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And another Gotama disciple is born...

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
I lay myself prostrate at the altar of Gotama worshipers...humbly I acknowledge the wisdom of all others who have already seen the light...I ask forgiveness for my previous transgression and refusal to understand how sick these sticks really are. On these skis...I am a witch...not subject to the normal laws of physics and gravity...I am invincible.

Me:
6 foot 3, 185 lbs of fit, burnin love.
36 years old, level 8 skier

The Place:
Park City Mtn. Resort aka PCMR

The Conditions:
4-6" of fresh on packed powder and crud...cloudy and marginal visibility...bumps, trees, groomers, bowls...tracked and untracked

The Ski:
2007/08 Volkl Gotama-183cm long

The Verdict:
What can I say? You all were just absolutely right about this ski. Before today, I had never skied on something wider than 90mm in the waist. I expected it to feel like a Humvee or Tank....nothing could be further from the truth. Though it is a substantial ski (105mm at the waist) it was nimble and fairly quick edge to edge. I had NO trouble carving the ski...it wants to turn. Conditions were great test bed b/c they were so variable. I would float high in 6-10 " of untracked and then transition into cruddy mank followed by a nice patch of dust on ice. None of this bothered me or the ski...I literally felt invincible.

Found some great snow in the trees with some tight turns and as long as I wasn't getting lazy and sitting back this things turned so quickly in the foot deep powder in there. Skiing of the Thaynes lift there was a bunch of rutted, large, heavy moguls...I was sure this ski had met its match. Even though this is not a mogul ski it was amazing how well it did. I worked the troughs some and also tried it up over the crests to see if it would chuck me backseat...I didn't feel that it did. It was forgiving, quick and powerful...don't ask me how a ski can be all those things at once. In the really chopped up stuff at the bottom I just pointed em and arced big sweeping GS turns...the confidence they inspire in the rider is amazing. In the past I have been tentative in conditions like this...particularly in the really heavy, tracked up snow....not on these.

I'm trying to be precise and technical in my description but I just keep coming back to how they "felt"...which is stable, nimble and responsive. I have found my western every day ski. I will keep my PEs for days when there's not a lot of fresh snow or to pound the bumps...but if there is any new snow it all, I will be on these skis. I only wish I got on these things a few years ago. I never new a wider ski could ride like this.

More snow on the way this weekend...I know these things will be filthy in a a foot of fresh or more...and I should get a chance to test that shortly. Will report back once I've had that opportunity.

Cheers
post #2 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by locknload View Post
I only wish I got on these things a few years ago. I never new a wider ski could ride like this.

That about summed it up for me too, and I've got the 05/06 model that's softer with less sidecut. Soon you'll be itching to go fatter...trust me.
post #3 of 27
I have 2 sets of Goats 04/05 at 183cm and 07/08 at 190cm. You really are invincible. When people ask about them I tell them that they are idiot proof. They let you ski anything with lots of fun. They just seem to disappear beneath you. They do what you want to do.They can go fast or slow. I can't imagine many other skis that can be any more FUN than these.
post #4 of 27
Thread Starter 
Good stuff guys. Magnus, funny you say that...I am already starting to wonder what 120 under foot would feel like in deep snow...I think I may start perusing boards at that width as well. Agree with you grumpof...how could anything be any more fun...is it possible?

Update:
Skied them today in about 8-10" of fresh at Snowbird. It just keeps on getting better. Steep tree runs and glades....just slayed the powder in there....so easy to turn ANYWHERE. Didn't get into Mineral Basin b/c visibility was not good. End of the day...skiing cruddy, heavy snow on the way down...absolutely effortless...can't believe it. The ski doesn't make the skier but I can tell you without equivocation is that these skis make me a better skier. Its still me giving them the input...but they just do it so effortlessly. Is there anything out there that compares? In all seriousness, if there is, please tell me b/c I want to try them for comparison. Riding this ski is like a religous experience..its a paradigm shift. Everything will be different from this point forward. And to Magnus' point...I'm sure I won't go and narrower from this point forward...probably just wider.

Cheers guys and happy skiing.

