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A Sad Review: Explosiv

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
Ski: Volkl Explosiv 190cm
Years skiing: ~30 years, blah blah blah
Conditions: BF’n

Alta, Solitude and Snowbasin this past week in conditions that ranged from groomers (not many and only to get to lift – at very high speeds) to 12” of cut-up but fine crud, to 2 feet of the lightest & fluffiest powder. The kind of snow where all you see are helmets floating, and then for a split second between turns a glimpse of the skier hauling through a halo of billowy snow.

Review: The ultimate big mountain ski. Phenomenal. This is the best damn ski I have EVER been on. If there were only one ski these would be my end-all-be-all pair.

It’s awesome in powder, and rules in crud. It carves like a hungry super-G, but you can “pop” them through the tightest of trees! Bumps? They’ll pop nice turns or you can turn them into a bumpy GS … what bumps?

There wasn’t a condition I experienced over the last week where these skis did not absolutely rock – in the sense that there would be no better ski. Period.

I can’t believe I didn’t find this ski until it’s last year in production.: : I can only hope that the Mantra is as good.


Oh – we can kill the “Fat ski craze going to die off” thread now. It won’t. Truthfully I don’t know what the measure of a “Fat” truly is. Is a 95 under foot considered to be a fatty? I don’t really care, but you guys that have been skiing these types of skis have been cheating.
post #2 of 25
I skied the Mantra last week, it is a great ski. Good float busts through crud and moves on groomers, a suitable replacement for the explosiv.

james
post #3 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by jlong1974
I skied the Mantra last week, it is a great ski. Good float busts through crud and moves on groomers, a suitable replacement for the explosiv.

james
Some folks at TGR skied it as well, they are saying the flex is (unfortunately for me) notably softer (Gotama-like) -can you confirm this statement? Hopefully not!



Woodee,

There have been 190 Explosives for sale at TGR lately, maybe check there if you don't mind used gear.
post #4 of 25
It will be interesting to see if the Explosiv really disappears. Volkl claimed they were going to stop making them last season but didn't. They have a fanatic following.
post #5 of 25
I keep hearing rumors that they will stay be made with the CMH topsheet, just not available in a retail version. I hope the rumors are true, cause mine pretty much became my everyday ski and they're getting pretty thrashed now.
Signed,
A Happy Cheater
post #6 of 25
Would a softer Mantra make it better in the bumps?
post #7 of 25
I skiied the mantra last week, I own a pair of explosivs, and from what I could tell the only difference was that the mantra had more side cut. Still full wood core with two sheets of metal. It was still very stiff, but it was easier to ski because it turned quicker (not quick, but quicker).
post #8 of 25
for you guys who did the demo on the Mantra's, how did it compare to the Karma's

I know, I know, it's a different ski, but I was thinking of getting one of them as my everyday Squaw ski....meaning ability to ski everything, groomers, to chutes, to trees, to powder, etc

any thoughts? was the new Karma also the same shape/size/sidecut as this year's?

is the incremental size difference in the Mantra plus it's new sidecut/ability to turn more quickly make it the better ski over the Karma

I was thinking Mantra in 177 would be great (I'm 6'1, 195)
post #9 of 25
For an every day ski at squaw the Mantra would be the way to go. The Karma did not change, and it is a great all mountain ski, but for Tahoe I would want something a bit wider and Stiffer.
post #10 of 25
In the sierra you definitely want a beefy ski...but not necessarily such a wide ski for your everyday ride...

In my experience a "typical" day at Squaw is ....in the sun - nasty crust that has melted and froze about 12 times...in the shade - sometimes light, usually chunked up variable loose but not too deep snow ...on both my beefy but only 72mm Machete Souls totally rip (and yet they are still fantastic in the fresh)...they REALLY rip on the steeps...

...in my opinion the 5 or 6 days a year when we get those massive storms (if the upper lifts even open) and maybe a day or two of heavy deep following ....does NOT warrant an everyday ski wider than the Karma....a second ski sure go wide for the big days....but for one ski...be realistic.....what are the conditions USUALLY like....
post #11 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by X-EastCoaster
In the sierra you definitely want a beefy ski...but not necessarily such a wide ski for your everyday ride...

In my experience a "typical" day at Squaw is ....in the sun - nasty crust that has melted and froze about 12 times...in the shade - sometimes light, usually chunked up variable loose but not too deep snow ...on both my beefy but only 72mm Machete Souls totally rip (and yet they are still fantastic in the fresh)...they REALLY rip on the steeps...

...in my opinion the 5 or 6 days a year when we get those massive storms (if the upper lifts even open) and maybe a day or two of heavy deep following ....does NOT warrant an everyday ski wider than the Karma....a second ski sure go wide for the big days....but for one ski...be realistic.....what are the conditions USUALLY like....


that's why I wanted to go short in the mantra - 177 vs 184

it's got a turned up tail so even the 177 probably skis like a 172, at least from reports I've heard

I'll have to demo both, but I might have a chance to buy Mantra's this year so I wanted to get others opinions

I'm just concerned that the extra stiffness might mean trouble on bumps

there's a guy on TGR saying he's 5'8, 160 and he demo's the Mantras this past week and will be buying the 177's and thinks I should go 184
post #12 of 25
Any thoughts on when to break out the Explosiv at Squaw Valley? I'll be there next weekend, and I'll have my Explosivs and my Rossi Cobras.

