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Review: Nordica Vagabond

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 

Just wanted to see if anyone else has had the same experience as I have had on this ski. I'm 6'1" 175lbs and have the 177cm. 107mm underfoot. I skied it for 4 days in Solitude in firmer conditions and packed powder before the storm in bumps, trees, and groomers then about 12"-18" of powder after the storm and the ensuing chop suey in the afternoon. It was a very good testing ground because of the variety of conditions.

 

The ski is REMARKABLE. I'll describe it as slithery but stable and incredibly versatile. Maybe it was the shortish length for my ht/wt but it felt very "turny".  When I opened it up on groomers and in the chop I never felt like I needed a longer length. They were incredibly stable with some speed and no tip deflection in chop. In the untouched powder they were a dream to ski. Very very easy. It was hard to make a mistake.

 

The only negative I noticed was in the bumps and this was VERY VERY likely due to improper technique on my part but it just seemed the tips crossed a little easier than my other skis perhaps due to their very low profile tips. They were still really fun in the bumps and the tips uncrossed easily as well. It resulted in one fall on my first day but I think I became aware of it and adjusted.

 

Super fun to carve long radius turns on groomers and held an edge very well but also was very easy to make short radius "swing turns". You can really throw them around when in a tight place and I usually have difficulty in those situations but felt confident with these skis. This could be a one ski quiver in the Rockies. I would butter my toast with them if I had a big enough piece of bread. Hope others have tried/enjoyed them.

 

As a side note, I feel like I could've easily handled a longer length but I like to make a lot of turns usually. For someone who really likes charging Id recommend the next size up (186cm?)

 

Agreen

 

ps thanks to the Starthaus for the great "blem" deal

pps I cant find the blem!!!

post #2 of 25

I moved this over to the Review section. Yes, the Vagabond is a "One year wonder" from Nordica. A ski that died too quickly of a death. 

post #3 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post
 

I moved this over to the Review section. Yes, the Vagabond is a "One year wonder" from Nordica. A ski that died too quickly of a death. 

 

 I think Starthaus may still have these leftover?  I am tempted to grab one. 

post #4 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post
 

I moved this over to the Review section. Yes, the Vagabond is a "One year wonder" from Nordica. A ski that died too quickly of a death. 


Why do you think this is? I have the El Capo, as you know the Vagabond with metal, and its a remarkable ski. But the shops aren't carrying them this year, the few they have left from last year are on clearance sale, and nobody I know locally has even heard of them besides the salesmen.

 

Is it a marketing issue? Simply better skis out there in the one o somethings? When you say it died too quickly a death, is Nordica discontinuing the Vagabond / El Capo? Why haven't these skis been more successful?

 

Sorry for the barrage of questions, just kind of wondering out loud, but I've been thinking about this and I'm sad Nordica might throw away a good design direction due to lack of sales. If anyone might have insight into this it would probably be you.

post #5 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lemon Zest View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post
 

I moved this over to the Review section. Yes, the Vagabond is a "One year wonder" from Nordica. A ski that died too quickly of a death. 


Why do you think this is? I have the El Capo, as you know the Vagabond with metal, and its a remarkable ski. But the shops aren't carrying them this year, the few they have left from last year are on clearance sale, and nobody I know locally has even heard of them besides the salesmen.

 

Is it a marketing issue? Simply better skis out there in the one o somethings? When you say it died too quickly a death, is Nordica discontinuing the Vagabond / El Capo? Why haven't these skis been more successful?

 

Sorry for the barrage of questions, just kind of wondering out loud, but I've been wondering this and I'm sad Nordica might throw away a good design direction due to lack of sales. If anyone might have insight into this it would probably be you.

It is tough to get any momentum from just one season especially when the company offers two skis that are identical in mold, it is tough to market both and get shops to stock both, especially in one of the tougher segments, the One Oh Somethings that has been tough to figure our anyway. Is it a big mountain charger? Is it a finesse ski? Is it a powder ski? It is confusing for the consumer..and the shop? YES! Trust me in that Nordica will not be throwing the design away, I think it will be infused with some new NRGy. ;)

post #6 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post
 

It is tough to get any momentum from just one season especially when the company offers two skis that are identical in mold, it is tough to market both and get shops to stock both, especially in one of the tougher segments, the One Oh Somethings that has been tough to figure our anyway. Is it a big mountain charger? Is it a finesse ski? Is it a powder ski? It is confusing for the consumer..and the shop? YES! Trust me in that Nordica will not be throwing the design away, I think it will be infused with some new NRGy. ;)

NGRy 108 would make sense! I was curious as well to why they discontinued after one season! Maybe they were late to the 10X game and got caught with the 100mm hype for 14/15 not sure!

