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Looking for suggestions for a ski for eastcoast/midwest icy/hardpack conditions

KKL2018

Certified Ski Diva
#21
I do find them versatile as well, I have only skied in up to 6"-12" of fresh snow. It's a fun ski that can handle a wide range of snow conditions well.
 

Zao87

Diva in Training
#22
I have the Yumis and absolutely LOVE them. They are great in fresh snow, groomers. But struggle on very hardpack/crusty/icy conditions because they are flexible. This is where I got the Volkl Flair GS Carbon UVO (71 underfoot-very rigid and narrow), for those days and it takes it on wonderfully. That UVO puck really seems to quiet the ski.

I would have to defer to those with more experience on this, but I would think the Kenjas (90 under foot) or the Secret (92 under foot) might be better than the Yumi for those deeper snow days but be more rigid (the kenja has more titanium). The Yumi is 84 under foot, so great on groomed runs and in some fresh snow, not too deep. But very flexible so I would say more playful than damp.
Wow. Thanks soo much for that comparison between Volkl Yumi and Flair SC. I also thought Yumi might not be as damp or quiet as I would like it to be. Maybe it's hard to get that quiet, damp, smooth ride that Flair SC offers with UVO tech. I am now really narrowing my choices down to 2 skis; Volkl Secret 92 and Nordica Santa Ana 88. Only reason I am looking at Nordica SA is because some Youtube reviews says that Nordica SA is a bit more forgiving while having 2 sheets of Titinal while Secret is stiffer (although the new 2020 version has less metal in a horseshoe shape?).
 

Zao87

Diva in Training
#23
@snoWYmonkey I see. I am a little worried about Volkl Secret /Mantra not being forgiving enough albeit being pretty much chatter-proof. Although I love the feeling of damp and smooth rides and I think I am a solid intermediate, I sometimes tend to chicken out of my turns a bit early and stuff especially in the first few winter days of getting back to skiing after months of hiatus. That's the only reason I might be looking at other skis like Nordica Santa Ana or Blizzard Sheeva 10
 

snoWYmonkey

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#24
You should definitely test a number of skis in the width that interests you.
 

Zao87

Diva in Training
#25
You should definitely test a number of skis in the width that interests you.
I wish I can demo but I live in singapore and ski only in Japan and there’s no such thing as demo-ing skis here. I can only rent to test out whatever the rental shop has ( The price is around 6000 yen / 60 usd per day not including tax) which is quite expensive. So far the shops at the ski resort I am at have very few all mountain skis ( only 4 or 5 all mountain skis) and even more limited for women. Only thing ski they have in 80-90 mm range for women is Head Great Joy for rent in a single shop. Other shops only carry ski length for men in this waist width range. So I have to buy based on online reviews and I find that on this forum the reviews are way more honest and comparative as they come from real users. After testing out head great joy yesterday, I think I am still leaning towards volkl although I liked great joy’s performance in soft snow and there was at least 6 inches of snow even on piste. I don’t know how to ski powder Hahahah... so. I only ski on pistes but it’s quite common in Japan for pistes to be completely covered in multiple inches of snow or be completely shaved down. So I think a 80-90 waist skis with good hard pack grip should have me covered most of the time.
 

Zao87

Diva in Training
#26
I do find them versatile as well, I have only skied in up to 6"-12" of fresh snow. It's a fun ski that can handle a wide range of snow conditions well.
Thanks for all the great info. From all the feedback from divas on this forum, Yumi seems more versatile but less grip than Secret. I am quite smitten with that damp, stable feel I got from volkl flair sc but worried I don’t have the skill to handle Secret. It’s a tough choice. I do tend to take about 1 week to get my ski legs once I start skiing in early winter so definitely Yumi is a safer choice but I have a feeling I will like Secret more.
 

KKL2018

Certified Ski Diva
#27
Thanks for all the great info. From all the feedback from divas on this forum, Yumi seems more versatile but less grip than Secret. I am quite smitten with that damp, stable feel I got from volkl flair sc but worried I don’t have the skill to handle Secret. It’s a tough choice. I do tend to take about 1 week to get my ski legs once I start skiing in early winter so definitely Yumi is a safer choice but I have a feeling I will like Secret more.
I intend to demo the kenja and secret this weekend. I really do love my yumis, they're my go to ski for most days...fun and forgiving, versatile. I
They are really only weak very hardpack/bullet proof snow, as in don't hold a great edge and are chatty. But, those are the days I break out the flair gs carbons.

