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2008 K2 PE Review

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
So I've finally gotten a chance to start demo'ing, but because I didn't bring the skis back in time, I only got one pair to work with.

About Me: 32 years old, 195ish lbs, 6' tall. Level 8, probably, definitely not a level 7 but am hesitant to say I'm a level 9. Ski about 10-15 days a year normally. I've been skiing on Rossi Bandit X's for about 8 years now, and despite wanting new skis for a couple of years, just haven't taken the time to demo at all.

Conditions: A mix of boot deep soft crud, soft bumps and some soft groomers this past Saturday at Whistler. Only about 2" of fresh the night before.

I actually went in to try the Head Mojo 90's, but I got there just a little too late (they'd just gone out), so took out a pair of 179 K2 PE's instead.

Initial impression: Squirrelly. Notice that I've been skiing on older Bandit's for a while, they're 191's and a 29ish radius, so this is the shortest ski with the smallest radius I've been on in years (or in forever, for the short turn radius). It definitely took me a run to feel comfortable at all on them.

Once I'd gotten a feel for them, I started to like them, mostly. I definitely liked the feel of them in the soft crud. However, I found some spots where the crud was a little firmer and not as deep, and they didn't work as well. That long splayed out tip floated over everything and didn't punch through the nearly as well as I would have liked, it made for a rough ride. They did pretty well in the bumps, but I'm not used to something with that much sidecut and i could feel them trying to hook up in spots I didn't really want/expect them to. They felt very at home on the soft groomers, no problem holding onto nice easy carves or breaking the tails free if I wanted to. I don't really push that hard on groomers, don't ski exceptionally fast so they had plenty of groomer performance for me. Hardpack performance isn't high on priority list at all, that's not the kind of conditions I want to be skiing in and don't want a ski that excels there while suffering elsewhere.

And the good news, after I turned them in, we were hitting some nice, soft boot to knee deep crud on Boomer Bowl, and I found myself wishing I still had the PE's instead of my Bandits. They just felt a more playful and fun. With the PE's, I felt less like I had to force the skis, and more like the skis were just willing to do what I wanted.

Overall conclusion: I liked them, they were fun, easy to throw around, held a nice edge in easy conditions, but got a little tossed around by firmer crud. I think I would be happy on them, but I didn't love them enough to stop my search now.

For my first demo in 9 years, I was pretty happy with how things went. I definitely want to do some more demo'ing, and am still trying to figure out what I want, honestly. Crud performance is important to me being in the PNW, but I've always felt that I don't want a super stiff ski that a) makes me constantly work or b) starts to dive when the conditions do get soft and light.

Other skis on my wish list to demo (at least as of right now): Volkl Bridge, Head Mojo 90, Fischer Watea 84 or 94, not sure what else at this point.
post #2 of 7
I concur completely with your crud comments -- PEs can be a wild ride. Sort of fun, but tiresome after a while. Try the Watea 94s, you will like them -- they are very good in crud and much more solid than the PEs all the way around.
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Cool, thanks very much for the feedback. I have read some very good reviews of the Watea's, and am itching to try them. Now I have to find someone around here that demo's Fischer.
post #4 of 7
Agree with your assessment. The ski is fun and good in pow, nice in soft snow, good on groomers, good in bumps. Once the crud starts to set up a bit, it has a harder time. I have noticed they tend to float and get deflected in heavier crud. Definitely does not ski like a metal laminate ski (e.g. an im88) in crud. You don't want to be way out in front on this ski trying to drive the tips in big long arcs, better to say centered in crud and chop and pop short fall line turns.

I would say you ought to look at some skis like the im88, m888 Alu, mojo 90, dozens of others to choose from.

Also try some that are 100+ in the waist like the Scott P4, gotama, Prophet 100, etc... These sort of boards are great for every day use if you tend to see frequent snowfall.
post #5 of 7
Originally Posted by jaobrien6 View Post
Other skis on my wish list to demo (at least as of right now): Volkl Bridge, Head Mojo 90, Fischer Watea 84 or 94, not sure what else at this point.
I have the PEs and the Bridges in the same length. The Bridge is not at all like a wider PE as one may think, as it is much stiffer. I find the PE to be a fun ski to kick around on whereas the Bridge performs better when skied like a GS ski and likes higher speeds. JMHO.
post #6 of 7
If you get back to Whistler, try the Prior's. Locally made. Great skis. I own 2 pair of the 'Original' ( 1 for inbounds 1 for touring ). Great stiff ski, 96 underfoot.
post #7 of 7
I have to say I demoed quite a few skis and ended up getting a pair of last years PEs off ebay. I love them, yea they bounce a bit in the crud but I don't mind it at all. I think its fun to pop off the little piles. I think they are great in the bumps (for a non bump specific ski) and have plenty of float in the powder. I have the 179s as well but i am only 6'3" 165lbs. They are quick edge to edge and hold edge at speed. You may want to try the mantras, I felt they were too heavy for my tastes but you might not feel the same way.
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