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Demo Day Recommendations: What western frontside-ski shouldn't I miss?

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 

Tomorrow is Demo day -- where I fall in love with skis that I wait until the end of the season to buy. This year I'm hunting for my next low-snow, Western-skier, carver. Think 60% on-piste fun, 20% bumps, 20% off-piste/low snow variable conditions. It'll be the narrow ski in my line-up replacing a 181 K2 AMP Aftershock (demoted to rock ski status). I like the K2s damp ride. In a perfect world I'd retain the damp, Cadillac feel, but add some energy out of the turn, quickness edge-to-edge, and lighter weight. Next ski "up" in my quiver is a 107mm wide Nordica El Capo (178cm).

 

For reference I'm a high 7 / low 8. Confidentially can navigate all terrain expert terrain at Summit Co. ski areas, but I still have lots of work to do on technique (early turn initiation and pressure management in the bumps being my big focuses this season.) 6'2" / 180lbs. 

 

Brands that will be present, with skis I'm interested in strapping on my feet for a few laps to the right. Please let me know if there are any "not to be missed" skis, or skis that I could bump down on my priority list realizing that I can't actually get through every ski below. 

 

Armada
Atomic: ??
Blizzard: Latigo (177? 184?), Brahma
Dynastar: Powertrack 79 or 84, 
Faction: ?? 
Fischer: Motive 86
Head: Monster 83? or 88?
Kastle: MX78.
K2: Ikonic 85
Line: Supernatural 92
Nordica: Nrgy 80/90? or FireArrow 84?
Rossignol: Experience 90
Salomon: ??
Scott: ??
Volkl: Kendo?

 

 

The wonderful problem of too many choices. 

post #2 of 15

Here's my recommendations, worth what you paid for them.

Salomon Xmax 8.0 or 8.8;  powerful carving machine, I'd go for the 8.0

Nordica Fire Arrow 84 EDT or 80 Ti:  two pretty different skis, 84 is fairly demanding, but what a ride, 80 is more forgiving and lighter

Nordica NRGy 80/90:  meh

Head Monster 83:  damp, smooth ride

Head Strong Instinct Ti, 83mm:  lighter than Monster 83, softer and lighter than FA84, but very quick and fun, better in bumps than FA84, not as demanding as FA84

 

After having been a wide ski nut for a few seasons I'm dialing that part back.  Half my quiver is now under 85mm.  I'd recommend staying in the 78-85mm range.  I'm sure you already have a 100mm or more ski so there's no reason for this ski to be very wide.  I own and have spent a fair amount of time on the Fire Arrow 84EDT.  It is my all time favorite hard snow ski, basically a wide race ski.  At 150 pounds I find it a lot of work in bumps, and I have skied it in the trees, which results in a fairly high pucker factor.  It is a ski that demands attention all the time.  For more variable conditions or when I can only ski groomers but don't feel like concentrating as hard, I have the Head Strong Instinct Ti.  This is a new ski from Head this season and some people wonder why since it's 83mm underfoot and so is the Monster 83.  But they are very different skis.  The Monster is damp, smooth and heavier/stiffer than the Instinct.  The Instinct has good edge grip, is very quick edge to edge and is just plain fun to ski.  The turn radii are also different, although Head's catalog is not very helpful because it lists the TR for the Instinct at 170 and the for the Monster at 177, but it looks like the Instinct has a slightly smaller radius.

 

Good luck and have fun.

post #3 of 15
Of the skis on your list, Latigo, Brahma and Kendo. I've skied all three and they would all be great for what you are looking for.
post #4 of 15

The Nordica NRGy 90 is a ski I demo'd for two days last year.  Totally capable for the type of skiing you describe you want, but not especially exciting.  I wouldn't say "meh" as mtcyclist described above, but I can totally understand where someone would get that impression.  Not much oomph out of the turn at all.

If I was in the market for a ski this year (and I may be) I would be looking for something similar to what you describe as a quiver companion to my Line SN100.  The Dynastar Powertrack 89 and Salomon X-Drive's have piqued my curiosity.

post #5 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawn W Satch View Post
 

The Nordica NRGy 90 is a ski I demo'd for two days last year.  Totally capable for the type of skiing you describe you want, but not especially exciting.  I wouldn't say "meh" as mtcyclist described above, but I can totally understand where someone would get that impression.  Not much oomph out of the turn at all.

That was my reaction to the NRGy90 because there was a lot of hype about it replacing the Steadfast and that Nordica had made it better.  My reaction was that they ruined the Steadfast and you summed it up pretty well, no oomph out of the turn.  The Steadfast has plenty of rebound and the NRGy90  has none, just dead.

post #6 of 15
Thread Starter 

Thanks all. I will report my findings in a few hours. Lots of great skis in this class -- stoked for tomorrow. 

post #7 of 15

Can you report back on the narrower end of Armada's Invictus series? 

post #8 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cantunamunch View Post
 

Can you report back on the narrower end of Armada's Invictus series? 

 

Yep -- I had almost forgotten about them. But then I remembered seeing them in Philpug's Deals and Steals thread. Going to try and get on them tomorrow if possible. 

post #9 of 15
Monster 88 is what I'm buying for the same purpose. Though the invictus 89 sounds good also
post #10 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by smileguy1 View Post

Monster 88 is what I'm buying for the same purpose. Though the invictus 89 sounds good also

 

Yes. We see that.

 

In virtually all of your 86 posts.

 

:deadhorse:

post #11 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmeb View Post
 

Tomorrow is Demo day -- where I fall in love with skis that I wait until the end of the season to buy. This year I'm hunting for my next low-snow, Western-skier, carver. Think 60% on-piste fun, 20% bumps, 20% off-piste/low snow variable conditions. It'll be the narrow ski in my line-up replacing a 181 K2 AMP Aftershock (demoted to rock ski status). I like the K2s damp ride. In a perfect world I'd retain the damp, Cadillac feel, but add some energy out of the turn, quickness edge-to-edge, and lighter weight. Next ski "up" in my quiver is a 107mm wide Nordica El Capo (178cm).

 

 

 

So...how'd it go?

post #12 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by cantunamunch View Post

Can you report back on the narrower end of Armada's Invictus series? 

Also interested in this.
post #13 of 15

Isn't his post over in Gear Reviews the answer to these ^^^^? 

post #14 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cantunamunch View Post
 

 

 

So...how'd it go?

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by qcanoe View Post


Also interested in this.

 

 

Sorry to say I didn't on the narrow Inviticus as it was out being skied both times I checked in on it. 

 

Got out on 5 skis -- favorite being a class of ski I took out on a whim -- a Head Rally. More info here: http://www.epicski.com/t/143654/report-from-loveland-demos-november-2015#post_1939275

post #15 of 15

Hehe, we'll get you over to the carver side yet....

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