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Any advice on the Hellbents for Skiing trees- Steamboat-like terrain

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 

Drooling over the Hellbents for pow days skiing trees and such like at Steamboat. Not a lot of bowls or open area's, tighter terrain, small 5' foot drops and such, jibbing around. Any thoughts or suggestions. Looking at the 179's I can't wait until Icelantic Rockers come out.....

 

 

post #2 of 20

Hear you, also always looking for the definitive tree ski. Good buzz about Liberty for trees, obviously Icelantics, and can testify for my Lhasa Pows as long as it's soft. Have always liked the way Goats wiggle through trees as long as there's a little room. Thinking these days about the new Wateas. Problem I run into back here is that woods are tight, real pow lasts about a half day and then your ski better be designed to handle bumps, exposed roots/undercrap, and lines not found in nature. Understand Steamboat is different, lucky you. 

post #3 of 20
Thread Starter 

yes, a little different.. These are for days with around a foot and piled up crap. I love my Icelantic Nomads for less than that and the next couple days after dump where there's plenty of stashes around. I am ordering a pair of the new Nomad Softs for that. Sierra is blowing the Hellbents out at 350 shipped.....

post #4 of 20

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post

 

yes, a little different.. These are for days with around a foot and piled up crap. I love my Icelantic Nomads for less than that and the next couple days after dump where there's plenty of stashes around. I am ordering a pair of the new Nomad Softs for that. Sierra is blowing the Hellbents out at 350 shipped.....

I believe there is some serious dumpage out west.  Why not go out there, pick up the Hellbents and go on a powder chasing tour?

I Double Dog Dare ya!

post #5 of 20
Thread Starter 

You know I just got off the phone about 2 minutes ago with my friend Jon in Steamboat, he was calling me from the trees where he's skiing in about 2 feet of fresh..... Mean while, Phils up at Buf' pass rippin in over 2' of fresh today and it's still puking up there......Me? Yeah, I'm in Nj, been working since 7:45 on a project..... This is really killing me, no really.....

post #6 of 20

I feel your pain Finn!  I'm sitting here in the office working on a 55 degree rainy day in Pittsburgh while my friend lives in Park City where they have 3-4 feet of new fresh snow
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post

 

You know I just got off the phone about 2 minutes ago with my friend Jon in Steamboat, he was calling me from the trees where he's skiing in about 2 feet of fresh..... Mean while, Phils up at Buf' pass rippin in over 2' of fresh today and it's still puking up there......Me? Yeah, I'm in Nj, been working since 7:45 on a project..... This is really killing me, no really.....


 

post #7 of 20

This is Bushwacker's territory. He's pretty familiar with those. Advice I believe is to go long.

post #8 of 20

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tog View Post

 

This is Bushwacker's territory. He's pretty familiar with those. Advice I believe is to go long.

 

wish I would have owned them but only skied them.

 

Honestly 179 is the right lenght. Its measures super long. Jakecast is on that size and that is the size Id go for in this ski.

 

I dont know if it good at Steamboat but its damn good tight tree powder skis.

 

I

post #9 of 20

 No need to go as long as for something more reverse/reverse. The "bread and butter" length in the Hell Bent is the 179 (which is really a 185). Especially for skiing tighter places like dense trees & chutes.

 

FWIW, we have all 3 lengths in the house and probably close to 200 days total on that part of the family's "sub-quiver". Unless you are solidly north of 200 pounds, do the 179 for the stated purpose. Nimble as hell for a ski with sidecut. It is, in fact, a surprisingly all-around ski. Although I admit on deep days - especially heavy ones -  I usually turn to something like a Praxis or Kuro... The rest of the family tends to stick with Hell Bents or EP Pros...

 

Oh, do not let anyone talk you much behind +7.5 or +7. And definitely not a mm behind +6. 

post #10 of 20

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by spindrift View Post

 

 

 

Oh, do not let anyone talk you much behind +7.5 or +7. And definitely not a mm behind +6. 

 

Are you talking 7.5 cm in front of the marked mounting point? Are they really that far off? Wow.

post #11 of 20

As K2 "team" skis, the Hell Bents have a large mounting range - in this case marked. zero to +7.5. +7.5 is "core center". On some production runs, there was a "recommended mark - I think at +2 (I'm too lazy to go down and look...).

