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2015 Stockli Stormrider 115 Review

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Regarding the Stockli Stormrider 115 (195 tested)-

Conditions: untracked. Tight trees, moderate 30-35 degree pitch. 10" of blower on top of a heavier layer, but you could feel the break between layers. I was the only one breaking "through" the snow, primarily because of my technique (see below) and my size/weight.

Skier type: good, not great. You know the drill. Better than I used to be though because I'm in better shape. 5' 10", 230lbs. More of a "charger" than a finesse skier. Trained as an instructor, and more of a "keep your skis" on the snow than a hucker. I like to ski relatively fast. I say I'm good and not great because in my opinion there are some REALLY good skiers out there, and I don't hold their jock strap.

Edit: From the Start Haus' SierraJim: "You downplay your ability a little too much. You are a "technical" skier that tends to "slice" terrain rather than "smear" it. Given the technical background that is just part of your skiing, no surprise that you like much of the Stockli stuff. That is not a company that builds skis for geeks."

On to the Skis: For a 115, nice flotation, but not crazy. They still give traditional feedback and sensations, which to me is mandatory in a ski.

I am not sure where the mount point on the demos I skied are, but I felt like maybe they were a little tip long? Once centered, they were very fast edge to edge. However, I feel in the 195 they were a bit much--I would ski them in the 185.

They skied "light", they were bouncy and floaty--super fun skis, I think in the right size they were perfect skis for my skier type and ability. They like to be "skied", not "surfed" which I appreciated, based on my training and history in skiing.

There is bounce, pop, playfulness, and fun. At 90% of my top speed (which is pretty fast) I never felt that they weren't under me or I wasn't able to turn them in and out of "tight" spots.

Could I scrub/smear them? Absolutely, with the twin rocker they weren't locked in. But could I "carve" the untracked? You bet.

How did they handle variable conditions? Remember, this is relative, as no one in my group thought the snow was anything less than perfect/bottomless. To me, it was typical sierra pow...you better be ready fore/aft. The stocklis were there for me at every moment. Stable and centered, albeit again, a BIT tip long. (Note that I am VERY sensitive to equipment setup however....at best. At worst I've been told I'm "fickle". Ha!)

Are they "the best" powder skis I have ever ridden? You bet. Am I buying them? Yes, in a 185, however.

Who am I buying them from? Unequivocally, without a doubt, the Start Haus in Truckee, CA. this is the best shop with the best staff in the country. And, my money is where my mouth is...the crew there always makes me feel like I'm getting my money's worth--even at full retail on LARGE purchases, which I have paid on two such occasions this year outside the super sale...

Edit: who will dig these skis? More traditional skiers, looking for a "big" ski that will ski traditionally and yet still float and ski powder and bigger lines well...but in the traditional form. If you watch the latest Sally video with scot Schmidt, you can see these things actually rail groomers as well. Who will NOT like this ski? Those who tend to ski in the more "splay" style, who are super steezy and ski switch whenever possible, the typical hucker type, or those with thin billfolds. They are BANK.
Edited by Jed Peters - 4/2/14 at 8:57pm
post #2 of 19

Great review and you hit the right day to try them. Congrats. 

post #3 of 19
Nice.
post #4 of 19

Jed, great review. Curious: If you have a hunch the 185 would be better for you, do you think anyone under 185 (lbs, that is) who's not on the WC circuit could enjoy this model? 

post #5 of 19
Thread Starter 
The 195? Absolutely. If I was 10 years younger and still 50+ days on the hill? Sure.

I would recommend the 195 for hard chargers, good skiers, who are extremely athletic and fit.

I am a good skier, but like a precise instrument that's a bit friendlier--hence the 185.
post #6 of 19

OK, here is my take on that ski after skiing it on a bluebird powder day.    Once upon a time there was a ski that I liked but didn't buy and kind of regretted it ever since- a Dynastar Legend 115.  A straight tail wood core ski with a long but low-slung rockered tip and a large amount of tip taper.  SR115 reminded me a lot of that ski.  Its a conventional tail design (rounded off like all current Stormriders), but the distinct features are a very long low rise rocker and a lot of tip taper.  One look at the design and you get the impression that this tip is designed to go fast in 3D snow.  This ski will plane, and won't hook up or fold on you at any speed.  Skiing it in powder pretty much confirmed the impression.  Above a certain speed this ski works beautifully, regardless of the type of snow you are in, it rises to the top and slices through any snow like butter with power AND finesse.  As a high-speed charger these are simply awesome.  The problem for me was the length.  195 felt like a pretty big ski, especially since I am used to a 112RP which at 190 is polar opposite- very quick, surfy, short and light. I did switch to it in the middle of the day, to get more time in the trees and squeeze more turns out of whatever fresh I could find.  

