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Help complete my Tahoe two-pair-quiver: K2 Extreme or Line Prophet 90?

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 

Hi all.  I guess it's my turn to stimulate the economy.

 

I am: 5'8", 155-160 pounds, PSIA 7-8.  I'm a recent transplant to the Bay Area, and am getting well-acquainted with the joys of Lake Tahoe.

 

I just picked up a pair of Volkl Gotamas ('08/'09, 176cm) w/Marker Barons when I decided that what passed for wide skis in SoCal (K2 PE, 174cm) was really a groomer ski here.  And over the course of this season I also decided that my prior groomer skis (Salomon Equipe 10 SC, 155cm) for small SoCal hills were pretty much snowblades here.

 

So I want a pair of groomer/bump skis to accompany my Gotamas.  I am looking at K2 Extremes (169cm) and Line Prophet 90's (172cm).  My preference is something that'll hold a good carve (something I know about the Extreme/PE, but have heard about the Prophet 90), but is maneuverable enough for bumps (shortish, Twips).  It is unlikely that I will do much park, so either pair will be mounted back near "boot center" or "freeride" or whatever facilitates carving rather than spinning or switch.

 

What do y'all think?

 

Thanks for any and all feedback.

post #2 of 29

Just go with the Goats and keep the edges sharp for groomers instead of getting a 90mm-ish 2nd pair.  I have Goats and had a pair of Mojo 90s, which I liked, but didn't use much because I was always on the Goats.  I sold the Mojos and I'm putting the money toward a new, reduced Squaw pass for $470, with just a few blackout days.  my $.02...

post #3 of 29

Dino makes a good point but if you really want a ski to rock the bumps with when there hasn't been a lot of fresh...the Gotama isn't the best choice.  I own the Gotama and ski it a lot...but if there hasn't been much fresh and I want to hit lots of bumps its just a bit too wide to truly zipperline tight bumps.  I had the PEs (what is now the Extremes) and they are a good bump ski.  I think they'll be better than the P-90s b/c the Propehts have a sheet of metal in them.  The metal will make them stiffer and not quite as fun the bumps.  I hope that helps.  PS..I also think you should size up on both skis...they both ski fairly short.  

post #4 of 29

If switch and spinning etc. is not on your agenda, then there's little reason for a twin. Two very good non twins to consider are the Fischer Watea 84 and the Dynastar Legend 8000. Both are directional skis with small kicktails and will be better performers for what you are asking. If you just want a twin, my preference between the two is the Prophet.

 

SJ

post #5 of 29
Thread Starter 

Thanks for all the feedback.  And here comes the apology...

 

I went lateral and picked up a pair of Volkl AC50's (170cm, from Tramdock).  Sorry about the wild goose chase with the Extremes and Prophets.

 

I kept carving and stability as priorities (may have neglected to mention the latter), but decided that I could sacrifice bump-ability.  Another reason was the bindings:  I need a low ramp angle, and the new Markers had that without requiring any diddling on my part.  I really couldn't be bothered these days to fabricate a Lexan shim of appropriate thickness, which I had to do for the Look PX12's on my PE's.  (Aside: It seems like most of TGR is in a fit about the "flatness" of the new Markers...  while I rejoiced, LOL.)  I would also have to say that Captain Strato's quiver-of-two was also influential.

 

However, I do wonder if I bought the right size.  Do you guys/gals think I can properly motivate these things?  I'm strong enough to adapt to most setups, but of course I would ideally like to ENJOY them.  I can still cancel or return the order if necessary.

post #6 of 29

Man, you really did make a leap there!  Those are pretty stout skis and will be tough in the bumps.  You'll probably want the Goats for bump days even thought they are wider.
 

 

Not sure about the length, but should be ok if you stay on top of them.  I love the power of Volkl carving skis, but you can't get sloppy in your technique or they will kick your ass.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DtEW View Post

 

I went lateral and picked up a pair of Volkl AC50's (170cm, from Tramdock).  Sorry about the wild goose chase with the Extremes and Prophets.

 

 

However, I do wonder if I bought the right size.  Do you guys/gals think I can properly motivate these things?  I'm strong enough to adapt to most setups, but of course I would ideally like to ENJOY them.  I can still cancel or return the order if necessary.


 

post #7 of 29

For a groomer ski, you bought the right size. For a bump ski, you bought the wrong ski.