 

Consensus seems to be that the rearward marks (notably the "recommended" one)were put there to satisfy people with a traditional "drive through the tips" vs a "centered" style. Especially to allow the tail to sink in powder for folks not used to that type of ski. The problem is that the ski just is not made to be skied that way. So most people who have used it a bunch seem to suggest +7 or +7.5. While I know some people who have them in the +4 zone, the trend is definitely to go to the forward part of the range. The very switch crowd is sometimes going as far forward as +9.5 - which is "true" center. And, as a side note, corresponds closely to the only recommended mark on the relatively similar EP Pro... I started out at +3 and now use them at +7. One of my kids just move from +7.5 to +9.5. Cloudpeak started at +4 and is now at +7.5. You get the idea...

 

Many threads on this at NS & TGR.

 

 

post #12 of 20

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by beyond View Post

 

Hear you, also always looking for the definitive tree ski. Good buzz about Liberty for trees, obviously Icelantics, and can testify for my Lhasa Pows as long as it's soft. Have always liked the way Goats wiggle through trees as long as there's a little room. Thinking these days about the new Wateas. Problem I run into back here is that woods are tight, real pow lasts about a half day and then your ski better be designed to handle bumps, exposed roots/undercrap, and lines not found in nature. Understand Steamboat is different, lucky you. 

That has to be the perfect description of the conditions I am constantly faced with as well. I would appreciate hearing more about your experiences with different skis in those conditions. Looking for a ski wider (floatier) than my trusty Blizzard Cronus for those deeper days that are similar in performance in trees and tracked up, bumped out trees here in the east.

post #13 of 20

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by spindrift View Post

 

 No need to go as long as for something more reverse/reverse. The "bread and butter" length in the Hell Bent is the 179 (which is really a 185). Especially for skiing tighter places like dense trees & chutes.

 

FWIW, we have all 3 lengths in the house and probably close to 200 days total on that part of the family's "sub-quiver". Unless you are solidly north of 200 pounds, do the 179 for the stated purpose. Nimble as hell for a ski with sidecut. It is, in fact, a surprisingly all-around ski. Although I admit on deep days - especially heavy ones -  I usually turn to something like a Praxis or Kuro... The rest of the family tends to stick with Hell Bents or EP Pros...

 

Oh, do not let anyone talk you much behind +7.5 or +7. And definitely not a mm behind +6. 

 

did you ever stop to think that if your back further than you should be than a big tail will feel better to you....

 

I know what Pollard and Mahre use and they are pretty aft as well.

 

Just saying there are more than one way to ski those skis.

 

post #14 of 20

I know what that ski is like at +3 to +7. I know a bunch of people who have crept further and further forward. I know no one (out of about a half dozen) people who use the ski regularly behind +4. The only person I know personally who skis with the general crowd you reference skis them at +9.5. 

 

Yeah, there comes a point where you are biasing toward skiing backward as much or more than forward. So there is some reasonable threshold for pushing forward. For example, my kid who just pushed to +9.5 spends a bunch of time skiing switch and buttering and blocking and leaving RR tracks every which way - and is used to the feel of EPs on the mark... But the simple reality IMO  is that even when skiing primarily forward, Hell Bents are far more consistent in chop and on harder surfaces when rolled more from the center. And I actually like it better in powder too. 

 

If you know where Mahre and Fujas have them mounted (as in you've seen their skis or talked with them), I'd be genuinely curious to know. I've heard they ski quite forward  (exact position not specified). And use the 179s day to day most places. And run relatively softer boots as they don't need to slam through the tips... Reliable contrary info would be intriguing... As for Pollard (who is not a Hell Bent guy, unless you know something the rest of us do not) - check out the single recommended mark on the EP Pros. Those skis are essentially identical in size to the 179 HB and the EP Pro mark will put you at approximately the equivalent of +9.5 on a Hell Bent (we just did the side by side exercise a week or so ago).

post #15 of 20

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post

 

Drooling over the Hellbents for pow days skiing trees and such like at Steamboat. Not a lot of bowls or open area's, tighter terrain, small 5' foot drops and such, jibbing around. Any thoughts or suggestions. Looking at the 179's I can't wait until Icelantic Rockers come out.....

