EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Info on BBR, Kendo, Bushwhacker & other high 80s Skis needed
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Info on BBR, Kendo, Bushwhacker & other high 80s Skis needed

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Slowly coming round to the idea that all I *need* ski wise is a fat ski and a not so fat high 80s ski, and that should make skiing on all terrain fun, with no gaps. Sure, I won't get race performance out of a high 80s waisted ski, but as long as I feel like I'm going fast, in control, and I'm having fun, I don't mind. The ski should do what my Volkl Shiro's don't (hard pack and ice) , and be able to blast through crud without being knocked about too much.


Essentially, I *think* need a 60/40 piste / off piste, relatively stiff ski with very good edge hold, capable of dealing with pistes at speed, a reasonably short turn radius (nothing over 20m, preferably a fair bit less), with a bit of tip rocker for crud and the odd cm of powder.
I don't think I need all five of those requirements to be met, but 4/5 would be good. 

Myself:
20
175cm, 70kgs
Aggressive skier, approx 25-30 weeks skiing
Will ski off piste whenever possible

Some skis that I believe would fit these categories, but with which I've no prior experience are:

Blizzard Bushwhacker (Probably at 173, although depending on turn radius maybe 166)


Volkl Kendo (170... again possibly 163 but I think that's too short, would give a shorter turn radius though)

BBR 8.9 176

K2 Iron Maiden (at 169 or 194 - these are marketed as a all mountain & park ski, although I don't see how that would impede edge hold?)
 

 

I was going to include a couple of Kastle skis in this, but I just wouldn't be able to afford them.

 

 

 

 


Those familiar with these skis, could you please let me know how well they fit into what I want them to do, or suggest any other skis that might work?








Lukas

post #2 of 12

I can vouch for the 173 Bushwacker. I'm the same weight but only 164cm tall. Its a very virsatile ski for the NE, it would be perfect for playful western inbound ski at our size, it shines on soft packed powder and 3d. I plan on domoing the 166 and the brahma next week along with the steadfast for comparison.

post #3 of 12

I have the 2011 Kendos in 184cm.  I'm 6'1" and 200lbs expert skier like the rest of usbiggrin.gif

Recently back in to skiing and spent 7+ years in the industry so I have skied ALOT in a variety of conditions from clear ice to breakable crust and refrozen crud.  I shifted from 210 Volkl VP19 super Gs that I kept as I dumped the rest of my equipment.  I tend to stay away from slalom skis & want stability, edgehold and power in tough snow conditions  (mostly northwest and sierra type snow).

 

My experience on the Kendos thus far is all positive.  Much, much quicker than I anticipated and very smooth at speed.  I will not tolerate a ski that I put on an arc in bad snow and it deflects or chatters.  The 184 Kendo proved that to me once again last week in refrozen crud.  When I set an edge, it stayed the course until I released it.

 

My experience in ~12-18" of fresh or heavy snow is limited this year, but when I did have the chance to let 'em go with out the kids, I had a smile on my face.  Nothing but fun and I'd expect the little bit of tip rise in the 2012 model to only help in these conditions.  I had the choice in soft bumps to go over, around or through them.  Now that's what I call fun.

 

If you really want stability at speed then go long.  It will be a little stiffer, but will shine once you get them up to speed.  I still firmly believe you can make a quick ski turn more quickly, but can't make a ski more stable at speed.  Off piste at speed means GS type lay-up and turn radius.   Don't try to compromise and cut back on length.  With the little bit of tip rise, they should feel a little shorter on piste.

 

As usual, go out & try them all.  You're looking at the right skis and my analogy is you want chocolate ice cream?  These are all chocolate, it's just a matter of what type do you like?  Dark, milk, chocolate w/ chips, etc.  No one can answer that question other than you and your skiing style.

post #4 of 12

Lukus, the Bushwhacker 173 is a fun ski.  Got them in '12 and initially had a strong dislike for the ski in anything but powder.  Was ready to give up on them, got them to a shop early this season after another "yeh these suck" days, and  with some good  input from this forum, had the ski de-tuned, (edges too sharp )and holy buckets, I have a ski!!  This thing is a lot more enjoyable to ski now and is really responds at faster speeds.  Good Luck.  (BTW 170lbs & 5'10" and too lazy to do the metric conversion.)

post #5 of 12

The BBR 8.9 is a good ski for what you want.  It is at its best when in up to 8" of new snow and in cut up but loose snow, the heavier the better.  It is a good tracker on groomed but likes to live off the beaten track.  For deeper powder it still works well, but it really likes the manky stuff.  It probably won't be great at race speeds on hard pack, but that's not what you are asking about.  I use them as my soft snow ski at Mt. Baker and I am very happy with them.

