I've been skiing some '09 K2 Obsetheds (105 mm underfoot) for the last four seasons and I'd like to replace them. I've used those K2's for everything from the days when it hasn't snowed in a week to a the 12" plus days and I've really liked them. Now I have a pair of fat, zero camber skis (Icelantic Gypsy) for the fresh snow days, so I'm thinking of slimming down a little on my everyday ski.
About me - I'm 41 years old, 5-11, 170 lbs and mostly ski in N. Idaho. I like trees and other tight places, so my skis need to be able to make tight turns. With that said, I like to open it up a bit in the wide open places. If it hasn't snowed in a week, I'm probably not going to drive to the resort. I have a pair of 88mm waisted skis (Atomic Snoop Daddy's) with Diamir Fritchis, but I haven't bothered to take them to a resort in years. So I think what I want is a soft snow biased all-mountain ski.
Here's what I've tried and liked/not liked:
Obsetheds (179 cm) - I really like these skis. I enjoy their dampness, their ability to pivot/slarve a little in fresh and I can make them make reasonably quick turns. When I get out in the open I can press down on the accelerator and not feel like they're falling apart. Now that I have the Gypsies, I'm thinking I can get away with something in the 98mm range to increase my hard snow performance (not a huge priority) and maybe find something that turns a little quicker (a priority).
Line 98's - Yawn....not impressed. They were OK. A little quicker than my K2's, but I felt like I missed the looseness of my K2's. Just not love at first sight.
K2 Hardsides - A little better. I liked their dampness and quickness, but they didn't really do it for me either.
Rossignol S3 - My first impression - WOW! They turned on a dime and were super fun. Then I got down to the open and they fell apart with any sort of speed. I'm not willing to compromise my ability to enjoy a little speed for the maneuverability. My perfect ski would turn like these, but still hold together with a little speed. I don't want a charger, but come on!
Atomic Alibi - I've always liked Atomics and I really liked these. A little quicker than my K2's, loose feel in the deeper snow, held together at speed. I really liked the feel on the groomers compared to my K2's. So far, if I had to choose right now, this is what I would buy.
Icelantic Nomad RKR - Great ski! If I still had only one ski, I'd buy these. I loved the pivoty feel in soft snow. I could go fairly fast, but they started to fall apart at lower speeds than my K2's and also felt a little slower edge to edge. I think these are too close to my Gypsies to really make sense for me.
So what else should I demo? I'm very interested in the Moment PB&J. Maybe the Armada TST (although I demoed the JJ last year and really disliked them). I didn't really like any of the 4FRNT power skis I tried, with the exception of the Hoji. The K2 Kung Fujas seems like a natural replacement to my Obsethed. I know you folks have a lot of experience on a variety of skis and I'm curious to see what I may have over looked. Thanks!