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Review of Volkl Karma as an All Mountain Ski - Page 2

post #31 of 48

do you find that the 177 might be a bit short?

i'm 5'11" and down to 180 (yahoo!) hoping to get down to 175 soonish.

at any rate this season i've found that the 177 feels really short and a bit skittish on hardpacked groomers. turns on a dime in say the Solitude rock garden at Squaw and on soft moguls, but when you got to straightline it, well it doesn't feel as stable as say my 180 No Ka Oi or the 181 T9's I just rode over the weekend.

i know the Karma rides short (the 185 is exactly the same length as the 181 Titan 9 if you put them together at a shop, for example and my 176 Armada AR5 was at least a good 2cm longer than the 177 if you put them together).

i also haven't really liked the Karma on hardpack or borderline ice. again, a little skittish.

i'm actually thinking of unloading mine, although i still yearn to try the 185 just for ducks.

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post #32 of 48
I've got a pair of 177s and mine are the same way. They don't like to be skied flat on packed snow, they just want to pivot. Put them in day old pow or bumps and that's a feature, on hardpack not so great. If you try and keep them on edge it helps to calm them down in those conditions. I've heard the 185s loose most of the playfulness without gaining much elsewhere but I haven't skied them. I had them at Beaver Creek on Sat and they were perfect but then again I could have probably skied a shovel and a sledgehammer in that snow

post #33 of 48
I have heard that Volkl is dropping the Karma next season and coming out with a new twin tip called the Bridge. Has anyone else heard this?
post #34 of 48
i rode 'em 4 days straight at Breck and Keystone (2 at Breck, 1 at KS, 1 at Breck) last season and they ripped, especially in the windblown off of Peak 8. but then on some border ice at KS they were sucky. i guess it's a bit of give and take...to rip up the moguls and the chop you gotta give up the hardpack performance, eh?

the more i think about it i can't wait for a ski that automatically switches while on the hill: the waist gets narrower when it encounters hardpack/ice and gets phatter when it hits soft and pow. that would be kind of cool. although then everybody and their uncle's mother's sister-in-law would be on the hill...
post #35 of 48
FWIW, I owned 177 Karmas and demoed the 184's. I'm 165, 6 ft.

177's were a great ski at the time (2 years ago), obviously for the backside, but surprisingly good on groomed as long as you gave them edge angle. The 184's were slower to react without being a lot different in terms of stability, and they sucked in bumps, while the 177's were nice if you brought your A game.
post #36 of 48
interesting...i find that if I ride the 177's really low, almost slalom racer style, then the stability issue isn't a problem. thing is i tend to want to stand up a little more when I am shussing the groomers.
post #37 of 48
Thread Starter 

It's True!

Originally Posted by Utah49 View Post
I have heard that Volkl is dropping the Karma next season and coming out with a new twin tip called the Bridge. Has anyone else heard this?
Hi Utah,

I've heard the same thing from SierraJim, I believe, and several other Volkl experts/dealers on the board. I would worry about this switch since I enjoy the Karmas so much but Volkl has been doing a superb job of exceeding expectations with each new release they’ve done lately. That said I don’t think I’ll be giving up the Karmas soon.

Have fun,

post #38 of 48
Thread Starter 

Me Too!

Originally Posted by beyond View Post
FWIW, I owned 177 Karmas....but surprisingly good on groomed as long as you gave them edge angle.....(184cm Karma) sucked in bumps, while the 177's were nice if you brought your A game.

post #39 of 48
Hi, I've been thinking about buying the karma's, as my only set of skis, and have alot of questions about these skis I'm 6'2 170, and was wondering what size of ski that any of you would recomend. I was thinking the 177, because im not a speed demon, but I like to have some speed. I also want to start learning how to ski switch and how do do some things in the park (rails, large jumps), but since I can only get one pair of skis then I needed all mountain performance and park performance. One last thing, what kind of bindings would you guys recommend, I was thinking either rossignol axial2 120 ti pros, or atomics 4tix 412's, or rossignol scratch 120's.
any feedback would be greatly apriciated.

post #40 of 48

I was wondering if you guys could help me choose a good pair of boots for me. I'm looking for a boot that would be a good company to my 169 Karma. The last boot that i bought sucks! because it wasn't comfortable and used to freeze my feet...i was reckless in buying this boot because besides i didn't pass to much time with the salesman, i bought it just because it was a good price range and cause of the appearance. As you guys can see, i'm new in this area of sking, i have only 2 years of experience, and i can't tell the diference between a good pair of boots to a bad one. I have a 169 Karma, i'm 5'9'' and 140lbs...I'm looking for a pair of boots with the price range between U$400 and U$500 that would be good for speed and for park( long jumps). My last boot was a Salomon X Wave 6.0, even though that i heard that Salomon produce nice boots, this one was a disappointment. My binding is a Marker M12.0, should i change it too?
I would appreciate if you guys could help me!

post #41 of 48
1. read up on bootfitting.

