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What to demo? Tahoe skier looking to add "all mountain" ski to quiver ...

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I'm looking for suggestions from the brain trust.  I currently am skiing on a pair of K2 Axis 174's, which are great on the groomed hardpack, but really aren't particularly happy when there's crud, any reasonable amount of powder, or "afternoon bumps" ... not surprising, since they're 70mm underfoot.

I do most of my skiing at Northstar (good fit for us, since my wife is a low-level intermediate, so there's lots of terrain to keep her happy). Would love to be able to explore more of the trees, and to enjoy the days when there's crud on the mountain a bit more.  Also working on developing bump technique.

I'm an advanced skier (not truly expert, sadly), age 47, 6'1", 215#.  Based on some early research, I'm considering the Blizzard Magnum 8.7 and Dynastar Sultan 85's as potential skis to demo, and would love other opinions as well.  I'm hoping that whatever I end up buying basically becomes the "daily driver", and the K2's only come out on "pure groomer / it hasn't snowed in a week" kind of days ...
post #2 of 10
The Dynastar Big Trouble ('09)/Sixth Sense Big ('10 - same ski, different name) would be something to try as well.
post #3 of 10
IMO, the 85-87mm width is a tweener and most of the skis I tried in that width were not that great in crud/cut up pow; I'd go wider.  I've had a pair of 183 2007 Volkl Gotamas (105mm) as my one ski quiver/daily driver in Tahoe for 3 years (46 y/o, 6'1", 170#s).   Any of the Gotamas from 2007-2009 make good daily drivers for what you're talking about, and you can find deals on them that are even better than the current spring sales.  SierraJim had a lot of posts on these before.  The 2010 Gotamas have tip rise, and IMO, aren't as versatile. 

I'll be in Tahoe this weekend, and if you want to hook up, you can check out my Gotamas.  I'd sell them for $275 in person with Salomon Z12ti demo bindings (DIN goes to 12) that can adjust to whatever boot size you need.  These are in good shape with no base/edge issues at all.  I got a pair of 4FRNT CRJs and am moving forward...

FWIW, Tahoe Daves is selling their 09 Gotama demos for $500. 
post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 
I will definitely check out the wider skis as well (95-110 mm). I plan to head over to Start Haus and have a chat with SierraJim if possible, as I'm sure he'll have some great opinions. I may not get back up for a few weeks ... was there last weekend, but given the conditions, my carvers were exactly the right ski to have on!  The Gotama's certainly sound interesting ...
post #5 of 10
I recommend trying the '10 Gotamas.  I demoed them twice this year and then purchased.  They are a very fun ski to ride and handle all conditions well (except hard ice).  Give them at least five runs before switching out.  Good luck.
post #6 of 10
 The Sultan 85 is an excellent choice.  However I think you will find that it obsoletes your K2s all together.  I have no doubt the Sultan 85 is a better ski than the Axis all across the spectrum, even for carving.  It's very capable.  So, if you were set on keeping the K2s as your skinny carver skis, then I'd go wider and maybe softer than the Sultan.  Something in the 94-100mm range would be a good choice.  The Fischer Watea 94 is a very good powder/crud ski as long as the snow is light and soft.  It's one of the best choices in that category in recent years.  If you think the snow will tend to heavier, and maybe involve some hardpack, then the Head Mojo 94 (aka "the John") is a great choice.  It's awesome in spring snow too.  Dynatsar Mythic is a good choice as well, though I'd probably swing back to the Sultan 85 in that case.  Perhaps the best option is next year's Sultan 94.
post #7 of 10
All good posts but I think you might not feel the Goat suitable on Northstar's terrain.  Try the Volkl Bridge (shouldn't be hard to find a demo) or the 4frnt MSP (that will be hard to find a demo;Porters in Truckee perhaps)? 
post #8 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by BearX1 View Post

I recommend trying the '10 Gotamas.  I demoed them twice this year and then purchased.  They are a very fun ski to ride and handle all conditions well (except hard ice).  Give them at least five runs before switching out.  Good luck.

did you ski on hte katanas at all?
post #9 of 10
Also keep in mind that if you want to support the local guy instead of sending your money to china. Then there are some pretty fine ski's being pressed in your area.
post #10 of 10
we certainly want to use our dollars wisely, and support American companies every chance we get, but are the Tahoe/Reno ski companies really pressing anything for intermediates at Northstar? Not to my knowlege in that particular category. but, good thought none-the-less. 
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