 

Whatever little groomer time I had on the SR115 was fine, the 28m sidecut feels similar to the dynastar ProRider, solid, but not exciting.  I'd say in 3D snow SR115 turned like a ski with a bigger radius than 28m, but that's what you want if you are looking or a charger.   One issue I had was with some lack of float at low speeds- as I said, I prefer skiing whatever powder snow slowly and try to squeeze more turns out of it. A bigger rocker like the 122RP works better for that strategy, it just rises up immediately.  SR115 literally begs you to go faster...

 

I did re-injured my back muscles and the 112RP ride quickly became too bumpy, so by the end of the day I switched back to the SR115 in search of a damper ski.  To my surprise that trick totally worked, the dampness and extra length really smoothed out the crud, and I was able to keep skiing slowly and deliberately to the end of the day.  Funny enough the SR115 was very agreeable to piloting them slow through the soft bumps carefully skidding the tail.  

 

Overall, this ski felt like a very refined freeride comp ski, very refined but with tons of power and rock solid stability at loony speed.  A couple of landing in fresh snow were very solid.  Great ski, but the 195 length literally has no market.  The few 25-y/o hotshots who have the legs and balls to ski it to the full potential probably cannot afford it, the guys who can probably need less ski.  I am curious how the 185 would ski.  If they added some more rocker to it, that could be my new favorite powder ski.  

 

Bottom line: a Legend 115 done right and made for the modern age.   

post #7 of 19
This is helpful; it makes sense in terms of Stocklis I've skied. Agree about the Dynastar correlation, too. I had the XXL's. Some skis suffer us at modest speeds but really wake up and look around at velocities that can get interesting in soft snow.
post #8 of 19

These seem so different than the pre-rocker version of the pro model (I have and love the 178 & 190).  115mm vs 105mm, tip rocker vs full camber, rounded tail vs semi squared off tail, front and asymmetric rear inserts vs no polyamide inserts, 166,178,190,201 lengths vs 185 & 195, etc. 

 

The reviews and videos look like the ski may feel very similar though. 

 

The 185 length would allow me to have one pair instead of two although the lack of the inserts seems to make the new ones a bit less versatile.  You can switch feet and really change how stiff the tail is on the older ones, almost like having two different pairs in one.  The rounded tails and tip rocker might make the new ones a bit more user-friendly but that isn't really what this ski is about for me.

 

Anyone here have experience skiing both models?

post #9 of 19
Thread Starter 

Okay, I don't have any experience riding the older "pro" model but I do know that the modern storm riders are both a kinder, gentler stockli but with the same top end--in other words, they're a little more apt to like slower speeds, but they are still refined and ski like a race ski that is set for "off piste" use.

 

My experience with them has been the OLD stockli from the mid-2000's and the modern ones from now. They suit me better for my everyday driving than anything out there--but they don't suffer fools--you need to be on your game to ski them.


If  I were a ski instructor again I would not want to be on these for all day use chasing a bunch of kids around. 

 

But are they more fun and forgiving than the old stockli? Infinitely. 

 

Here's how I ski, FYI:

post #10 of 19

Video is coming up marked "private"

post #11 of 19
Thread Starter 

Just updated video...not private anymore.

post #12 of 19
Thread Starter 
They're heeerrrreeee!!!!
post #13 of 19
Thread Starter 

 

 

Looking forward to making some turns with these! 

post #14 of 19

Those look pretty sweet.  Congrats!

post #15 of 19

is this a photo effect or bindings are in different colors (blue and gray)? Looks super nice... (both ski and binding)

post #16 of 19

Two different pairs of skis/two different sets of bindings.

post #17 of 19

Did you buy two pair of 185's?

post #18 of 19
Thread Starter 
My father (67 years young) has the same taste in skis as me...
post #19 of 19

yep, 2 different skis, sorry could not catch it earlier. STH2 color gray is STH2 13 and color blue is STH2 16.

Obviously, nobody would put 2 different binding on the same skis.

 

Congratulations to your dad. Driving these skis at 67 is an achievement.

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