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Pontoon 189 1st impression (rocker rookie)

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
for starters, I really didn't want to like this ski or the whole rockered idea.
i've seen others on em and don't like the appearance of the turn they are making. i like a certain sensation and from what i saw and heard, much of that went away w/ rockered skis.
so for the first 3 runs, I was right.
funky, odd and not too fun,
I started to find the sweet spot and figure out how they worked and what they liked, I found the place to rail 2 footed carves on the access groomers, I found a little, what I call, "impact" turn, where you hit the edge under foot and get some rebound, untracked was sweet and easy (of course), and i found McConkey's "slarve" in some really funky wind runnells to wind pack to hard pack.
that was the run where i decided rocker is good, the variation from windswept to big wind deposited waves. it took being right on it, anticipation, quick balance adjustment and absorbtion to ski on my conventional ski (which isn't skinny at 94mm), but on the pontoon, it was a playful surf fest. the huge turned up tip just surfed right up the pow waves out of either slarves, skids or whatever... no accurate move, no minute pressure control moves, just smile and surf and look for the next one to hit.

i'm not sure if the pontoon is for me, or if i'll own rockered skis, YET, but i do know that they work well and bring lots of smiles.
my mind says that i might get much of the same benefit from a soft very wide ski, so maybe i'll try that before the full rocker committment. i'm looking at Bro, fat, soft, at 115 under foot, little shape and quite soft, but we'll see. also, there are so many variations now, i guess i have to ski the 4front, the armada and praxis to see the lastest tweaks. or just get the really wide soft traditional ski until they work out which rocker design rules...

bottom line, don't be an old stogey and write this new idea off. McConkey isn't a kook and he skis better then most and his mad scientist side is well formed enough to keep an open mind.

post #2 of 11
Thanks for the insightful review Holiday. I recently had a chair ride with a patrolman at Silverton Mt. They have absolutely no grooming, just ski tracks on steep terrain ranging from tight trees to open bowls and chutes up to over 13,000 ft. elevation that are exposed to the sun and wind. Despite the hype, you can trust me that they have a lot of really funky snow conditions a lot of the time. He was not a big guy but was skiing the 189 Pontoons. He had two pair (only a patrolman there would have a pair of "rock Pontoons") and said that they were incredible and the only thing that worked there on a daily basis. I was on some fat tradtional boards and he said, "Remember when you first skied fat skis in powder, these are an equal step up from that."

There is more than one way to skin the powder cat. Mucho respect for McConkey for continuing to push the sport (like few others can) because of his unique phyiscal and mental abilities. Once you stop learning new tricks you're nothing but an old dog.
post #3 of 11
I got a pair the other day and they are great. Super surfy in the powder and I love whipping them through trees. Effortless, and I was picking tighter lines than I ever would have tried before.

Perfectly skiable on piste too, the only place I really didn't enjoy them was on ice - but no surprises there.
post #4 of 11
Thread Starter 
i could almost call it an impulse buy for me, with my propensity for over analysis, but I went ahead and bought a pair of pontoons! one for my wife as well. 189 for me 169 for her.

time to play with the toons... I'll give a more detailed impression after the next couple days of pow play with our latest Tahoe dump!

post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
so, the jury is still out.
after another pow day, where it took me awhile to find a turn the gave me what i wanted, I'm leaning toward wanting something that is really wide soft, but more traditional for my sensation idiosycrasies... i like some sensations and while the rocker thing is easy and fun, i might be holding out a little longer on being a convert. these may be up for sale sometime soon, but i'll give em another few days. cheers, holiday
post #6 of 11

I'm thinking I want fat, side cut, and probably a bit of rocker.
post #7 of 11
For you guys that want a more traditional rockered ski, checkout the PMGear "Rockers" when they become available.
post #8 of 11
Rockered skis are here to stay. Camber only hurts skis in powder. I love my Pontoons.
post #9 of 11
Originally Posted by memosteve View Post
For you guys that want a more traditional rockered ski, checkout the PMGear "Rockers" when they become available.
I'm pretty skeptical about the "tip rocker only" breed of skis coming our way. I like the looseness & lack of catch that tip+tail rocker offers. Plus it feels like it defines the turn shape in a "complete" way that the tip only ones probably can not. IMO this is true with both reverse/reverse and reverse with regular sidecut like the Hell Bent. I confess I have not skied any of the "tip only" ones yet though...
post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 
so, i sold em. just not for me. i will have rockered skis again, but not this one. too dramatic. i had trouble finding the sensations i wanted, althought they were very easy to ski and fun, i have baggage...

the Kuro seems like it could be worth a spin, as well as the Czar.

we'll see.

i'm quite happy to back on my traditional wide skis for now.

post #11 of 11
Look at the K2 Ob-Seth-ed or the 4FRNT EHP 186cm model. Maybe a slight rocker like the '08/'09 Salomon Overlord might be the ticket. I'm looking forward to demoing a lot of skis for next season!
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