LnL
post #5 of 27
I'm riding first generations with moldy sidewalls through tight trees and finishing my runs with- "I can't believe how easy these things are."

tomorrow is a buddha day for this goat.
post #6 of 27
Great Review!

My 183 cm goats just arrived last week. Although I've skied 3 times since, I haven't yet ridden them. Deranged, wacko? Probably.

Over the past week, we haven't had anything resembling deep snow. I'm so comfortable on my 84 mm M:EX's, I'm reluctant to give them up on packed or semi-packed conditions.

But, after reading this review, I'm thinking: Conditions-be-damned, I'm riding them tomorrow.
post #7 of 27
I got my Goats set up with Dukes to be my touring skis. But I find myself using them as my everyday ski. They just do everything so well.

Skied dust-on-crust at Vail today. They are super fun in crud, pow, bumps. And they rail on groomers like nothing. Complete ice was the only place they skittered.

Captain Strato, trust me, take the Goats out instead of the M:EX's. I sold my M:EX's last week after riding the Goats for two days.
post #8 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by faisasy View Post
Captain Strato, trust me, take the Goats out instead of the M:EX's. I sold my M:EX's last week after riding the Goats for two days.
Now THAT is a compelling endorsement.

I'd better get on these babies and see what all the fuss is about.

I'll post results tomorrow.
post #9 of 27
Captain, come ski with us tomorrow (Sunday).
post #10 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by faisasy View Post
Captain, come ski with us tomorrow (Sunday).
Faisasy: A-Basin would be a hoot. I've never skied there. I hear it's had rough treatment this year by wind (Zuma Bowl still a bit rocky?).

So long as there's limited chance of ploughing my Goat's into a rock garden, I'm up for it.

How do we connect?

PS: Wifey will be in tow. Any other ladies coming?
post #11 of 27
^^^ Will PM you later tonight.
post #12 of 27
OK,
I'll put in classifieds as well, but i thought this thread might drum up a buyer for me
08 Gotama for sale, 183, mounted w/ Duke S, skied less then 10 days.
$750 OBO.

cheers,
Holiday
post #13 of 27
Thread Starter 
Capt. Strato,

I hear you on thinking that you should wait until there's real snow...but darn it...there is nothing you can't do on this ski. I still have 3 other pair of skis..waists of 80, 85 and 90 ( I know...way too much overlap)...the Gots will clearly lead me to thin the quiver--perhaps quite dramatically--pick my favorite narrower ski and stick with just 2 skis for awhile. The only thing I probably can't do as well on these boards is a true zipper line in deep, hard moguls. In every single other possible, conceivable condition..they are superior. Though I love moguls....I will use the Gots all the time unless there hasn't been snow for awhile...then I'll pull out the PEs our the Lines to carve it the groomers and ski lots of bumps. I can't wait to hear what you think of them.

The only other question I have is whether anyone who likes the Gots has run across a similar ski that is better? My mind isn't closed..but, for the moment, I'm in ski heaven.
post #14 of 27
Well I quickly dumped my Seths & Snoops after getting my Goats. My im82's & Goats pretty much have me covered at this point. Though I'm wondering now whether I should have gone longer on the Goats. I'm on the 168's and wasnt aware that they measured shorter than their advertised length. I'm only 135lbs so normally something in the 165-170 range is good for me. For a powder ski, longer is better. I guess I'll have to demo some 176's & see if I made the right choice.
post #15 of 27
I will attest to the Gotama mystery, never have been a big Volkl fan but these skis rock. I was actually predisposed to not liking them. Bought these skis exclusively for my yearly Utah trips. So, I'm getting ready for the first of 2 trips to Utah and figured I should give these skis a whirl before lugging them out west. My daughter and I were at Okemo in VT and they rec'd a few inches of fresh snow last Friday. It killed me to leave my Elan SW14's in the car but I conceded to the Goats. Trails edge had some pushed off powder that they just were amazing in. As for the groomers, I was suprised just how adept they were. I'm anxiously awaiting my 3/12 trip to BCC. Awesome ski!
post #16 of 27

A Perfect Day for Goats

I finally had the chance to launch my new Goats at Breck yesterday (just missed Faisasy - arrived as he was leaving).

