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Ski for bumps: how much better than cheater GS?

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 

Hi guys, 

 

I ski mostly on the Fischer RC4 RC (cheater GS). On groomers and in gates they're great. Off-piste they're OK but not my idea of a great time. In bumps I find them very difficult, particularly if I ever get near a deep trough. I seem to remember bumps being easier when I was on the Head Integrale 009 or the Head Peak 82, but you know how memory works...

 

Are cheater GS skis particularly difficult in bumps, or is this solely a case of the archer and not the arrow? Are there some nice skis that will smooth out the ride in slush-on-frozen bumps and rubble-on-hardpacked bumps?

post #2 of 33
Just curious, but what skis were other L3's on? What about your examiners? I don't know that a cheater GS ski would ever have been my choice for an exam. Typical stuff seems to be Rossi E/Temptation-88, Head Rev 85pro, with shear numbers going to the Rossi E-88. Popular with examiners as well.

For people I know who passed PSIA L3 this year, the list is the same as above along with Head Titans both old and new.

Personally, for a western exam, I think the new Dynastar Powertrak 89 would rock as well.

In the end, they are all more well rounded than a cheater GS ski, yet narrow enough to do all the tasks/drills/piste skiing precisely enough to pass while being superior to the cheater off piste and in the bumps.

That said, I'm guessing taking exams out east would be a different equation.
post #3 of 33
"In bumps I find them very difficult, particularly if I ever get near a deep trough."

Absolutely. I actually owned a pair of those skis, from the 2004 era. Don't think they've changed a lot. At my size and ability level, at least, bumps on stiff race carvers - even friendlier ones than those Fischers - are very challenging.
post #4 of 33
Thread Starter 

Other peeps who've passed have been on slalom skis, Titans, all mountain carvers... nobody in my club passed the 3 this year so not sure what current skis are popular. :/ also the snow conditions are all over the board right now...

 

Off-piste/bump conditions are slushy snow on top of hardpack, plus some rubble/ball bearing snow, plus some thawed/frozen/thawed/frozen/thawed snow (something that say, a Cham sails through, but bogs down and stops a cheater GS ski from turning).

 

One of my coaches was really enthusiastic about the RC4 as an exam ski, so it's probably good enough for the intermediate parallel, short turns (steered), and advanced parallel. Plus I'm really comfortable with the ski on groomers.

 

I'm thinking of taking a second ski for bumps if I can figure out what's a nice easy riding bump ski for me (6', 170lbs, more leafy than powerful in my turns). Not sure I can get the Dynastar Powertrack 2015 ski - what could you suggest in a 2014 ski, perhaps something I could find in a rental shop? (or on clearance! ha)

 

Also, let's go with "I'm not taking the exam" for now :cool 

post #5 of 33
177 Rev 85 pro or 178 Rossi E-88 for anything other than really really hard snow. Any of the skis mentioned above.. I've seen the old white and blue Titans around still in the wrapper. The 170 could even work in the old Titan.. Maybe a Fischer Progressor or similar for the east? Head Rally? Rossi 170 non-FIS SL ski? In the end, at least out west, the 80-90 skis generally seem to rule the day for exam sticks.

Do you guys actually have time/opportunity to change skis on an exam day?
post #6 of 33
Thread Starter 

Those are good ideas - I think I'll try out the E88. Would it be good in 170, since I'm mostly concerned about the tips getting caught up in troughs? 

 

Guessing the rev 85 pro feels like the peak 82? ie pretty soft but also damper than a cheater GS ski?  

post #7 of 33

Not sure what you're asking here. Cheater GS skis are most certainly not as good as true bump skis, obviously.

 

Bump skis are quick, narrow, fairly light and tend to have a very even flex pattern with good edge hold.

 

Can you ski bumps, especially "deep trough" variety with a cheater GS skis? Some can do it quite well I suspect.

Are there better tools for the job? Yep! 

post #8 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Metaphor_ View Post

Those are good ideas - I think I'll try out the E88. Would it be good in 170, since I'm mostly concerned about the tips getting caught up in troughs? 

Guessing the rev 85 pro feels like the peak 82? ie pretty soft but also damper than a cheater GS ski?  