 

SJ

post #8 of 29

I'm not sure I undrestand the choice either....unless you just wanted them for something else.  That's not a ski I would ride in the bumps--the length notwithstanding.  Its going to be some work.  You can always return them if you have second thoughts.  I can't really comment on length b/c I prefer longer skis...a lot of folks do not.

post #9 of 29

Don't entirely agree with my esteemed colleagues. They spend too much time skining between Squaw and Alpine.   Squaw or Heavenly groomers can have ice that even approaches the real stuff back east. Meaning that if you already have a Goat, getting a 85-90 twin that isn't optimized for hard surfaces - and no twin can be, because of the tail - is silly. Haven't skied the 50's but skied 170 4's and 40's in bumps, not my first choice but plenty quick, prefer to carve or wiggle through the troughs rather than pivot or roll over the shoulders. Assume this holds if you add a coupla millimeters. And stiff enough to bust through rubble in the valleys. So be energetic in the bumps and you'll be fine, you'll love the grip elsewhere. 

post #10 of 29

As in all things ski related, it comes down to priorities and conditions. I have skied primarily in Tahoe for 30 years (with a 4 yr. hiatus in Stowe). IME, the times when the snow hard enough to even resemble a hard snow day in the east is maybe 5%. Even at worst, usually we'll have rocklike stuff for an hour or so in the AM then softening after that.

 

So what about this priority thing?

 

If you prioritize the brief periods of western bulletproof, then a ski with ice pick grip makes sense. OTH, that type of ski sacrifices something in shallow crud, bumps, and the mixed conditions where normally an 80-90mm ski would get a lot of use. Generally, those ice pick skis are more work and less fun because they actually grip too hard. 

 

Yep....same old story.....no free lunch. Pick yer priorities and live with the rest.

 

SJ

post #11 of 29

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraJim View Post

 

I have skied primarily in Tahoe for 30 years (with a 4 yr. hiatus in Stowe). IME, the times when the snow hard enough to even resemble a hard snow day in the east is maybe 5%. Even at worst, usually we'll have rocklike stuff for an hour or so in the AM then softening after that.

 

OK, time to trot out symbolic capital.  Let's see: First skied at Tahoe in winter of 1958. (Yeah, the one where you could stand in the middle of Tahoe City, look out at the embankment that drops off to the lake, and see snow up to your eye level. Used to be a tree with a marker on its trunk, in fact.) Relatives and grandparents owned up there, so by 1960 was living near Tahoe City summers and over winter school break, that went on for about 15 years, then skied there about 2-3 weeks each winter for another 10 years, then moved out of California, but have continued to ski there most winters when I visit people in SF. Adds up to 51 years, but I bet fewer total days than SJ. Plus sure he's a far better skier. And spent a lot of time in Sacramento, so he deserves points for sheer tenacity. 

 

All that said, I think his 5% figure is just nuts. Siberia at Squaw came to define "scratchy" for me as a kid. The Valley Run was the original Ski Cross on an ice rink, collisions every 10 feet. Red Dog had whole weeks where the bumps were too hard for anyone to ski, even patrol guys. I'd like to say I've noticed a great improvement, say due to global warming, but that would be lying. If anything, the winters have more thaws, and definitely less total snowpack, than back in the day.  Heard a bit on NR that the NW has half the snowpack at the end of the season it had 50 years ago. Suspect similar for Tahoe. 

 

Now our disagreement may reflect where we ski - I've mostly skied Squaw and Alpine over the years, a bit at Sugar Bowl, Heavenly and Northstar, only a few times at Kirkwood. (And a bunch as a little kid at Granlibachen. RIP )  I notice that coming from Sacto, SJ has spent a lot of time at Sugar Bowl and Kirkwood, both of which are less exposed to the wind, so maybe I just have been randomly assigned sucky snow. Or maybe he just blots out the horrible stuff at Squaw. 

 

Or it may reflect different definitions of eastern ice. Notice, Jim, that I said "approaches" eastern conditions. Nothing out west actually reaches them. 

 

But I'll hold my ground here. I also know Tahoe, and sorry, but it gets sh**loads of, ah, very hard snow. And our new climate will continue to make sure that's true.

post #12 of 29
Quote:

Yep....same old story.....no free lunch. Pick yer priorities and live with the rest.

 

Edited for afterthought:

 

Ummmm.........how wuz the grooming in '58? how 'bout '68?.....78????

 

 

SJ


Edited by SierraJim - 3/19/2009 at 08:30 pm
post #13 of 29
Thread Starter 

Thanks again for the feedback, everyone.  I didn't mean to ignite a debate as to what constitutes Tahoe conditions, but it's been interesting to listen nonetheless.

 

My limited experience with Tahoe (esp. compared to SJ) hasn't seen much ice on-piste.  Sometimes it's a *little* icy in limited areas for a couple of morning hours, but for the most part conditions vary between medium to soft.  As such, a narrow carver (66mm waist, like my tiny Salomons) was something I really didn't consider this time 'round.  Of course, I ended up buying a wide carver (AC50).

