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Volkl Kendo Skis for East Coast Steep/Bumps/Trees/Short Quick easy turns?

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

Can anyone recommend the Volkl Ski for an expert skiing East Coast  Steep/Bumps/Trees prefering short quick easy turns on all conditions?     I  I

50%front/50%back. I was looking at the Kendo, but wonder how quick they are, and if they are too stiff in the bumps? I'm looking for effortless lightning quick turns in all conditions. Thanks. Looking at just the Volkl line.

post #2 of 28

For what you are asking, I'd suggest the Volkl Bridge.

post #3 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiteroom View Post

For what you are asking, I'd suggest the Volkl Bridge.


x2 I could actaully see owning both the kendo is no doubt better on hardpack groomers and bumps but the bridge would be better in trees(even hardpack trees) and its that bad on hardpack bumps.

 

 

post #4 of 28
Don't rule out theVolkl AC30. I use mine for exactly what you describe. I fell in love with this ski after only 2 runs off a demo truck. I ski a 170cm and I am 195lbs at 5'9" and consider myself an agressive and strong level 8/9 who loves skiing all over the mountain. The gnarlier the better.

I really think their "Wide Ride" binding system works. For an 80mm underfoot ski, it is amazingly quick edge to edge. A very playful ski.

Good luck,

Rick G

PS I have been wanting to demo the Kendos as well.
post #5 of 28
Thread Starter 

OK, Volkle Bridge or even AC30's, in lieu of Kendos, where I was wooed by those early 5 star reviews also. Thank you for your insight. I do try to stay off the hardpack (if thats possible in NE), but lets face it, untracked/unpacked is an anomily. It's interesting all the skis are getting WIDE. Since I'm looking for a go-to ski to love (most likely a lifelong quest), and am at least searching for those bumps/steep/tree knarlyness (in that order), maybe I lean towards whatever falls and hits me in the store while walking by.  Thanks again, this forum is a huge resource for these major life decisions.

 

(I do already have the Rossi B-3 and SickBird (Tele), which is essentially a BC Scratch)

post #6 of 28

I haven' tried the Bridge or the AC30, but I did demo the Kendo in a 177 last week up in Vermont.  The ski held an edge very well on some very hard wind scoured groomed trails, and turns could easily be varied as could the speed.  However, I had a blast on these when I hit some trails that had some fairly soft, widely spaced bumps, with 3 to 6 inches of wind blown snow.  Even away form the bumps and just skiing the fresh heavy snow, again less then 6 inches though, the skis were great, and they seemed to just love this kind of terrain and would do most anything I asked of them.  For what it's worth, I'm 155 lbs. and found the flex on the Kendos to be just a little stiff but not too much.     

post #7 of 28

You're describing a non-existent ski - easy short radius turns on steep ice + easy wiggles through firm bumps + trees in soft? rolleyes.gif Suggest looking at "Crazy 88's" or "80-100" reviews, plenty of data here on Kendos, lot's of individual feedback on Bridges. If the Kendo is a scaled down Mantra, doubt it would rock bumps. Personally, I'd go for something softer and more middle of the road than any of these, like a Sultan 85, K2 Extreme, or a Prophet 90. Depends on your weight, also. If you're a bigger buy, then the Bridge might work. Also consider Scott Mission if you're lighter, Crusade if you're heavier. 

post #8 of 28
The Bridge (128-95-115) is substantially wider than the AC30 (124-80-107). That would seem to make the AC30 quicker edge-to-edge. Is the Bridge softer, which might give it an advantage in bumps? Do twin tips (Bridge) help or hurt in bumps?
post #9 of 28

You're really comparing apples to basketballs here. The AC30 is an all mountain carver with lotsa metal in it. The Bridge is a twin tip all mountain that evolved out of a narrower park ski, the Karma, has no metal and some rocker this year. Neither are very flexy, but the Bridge has the better flex pattern of the two for your mission. Quickness is important in bumps, yep, but IMO bumps and tight places are all about flex pattern. You want a tail you can slide when you're doing your pivots and a pliant tip to make entry supple. As far as width, watched some ski patrol guys this weekend doing serious bumps on S7's and S6's; BWPA has a video around somewhere of him doing trees at Stowe very nicely in 98 mm rockers. The Bridge is a nice choice for a do-it-all that can carve decently. If you want something cheaper but same mission, a K2 Extreme. 

