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Did I make a mistake with Bushwacker's at 173?

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 

Hello all, first post here.  Was really excited last night when I scored a pair of Blizzard Bushwacker's for a decent deal.  I normally would do my homework before shelling out a few hundred bucks but the ski shop was down to their last pair and I read some good reviews on the skis so I didn't want to miss out (yes, an impulse buy).  The only size left was a 173.  I thought given the technology used in today's skis this might be a bit small for me but caved in and bought them anyway.  Looking back on it, maybe should have waited.


I am a 38 year old intermediate/advanced skier in New England.  First year skiing in five or six years but hope to get back where I was back then (advanced).  Ski exclusively with my family at this stage in my life (all very new too the sport).  I'm 5'11" and a relatively fit 195 pounds.  Mostly skiing smaller resorts in MA, NH and VT.


Based on everything I've read, it seems like I may be disappointed with the edge grip on this short of the Bushwacker.  Anyone else roughly my weight on such a short ski?  Any help would be fantastic...I think I could still call and cancel the order before they mount the bindings tomorrow.  Thoughts?  Again, my sincerest thanks for answering a very redundant question I would imagine.

post #2 of 24
FYI I ski 173 at 5'6 130 pounds so yeah they are little short for you. Edge grip wise they are only ok on groomers but I bought mine to play off piste.

You may want to consider something bigger.
post #3 of 24

I'm 6'2" and around 170, and I ski the Bushwacker in the 173cm length.  They definitely ski short.  At your weight, I'd have gone with the 180cm length.


As for the edge grip...  They have functional edge grip -- i.e., it's not bad and it's not great.  They're not a groomer cruiser ski.  I use mine to play in the bumps and trees which usually means that I've dinged the edges on a rock within five minutes anyway.

post #4 of 24

5'10", 165lbs.  I demo'd the Bushwacker in a 173cm length.  Would certainly not go shorter.  You've got 30 lbs. on me, so I would guess the 173 would be short.  I echo the prior sentiments regarding groomers ... especially Eastern hardpack/ice.  Definitely not their forte.  Fun and playful elsewhere.

post #5 of 24
Thread Starter 

Thank you all so far.  Unfortunately, they had no more of the Bushwacker's left in other sizes.  I suppose I could consider something else....any thoughts on the Atomic Blackeye Ti or Line Prophet 90's for mostly east coast groomers with the family?

post #6 of 24
Thread Starter 

Sorry, should also say, that I favor short, choppy turns over long radius turns.

post #7 of 24
Skis are like women, there really isn't just "one" for someone. I just got a pair of bushwackers and I love them; they do it all for me. I am 6'3" 180 and got the 180cm, so 170 is short considering the the tip and tail rocker. They are really fun skis for someone who isn't a hard charger, I could do all different radius turns on hard pack. The conditions today were actually pretty icy and crusty and the edge grip was just fine, on the softer snow they were awesome for me. Again, there are probably a number of other skis that I would like, but I own these and they are great.
post #8 of 24
Thread Starter 

Thank you...If they had the 180's I'd scoop them up in a second.  Unfortunately, I'll be needing to find another brand/model it seems.  Likely will go with the Prophet.  It's a good ski too I believe, but rather unlike the Bushwacker.  Thanks again.

post #9 of 24

someone posted this a couple days back, but they have the bushwacker in 180 at a fair price considering binding/mounting included-unless this was the shop you were at and it;s really sold out.




I'm not sure how much of a factor you are using cost/budget/savings versus getting a specific ski you want. Cause I'm sure you can find a bushwacker in 180 still if you wanted it, so it's now a matter of cost.


How much do the Prophets cost  as compared to this package above?  

post #10 of 24
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the help Raytseng.  That is a good price.  I paid about $40 more for the same set up.  There is something to be said about buying local though I suppose.  I think the Prophets will cost another $100 on top of that.  I am willing to spend the extra money...was just really looking forward to the Bushwackers.  After reading several additional posts over the past couple of hours, I am pretty certain I will enjoy the Prophets equally...just hope the store didn't already mount the bindings on the Bushwackers yet...might be harder to exchange at that point  ;-)  Thanks again.

post #11 of 24

I am 5 foot 9, 155lbs, and the 180cm feels short to me. I would ski a 187cm if I could, this ski feels a good 5cm shorter than it measures.  At a recent demo event, I was skiing a 174cm Stockli 95, and the BW in 180. If I had skied with a taped-over topsheet, I would have guessed the BW was the 174 and the Stockli the 180.  I would also recommend the 180 for you.  Unless you are just putting along all day with the kids, get the longer ski. 