 

Also thinking a single 108 makes much more sense! I can count 50 cochises compared to 1 scout I see in the slopes! Not sure if sales also represent that but I don't think blizzard sells scout anything close to the number of cochise

 

did the el capo outsell the vagabond that much?

post #7 of 25

Any comparison on these to the Soul 7's?  I really like how easy it is to ski a Soul 7, however when the snow turns to crud, or the east coast powder is really dryer slush, they really get worked.

 

I guess I'd like some crud busting ability, but still an easy turning ski. Not sure that exists.

post #8 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by RatherPlayThanWork View Post
 

Any comparison on these to the Soul 7's?  I really like how easy it is to ski a Soul 7, however when the snow turns to crud, or the east coast powder is really dryer slush, they really get worked.

 

I guess I'd like some crud busting ability, but still an easy turning ski. Not sure that exists.


El Capo, but they're heavy. Very turny skis with their tip and tail rocker shape and tapered tail.

post #9 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by mfa81 View Post
 

NGRy 108 would make sense! I was curious as well to why they discontinued after one season! Maybe they were late to the 10X game and got caught with the 100mm hype for 14/15 not sure!

 

Also thinking a single 108 makes much more sense! I can count 50 cochises compared to 1 scout I see in the slopes! Not sure if sales also represent that but I don't think blizzard sells scout anything close to the number of cochise

 

did the el capo outsell the vagabond that much?


Yeah NRGy 108 is what I'm going to optimistically read into Philpug's response. I haven't skied the NRGY 100 yet so I'm not sure if that will make me happy or not. I'm partial to metal in my skis, so I'm not sure how I'll like their Torsion Bridge which seems to be their solution to bridging metal and metal-less skis into one.

 

But until then, Vagabond / El Cap are still awesome skis, definitely worth a pickup if you can find them on clearance.

post #10 of 25

http://starthaus.com/2014-nordica-vagabond-ski-blem.html

 

looks like 185's left but @ 299!!!!

post #11 of 25

It's a very nice ski and very versatile, but even in the longer length (I was on the 185's which are really like 188 or 189) I do not recommend it for charging.  It's for bouncing around on the snow, not blasting through it.

post #12 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post
 

http://starthaus.com/2014-nordica-vagabond-ski-blem.html

 

looks like 185's left but @ 299!!!!

 

or you can pay $30 more for the 169 or 177!

 

http://starthaus.com/nordica-vagabond-ski.html

post #13 of 25

OP, glad you liked them.  I have mine mounted up, but I have been holding off, waiting for a bit more snow before taking them out.  Maybe I will take them with me to Mammoth this weekend and have them base ground if needed, tuned up and give em a go.  The low tips have me a little concerned how they will be in powder, but hopefully I find out sooner than later.  I never found the blem either?

post #14 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by mfa81 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post

 
http://starthaus.com/2014-nordica-vagabond-ski-blem.html

looks like 185's left but @ 299!!!!

or you can pay $30 more for the 169 or 177!

http://starthaus.com/nordica-vagabond-ski.html

Mfa, you are close to my size. What length are you skiing in this ski?
post #15 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by qcanoe View Post

Mfa, you are close to my size. What length are you skiing in this ski?

I'm not :-) just poking around!

But I guess I'd ski the 177, my cochise is 177 but I know these are a little longer, but I can't see myself going down to 169 in a ski that wide!
post #16 of 25

I need to retract every disparaging remark I ever made about wide skis.

I bought the 177x107 Vagabond recently and it quickly became my go to ski in Big Sky.

Can't say enough good about the ski. It's so easy to ski while also being stable in crud and at speed on groomers.  Easy to set an edge.  Makes my LX92 seem redundant since the Vagabond seems more versatile. I'm sure refrozen slush will be easier on something narrower but I may become a ski snob in my old age and read a book on those few days when the Vagabond will not do the job.

