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Fischer Watea 78

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
Skier stats - 5'-8" 175 lbs. expert skier.

Skis - Fischer Watea 78 (122-78-107) 174 cm.

Weather and snow - Mostly cloudy, 22 - 35 degrees, some wind and flurries. There was a combination of groomed(moderately firm), broken powder, some soft powder in the trees and windblown "sugar" to a depth of about 4" over firm windblown.

I tried these today based on its reviews on skinet, and there was a fair amount of hard snow (for here) as I switched areas to test this ski. This ski (again if you believe the numbers) out performed both the Watea 84 and 94.

I started out on a groomed intermediate run that is really wide. This trail lends itself to big sweeping high speed arcs. I let the skis run and gently tipped them. The ski smoothly drifted into a large arc. As speed increased I added more and more pressure with each turn and the ski responded by steadly turning sharper. I was able to develop some pretty big edge angles. Smooth and stable at every speed and radius I asked it to do. This is one fun unit.

I got over to an Intermediate bump run that typically develops some really nice bumps. At first I tried to attack a bit. The skis worked but fought back a bit. Then I tried easing off and wow....what a difference. These skis don't like to be forced but if you are gentle with them they LOVE the bumps. Once I discovered that they were a pleasure to run through moguls about waist high. Fun stuff there.

Now for the tough part. Finding powder. I went to a few secret spots I knew of including one spot where I have never seen a track....and someone on a board had found it (after all these years) Well I made a few turns in untracked and a few more in broken powder in some fairly open trees. This is where it got interesting. The front 14" of the ski was pretty much on/above the surface of the snow, without any bending I could see. I had never seen a ski respond like this before. So....I leaned WAY forward. Still up. So I got into the back seat. OK, well maybe that wasn't the smartest thing to do (but I learn fast at speed when things don't work all that well.)

I went to a very steep area (bowl approx 45degrees) and turned them loose on broken powder, powder and windblown "sugar" over a firm surface. No problem, the ski just cruised. Then I found a stash of fresh and minimally tracked in a wide open area. They floated.....bigtime. Again the front of the ski was on the surface of the snow (keep in mind it's only 78 under foot)

This ski moves around the hill a lot like the Legend 8000 does. It doesn't have the energy the 8000 does but it isn't damp either. Another difference is that this ski skis much smoother than the 8000's and is far quicker edge to edge. I'm not sure it isn't quicker edge to edge than my 73 underfoot Tigersharks.

This would be a GREAT one ski quiver. Easteners, don't overlook this ski. You can ski it at home and sacrifice nothing and only have to pay for one ski bag on the plane for your trip(s) west.

This ski is a BIG
post #2 of 23
I'm considering the 84s or 94s. I'm wondering how the 78 compare.
post #3 of 23
Thread Starter 
Me too! I was going to head out on the 84's tomorrow but something else came up.

I did get some work via PM that most like the 84's and 94's better.

Try before you buy. I am amazed after trying a bunch of stuff this week how different each ski works. Many surprises.
post #4 of 23

I started skiing a pair of Watea 78s recently too

I also posted a review on TelemarkTips, so I used their format.

Is this a tele or alpine ski: Alpine
Length: 174
Tip width: 122
Waist: 78
Tail: 107
Weight in this length: 78
Boots used: Garmont Ener-G
Bindings used: TeleBulldog - mounted BOF/CRS
How many days on the skis: 5
Resort or backcountry: resort
Geographical region: New England
Tell us about the terrain you ski: Groomed or up to 6” fresh snow
Do you know how the skis were tuned (bevel): 2 degree side, 1 degree base
How long have you been skiing: 34 years
How many days a year: 35-45
Previous ski that you liked: Blizzard X-Cross (mounted tele), many alpine race skis
Previous ski you did not like: Totally Piste, Black Widow
How big are you: not very - 5”6”, 155 lbs
Mostly tele or parallel: 70/30 tele/parallel

With tele demos hard to access for me, I based my purchase on reviews, dimensions, feedback on similar skis from Fischer and intution. I found the reviews at SkiPress particularly helpful and un-biased. I was looking for an everyday ski for resort patrol work in New England. I wanted something more versatile than the 67mm waisted Blizzard alpine carver I have mounted with HHs. I went with the TeleBulldogs for the step-in and brake to help with patrol work.

On my first day on these skis, I arrived at my local hill to find 6” of light fresh snow. These skis had float for the fresh in the AM and easily cut through the mounded up snow later in the day. I found that they were easy to get into a nice carving arc in both tele and p-turns. I also found that combination of Watea 78 and TeleBulldog made for a very responsive quick turning and reacting set-up. The skis were happy in both small and large radius turns.