You're not heavy, but relatively tall. I don't know that you'd like a 170 E-88, but if ones available to try... Seems like you'd be giving up a lot to optimize bump performance. I'd still think the next size up is the ticket. Of course YYM and probably should V. smile.gif

The only ski that I'd think about going down to 170 for you would be the old white Head Titan. A 177 2014 Head Rev 85pro might be hard to find at this point. They sold quite well. I've only seen a couple pairs of 184's around.
post #9 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rossi Smash View Post

Not sure what you're asking here. Cheater GS skis are most certainly not as good as true bump skis, obviously.

Bump skis are quick, narrow, fairly light and tend to have a very even flex pattern with good edge hold.

Can you ski bumps, especially "deep trough" variety with a cheater GS skis? Some can do it quite well I suspect.
Are there better tools for the job? Yep! 

He's looking for an exam ski.
post #10 of 33
I love my Kastle LX82's in the bumps. I am doing Level 2 exam next year. Bought the 82's from Dawgcatching spring sale. I am female, 5'8, 140 and have the 172's. Very versatile ski. Skied in the slush and gloop closing day at Smowmass and it performed very well.
post #11 of 33
No Kastle on CSIA/PSIA pr$ f$rm. smile.gif
post #12 of 33
Dawgcatching price cheaper than proform.
post #13 of 33
Thread Starter 

Is LX82 a women's ski? They have them for around $550 at Fanatyk Co.

 

I'll rent the Rossignol E88 in 178, and if I'm still having trouble with the tips, I'll try the 170. (If I'm still having trouble, there's no hope!) Thanks!

post #14 of 33
No, not a women's ski. The LX series is less stiff and has different wood than some of the other Kastle series like the MX. That is probably a very incompete description. Several of my male instructor friends at Snowmass use this ski and love it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Metaphor_ View Post

Is LX82 a women's ski? They have them for around $550 at Fanatyk Co.

I'll rent the Rossignol E88 in 178, and if I'm still having trouble with the tips, I'll try the 170. (If I'm still having trouble, there's no hope!) Thanks!
post #15 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Metaphor_ View Post
 

Are cheater GS skis particularly difficult in bumps

 

YES!

post #16 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Metaphor_ View Post
 

Off-piste/bump conditions are slushy snow on top of hardpack, plus some rubble/ball bearing snow, plus some thawed/frozen/thawed/frozen/thawed snow (something that say, a Cham sails through, but bogs down and stops a cheater GS ski from turning).

 

My ski mentor (Demo Team) at the time once gave me a valuable piece of advice. "Always take your exams on winter snow".

post #17 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by skier31 View Post

No, not a women's ski. The LX series is less stiff and has different wood than some of the other Kastle series like the MX. That is probably a very incompete description. Several of my male instructor friends at Snowmass use this ski and love it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Metaphor_ View Post

Is LX82 a women's ski? They have them for around $550 at Fanatyk Co.

I'll rent the Rossignol E88 in 178, and if I'm still having trouble with the tips, I'll try the 170. (If I'm still having trouble, there's no hope!) Thanks!

 

I've spent a fair amount of time this year on the next-wider LX, which has the same construction as the 82. It does have a nice flex pattern for bumps. For that reason I can well imagine that the 82 would be a really nice mogul ski. I'm not an instructor and have never been faced with an exam, but I would think that if you were bringing one ski, something like this would be a good candidate, in that it's soft and wide enough to perform easily in mixed ungroomed, but - with its full-camber design and two sheets of metal - would still be precise enough for the technical carving-oriented tasks. Obviously you would want to have spent a lot of time on it before going in. Equally obviously, there are lots of other good candidate skis out there, some of which may be easier to find a deal on.

 

On the "women's ski" question, Kastle is kind of coy about this. They don't explicitly call out the LX series as women's skis. However, they do have a tendency to end up in the women's ski category in some of the magazine tests, and some reviewers (such as realskiers, in their most recent incarnation) seem to treat them as women's skis. I also noticed that when the LX 92 came out it had a kind of cantaloupe accent color that could almost have been described as "Mary Kay". In a later model year they changed it to plain orange that's more like the one on the MX 88. It's almost like different factions at the company are having an argument about how they should spin this line.