Me, 67 yo, 165 lb, not overly aggressive but enjoy steepish challenges. probably have a 45 mph personal speed limit. Usually ski bump runs or gladed runs marked black on the map but there are always lots of groomers on the way back to the chair so the relatively conventional tail is comforting.

post #17 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by steveturner View Post
 

I need to retract every disparaging remark I ever made about wide skis.

I bought the 177x107 Vagabond recently and it quickly became my go to ski in Big Sky.

Can't say enough good about the ski. It's so easy to ski while also being stable in crud and at speed on groomers.  Easy to set an edge.  Makes my LX92 seem redundant since the Vagabond seems more versatile. I'm sure refrozen slush will be easier on something narrower but I may become a ski snob in my old age and read a book on those few days when the Vagabond will not do the job.

Me, 67 yo, 165 lb, not overly aggressive but enjoy steepish challenges. probably have a 45 mph personal speed limit. Usually ski bump runs or gladed runs marked black on the map but there are always lots of groomers on the way back to the chair so the relatively conventional tail is comforting.

How do you like your crow served? I prefer broiled with a light demi glaze. 

post #18 of 25

Agree with the OP and ST, it is a very fun ski for something 107 under foot.  I finally got to try my 185's over the last 2 days and found them to be really fun and easy to ski.  I thought they felt very solid and I had them going pretty fast on some off piste.  Hope to try them in a little powder before the season is done.

post #19 of 25

I REALLY wanted to demo the Vagabond but nobody had it, likely since it's discontinued.  I did see it on the wall at Steamboat in one place, but as for demo, no dice.  Didn't wanna take a chance on a ski again without a demo, I have 3 bad experiences/buys (shame on me) doing that.  Too bad, I would have loved to get on the Vag.

 

If the NRGY 108 is anything like the 100, I would highly recommend demo before purchase.  The NRGY 100 wasn't anything like I hoped it would be.  A big pass on that ski FOR ME.

post #20 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunnerbob View Post
 

I REALLY wanted to demo the Vagabond but nobody had it, likely since it's discontinued.  I did see it on the wall at Steamboat in one place, but as for demo, no dice.  Didn't wanna take a chance on a ski again without a demo, I have 3 bad experiences/buys (shame on me) doing that.  Too bad, I would have loved to get on the Vag.

 

If the NRGY 108 is anything like the 100, I would highly recommend demo before purchase.  The NRGY 100 wasn't anything like I hoped it would be.  A big pass on that ski FOR ME.

NRGy107 is the perfect balance between the Vagabond and El Capo, personally I like the shape. 

post #21 of 25

I have skied about 25 out of the last 32 days throughout the West in CO, UT, CA and WY.  I'm using two skis during this time, 84mm under foot and my Vagabonds at 107 underfoot.  Used 84 most of the time, but used Vagabonds in fresh snow and junky snow.  Just four years ago my daily driver was 67mm underfoot.  I come from the east and have used narrow skis for nearly 50 years.  Vagabonds were my widest ski ever and personally I'm still learning how to best utilize.  My 84mm skis are much better on firm days or when doing a lot of bump runs.  Vagabonds great for wide open western bowl skiing or any off-piste skiing with ungroomed conditions.  I'm pleased with my Vagabonds and look forward to more powder days with them. 

post #22 of 25

Out of curiosity, which 84mm ski are you running?

post #23 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunnerbob View Post
 

Out of curiosity, which 84mm ski are you running?

The Nordica Burners.  Both my skis were StartHaus Nordica Blems:p  I also went cross country skiing yesterday on something probably about 55mm??

post #24 of 25

I wanted to add a comment about the excellent utility of the Vagabonds in soft spring snow.  I used mine on numerous warm days in CO in late March. Perhaps any wider ski would do this, but I really enjoyed them in spring bowl skiing on corn snow.  They were especially helpful and stable when the snow changed to overly soft and slushy conditions in ungroomed areas.  I hit something at Arapahoe Basin one day with my 84mm Nordica Burners and this summer will need to reattach with glue about two feet of edge that pulled away from the base of the ski.:o

post #25 of 25

Vagabond:Gone. El Capo:Gone. Welcome the NRGy107, the best of both of these skis, the light weight of the Vagabond, the power of the El Capo, all in one tidy package. 

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