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Ski selection help... Blizzard/ Head

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I'm looking for some informed opinions on the Cronus, Magnum 8.7 & Monster 88. My stats: 5' 8"-155#, 62yr, Level 9++. Ski fast and smooth everywhere in all conditions and maintain high fitness level...40-50 days/yr...Off-piste/Piste-90/10. I'd of course prefer to Demo but that is difficult. I'm in southern New England and these days my skiing mainly consists of a 6 week mid-winter trip to Western Canada at an area with very limited Demo availability. My years of road tripping are over!
Most recent skis have been g4/ax4 188 (alpine) and g4 178 (tele). No complaints about either but I'd like to add something a tad more agile. They would be used " between storms " in searching for unpacked in ever tighter spots as these days of increasing off-piste traffic require.
I'd been thinking Monster 88 (175) but the Blizzards are also interesting with the ability to switch out bindings and ski them tele. I realize the 8.7 (181) has metal and would be more powerful in rough snow but how much does the Cronus (180) give up to it and how do they compare to the Monster 88 (or the ax4's for that matter). I do enjoy the challenge of skiing precisely in difficult snow and the ax4's really work.
Thanks in advance for any insight you guys can provide. I envy the opportunity some of you have to sample so many ski flavors.
post #2 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by ebl-cc View Post
I'm looking for some informed opinions on the Cronus, Magnum 8.7 & Monster 88. My stats: 5' 8"-155#, 62yr, Level 9++...I'd been thinking Monster 88 (175) but the Blizzards are also interesting with the ability to switch out bindings and ski them tele...
Welcome to Epic. First order of business is to get realistic about your skill set. At your age, and given the way you frame your question, I doubt you are a "9++." That would be beyond expert, as in racer/pro. Perhaps you mean advanced or expert? As far as the skis in question, I'm familiar with the Cronus and the iM88, haven't skied the 8.7 yet. The 88's at 175 are beefy, surprisingly maneuverable, and like their speed kept up. Slay crud, very good in hardpack and on ice; a nice eastern powder ski if you don't live near the slopes. Not so happy for our weight (I weigh 163) in bumps or trees, but doable.

The Cronus is really different feeling. Still smooth but livelier and lighter (no metal, wood+carbon), not as icebreaker damp, superb in bumps and trees, still crashes through crud as long as they're on edge, wider range of speeds than the 88's, but lower top end, as grippy on ice as the 88's but not as solid feeling while doing it. They do not take tele bindings far as I know; perhaps you mean AT, as in Duke? That would be a yes, and they can be interchanged although it requires a screwdriver and ideally some glue. (You remove a single central machine screw that goes into pre-drilled hole in the wood, slide out the binding.)

If I wanted backcountry AT, a ski for tight places, or the interchangeability, no contest; the Cronus. If I wanted a high speed crud smasher and groomer, no contest; the 88. Suspect the 8.7 falls somewhere in between, so perhaps better solution yet. Ask Ptex or Whiteroom here.
post #3 of 12

my suggestions

. Head im 88 was one of my favorite skis. I know ski the 8.7 and chronus. 8.7 much beefier than the chronus for off groomed Id pick the chronus for ripping hardpack or crud I love the 8.7. Blizzard does have a tele-plate adaptor so you can tele and alpine the same ski. If interested in the Blizzards let me know. I have the teleplates in stock and skis ready to go.
post #4 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by beyond View Post
Welcome to Epic. First order of business is to get realistic about your skill set. At your age, and given the way you frame your question, I doubt you are a "9++." That would be beyond expert, as in racer/pro. Perhaps you mean advanced or expert?
If he's 155 lb and skiing a 188cm G4, he's probably a better skier than you are. Much better.
post #5 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by ebl-cc View Post
I'm looking for some informed opinions on the Cronus, Magnum 8.7 & Monster 88. My stats: 5' 8"-155#, 62yr, Level 9++. Ski fast and smooth everywhere in all conditions and maintain high fitness level...40-50 days/yr...Off-piste/Piste-90/10. I'd of course prefer to Demo but that is difficult. I'm in southern New England and these days my skiing mainly consists of a 6 week mid-winter trip to Western Canada at an area with very limited Demo availability. My years of road tripping are over!
Most recent skis have been g4/ax4 188 (alpine) and g4 178 (tele). No complaints about either but I'd like to add something a tad more agile. They would be used " between storms " in searching for unpacked in ever tighter spots as these days of increasing off-piste traffic require.
I'd been thinking Monster 88 (175) but the Blizzards are also interesting with the ability to switch out bindings and ski them tele. I realize the 8.7 (181) has metal and would be more powerful in rough snow but how much does the Cronus (180) give up to it and how do they compare to the Monster 88 (or the ax4's for that matter). I do enjoy the challenge of skiing precisely in difficult snow and the ax4's really work.
Thanks in advance for any insight you guys can provide. I envy the opportunity some of you have to sample so many ski flavors.
The im88 is much beefier than the cronus....my 100lb friend just picked up some 173 cronus for her big ski in the east. Not sure the 180 would have enough beef for you, it's fairly soft and not torsionally stiff.

