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Volkls and Squaw Valley

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 
Hi, this is my first post here, I was hoping to maybe receive some advice regarding a ski to buy. I ski exclusively at Squaw, and this year will be only buying one pair of skis since I'm a starving broke college student, so I need a very versatile ski that can comfortably deal with the different snow conditions I see. I'm 26, and expert level skier, 5-5, 145 lbs. I need a ski that can do most, if not all, of these:

1) STEEPS and CHUTES. I need a ski that can turn quickly down very steep and tight chutes. I don't need a slalom ski, just something that doesn't have trouble with tight spots.

2) Crud. I ski off-piste mostly, and Squaw often is a very cruddy, cut up, heavy snow kind of place. I need a ski that won't get thrown around, but can power through the junk and CARVE. This can make it difficult for the other things I want in a ski.

3) Moguls. I LOVE to ski moguls, so if moguls are difficult with a ski, I don't want them.

4) SPEED. I ski very fast off-piste and on. I need a ski with POWER and stablility. I'm also really hoping to get a ski that can do all of the above without sacrifing too much hard snow and groomer carving capabilities.

So I know there isn't a ski that can do all of those things superbly (or is there??) but I'm hoping to find a ski that can do most of those things while sacrificing the LEAST. I'll be demoing this weekend, and I need ski recommendations. Here are the skis I have in mind:

'06 Volkl Supersport Allstar: Next years 6 star. This ski sounds like a real champ, I can't wait to demo it.
Concerns: This might not be enough ski to handle the really thick crud that is a staple of Squaw, as it's only 70mm underfoot. Does anyone have a definite answer on how this ski can handle crud? I'd love to hear from anyone who has tried these.

'06 Volkl Unlimited AC4. Another new Volkl for next year. Could be the ski I'm looking for, I hear it's similar to the Allstar but wider.
Concerns: How do they perform in moguls? Can they turn fast enough in tigh spots? Anyone try these?

Dynastar 8800. I hear this ski is very fun.
Concerns: Some reviews say this ski is not very fast or powerful, but more a light, "dancing" ski. Is this true?

K2 Apache Recon. Similar to Dynastar.
Concerns: Similar to Dynastar

So if anyone had enough attention span to read all of that and has any input on what skis I might try based on my preferences, I'd love to hear them! I'd especially love to hear anything about the new Volkls for next year. Thanks!
post #2 of 34
New Volkl Mantra has been getting excellent word of mouth reviews. Also for deals you may want to look at the head mojo hot tricks or whatever it's called
post #3 of 34
if you love moguls, forget about the Mantra, to stiff, wide and has a long radius

it's a dedicated soft snow ski

AC4 is probably the right ski, but demo it

I'd also consider waiting for the flat version to come out because Marker bindings have lots of 'issues'
post #4 of 34
Atomic Metron B:5!


How can you mention those particular capabilities you want in a ski and not mention the Metron line? It's perhaps the most versatile ski on the market right now.
post #5 of 34
metrons are like tanks. VERY HEAVY SKIS
post #6 of 34
Skied the AC4. It feels like the AC3 but with more float. The 3 and 4 are both good in the bumps and trees.
post #7 of 34
Volkl Mantra 177cm is your ski.

I have the Explosiv 180cm and take it everywhere. On piste, off piste, bumps, etc. The 177 Mantra is even more 'turny' than the Explosiv 180 so it is do-able in the bumps and blasts through crud.
post #8 of 34
Thread Starter 
Thanks guys! A lot of people here love the mantras! But can they smash moguls? Are they good in icy conditions? Do they carve well like a race ski? These are the things I've been hearing about the new allstars. But are the mantras that versatile? I ski like a racer down everything, with fast turns and aggression. I did hear the atomic metrons are great skis, but also that they are heavy and you would need to keep your skis attached to the ground at all times. When I'm off-piste I do lots of kick-turns, so I eliminated those from my interest. I'm probably not going fat this year, but closer to mid-fat.
post #9 of 34
Pocket Rockets. My son x-racer sounds like you. He has trained in GS on his PR's The coaches were amazed. He fly's throught the bumps on them or on my AX3's. He had demoed the EXP in 163cm and could not find there limit. He demoed the AC4 in 170cm as well as a few other fat or fatter skis on that same day. When I asked him which ski he liked best that day, his answer was his PR's.