It had started snowing at about 10:00 am, and was coming down furiously by 1:00.

We mostly skied the black bowls to the left and right of the T-Bar. It was choppy in places, with hefty wind-blown pockets. Perfect Goat terrain.

Even with the Gotama's pedigree, I wasn't expecting a big ski (183 cm, 105 mm) to be so nimble. I could pop down the chop-filled semi-moguls with no problem, and they floated beautifully in the deeper pockets.

This is, hands down, the most versatile big ski I've tried (a long list). They grabbed surprisingly well on groomers, were fluid in soft bumps, and handled varying terrain and conditions with nary a shrug.

The Goats were most impressive on steep terrain. I felt rock-solid even on sketchy, wind-blown crust. They didn't seem to care what was underfoot.

I could happily use the Gotamas for everything I ski in the west, and never look back.

But, I'm not yet ready to discard my M:EX's. At 84 mm underfoot (21 mm less than the Gotama's), physics plays a role. The M:EX's are easier to tip on edge, and quicker. The shorter length - 174 cm - is also a factor.

On deep, steep or wind-blown terrain, the Goats are the weapon of choice. No contest. I can't wait to surf them in true, untracked pow.

But, if I'm on groomers, bumps or ankle-deep fluff, I'd pick the M:EX's for increased agility.

Between these two skis, I can't imagine needing anything else.

Well, I'd like to try the Kuro's, and a pair of AC40's would be nice. :
post #17 of 27
current quiver = goat (105) & Jet Fuel (84)

dream quiver = kuro & Jet Fuel.

(disclaimer* I have not yet skied the kuro. don't have to.)
post #18 of 27
my goats w/ dukes are reduced in classifieds... $700 shipped to US, skied less then 10 days.
not for me, and I'll review em later, no time now.

cheers,
holiday
post #19 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by locknload View Post

The only other question I have is whether anyone who likes the Gots has run across a similar ski that is better? My mind isn't closed..but, for the moment, I'm in ski heaven.
It depends on how you define "better". For much of last year and early this season, the Gotama was my "all conditions", "all around" ski. However, it has been a while since they've seen snow. The Gotama is a great powder capable generalist - but I think, at least for someone of my middle of the road abilities, it has now been surpassed in several dimensions.

My .02...skipping the super detailed analysis...if you are considering a Gotama because...

...you want a powder ski that is easy to ski, very groomer friendly, handles cutup crud like a dream, and is nimble in trees, get a Kuro. I mean, really, really get a Kuro. If this ski does not get the "we didn't t think it could be done" award from every major ski test this year, they are either not paying attention or are clueless. That's all there is to it.

...you want a very powder capable playful all-arounder, get a Hell Bent. (probably everal other contenders as well, but this is the one I've spent a bunch of time on this season)

...you want pure uncompromised powder performance and agility without concern for groomers, get a Praxis.
post #20 of 27
Thread Starter 
Interesting Spindrift...you sound sold on the Kuro. I'm definitely open to trying it. I will definitely ponder your thoughts and this and give them a spin for myself. Do you own all of the skis you mentioned or just had a chance to ride them? I like how specific you are in terms of the type of performance you are describing and I find that really helpful. I think the Gotama may be my one ski quiver since i mostly ski in UT...but I might add a bigger ski for the really deep days. I've also read such great stuff about the D-Sender Fatypus-Alota (Hilarious name by the way) that I REALLY want to try this ski. It is pretty amazing the kind of performance these fat skis deliver. I also find it amazing how many people still ride the skinny race carvers....its fine by me but I think they're missing out. Fat skis just make it so much fun out there and can do just about anything a race carver can...except carve quite as tight on the groomers.
post #21 of 27
I have all 4 I discussed above. Ten days or more on each of the Goats, Praxis and Hell Bents. Two and a half days so far on the Kuros - which I just got my hands on.

As you can tell from the skis I mentioned, I have become a huge fan of rockered and reverse camber skis. As fine a ski as the Gotama is, the funshapes make me feel as though I have more control, more options, and more "margin" - without compromising away anything at all.

Note that I am a very enthusiastic, but very middle of the road skier - with a strong bias toward powder and fresh snow in general, a willingness to play & smile on groomers, and a pathological hatred of bumps (at least icy ones).