 

OTOH, if you live to zipperline at knee-crushing speed, then you should be looking at a non-metal, fairly narrow and fairly straight ski, which is neither of these. And if you want an "easy" ski to carve on, but also want the bump performance, I'd suggest a Contact 10 or Contact Cross. 

post #10 of 28

beyond 111 mm rockers :) bigger skis make your soft snow turns nicer!

 

He is a mix of hardpack and light powder from christmas week on liftline on ski very close to the bridge. IMO for the right person a 98mm ski with rocker is perfect off trail ski on the east coast.

 

 

the thing is each ski would serve your purpose jsut what are you willing to give up? what do you want to gain?

post #11 of 28

I ski both the Mantra and the "new" Bridge, the Mantra being the wider version of the Kendo. I like them both for different reasons. Mantra is bullet proof and handles hard pack very well. They have no speed limit at least none that I have appeared to reach. I've skied them in plenty of trees and plenty of bumps, and while I'm no expert in either, I thought it handled well in both. They'll blast through chopped up crud and through soft bumps. Like I said it likes speed, it's an aggressive ski, the Kendo may be a bit mellower and a bit more front side orientated but probably pretty similar.

 

As for the Bridge, I got it for use as a softer snow, more relaxed ski, less speed driven. As it turns out, on front side hard pack it can be driven quite hard, much like the Mantra. It's much poppier off jumps and bumps when compared with the Mantra. Like others have said it's lighter and has more flex then the Mantra and therefore handles bumps better in a more traditional manner. Now all that being said my experience with the Bridge is much more limited then with the Mantra, the Bridge is my new toy, so I cannot say how it handles in the trees, yet. 

 

I think that your decision comes down to where you honestly ski most, where you'd like to ski most and how you like to ski. I don't think any one ski will do everything you listed well; but they'll do some things well. On a side note, the AC 30 might be a good choice for you, my brother in-law loves it, says its quick edge to edge and decent in the bumps, but more of a front side ski.

post #12 of 28



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sane View Post

I ski both the Mantra and the "new" Bridge, the Mantra being the wider version of the Kendo. I like them both for different reasons. Mantra is bullet proof and handles hard pack very well. They have no speed limit at least none that I have appeared to reach. I've skied them in plenty of trees and plenty of bumps, and while I'm no expert in either, I thought it handled well in both. They'll blast through chopped up crud and through soft bumps. Like I said it likes speed, it's an aggressive ski, the Kendo may be a bit mellower and a bit more front side orientated but probably pretty similar.

 

As for the Bridge, I got it for use as a softer snow, more relaxed ski, less speed driven. As it turns out, on front side hard pack it can be driven quite hard, much like the Mantra. It's much poppier off jumps and bumps when compared with the Mantra. Like others have said it's lighter and has more flex then the Mantra and therefore handles bumps better in a more traditional manner. Now all that being said my experience with the Bridge is much more limited then with the Mantra, the Bridge is my new toy, so I cannot say how it handles in the trees, yet. 

 

I think that your decision comes down to where you honestly ski most, where you'd like to ski most and how you like to ski. I don't think any one ski will do everything you listed well; but they'll do some things well. On a side note, the AC 30 might be a good choice for you, my brother in-law loves it, says its quick edge to edge and decent in the bumps, but more of a front side ski.


What is the difference between the "new Bridge" and the one that I have which is 2 years old?
 

post #13 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by nikonfme View Post


What is the difference between the "new Bridge" and the one that I have which is 2 years old?
 