My next day on the skis were on more typical New England hardpack. The Wateas gripped the firm as well as my Blizzards and were very stable making larger turns at speed. They love to carve both short and long radius turns, tele and alpine style. This is a very easy skiing ski that responds to subtle movements and does not require muscling around. That said, it has a light, lively feel that is responsive to good technique, in both tele and p-turns.

To sum up, for me, and what I need now, these skis are great. They are very versatile, and the more I ski on them, the more I enjoy them. These have taken the place of anything narrower in my quiver and the next wider ski I would need would be over 100mm. For the east this could be a quiver of one.
post #5 of 23
IMHO, the 78 pales in comparison to the 84 and 94. It's like the 78 is from a totally different family.
post #6 of 23

Statistics

Weight 85 Kgs

Height 179 cm

Advanced

Ski quiver Rosignol Bandit B2,Atomic Metron B5,Fischer RX8,Atomic M9 Puls-ti,Fischer Watea 78.

 

In Greece where I ski it is impossible to demo skis .So I bought the 78 after reading rave reviwes in

Skinet USA ,Ski pressworld Canada,Expertskiers.com.(All three agreeing very rare).

Could not find the skis in Europe ,had to order from Ski-depot USA (fantastic service).

 

This the the best ski I have ever skied in my life.

It does everything ,soft edge,carving,straight lining,short and long turns.

Badly groomed piste iced early morning no chater.

Groomed piste fantastic

Heavy crud no problem feels like groomed

Fresh 50 cm heavy wet snow easy,whereus with my other skis almost impossible to ski.

 

It feels like this ski has been sprnikled with magic dust.

post #7 of 23
UL made another post that brought me here...epipoleos liked these on ice, anybody else have any thoughts on these for super hard snow and ice skiing? That's a big concern for me, as I mostly ski in the Southern Whites.
How about the 84 under similar conditions?
Thanks, everybody.
post #8 of 23
These are my one-quiver skis. These are very, very light and nimble and silky. they like to go fast. I used to have sugar daddy skis for deep days but i gave them away since this ski works for me in anything up to boot high and is OK up to knee high and the SD's weren't much better at anything deeper than that. I am small though.

UL is right about their versatility. They are especially confidence inspiring on very steep bad snow. More forgiving in the bumps than the Atomic nomads I demoed. They do hold well on ice, at least what passes for ice around here. I took them on a race course after the event and didn't die...

However, i would not say that's their best condition. So if you are looking for a ski primarily for very hard snow or real ice, (not Rockies "ice") then you may want to consider a stiffer, more race-like ski.

 Hope that helps.
post #9 of 23
I have the Watea 78's with Tyrolia Mojo 15 bindings and skied them about 30 days last year at Sugarbush in a variety of conditions and agree that they are a great eastern all-mountain ski.  For real "firm" days and running the NASTAR course I still go with my RX-8's but that may be more of a personal preference vs the capability of these skis.  I can't speak to the Watea 84 under simillar conditions.
post #10 of 23
I live in Maine and ski ice on a daily basis.  Although the Wateas are passable, they re not ice machines by any stretch.  If you want an all around light, nimble, easy ski for mostly soft snow and a little ice, OK.  If ice is a big part of the diet then def. consider something beefier such as Head Monster (now "Peak") 78, 82 etc, or Volkl AC30, 50 etc. among others.

Of course skinny-waisted race/carvers give the very best ice performance but are less versatile if you venture into tress etc.
post #11 of 23
 I'd have to agree with RiDeC58.  I owned a pair of Watea 84's and skied them a lot in the East.  They did remarkably well on hard conditions and yes even ice.  However when I returned to a pair of Blizzard WC Slalom skis it was night and day different as far as edge hold and carving shorter turns.

This year I will be on Fischer Progressor 8+ mostly (and the Blizzards.)  Demoing the Fischers last year impressed me a lot with their versatility.   Worth checking out.
post #12 of 23
I appreciate the thoughts on these skis.
I asked because I bought Red Heats (74mm waist) last season and was thinking of picking up a bit wider ski at some point this season. I had been thinking of something like a Blizzard 8.1, maybe that would be better for the hard snow/ice conditions that we see a lot of. I'd sure try a Watea if I could get a demo.
post #13 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virtus_Probi View Post

 I had been thinking of something like a Blizzard 8.1, maybe that would be better for the hard snow/ice conditions that we see a lot of. I'd sure try a Watea if I could get a demo.
After skiing both the Watea and the Blizzard 8.1 under the same conditions a day apart, I pulled the trigger on the 8.1.  As good as the Watea's were I liked the 8.1's better.
post #14 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Louie View Post
After skiing both the Watea and the Blizzard 8.1 under the same conditions a day apart, I pulled the trigger on the 8.1.  As good as the Watea's were I liked the 8.1's better.
 

