in those woods both summer and winter and I have a fair idea of what is there. If you ski the trees at Stowe today, you are possibly skiing "runs" that I helped work on. During my time there, I mostly skied a "Big" in the woods..........it was 90mm wide. The current crop of 88-90mm skis are much more versatile than that ski ever was and they suit the needs of an Eastie DD ski very well. The OP was not just about trees and deep snow, it was about something to ski all the time any time.

 

That IS what the OP axed about............remember?

 

SJ

post #14 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraJim View Post

Ummmm.............during the four years that I worked in Burlington. Knew you knew Stowe, which is why I'm giving you grief. If you ski the trees at Stowe today, you are possibly skiing "runs" that I helped work on. Hmm. Could be, although suspect things have filled in some. Have heard stories about guys showing up at midnight with chain saws, but that's frowned on these days. Yer an outlaw, Jim. During my time there, I mostly skied a "Big" in the woods..........it was 90mm wide. Yeah, and that's my narrative. Not only has the definition of "big" changed, but the current crop of 98's could have the same language you use for 88's. In fact, you've used the same language elsewhere, about how the 98's are so much more versatile, and so on. But the 88's as wonderful as they are, don't address the 200 lb/float issue, admit it. The current crop of 88-90mm skis are much more versatile than that ski ever was and they suit the needs of an Eastie DD ski very well. The OP was not just about trees and deep snow, it was about something to ski all the time any time.

 

That IS what the OP axed about............remember? The opening post is below. Our problem is that he asked for everything (italics mine) with some odd definitions, like sidecountry = packed powder + stashes, allowing each of us to take away an arguing point. BTW, using the phrase "remember?" is a lot like "VOR," cheap argumentative device. Yes, I remember. Yes, I am capable of reason too. You ain't the only reasonable person with a memory on Epic. wink.gif  

 

SJ

 

"...(I have Rossi B-3's, and like them, but think some rocker in tip/tail would be nice, also have Atomic Access/BC Scratch for Powder Days)

 

200 lb. Expert/Quick, East Coast, quick/easy turning/short radius for tight (packed/mixed) trees/Bumps:

One ski quiver, playful, float into turns in lieu of knife edge into them= no huge sidecut (bumps)

Some rocker in tip/tail, some give or flex so I'm grounded and not getting kicked around 

mostly sidecountry if possible= packed powder with stashes

Light(wgt.), nimble, unclick after 8 hrs. and hug them...

~85-90 underfoot..."

post #15 of 28

Didn't use chain saws very often..........pruning saws on 6ft poles were the tool of choice........biggrin.gif

 

BTW.......I didn't say in this thread that a 98mm is a poor tool at all.......but the OP already has two pr. of those. One of them, (the Access) is pretty darned good in the light, nimble, tossable area. (how many 98mm skis does one need?) The ski he axed for was a 85-90mm ski as a replacement for his sub standard DD.

 

SJ

post #16 of 28
As someone who is now 200+ lbs and grew up skiing in VT (although doing my best to avoid bumps at all costs!) the Magum 8.5 would be a better tool than the Bushwacker and really I think it would be exactly what you're looking for. Mag 8.5 and Bushwacker have virtually identical rocker profiles (rocker/camber/rocker) but you get 2 sheets of metal and a solid wood core in the 8.5 which would aid in dampening, deflection, and grip on the east coast boiler. The rocker (especially in the tail) is not that exaggerated, just enough to help release in bumps and trees but not noticeable once tipped on edge and carving. The sheets of metal in the 8.5 are different than the Bonafide, Cochise, Bodacious in that the metal doesn't extend all the way over the edge for the full length of the ski which helps in weight savings but also ads a little more liveliness that someone would want in a ski that leans a little more towards groomed snow.

Since I wasn't able to ski last yr I never got to ski the Mag 8.5 but I did ski the Bushwacker on really hard snow. First run ever on it in Europe at the sales meeting was just as hard as any snow I skied in VT and the lack of metal in the ski was very noticeable for me. With aggressive pressure the ski would flex too much and did not have that grip I associate with our other skis. If pressure was more gradual it was fine and I would imagine in soft west coast bumps/groomers it would be great. If you're sub 180 the Bushwacker would be no problem on harder east coast snow but at 200lbs I would not recommend it.

8.5 isn't as light as the Bushwacker but they're not exactly heavy.

Does the Prophet 90 have tail rocker? Thought it was just early rise in the tip.

Are there other skis in 85-90 that have tail rocker? I don't have extensive knowledge of this category so I don't know.
post #17 of 28

Do you guys have the Bushwacker shape with metal? That flipcore line keeps growing, so I'm not sure.

 

What about a Nordica something from that line with the Steadfast and all?

post #18 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by epic View Post

1) Do you guys have the Bushwacker shape with metal? That flipcore line keeps growing, so I'm not sure.

