or Connect
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Redheads (Head XP80/iC180)
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Redheads (Head XP80/iC180)

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
We started up to Jiminy at 6:50 AM yesterday to test the newly acquired Redheads. Conditions were about 7 or 8 inches of windblown powder on top of a packed base. Wait on the lifts throughout the day were about 1 1/2 minutes and the lift moved quickly. 10 minutes for an up and down on the 1150 foot vertical, including walking to the trail of choice. One can pack alot of skiing in on that mountain. I do like the rhythm of making longer runs, but unfortunately one cannot have everything when one day trips and lives in the NY Metro area.

We started with Sing Sing skiing the B2 demos, and me on the Redheads. Sing Sing was flying down the hills showing surprising form. While the Redheads got me down efficiently, something was troubling me. I had read about the powder in the newspaper and heard about on the radio. I was even seeing the powder in front of me. I wasn't having any problem sinking into the powder either. I just didn't have the sensual sensation that I was skiing in powder. After about 4 runs, I requested a switch. Skiing on the B2s confirmed that the problem was the skis, not the conditions. This is a big deal for me. The Redheads seemed too stiff to convey to my senses the joys of floating on powder.

After my one powder run, we switched back, and I resumed my Redhead trial. I did find an improved ability to do quicker turns on occasion. After a tune, the skis will likely carve well and make quick turns on hard pack. The best virtue of the purchase is that the Redheads allow me the "luxury of time" while the following takes place.

1) Await Oboe's revelations chapter by chapter with eagar anticipation.
2) Assess the Redhead's and Elan Mantis' performance on eastern hardpack.
3) Assess the Elan Mantis 662 performance on powder compared to the B2.
4) For the Mantis to win, it needs to be within 15% of the Redhead's performance on hard pack and within 15% of the B2's performance in powder. That will be an amazing performance if the Mantis can pull that off.

The odds seem to favor me ending up with the Redhead on hard pack and the B2 everywhere else. Not an eastern/western split, but rather the redheads on ice, the B2 on snow. I think Lars said it extremely well. The B2 doesnt' inject its character into the skiing experience. It does what it is told, and lets you ski the way you want to ski without distractions. I think they are a fine pair of skis for me. Now lets find out just how sensational the Mantis is. Their first hurdle will be winning over Oboe's heart.
post #2 of 3
RV – I’m sorry you didn’t especially like your new skis in the soft snow conditions that you encountered. Your experience goes along with the reservation I expressed in my post dated February 26, 2003 02:14 AM in the thread http://www.epicski.com/cgi-bin/ultim...=000381#000000 where I reviewed the related xp100 / IC-200’s (ie, not the 80’s). In that thread, I said that when I intentionally tried the Heads in deep, tracked-up conditions, I was very happy to switch back to my fatter skis (either my 10ex’s or my Explosivs).

I also referred to this shortcoming in some more recent threads including

http://www.epicski.com/cgi-bin/ultim...=000618#000001 and

http://www.epicski.com/cgi-bin/ultim...=000626#000018 .

In the latter thread I replied to one of your posts and said,

"..Finally, I would caution that even if deeply sidecut skis float well (in the sense of having lots of base surface area), this doesn't mean that they will necessarily be particularly good powder boards (which I believe is what you are hoping for). In the opinion of many regular powder skiers, deeply sidecut skis with wide tips and tails get too twitchy in cut up powder to be as useful as one might think. Been there, done that (and reported it in previous posts)..."

Seven or eight inches of snow is getting to be a significant amount for these skis. IMHO, almost by definition, it is impossible to find one general purpose pair of skis that will truly be as good in both soft and hard conditions as two pairs of skis, each specifically designed for a particular type of snow. The xp80’s should do a good job for anyone using modern technique on anything from rock-hard, see-through ice, all the way up to soft surfaces an inch or two deep. FWIW, this season, I still am using my xp100’s almost exclusively for most conditions around here, and switch over to my 10ex’s when I’m likely to encounter more significant depths of soft snow (ie, several inches of spring slop, lots of early season snowgun thick, wet & grabby, new “real” snow, etc.)

Again, good luck with the 80’s on your future ski outings, and be sure to give yourself a bit of time to get used to them.

All the best,

Tom / PM

[ January 29, 2004, 01:37 PM: Message edited by: PhysicsMan ]
post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 
While I didn't buy the Redheads for 6 inches of powder conditions, I had no trouble skiing the Redheads yesterday. So I am not disappointed with my purchase at all and certainly still appreciative of your sharing your insights with me.

Oboe recently said that he was skiing his double Xs in deep powder and guys on skinny skis where skiing circles around him. I knew the Redheads wouldn't float as well as the XXs, but floating simply wasn't the issue. Nor was technical prowess a problem. Skiing on the B2s and the Redheads was the difference between making love with your ski gloves on, or your ski gloves off. What I learned was that in the future when there is powder to be skied, I wanted the "gloves off" experience.

I just need a chance to get the Heads tuned and spend a weekend at Killington with them. The sad thing is that when I came to this forum, I was a very well traveled seasoned skier. Unfortunately, in terms of equipment, it was as if I had been asleep for a while. In short, I had alot of catching up to do. Perhaps it is therefore appropriate that my name stands for Rip Van Winkle. The guy who went to sleep for 19 years and then woke up to see everything changed around him. It does take a while to get back up to speed. But my secret is being able to pick the right people to listen to.

Any suggestions about how the XP80/100 likes to be treated for best results? Your suggestion about giving it some time is one which makes me take demoing with a grain of salt. Sometime there is a learning curve with skis that is not visible with a one hour demo.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Ski Gear Discussion
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Redheads (Head XP80/iC180)