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Versatile Skis - Love my bumps - but need out west powder - Mantras ?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

Hi Folks


I'm primarily an East Coast skier but make a number of trips out west each year and LOVE It.  I ski on narrow K2 Axis XT.  I'm an aggressive but smooth bump skier but love to just play in the glades, on the steep bowls out west, and love to try to find a little untracked powder.


I'd like to get a ski that I can take in the powder but also be able to kick back on piste and run the bumps.  (West coast bumps are so much softer and nicer than east coast bumps... can't get enough).


So I demo'd Mantra's on a marginal ski condition day last year.  Really liked them but didn't get to test them too much - got too foggy/white out.  Any suggestions on skis that other folks have enjoyed for the combo of bumps and powder.  I know I'm not asking much !!


Thanks - Dave

post #2 of 5

I ski all over the Rockies, and see a lot of folks (including patrol) on Mantras.  They are a good all around ski.  I have about a half dozen friends skiing them, and it always amazes me how well the do in the bumps, considering they have a 96mm waist, and a rather stiff tail.  Mantras have quite a bit of sidecut, so if you stay on the front of them, they make a good bump ski but, like most Volkls, they are not for the timid or wimpy.  If you've got the game, they are probably still one of the best choices for a 50/50 ski, although the trend seems to be going even wider these days.


Another option is the Watea 94, which has almost identical dimensions to the Mantra, but is a bit softer flexing, so it's a little more forgiving in the bumps, and playful in the powder, but does not rail the hardpack as well.

Edited by mudfoot - 9/16/10 at 9:58am
post #3 of 5

Mantras are nice all around skis. Wouldn't be my choice for either a bump ski or a pow ski, mine only really come out on hard snow days.


However, in saying that I find mine fine in the bumps, but they are kinda stiff for bumps so you have to be a decent bump skier.


Mantras are still my pick for an all around ski, even with all these new models coming out.

post #4 of 5

I ski out west and have lived in Tahoe for aboooot 30 years or so. I also am a ski retailer and have access to about anything I want. Having owned two Mantras over the last four years, I can comfortably say that it is not the ski I would buy for western skiing if I could only have one. Given your particular emphasis on bumps and powder, it would be nearly at the bottom of my list as it is not nearly as good in those conditions as several other skis within the general width range.


Some better alternatives..................


Dynastar Sultan 94

Fischer Watea 94

Line Prophet 90

Salomon Sentinel



post #5 of 5

Search this site for threads on the OSQ (one-ski-quiver) for West coast, and you should fine more information than you need.  


I am with SJ on most of his recommendations, and he certainly is much more informed than I am.  I personally ski the 94mm Head, and like it quite a bit (in Tahoe), but that's just what I have.   A lot of instructors here ski Mantras, but you should not pay attention to that as they may be able to get pro deals on that ski, or like the prestige, or geniunely like that ski, who knows...  My impression has always been that Mantra has too stiff of a tail to be a truly versatile ski out West, you can ski it, but there are better options.   As a rule, most guys who ski Mantras also have a pair of fatties for a powder day.  

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