 

2) What about a Nordica something from that line with the Steadfast and all?

1) popcorn.gif

 

2) Steadfast is a viable option, but I do think the shape and the rise out of the tail on the flip cores are the difference for me for THIS application. 

post #19 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post

1) popcorn.gif

 

2) Steadfast is a viable option, but I do think the shape and the rise out of the tail on the flip cores are the difference for me for THIS application. 

 

It depends on how you like to ski bumps (and how much that matters) if that rocker profile is gonna be fun for this application. Do you like to slither or smash?

post #20 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by epic View Post

 

It depends on how you like to ski bumps (and how much that matters) if that rocker profile is gonna be fun for this application. Do you like to slither or smash?

Well, along with the tail shape being less likely to catch while in the trees. I do like a traditional tail in the bumps but this design of the BW and 8.5 lend them selves to work very in the conditions that the OP is looking for. 

post #21 of 28

Take my comment w/a grain of salt, being that I have never skied east of Summit County! 

 

Last year, I skied a ton of skis in bumps that were forming late in the year.  Lots of tight trees, lots of tight liftline type stuff. 

 

Out of all of those skis, easily my favorite was the Kastle MX83. Not that it was better in bumps; it was as good as the others, but it was so much better in other conditions that I would choose that ski without looking back.

 

I also really liked the Outland 80 and Outland 85. Both were smooth and predictable, and fun on the groomers as well.  Outland 80 was a ski I would purchase!

 

Head REV 85 was among the best.  Great flex. Head Rock n' Roll (95) was also superb.

 

The Bushwacker, for me, felt a little vague. Maybe it is one of those skis it takes awhile to really warm up to.  All of the ones I liked better tend to be stiffer in flex, less rocker.  Lots of people love it, so I am sure it partially comes down to skiing style.  I would grab an 8.0 or 8.5 over it, feels more secure and more lively, still super easy.  I skied many, many bumps on my 8.5's last spring. 

 

There were a lot of other skis I liked to.  It is just those really stood out as fun, easy, yet not wimpy. I skied some others (like the K2 Aftershock) which was a great ski in bumps, but not as much power or bite as I was looking for elsewhere on the mountain. For a great bump ski and a mellower ride, it would be hard to beat.  I am looking for something that bumps well, holds like glue on ice, has race ski power, and is versatile in choppy soft snow.  There aren't too many skis like that!

post #22 of 28
Thread Starter 

I cannot thank you all enough. This forum is an enormous resource. I am leaning Bushwacker 180 (200lbs. 6'2"), as I want them light and quick turn (on a dime) in tight woods, and bumps by just thinking about it, which I am sure will make them squirrely at speed, but I've got other skis for cruisin. I also don't hit that virgin powder in those trees too much, so it's packed down when I get to those trees on weekends, so 88 is fine (have Atomic Access for deeper snow, and out west) I've loved my B3's but it's time.

post #23 of 28
Take a close look at the Head REV 85pro
They are super versatile.
post #24 of 28
Try the Nordica SideCountry Burner (84 mm) in 178cm.
post #25 of 28
Thread Starter 

OK, if we're looking at the Bushwacker, I'm assuming both 173cm or 180cm would work for me (198 lbs @ 6'1"), so given that I'd take nimbleness in bumps/tight trees over frontside speed, then go with the 173's, or would I regret that decision until the day I die. 

(I'm on 176's now) 

post #26 of 28
I'd go 180 and think the 173 would be too short for someone ~200 lbs. I tried out a friend's 173s and they felt too short for me at 6'1" and 185 lbs.

Mike
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdcraig View Post

OK, if we're looking at the Bushwacker, I'm assuming both 173cm or 180cm would work for me (198 lbs @ 6'1"), so given that I'd take nimbleness in bumps/tight trees over frontside speed, then go with the 173's, or would I regret that decision until the day I die. 
(I'm on 176's now) 
post #27 of 28

I would also recommend demoing. No need to buy skis in November: they will be still available after you get a few days on the hill and can try some stuff.

 

If you are looking at wider, I highly recommend the Head Rock n' Roll.  No metal, just a bit of tip rocker, super versatile, easy to ski in tight spaces.  It is one of my go-to skis around here, and even though trees aren't tight locally, I can see it would be super nice in tight trees, as good as it is in tight bumps here.
 

post #28 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by qcanoe View Post

Better to go over a log than over a rock. However, better to go over a rock than under a log.

 

Better to avoid obstacles altogether me thinks.

 

New to skiing, but don't see myself trying to dodge dense trees while trying not to break a leg or take out a knee while my skis go under a log and my body attempts to go over the log, or scraping up new skis on lousy uneven shallow climate change type snow cover in the New England woods.

 

Don't see the appeal.

 

Perhaps it's more fun just below the tree line out west where trees are more spread out and the snow is bottomless.

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