Very interesting data point, UL, thank you.
I'm pretty sure that I can demo the Blizzards on my home hill. I almost got the feeling that Ski magazine liked the 7.6 more than the 8.1, but I feel that the former is too close in width to my old ski to make much sense for me.

Seems like the Fischer Cold Heat (which probably has a new name this year) might be worth trying based upon its size, but I never hear any buzz about it. I'm interested in the Head IM 82, but that one would probably be tough for me to demo.

 

post #15 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virtus_Probi View Post

Very interesting data point, UL, thank you.
I'm pretty sure that I can demo the Blizzards on my home hill. I almost got the feeling that Ski magazine liked the 7.6 more than the 8.1, but I feel that the former is too close in width to my old ski to make much sense for me.

Seems like the Fischer Cold Heat (which probably has a new name this year) might be worth trying based upon its size, but I never hear any buzz about it. I'm interested in the Head IM 82, but that one would probably be tough for me to demo.

 


Here is a link to an additional review of the 8.1. (actually part a combo review of the 8.1 and 8.7 on the same day)

shop.starthaus.com/store/pc/viewPrd.asp


SJ
post #16 of 23
Thanks for the link, SJ...interesting review.
Also, that is a super attractive price you have there for the '09!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraJim View Post

Here is a link to an additional review of the 8.1. (actually part a combo review of the 8.1 and 8.7 on the same day)

shop.starthaus.com/store/pc/viewPrd.asp

SJ
 
post #17 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virtus_Probi View Post

Thanks for the link, SJ...interesting review.
Also, that is a super attractive price you have there for the '09!!
 


 

You can also read the review of the 8.7 as a counterpoint to the 8.1. I tested them on the same day and the subtle differences are there for the reading. When you digest both reviews, I think you can get a pretty good idea of this portion of the Blizzi lineup is all about.

SJ
post #18 of 23

Love Sugarbush and Mad River!  Are these really skiable in the 2-foot dumps?  I laugh at those folks that say the East has no powder.  They probably frequent Holiday Valley (NY) or god forbid the Poconos (PA).  Not quite like Sugarbush.  I'm torn b/n the Watea 78s and the Legend 8000s.  The seemingly better edge grip of the Watea's (based on various reviews, not personal testing) is weighing on me.  I generally don't even bother on the bulletproof ice days - not much fun for me.  And I'd look to add (or rent) a powder ski to the quiver for the big big days or out west.    

post #19 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkazzi View Post

  Are these really skiable in the 2-foot dumps?  I laugh at those folks that say the East has no powder. 

The day I tested them where I went (Breckenridge) was a north facing slope in tight trees.  There was about 24-28" of week old powder that remains fresh due to the direction it faces and the trees.  I did not hit bottom on the Watea's.

I'm a former Eastern guy and I agree they do get powder there but it is almost always denser than the western stuff.  Given that, the Watea should do quite well keeping in mind it isn't a powder ski.

I'd demo both skis you are considering.  I demo'ed each about a day apart under symilar conditions and they do ski differently. My review ot the 8000's are here somewhere on Epic also.  Both were fun.
post #20 of 23
Thanks UL.  I have read and enjoyed several of your reviews (Watea 78s, Recons, Legend 8Ks).  Great detail you provide in terms of snow conditions and what you try to do witht the skis/vs. what you can do with the skis/vs. what the ski "wants" to do.  I''m a bit heavier than you (about 195 lbs, 5"11"), so the smoothness of the Wateas sounds appealing.  Because I want a ski I can maneuver in the bumps, I'm leaning toward 172s (for the 8Ks).  I've been on Volant Macheste Soul 170s for 5 years, before that K2 Four 178s.  I don't think I want to go back to 178s....but based on several comments here, others would argue that's the best for my size/shape ;-) 
post #21 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkazzi View Post
  Because I want a ski I can maneuver in the bumps, I'm leaning toward 172s (for the 8Ks). 
Something to consider here at EPIC when you read what folks think about length is where they ski.  In general eastern bumps are a bit tighter and their shape a bit more sharp and cut then western bumps.  A bit shorter here would help.  Keep that in mind if the ski is going to be an "eastern bump ski".  (some will argue that too  )
post #22 of 23

I was thinking about the RX 8 or the volk ac 30 or even the kendo as well. I know those three skis would be better on the ice and hard pack but what about in the bumps

post #23 of 23

I replaced my RX8s with the Progressor 8+ last spring.  Very happy.  Great hard snow grip yet easy to ski at a variety of speeds.  Works well in bumps and even a little bit of powder.  A great eastern daily driver and a definite step up from the RX8.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TFull View Post

I was thinking about the RX 8 or the volk ac 30 or even the kendo as well. I know those three skis would be better on the ice and hard pack but what about in the bumps

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