The "new" Bridge has ELP rocker instead of traditional camber and is a bit larger overall. A bit fatter underfoot at 95 mm and comes a bit longer mid size 179 with a 20 m turn radius.

post #14 of 28

The Kendo is not your ski.  It's very groomer oriented, and too stiff for bumps.

post #15 of 28

Demo the Kendo and decide for yourself.  I thought they were great in the bumps, big softies and shaved hardies.  It performed great all over the mountain.  For me the ski turned as quick as I wanted/needed it to but that is obviously a very subjective characteristic  

post #16 of 28


How can you call an 88 groomer oriented? It's great in bumps and skis pow and especially crud nicely. My only gripe is that the radius is long. Only an issue for me because I have too many long radius skis allready and wanted something a little snappier. Great ski for everyday riding or one ski-quiver.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eastskier44 View Post

The Kendo is not your ski.  It's very groomer oriented, and too stiff for bumps.

post #17 of 28



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sane View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by nikonfme View Post


What is the difference between the "new Bridge" and the one that I have which is 2 years old?
 


The "new" Bridge has ELP rocker instead of traditional camber and is a bit larger overall. A bit fatter underfoot at 95 mm and comes a bit longer mid size 179 with a 20 m turn radius.


Do you know if they also softened it up a bit. I checked the flex on one in a shop and it felt softer than my Bridges. Also on the Kendo vs Mantra. Flex wise they felt pretty much the same at the shop. I guess that's why you need to demo...........................
 

post #18 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by nikonfme View Post

Do you know if they also softened it up a bit. I checked the flex on one in a shop and it felt softer than my Bridges. Also on the Kendo vs Mantra. Flex wise they felt pretty much the same at the shop. I guess that's why you need to demo...........................
 



I'm really not sure to be honest; I know that they supposedly have the same construction as last years but two or more years ago I can't say. I skied them today in a six inches of fresh and they  were wicked fun, very floaty, smeared really well, and in the chop poppy and snappy, felt like I had springs.I still haven't gotten into the trees with them because the ground cover is pretty non-existent.

post #19 of 28

 

 

Quote:
How can you call an 88 groomer oriented? It's great in bumps and skis pow and especially crud nicely. My only gripe is that the radius is long. Only an issue for me because I have too many long radius skis allready and wanted something a little snappier. Great ski for everyday riding or one ski-quiver.

If this is the case, why do some people want to sell them immediately after they buy them.  There was a thread just the other day from a guy who wanted to get rid of them because they weren't what he was looking for.  He most likely bought the Kendo as a do it all ski (which we all know doesn't exist) and quickly found that that wasn't the Kendo's gig.  I may have mispoken, as the Kendo would probably do fine in powder.  IMO, it's a groomer and powder ski that doesn't like the tight spaces (short-radius turns, bumps, trees).  The Volkl rep even vouched for this.  The Kendo is pushed as the do it all ski, but I don't think it is.  I skied them, and to me, they wanted to be railing medium to long-radius turns on the groomers (I didn't get a chance to ski them in pow).

post #20 of 28

Depends on how you ski bro.

 

I ski the Kendos and they rip.  

 

Tight turns?  no problem as long as you have some pitch involved b/c they don't like to go slow.

 

Crud, slush, fluff, hardpack, pure ice, and any other typical east coast condition?  no problem

 

Someone that thinks they are way better than they are?  problem

 

Why do I say that?  b/c we have way too many of those guys on the east coast that have never spent a few seasons out west to see what 'really good' means.

 

The Kendo is a stiff, 88 waisted, all-mountain full sidewall ski made for expert skiers.

