Originally Posted by segbrown
By the way, what didn't you like about the Gotamas? You're like the first person I've heard who didn't like them. And I have read raves on the 2010 Kiku ... but I think the 2009 was more like an older-style Goat ...
Yeah it's this ski's near universal popularity that drew me to them without demo'ing them first. Believe it or not though there are lots of posts damning Volkl for making them progressively stiffer and thereby leaving us with the ski we have today...a minority opinion I should have heeded....
The Goat's are great in many conditions (i.e., semi-packed, variable, crud, bumps), but my Watea 84's are as good or better in these conditions and can handle harder conditions to-boot. I bought the Goat's to be my in-bounds deep snow ski (I spend alot of time tree-skiing @ Steamboat where lots of deep untracked snow can be found even when the snow report didn't say "dump"). In these conditions they seem too torsionally rigid to float well without: a) sitting back quite a bit (not my preferred technique nor good in tight trees), and/or b) speed (fine for most situations except tight trees). They also want to seek bedrock and carve - they don't take well to powder-oriented turning techniques such as smearing and swiveling. In fact, in many deeper snow conditions (i.e.,., lighter and consistent) they are also no better then my W84's and overall are worse powder skis than my former 90mm K2 AK "noodle" Launchers (with the hassle of hauling an additional 15mm width around).
Can I ski them in all sorts of powder well - yes (just like I could ski powder on my old 65mm, 195cm GS skis), but they take way too much muscle and energy than that expected from a 105mm boat. I'm gonna go out on a limb and say that they are popular despite my impressions because:
- Most skiers on the 176cm version probably weigh much more than I do (I've seen 200lb guys on this length). OTOH I wasn't going to buy them in the 168cm, which is a ridiculously short ski.
- Most skiers use them more as a one-ski quiver and praise it for its versatility. I'd also bet that many of them don't take them into truly deep snow and/or tight trees. These skis have that cachet that attracts all sorts of skier abilities skiiing all sorts of terrain (rather than just experts focusing on challenging off-piste conditions).
I wanted a ski that was very good in all forms of deep snow with just enough edge-grip to make the short groomed run stretches back to the lifts not as harrowing as that for an uber-wide fully rockered powder ski. Instead I got a ski that's too well-designed for those short groomed runs and not soft enough for deep snow (at least under my 5'5" 130lbs frame).