Read this, posted January 12, 2004 12:28 AM
Ski Make: Elan
Ski Model: Mantis 662
Ski Length: 176cm
Snow Conditions Used In: Pacific Northwest new and slightly old snow
Number of Days Used: 5 (3 at Mt Hood Meadows & 2 at Crystal Mt)
Your Ability: PSIA level 7 (upper intermediate)
How Many Years Have You Been Skiing: about 12 or 13
Avg. Days per Year Skiing: 20 (average lessons per year: 2)
Other Skis You Like: (below)
Your Height/Weight: 5'10" (177cm) / 180# (about 82kg)
For myself as an upper intermediate looking to improve off-piste, these are a very nice ski. In the 5 days I've already been on them, I can see myself improving, which is really exciting.
I couldn't be more pleased with my 662s.
What I like about the Mantis 662: they have a moderate flex and natural short radius that makes it easy for me to bend the ski and carve (not skid) short radius turns at medium to slow speeds. However, I can still do long radius turns on them, too, so I really enjoy the variety of turn sizes I can do with them.
The 662s are very stable when I want to "let them rip" on an occasional groomer. I can't tell if my speed on them is limited by my ability or the ski's stability, but I've gone awfully fast on them.
The first thing I noticed about the 662 when I skied them was how good the edge grip is. And this is what I was looking for in a ski: great edge hold and a moderate (not soft or stiff) flex with a naturally shorter turn radius.
I prefer skiing steep slopes (black diamonds & an occasional double black), and I would like to improve in powder and bumps. The 662s are giving me the confidence to do that. Previously I was on a K2 Mod-X (Axis-X) in a 188cm, which I enjoyed, but not like my 662s.
Before buying my 662s, I recently demoed the following skis: Volkl 724 Pro 170cm, Salomon Scream 8 175cm, Salomon Scream Hot 175cm, Salomon Scream Xtra Hot 175cm, K2 Axis XP 174cm, and Rossignol B2 176cm. Of these 6 skis that I demoed, I liked the Rossi B2s the best (demoed on soft snow only). The Mantis 662 skis more like the Rossi B2 than any other ski that I demoed - they're very similar skis.
(I also liked the Volkl 724s, but they were a little bit stiffer than what I wanted. Didn't like the K2 XP at all. The Salomons preferred longer radius turns than the B2 & 662.)
The local Elan Rep tells me that the 662 has better edge hold/grip than the Rossi B2, and while I didn't get to ski the B2 in harder/firmer snow, it wouldn't surprise me if that's the case.
I've been snooping this site regularly for years, and its nice to be able to make a contribution. Hopely this helps someone trying to decide what ski to demo.