 

Bottom line is that if they work for you, it doesn't matter, especially as there are no curlicues on the topsheets to distract anyone. I'm glad that epic unambiguously validated my experience with skiing race carvers in bumps, so you are getting a consistent message on that.

post #18 of 33

High170s in length, only need really narrow if they are really frozen, ice cold, bulletproof.  The softer they (the bumps) are the wider you can go with the ski.  Older GS skis (before 2004 or 2005) are better than newer ones simply because the tips of older ones are softer and more forgiving.  SL skis are doable simply because they are so short you can get around them and through ruts without needing them to be as soft in tips.  That said, these things are preferences that vary by skier and their bump skiing tactics.  You need to find what works best for YOU!  :D  Surely you are a very good all around skier at your level.  Spend some time skiing bumps with other folks that did recently pass the exam you're gunning for (again).  You WILL pass next time with a little more experience and confidence in yourself, whatever gear you decide on for the day of the exam.

 

If you were to have no idea of conditions I'd go with a SL.  I'd rather ski slush bumps in an ice ski than ski ice bumps on a slush bump ski.  165-179 is the length range you should be looking on, with the 165 being a SL and the high 170s being the 80-90 under foot softer skis.

post #19 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by crgildart View Post
 

High170s in length, only need really narrow if they are really frozen, ice cold, bulletproof.  The softer they (the bumps) are the wider you can go with the ski.  Older GS skis (before 2004 or 2005) are better than newer ones simply because the tips of older ones are softer and more forgiving.  SL skis are doable simply because they are so short you can get around them and through ruts without needing them to be as soft in tips.  That said, these things are preferences that vary by skier and their bump skiing tactics.  You need to find what works best for YOU!  :D  Surely you are a very good all around skier at your level.  Spend some time skiing bumps with other folks that did recently pass the exam you're gunning for (again).  You WILL pass next time with a little more experience and confidence in yourself, whatever gear you decide on for the day of the exam.

 

If you were to have no idea of conditions I'd go with a SL.  I'd rather ski slush bumps in an ice ski than ski ice bumps on a slush bump ski.  165-179 is the length range you should be looking on, with the 165 being a SL and the high 170s being the 80-90 under foot softer skis.

 

The narrow width is for edge to edge quickness more than anything....you get up near 90mm, that is long gone.

post #20 of 33

He's using these for a CSIA L3 exam, not free skiing. He WILL be off piste. He WILL be in bumps. He WILL do drills/tasks... the venue is Whistler in the spring. He wlll ski on piste. CR, you might go for an SL, and most likely you'd fail... Met could run into anything including several inches/cm of glop or a foot of lovely mid winter snow. In general, most successful candidates for upper level exams will ski something in the 80's underfoot. Not too often more as tasks and drills generally are more difficult to do precisely on wider skis. This is about a ski that will help Met reach his goal, not about what ski we really like. (Sure, I'd say do it on a Stockli SR 88 if $$$ were no object. :) )

 

The trick is to find the narrowest ski that allows you to aggressively ski off piste in any condition/terrain the examiners might lead you. IMH experience, MOST successful candidates for PSIA L3 in the western states ski on what I'd call a 'performance all mountain ski,* with a 14-17m radius side cut. Narrower than 80, and it could be a long day in a foot of crap. 

 

 

* as defined by Chris Fellows in "Total Skiing". 


Edited by markojp - 4/28/14 at 4:29pm
post #21 of 33
^^^

Yeah. Okay. We have mostly circled not too far from that. But Met also opened several threads on this, not all of which call out the context you identify. This is one of those threads without that context, except as provided by you, not by the OP. So general discussion is fair game imho.
post #22 of 33
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the ideas guys. I'm all set now - will let you know how things go. And we'll still work under the premise that I'm not taking the exam. :) 

 

The course conductors were pretty clear they thought it was a bad idea to switch skis during the exam, so from now on I'll just ski the E88. Seems a bit crazy to pay like $180 for rentals, but there you have it. 

post #23 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Metaphor_ View Post
 

Thanks for the ideas guys. I'm all set now - will let you know how things go. And we'll still work under the premise that I'm not taking the exam. :) 

 

The course conductors were pretty clear they thought it was a bad idea to switch skis during the exam, so from now on I'll just ski the E88. Seems a bit crazy to pay like $180 for rentals, but there you have it. 