Here: http://forums.epicski.com/forumdisplay.php?f=73


Here: http://www.techsupportforskiers.com/boots1.htm

2. Go to a good bootfitter, one that has a wide array of boots for you to try. Plan on spending at the very least an entire day (anywhere from 2 to 8 hours) trying on boots. Get the ones that fit the best, regardless of price (or simply tell them your price range and see if you can get something that fits well within those parameters).
post #42 of 48
I hate to dig up an old article from almost a year ago, but my search found this thread to be most appropriate. I have Karmas and I'm very happy with them, but I am looking to up my quiver to 2 pairs nontheless. I am taking a rather rigorous (in my estimation) freestyle program in Vancouver this winter, very park-heavy, including water ramps, trampolines, and virtually no mountain time outside of the park.

Would you recommend a park-only twin tip like the new Volkl Walls (basically, are the Karmas too well-rounded for maximum performance in the park?), or should I go big-mountain (making the Karmas more than adequate in the park, thus focussing on a more powder-oriented ski?)? Other recommendations?

As I dont demo very often I am not that great at judging how my Karmas perform in the park in comparison to all the other stuff out there. For this reason any help on the matter would be appreciated.
post #43 of 48
I had Karmas and loved them.

Only complaint is that they tended to ski short and I found the 177 to be, well, too short.

By the time I figured this out, the damn ski had been discontinued and there were no 185's to be found anywhere.

Oh well.

Have since replaced with Lib-Tech NAS Freeride.

post #44 of 48
Stick with your Karma's they are just as good as the wall in the park and better all mountain. They are almost the same ski, save the symmetrical sidecut and crappy Chinese build quality. I wish they would bring the karma back, i've been searching for a NOS pair in 185 for a while now. I think its too wide to be a great park ski and too close to a goat.
post #45 of 48
I'm 220, 5'10. Would I overpower the 177 or should I go with the 185's. I found both for pretty cheap. I longest ski i've been on is a 172, so I'm a little worried about a large jump to 185.
post #46 of 48
 at 5'10" 220, i'd suggest the 185, as they ski short. 

i had the 177's and ultimately found them to be too short once i got used to them. 

that said, if you've never been on anything longer than a 172, it might behove you to try 'em out, if you can...i do miss not having tried the 185's and think that the Karma was a sweet ski (no idea why Volkl discontinued it).
post #47 of 48

After all the glowing reviews on this site, I found a pair of 185 Karma's on EBay that were demos, but basically new.  I first skiied them out at Big Mt. Montana, but have also had them at Steamboat and also at various local places around Minnesota.  I have been skiing all my life whic at this point is 35+ years.  I found this ski to be very soft flexing and yes, great at slow speeds, but the first time I turned them loose at Big Mt, they scared the @#$%@#$ out of me!  At about 30+ mph they started to chatter and I had to stop to geth them in control.  Thinking this was a fluke I cut loose on another groomer and same thing.  Totally freaky.  I've had maybe 20 pairs of skis or more and never had one do that to me -- at least to that degree.  These skis are also incredibly heavy.  Yah they plow thru crud, but so would 2x4's.

post #48 of 48

Me 6' athletic 210.

I ski 177 Karmas on New England hardpack and they do chatter. Still like them, though, for softer snow days. I find them light with the Markers. They have that Volkl edge feel.

Took them out to Alta/Snowbird last year and they did just fine in 18" of fresh.


Own Fischer Watea 84s in 184. So light. Feels similar to the Karmas and a wee bit softer.


Can't decide which (Fischer or Volkl) I prefer for those occasional New England soft snow days including spring skiing.In fact, for spring skiing, I go to my Fischer Watea 78s in 174 and to the Karmas. 


Of course I have other skis for ice -- Volkl Racetiger RCs in 173. 


And I ended up buying 2010-2011 Volkl Gotamas in 186 for powder.


I guess I like Volkls.








Edited by Vinstant - 11/29/11 at 1:14pm
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