Again - I'm sure not knocking the Goats. I still consider them a really nice ski. But since locknload asked the question, I figured I'd answer it...
post #22 of 27
so, my goats are sold,
and
i agree w/ spindrift. wholeheatedly
the goat is an all mt fat that is a good pow ski.

I sold mine since I have an all mountain fat i my watea 94 that I prefer, and there are better pow skis. i wanted a pow ski in to accent my watea, that I love, and the goat is very similiar to the watea.

maybe the accent will be the kuro, i've called my rep, we'll see. I do know that the pontoon didn't make me happy, but maybe the kuro will be the great pow ski that still maintains some traditional sensations.

cheers,
holiday
post #23 of 27

Yes, BUT...

Quote:
Originally Posted by locknload View Post
Good stuff guys. Magnus, funny you say that...I am already starting to wonder what 120 under foot would feel like in deep snow...I think I may start perusing boards at that width as well. Agree with you grumpof...how could anything be any more fun...is it possible?

Update:
Skied them today in about 8-10" of fresh at Snowbird. It just keeps on getting better. Steep tree runs and glades....just slayed the powder in there....so easy to turn ANYWHERE. Didn't get into Mineral Basin b/c visibility was not good. End of the day...skiing cruddy, heavy snow on the way down...absolutely effortless...can't believe it. The ski doesn't make the skier but I can tell you without equivocation is that these skis make me a better skier. Its still me giving them the input...but they just do it so effortlessly. Is there anything out there that compares? In all seriousness, if there is, please tell me b/c I want to try them for comparison. Riding this ski is like a religous experience..its a paradigm shift. Everything will be different from this point forward. And to Magnus' point...I'm sure I won't go and narrower from this point forward...probably just wider.

Cheers guys and happy skiing.

LnL
Great review! And it sums up what I think of the ski so well I won't bother to add my own review, which was on my mind.
There is a caveat: on hard snow (not ice, but decent hard pack when it hasn't snowed in a while), they ski fine, hold an edge fine but take about 2x the energy of a narrower ski. A few weeks back I skied Saturday on the Gots, loved it, then tried my old narrower all-mountain skis Sunday to see if I should even bother keeping them. Hell yes! It is a wonderful feeling to just roll your ankle a tad and have the skis respond. Going through bumps is much easier as well. Do the Gots work? Of course, and well. But I don't think it's time to dump all the narrower skis from the quiver just yet.
What about even bigger? Haven't tried, but unless you're in some area that doesn't get skiied out in 2 hours like most areas, I don't see the need. But I guess I'll have to try to find out!
post #24 of 27
Thread Starter 
Thanks Sam...good comments. I'm following some of these other questions regarding mounting point and I have to ask..where have all of you mounted yours? Mine are smack dab on the "boot center" line (the rear line). Some of the comments on other threads are making me wonder if +1 from that line is even better? I know we can analyze this stuff to death...but just wondering thoughts about whether that will even noticeably change performance on hardpack or negatively impact in deep, soft snow?

Generally, it seems MOST (I know I'm generalizing) have mounted smack on the rear line no?
post #25 of 27
rear line works great for me.
post #26 of 27
Mine are on boot center line. Me = 6'1", 220 pounds, 27/27.5 mondo. 183 cm goats. Great handling in powder and soft snow. Very good handling on harder snow - but on harder groomers, I need to concentrate on managing the tips - so now and again there are times I wish I were +1. But rarely.

If I had to do it again, I'd stick with them where they are on boot center. If I were a bunch lighter/smaller without a commensurate increase in athletic talent, I'd consider +1 or +.5 for the 183s. Either way, I'd pick my spot & enjoy the ski.
post #27 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by locknload View Post

Generally, it seems MOST (I know I'm generalizing) have mounted smack on the rear line no?
Yes...that seems to be the spot. I skied my demo pair and moved the bindings around a fair bit. Always kept coming back to that rear line, so that's where I mounted my own (183) pair.

FWIW....some skis are very different with a small binding move (some get downright whacked) but the Goat doesn't seem very critical.

SJ
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