post #6 of 12

Not on your list but two more you should consider are the Nordica Steadfast and Elan 888/Apex.  I demoed the Bushwacker and Steadfast last year and while the Bushwacker was pretty good, it didn't make me say "wow."  The Steadfast made me say "WOW!":  It has tip rocker, camber, turned up tail, terrific edge grip and is lightweight and very responsive.  I.ski trees as much as I can and it is quick to turn when you need it most.  We don't get a lot of ice out here but it held quite well on really hard snow that was approaching ice.  It is my daily driver and I use it for everything, in fact I haven't been on my Icelantic Shamans even once since I got the Steadfasts.  I'm about 171cm, 150 pounds and my Steadfasts are 170cm and I am a pretty aggressive skier.  I don't pay much attention to turn radius because I can bend them into however tight an arc I need.  Maybe that's teh advantage of having grown up skiing old straight skis.  My son has a pair of Elan Apexes, same as the 888, and thinks they're the best ski ever.  The Apex has tip rocker, camber, a pretty flat tail, and is more damp than the Steadfasts since it has a metal sheet in it.  I haven't skied them yet but my son says they're very responsive and hold an edge well.  He skis trees and bumps just like I do and a responsive ski is a must in the trees.  My son is about 183cm and his Elans are 178cm.

post #7 of 12
Thinking anyone contributing to this thread should read Lukas's post on skiing the Shiro in Chamonix first. Somehow he just doesn't sound like a Bushwacker kind of guy to me.
post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 

Cheers guys,

@qcanoe can you explain that? I've no idea what a 'Bushwacker kind of guy' would be. 
Shiro review is here for anyone wishing insight by the way: http://www.epicski.com/t/117959/2012-13-volkl-shiro-fat-all-mountain-ski
Tried not to gush about them too much.

@mtcyclist: The Steadfasts are definitely going to be added to the list of possibilities, certainly sound like the right category of ski.
I'm struggling to find the exact elan model you meant, is it this one? http://www.elanskis.com/en/product/888-alu.html 

I do think that the turn radius problem is the least of my worries, as long as when the ski is thrown out of it's turn at speed on hardpack it doesn't chatter like crazy (otherwise I'd just keep my Volkl Bridges, but they do chatter a fair bit). Which is why I'm slightly put off by the BBR because put on edge it makes turns as small as most slalom skis. 



I'm not sure when exactly I'm going to have a chance to demo any of these skis, so any more suggestions would be great.


Lukas

post #9 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lukas View Post

Cheers guys,

@qcanoe can you explain that? I've no idea what a 'Bushwacker kind of guy' would be. 
Shiro review is here for anyone wishing insight by the way: http://www.epicski.com/t/117959/2012-13-volkl-shiro-fat-all-mountain-ski
Tried not to gush about them too much.

 

 

Disclaimer: I have not skied the Bushwacker myself. Here on EpicSki it has a reputation as a very easy-to-ski model that likes to noodle around in softish but-not-too-deep conditions at moderate speeds, and for having only adequate edge grip and stability on groomers at speed. It's often recommended for east coast tree skiing and the like, commonly to smaller or less experienced folks who wouldn't be likely to overpower it. It's a ski that I suspect I would like very much for the intended use. I fondled one in a shop the other day - pretty light, feels fairly limber, thin profile, significant early rise tip and tail ... much more than an E88 or a Steadfast, for example, to pick two other 88mm skis.

 

MEANWHILE, you are 20 years old, 170lbs, more or less, have been skiing since you were three years old, and say that you want "relatively stiff ski with very good edge hold, capable of dealing with pistes at speed". Moreover, your Shiro posts contains several passages like this one:

 

 

Quote: Lukas

Charging down the Vallee Blanche in big wide turns through windblown and fresh powder ....


... I largely missed out on giving the skis a lot of hucking and air practice, although the few smaller landings that I did get to do I barely even noticed landing, the Shiros just kept going as if they'd never left the ground. ...


... the Shiros seem to just plough through any type of crud without the rider even noticing ...

 

It's entirely possible that I'm misreading the signs and symbols. But it sure sounds to me like you are a bit of a charger, a bit of a young gun, probably a pretty fast and aggressive skier. That is not the kind of skier that the more knowledgeable retailers here typically steer toward the Bushwacker. At least that's what I seem to have observed. Maybe one of them will chime in here. Hope that explanation helps.

post #10 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by vwr1vwf View Post

I can vouch for the 173 Bushwacker. I'm the same weight but only 164cm tall. Its a very virsatile ski for the NE, it would be perfect for playful western inbound ski at our size, it shines on soft packed powder and 3d. I plan on domoing the 166 and the brahma next week along with the steadfast for comparison.