FYI, we have them for $429 shipped as well (plus an extra 10% off!).  That time of the year, good deals to be had! 

post #12 of 24
Thread Starter 



      Thank you...I figured they were a bit short but got caught up in an impulse buy.  I am going to try to exchange them when the store opens today.  They seem to have a good exchange/return policy so as long as I can get there before they mount the bindings I should be okay.  Looked at your site....very good deals.  I certainly haven't found anything that can compare with that around here.  I may be in touch soon!  Thanks again.

post #13 of 24

now, if you need to sell those Bushwackers, let me know!

post #14 of 24
Footloose Ski Shop:
“Going to the next longer size will add stability and smooth out the ride a little, at the cost of low-speed maneuverability. When you drop a size, the skis feel more responsive, but less stable at high speed. The bottom line is that you should ski the shortest size that you’re comfortable skiing fast on. Anything longer is just unnecessary extra effort, and using skis that are too big can force skiers to develop awkward technique to compensate. The skis should be short enough to turn easily at the speeds you ski at, and long enough to feel stable when you open it up.”
post #15 of 24

^^^^^ Agree with the first two sentences but the "bottom line" third does not follow. They could just as easily say, "go with the longest ski that you're comfortable with in the terrain you tend to ski." And I've seen plenty of bad technique from skiers on short skis that let them get away with it because its so easy to slide the skis around. 


Dawg and the others are right; 173 is too short unless you plan to use them entirely for bumps. Turn them back in. As far as the other skis you mention, yeah, check some of our members who have online stores. 

post #16 of 24

 my son chris skis the 173 - he's 16-  5' 7" and 140 # tops.....  he loves them... however - phil set them up and chris rips-  so thats just the icing on the cake...

 im an inch taller and a few lbs. lighter..,. ( at least right now- who knows how long that will last?) i ski the bonafides in 180 and ( maybe should've gone longer) , although they are apples and oranges...


Prophet 90's?  i'd  go longer than 180 if i were you -  I have 4 yr old P90's in 180 and I think they ski very short- which helps me in the bumps and trees- but i'd like longer on the groomed.. 


good luck

post #17 of 24

i meant an inch taller than you... not chris..

post #18 of 24
Before I make a mistake with the same ski...torn between the 173 and 180. 5'10", 170ish lbs, advanced skier. Looking to these for moguls, soft (not deep) snow, and trees. All East Coast. Sure I'll be pretty happy either way but input never hurts.
post #19 of 24
Originally Posted by timm View Post

Before I make a mistake with the same ski...torn between the 173 and 180. 5'10", 170ish lbs, advanced skier. Looking to these for moguls, soft (not deep) snow, and trees. All East Coast. Sure I'll be pretty happy either way but input never hurts.

It skis short. If I were you (glad I am not!...kidding of course) I would get the 180cm.  It feels more like a 175, there is a lot more length of rise in that tip than on pretty much anything else in the category.  You might be going over the handlebars on the 173. 

post #20 of 24

Thanks a lot for your input Dawg, really appreciate how you guys step up and answer questions from all comers on here. I'm still mulling it over myself. Speed is not my priority but tight bumps and trees -- which is why the shorter size is tempting, especially where the rocker seems to start early in the Bushwacker but run low so you are still getting a lot of edge contact with it. If I go with the 180, I'll grab it from you since you have that size in stock (which says "Recommended height: -5cm under head height for tight trees, head height to +5cm head height for faster skiing" just to add to my dithering by the way!).

post #21 of 24

Any other right coasters on this ski want to chime in?

post #22 of 24



I've skied the 173cm in the East Coast / Mid-Atlantic and for myself it never felt like it was too much ski. I'm 5'6 and 130 pounds advanced skier and still think most of the time the 173cm is on the shorter side. My friend skies the Blizzard Bonefides in 180cm at a weight/height similar to yourself and he wouldn't go shorter then 180cm's as well. You would be good following Dawg's recommendation.

post #23 of 24
post #24 of 24

Hi timm, I am skiing the Bushwackers in the NE. For comparison I'm 5'5" x 150sh skiing the 173, but tend to only venture into bumps or trees if conditions are favorable and I'm up for it. The skis are extremely easy to use, but having said that they're not noodles and can have a stoutness to them. I would agree that they definately ski at least 5 or 6 cm short on the groomers and like medium to big turns best, and will hold an edge on any surface you can penetrate with your pole tip. I would say on tight steep ungroomed terrain you get the whole ski to work with and muscle around though, so I'm not sure if I agree with the rule of automatically up sizing all skis with early rise or "rocker".


All that said at your size with this ski you could go 173 for an intermediate level skier coming of something narrower , but for your level I think the 180 would be perfect for you, and the extra 2.75 inches will pay you dividends in fun every day on your way back to the lift.

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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Did I make a mistake with Bushwacker's at 173?