 

No need to over analyze it more than that.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

post #21 of 28
Thread Starter 

 Are the volkl bridge's too wide (esp. under foot) to be a nimble bump ski? everything I've always read (maybe old school) said bump skis were more narrow under foot? I've got Rossi BC Scratch (4 years ago), similar measurements, but wouldn't call them good bump skis as they are not quick edge to edge, and don't want more of the same.

post #22 of 28

I actually bought the new Volkl Bridge this year and love it. I am from the East Coast 23 yrs. 170lbs. 5'11" and I'd say I am an expert skier. I also love to push it in the trees. IMO there is no better ski for that than the Volkl Bridge. It is unbelievably nimble and you can go side to side in the tight spots effortlessly. It is true that you can't find a ski that is perfect at everything but the Volkl Bridge is pretty close. It holds and edge pretty good in hard park and with the EP and 95mm underfoot it can bust through crud, soft snow, and a bit of powder pretty easily. I haven't tried the kendo but if you are charging down groomers then it can probably hold better than the bridge but for everything else the Bridge is great. I just got back from a week at Sunday River which was pretty much all ice and hard pack and I was able to push the Bridge as hard as I wanted down any trail. I was also at Cannon a couple weeks ago for 12 inches of fresh snow and the Bridge made it so easy to make turns in that (I know its not much but hey, its the East Coast). I compared it to the Line Prophet 90 2010 and the 2008 Dynastar Big Trouble and the Bridge blew them away.

 

I always like softer skis for the trees and I will never get anything that doesn't have rocker and I love the Bridge. If you really want a good opinion on the Bridge check out Freeskier Magazine, they ranked the new Bridge as the best ski of the year. Can't argue with that.

post #23 of 28
I'm looking to demo the kendos in vermont or at whiteface. Does anybody body know a place that demos them? Thanks!
post #24 of 28

Jon there is a spot in the Okemoe village that demos the Kendo.  Northern Ski Works.

post #25 of 28

I have a pair of Volkl AC3's that I loved.  I also have a pair of Racetiger RC's and a pair of V-Pro's...All are 177-180 in length.  I ski east coast and ski hard amd at 215 lb and 6'1''.   Two days I bought a pair of Kendos in 184 with the Knee Binding.   I demoed a lot of skis to find these baby's.   They rip on the groomers, either big carves or they are quick and lively enough to make short turns.   They go thru the bumps all by themselves, I just go along for the ride.  I have not tried them in the powder but they have to be better than what I had.  They hold on ice (not as good as the RC's, but what would?) about the same as the AC3's.   The reason I got them is because i was tired of horsing skis around in the bumps.   These appear, so far, to do it all.  One part I am concerned about is that I had the bindings mounted at -1 (behind volkl's rec).  The demos were at 0.  I don't know if that was the right thing to do as the new ones felt different - more tip strong.  I am hoping it has more to do with the new, sharp edges vs the binding location...hell, it was only about 1 cm back, it shouldn't make that much difference....guess I'll go find a file and dull the edges back about 4 inches and see what happens...

 

Short version, buy them

post #26 of 28

First, my comments relate to the 2012 versions of the Volkl Kendo and Bridge.  I've now demo'd both at two different lengths on two separate demo days, with different conditions at each hill.  First, I'm 5'9, 180-185 lbs...have been skiing for a fairly long time and I like to do a little of everything...especially high speed arcs on the groomers, short turns on the steeps and zipping through the trees when conditions permit.  Enjoy bumps too, only in the soft conditions.  I stay away from icy bumps...not because I can't ski them, but because I don't find them fun.  I've even been known to hit some jumps in the park now and then, but I'm no park rat (being in my 30s, I'm getting too old and fragile for that).  Live in Ontario, but venture every year to Vermont, NY, Quebec, and/or BC.

 

First I tried the 170 Kendo's.  I should put a disclaimer on this review because it was among my first turns of the year and the conditions were horrible.  Inconsitent, icy, then man-made clumps, then later on a little bit of fresh snow.  My first opinion was that they were okay but didn't blow me away.  I did however notice how much lighter they were than I had expected.  I actually washed out a couple of times when in deeper arcs...but that could've been due to the conditions or poor tuning.  Other than those couple of incidences they held an edge well.