The 175 im88 should fit you very well for most tree skiing if you're used to a stiffer 188 G4. They'll have enough beef while being easy to throw around.

For the kind of use you're suggesting, you should also look at a 169 or 174 K2 Public Enemy, mounted at 0 or +1. Very good in tight trees and settled powder. Wide tip, hefty for a ski with no metal, and firm flex.

I would pass on the 8.7 magnum, seems like their fat carving ski for people who are afraid to transition into a full freeride ski.

Strongly recommend a low lift or turntable binding on any ski like this.
post #6 of 12
Oh...and many resorts in VT or NH have demo days....might be worth while to hit one up before you head out west. Be careful though, most reps will try to put you on a 160cm ski...
post #7 of 12
Also look into Movement skis.. The Thunder would fit you just right 89 under foot and EXTREMELY POWERFUL.. Similar to the im88, but some people consider it better, like a fine tuned im88.. 8.7 is better suited on-piste, the 88 & thunder better off.. Happy hunting.........
post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Highway Star View Post
If he's 155 lb and skiing a 188cm G4, he's probably a better skier than you are. Much better.
As usual your d**k waving over length gets in the way of your forebrain. I didn't say or infer I was better than OP, did I? I didn't even bring up any comparison; just noted that 9++ is a weird descriptor, since he's saying he's beyond expert. So I doubted he was. Still do. And although I don't use skis - or length - to infer ability, I'd suspect he IS better than me (I'm just advanced, period). Down boy; try a cold shower...
post #9 of 12
OMG, it's HighwayStar, waving his ****

Time for a ski off

Now back to the topic.

How about - Hellcat. You were talking about AT but that's not what you are actually looking for, right?
post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks guys. Sorry about the ++ confusion. I was trying to indicate I wasn't just necessarily looking for a ski to help me figure out difficult terrain and snow conditions. The only outside reference I had is that 20 years ago at a Ski Week in Taos I was identified as Level 9 and I'm a much stronger skier these days. Many more miles off-piste , more attention to fitness , and easier to ski , higher performing skis. I thought I had seen somewhere that there was a Level 10 for top racers & PSIA etc. NOT ME ! Can I ski better ? I hope so. I still work at making each turn better than the last. Not many chilling out groomer runs. Personality disorder I guess.
I was actually dancing around my real question. Guess I was hoping to find someone who understood what I liked about the ax4's (hopefully had skied them ) and could assure me the Blizzard's particularly the 180 Cronus would not disappoint. The ability to ski them tele as well as alpine would reduce the amount of gear I drag to Alberta. Ive tried a few tele specific skis and they weren't much fun.
Don't really need emphasis on groomer ability as I don't spend much time there . Truth is I'll probably still ski the ax4's most of the time( I do use them in trees and bumps ) but want something quicker , but still gutsy,
at the slower speeds required in the fringe areas , you know , where only the boaders lurk.
To demo in northern N. E. involves 4.5-5 hrs driving each way to try out something (if I can even sample the lengths and models I want) on man-made snow and low angle on-piste terrain. Not really where I'd be using them. Movement Thunder looks interesting from the little bit of info I've found but where do you find them? Seems like they are a light weight g4 with a bit softer shovel. Anybody skied both?
Guess I need to call p-tex and pick his brain. Thanks again guys for your time in sharing your thoughts.
post #11 of 12
Hi ebl-cc, clarification helps a lot. Given that you are not interested in on-piste that much, but OTOH don't want a dedicated soft snow ski, the Cronus with a Duke would be a great setup. Light, smooth, can ski just about anything well, and found out from TGR that it can now take a tele adapter plate. IMO Blizzards and Kastles are the most interesting brands out there right now. I posted a full review here, and so did epic (hook, not site). Definitely pm/call Ptex or Whiteroom. Good luck!
post #12 of 12
hi,

For me at 155 #, the 8.7 Magnum was better than either the iM 88 or the Cronus, but I do about 60/40 on/off..

If you go Cronus you should get the longest length...

Perhaps you should consider the Argos, at 101mm waist, as many in Tahoe use it as a 1-quiver ski...

Check with ptex1 above for Blizzard advice, selection, and good prices....

my $.02

HIGHWAY STAR IS BACK!!!!! wawawaWA
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