 

I like your logic.  Best of luck.

Stay cool.  

post #24 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rossi Smash View Post
 

 

The narrow width is for edge to edge quickness more than anything....you get up near 90mm, that is long gone.


I thought the same thing until I skied slush bumps on 91s for the first time.  And, I used to compete in bumps some.  You don't need the edge to edge so much when you can blast over and through them.

post #25 of 33
Quote:

Originally Posted by markojp View Post

He wlll ski on piste. CR, you might go for an SL, and most likely you'd fail...

 

 

OK I wasn't aware that making the call on what skis to use in the parking lot then even changing mid day weren't options. 

 

I was going on the thread title:

 

Quote:
 Ski for bumps: how much better than cheater GS?

If it has to be swiss army ski that allows you to ski some crud and deep stuff and look good doing it in addition to skiing the bumps and all has to be in the exact same pair of skis I'd only go for the SL on a very cold, very dry day when there hadn't been fresh snow recently and the trees are bare.

post #26 of 33
Thread Starter 

Yeah I was pretty ambiguous in the title! Thanks for all the ideas. 

post #27 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by crgildart View Post


OK I wasn't aware that making the call on what skis to use in the parking lot then even changing mid day weren't options. 

I was going on the thread title:

If it has to be swiss army ski that allows you to ski some crud and deep stuff and look good doing it in addition to skiing the bumps and all has to be in the exact same pair of skis I'd only go for the SL on a very cold, very dry day when there hadn't been fresh snow recently and the trees are bare.

Which is great if that's the ski you spend your time training on and know that you can ski in any condition you might meet on a particular day. Almost everyone I know taking their L3 commits to an 'exam ski' for the region they're likely to take the test. In yours Cr, I'd guess an SL ski could work great. Whistler might accommodate an SL ski nicely once in awhile, but in general, a bit wider will be more versatile.

Met, hopefully for the $$$ your spending on your rental, they'll be guaranteed to have a nice turn. Take a gummy stone of you feel the tip is a little hooky. If they have the 2015 E-88, take it!
post #28 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by crgildart View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rossi Smash View Post
 

 

The narrow width is for edge to edge quickness more than anything....you get up near 90mm, that is long gone.


I thought the same thing until I skied slush bumps on 91s for the first time.  And, I used to compete in bumps some.  You don't need the edge to edge so much when you can blast over and through them.

 

I'm happy skiing even firm bumps up to 90mm.  I've been on E88's, Kendos and Steadfasts and they all do fine in a zipper line (or any other line) at least at mere mortal speeds.  I start to notice the slow edge to edge of wider skis around 100mm.  

 

Softer snow allows you to go wider, firmer snow requires narrower.   Additionally, slower skiing allows you to go wider, faster skiing requires narrower.

post #29 of 33
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by markojp View Post


Which is great if that's the ski you spend your time training on and know that you can ski in any condition you might meet on a particular day. Almost everyone I know taking their L3 commits to an 'exam ski' for the region they're likely to take the test. In yours Cr, I'd guess an SL ski could work great. Whistler might accommodate an SL ski nicely once in awhile, but in general, a bit wider will be more versatile.

Met, hopefully for the $$$ your spending on your rental, they'll be guaranteed to have a nice turn. Take a gummy stone of you feel the tip is a little hooky. If they have the 2015 E-88, take it!

 

Interestingly there are a few guys on SL skis doing the exam this week. I will really not be taking the exam after getting some disheartening feedback. Goodbye, 3 wasted years of my life. Oh well.

 

On the upside, the E88s are pretty good in bumps, much better than a GS ski. 

post #30 of 33

So are you observing? Hanging out and skiing? What feed back did you get that lead you to the 'no go' decision? And aside from all that, glad you like the skis. Are they this year's, or next's? Questions, questions....  oh, and I doubt that you've wasted 3 years of your life. I'm sure you're a much stronger skier that when you began. Most people are if they're trying hard.

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