As much of a Volkl man as I am, I'm looking to pick up some PR's.
post #10 of 34
Jes', let's not ask for too much in one ski. Next thing you'll want it to cook you dinner and bring you to ......

There's a bunch of shops at Squaw where you can demo and apply the demo fee to purchase. Esp Squaw Sports Shop upstairs: as many pair as you want in one day for $40 or so.
post #11 of 34
You really seem to be hung up on the mogul thing. If so, you'll hate anything > 80-mm in the waist and anything very stiff. That pretty much rules out every ski on your list but the Recons. Since you weigh in at a svelte 145, the Volkl's may (will) end up being a lot of ski.

I recommend the following:
  • K2 Recon (previously mentioned)
  • Dynastar Legend 8000
  • Volkl 724 Pro

Definitely go less than 180 in whatever you choose. Some of the regulars here might think these are strange recommendations coming from a guy with four pairs of skis over 95-mm in the waist, but as I stated earlier, if mogul performance is important, stay away from the fat all-mtn. master skis...
post #12 of 34
I can't comment on the PR's, but I do own a nice Volkl quiver made up of the 6*, 724Pro, Explosivs, P40 GS, and G3's.

The LAST ski I would pick for Squaw, or for skiing terrain that you describe, would be the 6*. Don;t get me wrong - they're awesome skis. Just not as well suited to what you're looking for as some others.

If I had to start all over I'd just buy a pair of Explosivs (Mantras).
post #13 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim S
Jes', let's not ask for too much in one ski. Next thing you'll want it to cook you dinner and bring you to ......
Yeah, I knew I'd hear this. Those are the things I Like to ski, not the REQUIREMENTS a ski must have for me to buy them. I'm looking for a ski that would sacrifice the least for those things. And maybe cook breakfast.
post #14 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodee
I can't comment on the PR's, but I do own a nice Volkl quiver made up of the 6*, 724Pro, Explosivs, P40 GS, and G3's.

The LAST ski I would pick for Squaw, or for skiing terrain that you describe, would be the 6*. Don;t get me wrong - they're awesome skis. Just not as well suited to what you're looking for as some others.
I heard the allstars are different this year. Closer to the 5 stars in terms of flex, but edge like the 6 stars, plus they're wider. I'm really itching to try them, should I not be?
post #15 of 34
Try any and everything you want, but don't let the "itchin" cloud your judgement when it comes time to buy. Hopefully then you'll be itchin for the best sticks for ya, instead of what caught your eye. (i'm itchin for AC4's right now)
post #16 of 34
Bandit Man has a good point, as usual: Dynastar 8000 is a superb all around ski. I skied and liked it a lot. I is great in many conditions and is super sweet in the steeps and bumps (Mt Rose Chutes).
post #17 of 34
I just skied Squaw, and Alpine, with new Volkl 724 Pros. They're a 77cm waist, so a pretty fat mid-fat. I love 'em. Didn't have moguls last week [too much snow!], but I ski fast, and these are plenty stable, as well as very happy in the deeps, &c.
I'm 5'4", 112#, skiing a 163cm.
post #18 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim S
Bandit Man has a good point, as usual: Dynastar 8000 is a superb all around ski. I skied and liked it a lot. I is great in many conditions and is super sweet in the steeps and bumps (Mt Rose Chutes).
Yes, I have heard about these skis. Are they good in crud and do they ski well at high speeds? Thanks
post #19 of 34
I skied the 8000 for a few runs on a demo day: packed powder groomers and steep bumps with a bit of powder. I didn't test 'em in crud or Sierra cement. I think they'd be pretty good. On this and other forums I can't recall any negative comments.

But demo, demo, demo. It's so easy to do at Squaw.
post #20 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by RJP
Try any and everything you want, but don't let the "itchin" cloud your judgement when it comes time to buy. Hopefully then you'll be itchin for the best sticks for ya, instead of what caught your eye. (i'm itchin for AC4's right now)
You're itchin' huh?!? Have you tried the AC4s?? Are they the the dope shizzle??
post #21 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by head_wall
Are they the the dope shizzle??
: shizzle? schnizzle? schnitzel? ...Oh, you're German. Yes, stick with the Volkls, they go great with schnitzel.
post #22 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by head_wall
I ski like a racer down everything, with fast turns and aggression. I did hear the atomic metrons are great skis, but also that they are heavy and you would need to keep your skis attached to the ground at all times. When I'm off-piste I do lots of kick-turns, so I eliminated those from my interest. I'm probably not going fat this year, but closer to mid-fat.
If you can find a demo of the Metron B5 I'd say give it a try...it sounds like a ski that will fit your skiing style. When I was in the shop and picked them up for the first time I thought they were heavy but then I skied on them and didn't notice the weight (even in bumps and cruddy stuff that forced me to aggressively retract my legs to get out of the snow).