 

A couple of skiis later I tried the 171 Bridge's.  Again, I was surprised how light they felt given the width, and I immediately noticed the rocker and the ease of initiation.  I also liked the twin tip because even though I'm getting old, I like to ski switch for fun too.  Definitely a softer, smoother flex than the Kendo as well.  Overall, I liked them better than the Kendo at this length...as it was definitely very playful.  However, for bigger hills I'd go longer for sure.  Also noticed they preferred your weight and stance centered...which was a valuable lesson I took to future ski tests to evaluate the others.

 

On the next demo day, at a different hill in much better conditions...being fresh packed powder and groomers and then it got warm late in the day and some damp, almost spring like conditions came around with some small bumps here and there.  Not enough snow in the trees though yet.  In the afternoon I tried the 179 Bridge first.  Again, noticed the rocker and surprising lack of weight given the length and width.  Once again the smooth softer flex pattern was apparent, and they carved really well.  However, this time the extra width caught me off guard a couple of times and I found myself trying to adjust my stance and skiing style to accomodate a little more often then I'd like.  For some reason they seemed wider this time then the first time I demo'd them.  Must have been the grippier conditions or maybe the additional length.  Still enjoyed them overall though.

 

Next, I clipped into the 177 Kendos.  My reaction to the first turns...HOLY F$%#!  These skiis ripped!  I found myself carving deeper, faster arcs than at any time during the course of the day.  The only skiis that rivalled them among the wider skiis I tried over the demo days were the new Rossi Experience 88s, and the K2 Aftershocks weren't too bad either.  Short turns weren't a problem on the Kendos.  No they arent as agile as true narrow waisted, short radius eastern carving skiis but they were certainly nimble enough and had a nice kick too!  Where they REALLY excelled was in the medium to long radius high speed arcs over the small spring-like bumps.  It was like they weren't even there!  Even at the 177 length, they felt light underfoot.  I'd only felt this level of smoothness over rough terrain from much heavier skiis in the past.  I then also tried slow easy turns through the grippy conditions and they seemed fine.  My only unknown now is how they'd perform in steeper, tighter trees.  I think they'd be awesome in soft, cruddy conditions.  Not sure if they'd like hard boilerplate bumps, or hard conditions in the trees.  Might be a bit stiff for that...but I'm going to take that risk!  The 177 Kendo's are my next ski!  Maybe I'll upgrade to the 2013 Kendo's that are rumoured to have some tip rocker added.

 

Cheers!

post #27 of 28


 

Quote:

Maybe I'll upgrade to the 2013 Kendo's that are rumoured to have some tip rocker added.

 

Cheers!



A Kendo with tip rocker would certainly be interesting, and they probably *have* to do it since it seems like almost every other All Mountain free-ski has some degree of rocker this year (except MX88s).  I wonder what slight ELP tip to tail (while retaining the camber underfoot) would do to change the Kendo's stable GS-type feel?  If they could do that and retain edge grip and stability while making it a bit more compliant in bumps and trees it would be pretty awesome.

 

That said, I don't think the Kendo really *needs* it (other than for marketing purposes).  It's already a great All Mountain ski for advanced-intermediate to expert skiers who like to ski the whole mountain aggressively and fast.

post #28 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by swellhunter View Post

Depends on how you ski bro.

 

I ski the Kendos and they rip.  

 

Tight turns?  no problem as long as you have some pitch involved b/c they don't like to go slow.

 

Crud, slush, fluff, hardpack, pure ice, and any other typical east coast condition?  no problem

 

Someone that thinks they are way better than they are?  problem

 

Why do I say that?  b/c we have way too many of those guys on the east coast that have never spent a few seasons out west to see what 'really good' means.

 

The Kendo is a stiff, 88 waisted, all-mountain full sidewall ski made for expert skiers.

 

No need to over analyze it more than that.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Couldn't have said it better myself.

 

I am from the east, spent a decade out west, now I'm back.  

 

So many east coasters just don't get it, and think they are way better than they are.

 

Out there you become a product of your environment.

 

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