 

I guess part of it was impulse buy (Tramdock, flipped a coin three times, 1/8 chance?), but based upon prior knowledge and admiration of these sticks in real-life on the feet other others.  The other part was that I clarified what I liked:  some of my most enjoyable skiing memories are that of carving deep railroads on fresh morning corduroy on a half-deserted mountain.  This was partially reflected in my original choices; the PE/Extreme is a surprisingly good mid-radius carver for a Twip, and the Prophet 90 is actually billed as capable of deep GS-turns.

 

So why did I initially go for a shorter Twip?  Here's the admittedly bizarre rationale:  I don't like bumps.  I don't remember ever having a good time in a mogul field.  It was always a matter of negotiating them just so I can ski the rest of the run.  So why optimize at all for them?  So they wouldn't be as annoying.  Of course, this holds fine as long as the adjustment doesn't significantly compromise what I'm really enjoying.  This holds for the Twips, at least for me.

 

But when suddenly faced with something that would heighten my enjoyment of what I liked for groomers (carving), the AC50's detriment in the bumps kinda got shoved into the corner.  I figured I'll deal with that as I always did: withstand the bumps, enjoy the carving.  Just like Jim said, pick yer priorities and live with the rest.

 

(Also, less functional overlap with my Gotamas.)

post #14 of 29
Thread Starter 

On another thought, I do like the flex of my K2 PE (174cm), perhaps could be a touch firmer and the rebound a touch livelier.  Is the AC50 (170cm) that much harder to flex?

post #15 of 29

Only about a million times more.  The PE is medium-soft on my scale, whereas the AC50 is extra-stiff.

post #16 of 29
Thread Starter 

Ugh.  Not good.  Seriously?  ( I mean not literally, but over twice as stiff?)

 

I cancelled the order before it was shipped.

 

post #17 of 29

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DtEW View Post

 

Ugh.  Not good.  Seriously?  ( I mean not literally, but over twice as stiff?)

 

I cancelled the order before it was shipped.

 

I think you did the right thing.  There are lots of great skis that will suit your needs better than the AC50.  It's a very good ski for what it does well, but I don't think it's what you were looking for as a complement to the Goats.

post #18 of 29

Damn, I just came into the thread sideways and now we're canceling orders?!?!  I stand by what I said, but didn't mean to cause a panic. 

 

Let me throw out a recommendation -- 4FRNT MSP.  I'll try to write up a review over the weekend if I can.  As a bonus for you impulse buyers, it's been showing up on Tramdock for about $320.

post #19 of 29

For what its worth, I think you did the right thing cancelling the order prior to shipment.  Given your requirements, it really didn't seem like the right ski.  So what are you thinking now?

post #20 of 29
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by skier219 View Post

 

Damn, I just came into the thread sideways and now we're canceling orders?!?!  I stand by what I said, but didn't mean to cause a panic.

 

Ah, what's a bull-or-two in a china shop.

 

("Szechuan beef noodle soup" would be the punchline.)

 

Actually, it was something I was already becoming concerned about from SJ's comments.  I did know that the AC50 would require a more aggressive skiing style, but everything is a matter of degrees.  More aggressive than the PE, say up the aggression by 33-50%?  Sign me up.  In a whole different world than the PE?  Uhhh...

 

I mean, I figure I could possibly make it work in short moments of shiny glory.  But again, it's a matter of degrees, including my enjoyment of the skis.

 

I dunno what'd consider next.  I think SJ's recommendation of the Dynastar Legend 8000 is interesting, but I called SierraSkis and couldn't find out about the binding ramp angle/delta of those PX12's as part of the Fluid system (I need something about ~2-3mm and no more).  Another alternative would be the first-mentioned Prophet 90s and a pair of Griffins.  I don't know much about the MSPs.  Is there metal in it?

post #21 of 29

I think you did the right thing. If you are going for a 2ski quiver I think a narrower ski might make more sense than either the PE or the P90.

 

If you want versatile carvy check out the legend 8000 or the Contact 4X4. Srsly.

post #22 of 29

AC50 would have worked, just wouldn't have been the best option for your money, which is the bottom line when you're building a quiver. 

 

No metal in the MSP, but it's stiffer and a lot more refined than the PE.  But no worries, not too stiff .

post #23 of 29

The reason that I'm not real high on the AC-50 for a western skier is high torsional stiffness. Yeah, it's stiff longitudinally too and that's not great but that's not the biggest drawback. Tahoe generally isn't "icy". It does get firm from time to time but it's just not the same thing as when the Easties talk about ice.

 

The deal with high torsional stiffness is that while it does give you grip (that's good) it can be too grippy (that's bad). One might axe "how can you have too much edge grip"??

 

Imagine looking down into "the"Slot" at SV or "our Father" at Alpine on the day after a 8" storm. You have half formed moguls, hard scratchy spots intermixed with soft crud piles. A ski that is too stiff torsionally wants to lock you into a carve when what you really want to do is break the tails free and skid 'em a little. It's not the end of the world, you probably wouldn't like DIE, but it's just harder work (and I'm all about easy).