The other ski that sounds like it would be a good fit is the Head IM77 Chip. I demo'd that one and liked it quite a bit. I went with the Metron because I liked the SL sidecut which is a kick on the groomers.
post #23 of 34
Skied the Allstars. They are great and I will be on a pair for next year. Stiff, powerful but responsive. Will ski the bumps well, IF YOU TURN!!! They carve well and edge hold is exceptional. They will plow through most stuff but ski length will be important. @ 200 lbs I think I am going 168 but would love to stay in a 161. This is a one-quiver ski.

ed
post #24 of 34
For what you are talking about I don't think the All-Stars are going to give you enough width to blast crud, pow and cut up pow. However, the AC4 is a different story! This thing handles crud no problem and can grip ice better than most mid fats I've tried. The 82 mm waist seems just right and the feel of the ski is somewhat stiff but not much more, if at all, than the five stars I'm used to. It's an all around ***-kicker.
post #25 of 34
Good advice all around here, you're asking for a lot from one ski. I personally ski last years K2 AK Launcher as my "all mountian" Tahoe ski. It doens't quite do everything perfectly (ex Moguls) but it's good enough for me.

If you can demo next years K2 Apache Outlaw that might fit the bill for you. It's 88mm underfoot but has a lot of side cut (good and bads, but it's very turny). I tried them out at the Mt Rose Demo day two weekends ago and they did great in the steeps (the Chutes) and deep powder and felt really good on the groomers too.
post #26 of 34
The AC4 will ski moguls fine, that's here in the east so your big moguls out there it will be even easier. I still think you should try the PR's. They do the soft moguls here at Okemo just fine. there are not my first choice for normal days here but on a powder day, that's my first choice. The 8000 is a great ski, will do everything well like the AC4.
post #27 of 34
Thread Starter 
These are good replies, thanks. Looks like I had it right about the ac4 and the 8000. I'm hearing a lot of replies that say "Don't do the Allstar, it probabably can't handle the crud" but no replies that say: "I tried the Allstar and it doesn't do crud." : Has anyone tried them and had a hard time? Thanks!!!!!!!!!
post #28 of 34
If you want to go mach 3 with big GS/SG turns through crud you are going to need a wide, stiffer ski like the Mantra or Legend Pro. In doing so you will have to give up really good bump performance. If you really love bumps try to find a pair of few-year old bump skis (read: skinny, under 100 tips etc) on ebay and bring them to the hill to do bump runs and use the big stiff boards for powering through everything else.
post #29 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by gramboh
Mantra or Legend Pro....use the big stiff boards for powering through everything else.
I have the Explosiv in a 180cm and the 186cm Dynastar Legend Pro.

Pro is super sweet, carves wonderfully, busts through any crud, has good float, and feels lilke a race car glued to the terrain. It's more user friendly on groomers and great for arcing down the steeps in long turns. Amazingly quiet at superspeed, a bit more so than the venerable Explosiv.

Explosiv feels a bit lighter, has a longer turn radius, and it is easier to use in steep chutes (7-8 feet wide) for hop turns and in the trees. Overall easier to dance on than the Legend Pro in length I mentioned. Explosiv is superb in crud but the LP is a freakin' steamroller that smooths out anything.

If I had to choose one.....maybe Explosiv?
post #30 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by gramboh
If you want to go mach 3 with big GS/SG turns through crud you are going to need a wide, stiffer ski like the Mantra or Legend Pro. In doing so you will have to give up really good bump performance. If you really love bumps try to find a pair of few-year old bump skis (read: skinny, under 100 tips etc) on ebay and bring them to the hill to do bump runs and use the big stiff boards for powering through everything else.
hmm. I'm going to be demoing the legend 8000s this weekend, are those decent in crud? I want something in the middle that does both adequately. I don't need really good bump or crud performance. Just something that can do both well.
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