I'll let you know how the demo goes
 

KKL2018

Certified Ski Diva
#28
I wish I can demo but I live in singapore and ski only in Japan and there’s no such thing as demo-ing skis here. I can only rent to test out whatever the rental shop has ( The price is around 6000 yen / 60 usd per day not including tax) which is quite expensive. So far the shops at the ski resort I am at have very few all mountain skis ( only 4 or 5 all mountain skis) and even more limited for women. Only thing ski they have in 80-90 mm range for women is Head Great Joy for rent in a single shop. Other shops only carry ski length for men in this waist width range. So I have to buy based on online reviews and I find that on this forum the reviews are way more honest and comparative as they come from real users. After testing out head great joy yesterday, I think I am still leaning towards volkl although I liked great joy’s performance in soft snow and there was at least 6 inches of snow even on piste. I don’t know how to ski powder Hahahah... so. I only ski on pistes but it’s quite common in Japan for pistes to be completely covered in multiple inches of snow or be completely shaved down. So I think a 80-90 waist skis with good hard pack grip should have me covered most of the time.
OK. So, I had a chance to demo the 163 Secret this weekend, as well as the 156 and 163 Kenja 88 (2020), the Flair 75 and ride my 2018 Yumi all in the same conditions on the same slopes, same day. I took the Secret out twice--as well as the Kenja. Fair being fair the conditions were not really suitable for the Secret IMHO. It had been warm and the slopes were not icy, but a bit hardpacked fresh snow and tracked up areas that refroze. They were stable, but obviously slow side to side and felt a bit cumbersome--was it the longer length than I was used to or the width? Maybe a little of both and the conditions. I wish we had some fresh or deeper snow to try them out, but we don't often get enough of that to justify them--and the Yumis handle just fine in what we do get.

I didn't care for the flair 75 at all...I was meh. Felt a lot like my Flair Carbon SC UVO, stiff, shifty. Guess I am just no longer a fan of more narrow skis after spending so much time in the Yumis.

Having said that I was not expecting to like the Kenja 88s and didn't think there was enough difference between them and the Yumis (which are 4mm narrower in the waist) to justify having both. But holy cow I stinking loved them. I skied a much longer ski than I would have, he accidentally gave me the 163 which I went back and retried the 156. Neither felt long, they were surprisingly snappy and quick edge to edge. Powered through crust, crunch, deep frozen ruts from the race skis, held a phenomenal edge and were quiet. I took my Yumis out immediately on the same slope for comparison and it was night and day in those conditions (which is where the Yumis do struggle).

Hooked, in love with the Kenja 88. Needless to say this has me needing a pair NOW :smile:
 

Lmk92

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#29
"Hooked, in love with the Kenja 88. Needless to say this has me needing a pair NOW :smile: "

This is so interesting. I demoed the Kenja a few years ago and really hated how wide they were. I felt like I had planks on my feet. Haha
 

snoWYmonkey

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#30
I loved my old Kenjas, but now prefer the edge grip and aggressive nature of the new mantra. So glad you found your ski!
 

lisamamot

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#31
"Hooked, in love with the Kenja 88. Needless to say this has me needing a pair NOW :smile: "

This is so interesting. I demoed the Kenja a few years ago and really hated how wide they were. I felt like I had planks on my feet. Haha
Isn't it interesting how one's love is another's cannot-get-off-it fast-enough?! Some of it is specs, some of it is what we like in a ski.

With my size (5'9"/140ish) and ski preferences (stable, but playful) I find the Kenja and the Secret just too much ski in my preferred 170 length. Backing off to the 163 fixes that, but they feel short and not lively enough for my taste.

@KKL2018 - glad you found something you connected with!
 

KKL2018

Certified Ski Diva
#32
I found and ordered a pair within 24 hours...they will be here this afternoon, at which point I will be running to the nearest slope to get them out LOL

My husband tried the new Mantra and really liked them. Curious, for those that tried and weren't a fan of the Kenja, did you try this years model (the 2020 Kenja 88)? It's 2 mm narrower and has some modifications that seem to make it livelier. I am curious if I would have liked the predecessor as much....
 

lisamamot

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#33
I found and ordered a pair within 24 hours...they will be here this afternoon, at which point I will be running to the nearest slope to get them out LOL
Congrats! Did you go for the Kenja 156 or the 163?

Curious, for those that tried and weren't a fan of the Kenja, did you try this years model (the 2020 Kenja 88)?
Oh, and yes, I tried the 2020 Kenja. That said I weigh 140 and was on the 170 which is my preferred length for my height. Still feels like too much work to me. I can ski them I just don’t want to.
 

KKL2018

Certified Ski Diva
#34
Well gals, in my excitement I got TOTALLY burned on my purchase. It was a pair of demos that he won and used once, for a hell of a price. After the seller sent me the tracking number I sent payment via PayPal and what arrived today was not skis, but a completely empty envelope. Thankfully through recourse with help of PayPal and the local PD he will be reversing the money back into my account. With all of the purchases I have ever made online this is the first to go south, so I consider myself lucky.

So, my husband feels really bad and is ordering a brand new pair for me tonight from a shop. :smile:

I skied both the 163 and 156, didn't really notice a difference, but think the 156 will be easier to maneuver in chopped up crap. I am more compact, on the shorter end (5'5") and thicker built.