Also, if anybody can recommend any fun lines they like, I'm looking for suggestions. I don't know how aggressively I'll be skiing -- I'm healing up from a leg injury, and may be on light duty -- but I'm very interested in knowing where other Bears spend their time at Squaw.
post #13 of 25
Going to Utah next week, the Exploders are the only ski I am taking.
post #14 of 25

Squaw Explosiv

Rambling

I'm going to try to brave the crowds and hit Squaw tomorrow early .... hitting the tram at 8:15am before it opens.

I'm certainly taking my 180cm Explosiv. It's a great ski for the Sierra. I'm picking up a pair of demo 179cm Seth Pistols tonight and will bring those too.

BUMPS
I take the Explosiv in 'em and have a good time. It took me a while to get used to it but you can ski the bumps with the Explosiv. Now, I don't think anybody has confused me with Johnny Mosely (?sp) but Explosiv are not as difficult in the bumps as I thought.
post #15 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Colossus178
Any thoughts on when to break out the Explosiv at Squaw Valley? I'll be there next weekend, and I'll have my Explosivs and my Rossi Cobras.

Also, if anybody can recommend any fun lines they like, I'm looking for suggestions. I don't know how aggressively I'll be skiing -- I'm healing up from a leg injury, and may be on light duty -- but I'm very interested in knowing where other Bears spend their time at Squaw.


get this book, study this book, then watch the film Immersion, filmed entirely at Squaw. You can buy both on the Matchstick site

http://www.skiersjournal.com/article777.html

I like the Granite Chief peak myself, it's a nice short hike off the top of Granite Chief chair (takes time to get tracked out because there's effort involved to get to it), and it's a great playground for the Explosiv

need visuals to decide? check this pic out.....this is the G.C. peak

http://www.squaw.com/gallery/album85/aai?full=1
post #16 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodee

Review: The ultimate big mountain ski. Phenomenal. This is the best damn ski I have EVER been on. If there were only one ski these would be my end-all-be-all pair.
I TOLD YOU SO...

Question - "Who really needs a ski like an Explosiv?"

Answer - "If you have to ask, you obviously have never skied a pair."
post #17 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bandit Man
I TOLD YOU SO...
Yes you did, and thank you, thank you, thank you ... you cheating ba$^ard you..

I can't stop raving about these skis, and I'm not kidding when I say the best I have ever been on (and I've been on a lot ... er, maybe broken a lot too).
post #18 of 25

Bandit Man develops cult following. Film at eleven.

Yeah, Bandit Man and Union Bowler sang the praises of the Explosiv to me months ago. I had never heard of the ski. I demo'd it one day at Squaw early this season and had the same response at the top of this thread.

The even more amazing realization is you'd think a stiff ski with little sidecut with a fat waist would be stifling. It's the opposite.
post #19 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodee
I can’t believe I didn’t find this ski until it’s last year in production.: : I can only hope that the Mantra is as good.
You should be glad! You should be able to buy a couple pair for the price of one since they're discontinued and so many people have to have "the latest".
post #20 of 25
Thread Starter 

For me this is the latest!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ssh
You should be glad! You should be able to buy a couple pair for the price of one since they're discontinued and so many people have to have "the latest".
I don't know ... unless I was fed a line of BS I was told I got the very last pair of 190 cm at the "Volkl warehouse". A complete story with the whole "they shown one on the system, but they have to go out to the rack to see if it's acutally there" thing.

That means either the Mantra HAS to be that good, or ...
post #21 of 25
Woodee, perhaps. Or, perhaps they've already gone to the big guys who buy the discontinued and clear 'em out the next year. We'll see, I guess.
post #22 of 25
I purchased my Explosiv last mid-December and it wasn't easy to find them even in Tahoe. Lots of Gotama, Karma, etc but not everybody stocked the Explosiv. I bought the last 180cm from one store.
post #23 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim S
The even more amazing realization is you'd think a stiff ski with little sidecut with a fat waist would be stifling. It's the opposite.
BINGO...

The key to the Explosiv isn't the ski, it's the skier. If you want a "lot's of sidecut, turn for me, finesse powder ski", you aren't gonna like it. On the other hand, if you are good enough and charge hard, the Explosiv is your tool.

Woodee and Jim S., Welcome to the fold, brothers.
post #24 of 25
I just bought a pair of Explosivs! I'm super excited! I don't want a ski that will turn for me and that's why I didn't really like the Volkl Six-Stars. It's bad news when all you have to do is slightly twist your ankle to turn 'em. Don't get me wrong, the six-stars are good skis, but who wants to constantly have to turn their skis to keep them on edge? These reviews really helped me feel more confident about my decision! Thanks!
post #25 of 25
I too am converted. Bought one of the last pairs of Explosivs at Granite Chief in Truckee two months ago -- 180s. And I do love them and am amazed at the versatility of the skis. But alas, the quiver seems lacking. My qualm with the Explosivs is agility in the bumps. Yes, I can ski the bumps fast and reasonably well with them, but I do get tired of dealing with the extra width when the moguls are tight and I want to make quick turns -- with the Explosivs, it takes more effort to go edge to edge in tight moguls. And it's not a question of length -- I actually prefer my 191 Volant PowerKarvers in the bumps.

My question: what's a good complement to the Explosivs for days when I want to ski the bumps? I don't want a ski that turns for me either -- in some ways, just the opposite. I want an agile ski that does what I tell it to. Ideas?
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