I have to add a ski to the soup. I think 16m radius, close to the Bushwacker, but definately easier to change sizes, and a fun tail too. 

I did something very stupid yesterday, I demoed the 2013 172cm Prophet 90 (for free) in 20"+ of fresh noreaster snow. I kept them all day, so I did a very comprehensive comparison with my 173 wackers. I was at a small 650' local hill, so it was trashed before lunch.

 

If they had Griffon demo bindings instead of the Neox demos, I would have put them on my credit card......

 

To be fair, my Bushwackers badly need a tune. Or worse, my eyes were bigger than my legs, and I got the wrong size.


Edited by vwr1vwf - 2/10/13 at 2:03pm
post #11 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by qcanoe View Post

 

Disclaimer: I have not skied the Bushwacker myself. Here on EpicSki it has a reputation as a very easy-to-ski model that likes to noodle around in softish but-not-too-deep conditions at moderate speeds, and for having only adequate edge grip and stability on groomers at speed. It's often recommended for east coast tree skiing and the like, commonly to smaller or less experienced folks who wouldn't be likely to overpower it. It's a ski that I suspect I would like very much for the intended use. I fondled one in a shop the other day - pretty light, feels fairly limber, thin profile, significant early rise tip and tail ... much more than an E88 or a Steadfast, for example, to pick two other 88mm skis.

 

MEANWHILE, you are 20 years old, 170lbs, more or less, have been skiing since you were three years old, and say that you want "relatively stiff ski with very good edge hold, capable of dealing with pistes at speed". Moreover, your Shiro posts contains several passages like this one:

 

 

 

It's entirely possible that I'm misreading the signs and symbols. But it sure sounds to me like you are a bit of a charger, a bit of a young gun, probably a pretty fast and aggressive skier. That is not the kind of skier that the more knowledgeable retailers here typically steer toward the Bushwacker. At least that's what I seem to have observed. Maybe one of them will chime in here. Hope that explanation helps.


Thanks for explaining, I certainly want something more than adequate edge hold and stability at speed on groomers, so maybe the Bushwhacker will be relegated to the bottom of the current list. Although tree skiing prowess might be useful (although I suppose most high 80s are quite good at that anyway).


Does anyone know how the Bushwhacker stands up to something like the Kendo for example? (I'll do some searching on the forum in a moment...)

 

@vwr1vwf: Thanks -  I think I'd be a little bit more tempted by the Prophet 85 as above all I'm looking for something to use on the pistes / crud, I've got plenty of powder performance with the Shiros, though I'll certainly have a closer look at the Prophet 90s and try to demo them if I can.
In what ways did the Prophet 90s feel better than the whackers? 



Lukas


 

post #12 of 12

They were more receptive to my technique and stance, bigger sweet spot I would say. The Prophet was also turnier in the fresh and on the groomers, the tails were easier for me when bumps started to form, because I am not a bump skier, I slither in the troughs as fast as I can. The P90 was also easier for me in tight, steep, bumped out trees. Even though they were noticeably heavier, especially with the NEOX, they were very responsive and lively. I have a love/hate relationship with heavy skis, but their crud performance was noticebly better also, they were a good balance of both with just the right amount of dampness for me. The P90 also seemed to have a very fun and noticeably better pop on jumps and small features,with smoother landings.

 

The P90's were a better Allmontain ski (for me). As you might have noticed I'm not that experienced and consider myself an advanced imtermediate, on piste only. I grabbed the bushwacker demo off ebay last summer, blindly without demoing, based purely on reviews because they were in like new condition. They have definately served their purpose by making more terrain accessable for me, while inspiring confidence, just as advertized, I still love them. They're still good performers on trails, but are happiest in soft snow. As I said, maybe at my size 5'5" x 150-160sh the 166 would be more playful for me.

 

As for the Kendo, they are in the same category. I have not skied them yet, but have fondled them alot. They hand flex noticeably stiffer with the same light and lively feel as the Bushwacker, and are no doubt better on piste performers, with from what I gather from reviews, they have good off piste versatility also for the NE

 

One of my local shop owners is your size. He is on his second season on the 2012 Nordica Side country series Burner (84mm) and loves them.

 

This underscores the importance of domoing to find your ski.

 

Rich


Edited by vwr1vwf - 2/11/13 at 7:18am
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Ski Gear Discussion
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Info on BBR, Kendo, Bushwhacker & other high 80s Skis needed