 

The ramp angle on the fluid system is very close to flat.

 

The L8K is also available without bindings and a Griffon would be a good call on that one. The L8K is more versatile than the P90, the PE, or any other twip I can think of.

 

SJ

post #24 of 29
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the insight, SJ.  I will take my Goats up to Tahoe this Sunday (yes, storm!) and consider it.

 

Talking to Mike(?) @ SierraSkis, I may have to pre-buy the Legend 8000 Fluid for them to bring it out of inventory for me to measure the ramp angle/delta when I stop by the Sac store.  I do very much like my PX12 on the PEs (except for part about having to make a shim).

post #25 of 29

 

DtEW, if you want a good all mountain carver to complement your Goats, and got buyer's remorse over the 50's, all good. Strongly advise you go see Sierra Jim or PTex about some Blizzards, probably the 8.1 would make the best fit. Elan 82 Ti's would also rip, and Dawgcatching may still have a pair or two. 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by SierraJim View Post

 

Edited for afterthought:

 

Ummmm.........how wuz the grooming in '58? how 'bout '68?.....78????

 

Hmmm.  Given that a most of our mountains in the east depend on man made, and often 100% of all runs are blown and 80% are groomed to friggin death every night, I'd say not as thorough as here for any decade in question. Only a few oddball places like Mad River Glen ("Ski It If You Can!") still valorize unpulverized snow. Even Stowe and K are slowly caving. So ahyup, we do groom hard back here, have since I first skied here in the 70's. Oddly, we still get ice. Could it be the weather?

 

As far as Tahoe, maybe historians of grooming (are there such people?) could help me. Don't recall much grooming in 58 except the greens, and some was even by rake-like jobs skiers towed. Old race course technology. But groomers were for sissy beginners anyway. Mostly favored Alpine after it opened; Alex Cushing was Enemy of the People and Squaw was rumored to cut corners on maintenance (turns out they did, too). We liked Squaw for the old ice arena with the big plaster statues, Alpine for the saner ambiance. 

 

By 68 at Squaw and Alpine they groomed much of what they do today but not as often, as in like once after a storm to create a deeper base, and then wait for more new snow. Of course didn't have the winches and small units for anything steep. Which was why back in the day, a good skier was defined almost entirely by his/her ability in moguls. Big bumps were a given for any diamond run and most blues. (Think about what KT22 means. Used to actually be tough to ski.) But real change IMO wasn't until 90's, when boomers' aging knees converged with this new sport called snowboarding. So was Squaw better groomed last year than in 58? Ahyup. The pants weren't creased, either. 

 

None of which changes the laws of sun, thaws, wind, altitude, and settlement. Or the fact that the Tahoe areas I mentioned got nice and hard by 1 pm last year when I skied them, and were skating rinks by the 3 pm shadows. Or the year before that. Come on, Jim, just admit Tahoe on average  (yes I know about Vail this year) has scratchier groomed and stiffer crud, regardless of grooming, than the Rockies, sometimes nearly as bad as an average day back east. There, doesn't that feel better to get it off your chest? It's OK, we all still love Tahoe. Very special place..

 

Edited by beyond - 3/20/2009 at 04:15 am
post #26 of 29
Quote:

Jim, just admit Tahoe on average  (yes I know about Vail this year) has scratchier groomed and stiffer crud, regardless of grooming, than the Rockies, sometimes nearly as bad as an average day back east. There, doesn't that feel better to get it off your chest? It's OK, we all still love Tahoe. Very special place..

Well heck, of course it does. I don't recall Colorado being part of the discussion though. Actually, maybe it's just that we tune our skis out here (heck we even use files) I hear folks in Co. don't know what those are.

 

SJ

 

 

post #27 of 29

yo,

 I think that the AC50 would have been fine for your skinny ski, and except for bumps, it is better for your weight and ability than all the others mentioned...you will be tired at the end of the day, but you will have a killer day!   I'm 5 lbs or so lighter than you...

I spent last week at Sugar bowl, Alpine  and Homewood, and I found that I liked it as well as my up-to-now favorite ski, the Blizzard 174 8.7 Magnum, which my son was going nuts on....

 

Just my $.02

post #28 of 29

I will offer another vote for Legend 8k.  It as my first "wide" ski a little while back...it now feels like a carver to me.  That said, it is a really nice bump ski--great flex and carves very clean.  I will always hold on to my 8ks.  That and the Gots is a really solid 2 ski quiver that covers just about all conditions out there except for Change your Life deep conditions.

post #29 of 29

What about the Head IM82?  Seems to fit all your criteria...

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