I'm new to joining Epic, but I've been lurking the forums for quite a while now (probably a familiar story). Great forum, and really nice to see that not every thread turns into a flame fest like so many other forums. Anyway, I came out of the woodwork to see if I could get a few opinions.
Quick bio - I'm 175lbs, 5'10, have 25+ years of skiing experience (advanced/expert if you will), ski out West (Canadian Rockies) 99% of the time, more finesse than charger (but still like to get after it depending on terrain), and will ski anything from pow, bumps, steep chutes and trees (my fave) to following behind my beginner/intermediate wife on blue groomers.
To save everyone the long story (been out of touch with ski tech the past 5-years and didn't ski much), I can get into a set of Kastle's or Nordica's (so that's where I'll limit the topic). I'm budget limited to one set of do-it-all skis (a two or three set quiver would make this so much easier - MX88 and BMX108, done!) that can manage my off-piste, variable snow runs while also not being completely horrible when I'm skiing with my wife. I'm more interested in getting a great ski for the off-piste, tree diving crap that I like to do and compromising with a crappy groomer ski.
I recently put 3 days on the BMX 98's (in 178cm) and enjoyed them - decent in bumps for a 98mm ski, pretty boring on groomers, not much "pop" or energy, but I did enjoy them off-piste banging around in the trees. They didn't inspire as much confidence in the trees as I expected, and I'm assuming that was width-related more than anything. They were obviously terrible on ice, but that's not important to me. Cruising around with the fam on the groomers, they were again just okay, but I understand they're not a carving-oriented GS ski. To sum them up, they were generally 'good' at everything. Light, turny, smooth, but uninspiring.
With that in mind, I figured the 2013 Enforcer (in 177cm) would be the remedy and a sure bet. With the metal construction, I thought the added stiffness, weight and snappier tail would be the perfect compromise. In reality, I found the Nordie's incredibly heavy, lethargic edge to edge unless I really got after it, way too whippy in the bumps (the stiff, flat tails did me no favours), but awesome in the crud and light pow conditions of the day off-piste. They were also a lot more fun on the groomers than the BMX98's. In steeper terrain, they were great - confidence-inspiring, stable, damp, and energetic. That said, due to their weight and unwieldiness, I didn't love them (actually kind of hated them) in the trees and they were way less fun in the bumps than the BMX98's. To sum them up, heavy, slow, damp, and tail happy.
So, going back to the one-ski thing, I'm tempted to try the Hell and Back's considering their specs address a lot of my complaints about the Enforcer. Any thoughts? I also considered, maybe wrongly, giving the BMX108 a try based on dawgcatching's review (http://www.epicski.com/t/106987/dawgcatchings-2012-reviews-pt-1-102-112mm-waist-skis) of them as "sporty, fun in tight spaces, damp and smooth" and later as "perfect for cruddy bumps, steeps, challenging shorter to mid-radius turns, trees...". Sounds perfect. I don't mind the 108 width for the stuff I like to do, but I'm concerned that the benefits of a 108mm waisted ski would be lost on groomers and anything but fresh pow and BC forays.
Sorry for the long intro/help-me thread, but hopefully you guys can give me some insight.
Cliff notes -
Looking for one do-it-all ski (Nordica or Kastle), focus should be on BC/off-piste, steep terrain, trees, pow, and bumps, but has to be somewhat decent on groomers. I've tried the BMX98 - it was okay at everything but uninspiring. Tried the 2013 Enforcer - it was neither. Now debating the BMX108 and Nordie HnB.