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Kama vs Ripstick 86/94

cvana

Certified Ski Diva
#1
There's not a whole lot of buzz about these skis.
I'm looking for an East coast tree ski for my small, light daughter. She's 5' 3" and about 110 pounds.
We get plenty of good snow in VT trees, and she rips through everything. I want something nimble, light, short turn radius with enough float for her.
She's been skiing Gotama JR skis which I think are 86mm at the waist, with no problem.
Our ski shop thinks she should stick with something in the 80's, like the Kama - because of her petite size and ability to put the ski on edge.
Any thoughts on this? She can have another ski for days on groomers.
I was thinking of getting the Ripsticks for myself in 94 - my Black Pearl's are ready for replacement - but I am not as gutsy a tree skier as she is.
Thank you, divas!
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
#5
I'm looking for an East coast tree ski for my small, light daughter. She's 5' 3" and about 110 pounds.
We get plenty of good snow in VT trees, and she rips through everything. I want something nimble, light, short turn radius with enough float for her.
She's been skiing Gotama JR skis which I think are 86mm at the waist, with no problem.
Our ski shop thinks she should stick with something in the 80's, like the Kama - because of her petite size and ability to put the ski on edge.
Any thoughts on this? She can have another ski for days on groomers.
I'm about your daughter's size, a bit shorter, same weight, much older, advanced. The only time I demo'd the Ripstick 94 was a few years ago at the April Alta Demo Day. A couple of agressive teen girls I knew who live in VT loved them. For me, it was a little odd. I didn't like the 156 length but enjoyed the 163cm, which should be too long.

There was a few inches of wet snow during the day but for Alta, it was essentially a groomer day. On the same day I tried the BP78 @156 and it was okay. I liked the BP88 @159 a lot more though.

As for the Kama, I check out the 161cm at the Sunapee Demo Day last March. Didn't like it, but that's no surprise for a couple reasons. First, that's too long for me. Second, I generally don't like Volkl skis. Too stiff for me I think. Only Volkl I've ever found to be fun is the Yumi @147cm.

Since she has skis for groomers, mid-80s seems okay as all-mountain skis in the northeast. Perhaps the Total Joy? I own the narrower Absolut Joy and have skied them a fair amount in the northeast and mid-Atlantic in a variety of conditions, including fresh snow. But I tend to stay out of northeast trees or bumps unless the snow is really fresh and soft. Too spoiled by trips out west to run the risk of falling on hard, frozen snow.
 

heysally

Diva in Training
#6
I'm 5'4" and 114 lbs.
I bought a pair of 163cm Ripstick 94 early last year. Love them - playful, forgiving, but also carves well because of the asymmetrical design. They're relatively soft and very responsive, making it easy to turn in trees. They float great for me in 30-inch powder and I plan to take them to Japan this winter - I don't need 100mm+ skis anymore. They are my west coast skis, however, would not use them in the east coast resorts as they cannot handle ice very well.
My east coast pair is Head super joy, even though they are only 75mm on the waist, they have wide tips and enough rocker so I use them even in eastern powder days. They might be a bit too stiff for trees - You might want to consider total joy - similar profile but softer.
I tried several Volkl skis but only on the trails and I was focusing on carving performance, so can't speak for Kama. It seems that Yumi are more popular than Kama among intermediate-advanced skiers. They are similar but Yumi have Titanal band in them so they're stiffer than Kama.
 

WaterGirl

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#7
@cvana - the Junior Goats are such a great ski! DD had them, then moved up to the Pyra as she was primarily skiing park. I have not kept up with the most recent changes for Volkl but I believe the Bash / Revolt lines are the more freestyle oriented lines if you wanted to stay with a twin tip that was similar to the Goats. The dims on the Revolt/Bash 120/86/110 are similar to what I found for Jr Goats 118/86/111.

Kama - appears to be the old Yumi "For 2018, Volkl updated the Yumi ski to include metal, which made it a little bit more demanding overall. For skiers who prefer a wood core with no metal Volkl has essentially brought it back in the form of the Kama." (from Ski Essentials) The Kama appears to be more of a rocker camber with a turned up tail according to specs I could find 125/83/103 (@154cm).

That being said, the issue you may have with the Volkl is the sizing depending on what she is on now. When DD was around that size she seemed to be in-between the 154 and 161. Im not sure how old your DD is or if you would be able to demo. This is a tougher age/ size to find skis for esp if not done growing.

The Jr. Goats had crud capabilities, not sure what is out there in her size that would be that similar. There seems to be a lot of love for the Santa Ana 88 which is heavier or for something lighter Armada Victa 83?. Black Crows Captis Birdie if you wanted something as more of an of piste / crud/ variable snow. Can she use your BP? OR you could just get her a pair of Ripsticks.

Ripstick 94 is my touring ski, I have so much love :love: for this ski. I echo everything @heysally said about them. Just a supper fun, handles everything, and I agree with @heysally in that they seem to have a ton of float for how narrow they are.

NOTE: Elan is now making a Ripstick in an 88 (156/163) which could be another great option.

Do not confuse it with the Ripstick 86 from last year which is a totally different ski from the Ripstick line and will no longer be made as I understand. It was more of an intermediate ski which actually might work for your daughter. I have not demo'd the 86.
 
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cvana

Certified Ski Diva
#8
Thank you, this is all very useful feedback. We don't get a lot of opportunities to demo skis, so these detailed responses are very helpful. I am going to look again at the Head line - Total Joy looks interesting, with the very short turn radius and light construction.

The Kama is all wood and is light. My daughter will like the turned up tail, as she is slippery in tight woods and feels it gives her a bit of wiggle room. Will look for info on it's ability to bite on ice and how it deals with crud.

I think if we find the right ski, she may give up the Volkls she rides when skiing groomers with her friends - I think they are too stiff for her, anyway.

I'm VERY interested in the Ripstick 94. It seems like a great Mad River ski. You seem them a lot in the lift lines, but I haven't talked to anyone about them. Being east coasters, we do need something that will also bite on the boilerplate.

Love my BP's but damn it, the cosmetics went south in no time. Top sheet peels and chips off in unsightly chunks. I can handle that, but it's not really what a 17 year old wants. I don't think I'll be buying another pair.

There seems to be a lot of love for the Santa Ana 88 which is heavier or for something lighter Armada Victa 83?. Black Crows Captis Birdie if you wanted something as more of an of piste / crud/ variable snow.
I will look into these ski, as well. Thank you for the personal feedback!
 

tinymoose

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#9
The Kama is all wood and is light. My daughter will like the turned up tail, as she is slippery in tight woods and feels it gives her a bit of wiggle room. Will look for info on it's ability to bite on ice and how it deals with crud.
I had the all wood Yumi, which basically got turned into the Kama when they added a titanal band to the Yumi. My experience with them was they did OK on ice for a ski of their width. I always had them tuned 2/1 (side/base angle). They obviously weren't as good as my race skis with a race tune, but otherwise very good for an all-mountain ski. Crud on the other hand, because they're all wood, they weren't the best crud busters imo. My new Yumis with the titanal band handle crud much better than my old all wood Yumis. I really had to work to keep them on edge in the crud to keep from getting tossed around. But I like to think that made me a better skier. :tongue:

ETA: about me... East coast skier, 5'1", 105 lbs.
 

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