 

 

 

Never skied the bents.. but this description is spot on most of the xpert skiing at the beav and Praxis 185 work so perfectly in small lines. I see alot of people on bents and EP PRos too. I don't think any of those will be a bad pick.

post #16 of 20

Heh - tromano's post just jogged me a bit  --- to be clear, I'm not claiming the EPs and Hell Bents are overly similar in behavior. Just that the mount point comparison is somewhat interesting given the class of ski they represent.

 

I find them to be different critters. With the EPs much more challenging than HBs. This situation is not helped by my weighing handily over 200 pounds - and being basically mediocre... But I'd describe the EP as a substantially more "subtle" ski in its handling.

 

post #17 of 20


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post

 

Drooling over the Hellbents for pow days skiing trees and such like at Steamboat. Not a lot of bowls or open area's, tighter terrain, small 5' foot drops and such, jibbing around. Any thoughts or suggestions. Looking at the 179's I can't wait until Icelantic Rockers come out.....

 

 


 

Can't state this definitively, since I've not skied 'em, but the 'bents would seem to be more ski than necessary, a bit dicey unless the pow is deep/heavier and the base real soft, and a bit much to haul around tight trees.  If I were to guess, a narrower hybrid rocker like the S7's or JJ's would be better. I've even found my Goats to be a bit much except on the deepest of days, with not much advantage even over my W84's during a lot of others - hard to beat the real light and nimble feel of the W84's in Steamboat trees (though  130lbs makes this possible).  Maybe it's the reall light snow that Steamboat normally gets.  Nevertheless I WILL be trying some of the new narrower hybrid rockers next year (none of the demo shops seemed to have the obSethed's/Czars on the radar this year) to see if they improve on the Goats in Steamboat trees.  As for your needs....

 

P.S. Yeah, spent yesterday blasting the Goats through about 16" over 24" at Copper.  Moving my bindings back 1cm seemed to reduce the tip dive substantially (and they seemed to work better in the few areas of trees I tried).  Wow what a day!

post #18 of 20

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post

 

Drooling over the Hellbents for pow days skiing trees and such like at Steamboat. Not a lot of bowls or open area's, tighter terrain, small 5' foot drops and such, jibbing around. Any thoughts or suggestions. Looking at the 179's I can't wait until Icelantic Rockers come out.....

 

 

If you don't need them now, I would wait until next year's Sidestash is available (if you want to stick with K2).  That is a very quick ski, and will just rail in the terrain you describe.  There is also the Huge Trouble: still a great soft snow ski, zero camber jives better with how I ski, as it has a rocker effect at the tip when it de-cambers (starting from zero, of course) and feels extremely reactive yet a bit more solid in clumpy snow than any of the reverse or tip rockered skis I have tried.   

post #19 of 20
Thread Starter 

well, i do have options, I picked up a pair on sierra since they were going for 350 shipped for bears. Can always sell..... To be honest I was planning on skiing these until the new Icelantic Rockers come out next Jan/Feb, I do plan to use just for the 8-10" plus days. I am fortunate to have a bunch of those days per season and it would be fun to have a ski that I can play on and take into low angle pow fields and all. There are a lot of areas like that at the boat that can sit untracked for days due to not enough pitch in certain areas. A HB is a ski that you can surf enough on to take advantage of those areas.


Edited by Finndog - 3/27/2009 at 08:18 pm
post #20 of 20


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ski-ra View Post

 

Can't state this definitively, since I've not skied 'em, but the 'bents would seem to be more ski than necessary, a bit dicey unless the pow is deep/heavier and the base real soft, and a bit much to haul around tight trees.... 

 

...spent yesterday blasting the Goats through about 16" over 24" at Copper....


 

It's looking like it's really "rocker-envy" on my part, that Ron'll prove me wrong, and I'll be joinin' him soon....  And now that I'm facing reality...yeah, the Goats blasted yesterday, but that was because they needed to inorder to plane up and turn in the heavy snow.

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