• Women skiers, this is the place for you -- an online community without the male-orientation you'll find in conventional ski magazines and internet ski forums. At TheSkiDiva.com, you can connect with other women to talk about skiing in a way that you can relate to, about things that you find of interest. Be sure to join our community to participate (women only, please!). Registration is fast and simple. Just be sure to add webmaster@theskidiva.com to your address book so your registration activation emails won't be routed as spam. And please give careful consideration to your user name -- it will not be changed once your registration is confirmed.

What should I demo?

skiwest

Certified Ski Diva
#1
I'm looking to replace my Rossignol Temptation 100s (167 cm, 100 mm underfoot) because I find them too heavy and hard to turn in trees and crud. I'm 5'4", 155 pounds, and I'm a low-end type III all-mountain skier who only gets out 10 days or less per year, although I'd love to go more. I'd love a great all-mountain ski that turns easily, can handle off-piste and groomers well, and that can handle the occasional powder day, although I'll keep the Rossignols for any real powder days (a rare thing for me now, unfortunately). I also need to be able to buy the skis at REI to utilize my dividend. Any ideas for what I should demo? I tried the Blizzard Black Pearl 88s last year, but didn't like them. I suspect a bad tune job occurred because they literally could not hold an edge at all, but even still, I'm leaning towards trying something else. Any recommendations would be very welcome!
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
#2
Any recommendations would be very welcome!
What region are you going to ski in the most?

Although I like the BP88, I recently demo'd the Nordica Santa Ana 88 and thought they were more fun. A couple other Divas liked it as well, and they are more in your size category.
 

skiwest

Certified Ski Diva
#3
What region are you going to ski in the most?

Although I like the BP88, I recently demo'd the Nordica Santa Ana 88 and thought they were more fun. A couple other Divas liked it as well, and they are more in your size category.
Mostly in the Tahoe area, although a bit of Utah as well. We are also considering moving to Idaho, but nothing is for certain and I'd rather get new skis before then anyway.
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
#4
Mostly in the Tahoe area, although a bit of Utah as well. We are also considering moving to Idaho, but nothing is for certain and I'd rather get new skis before then anyway.
Ah, so big mountains out west in general. I had the Santa Ana 93 at Bridger for a morning with 10+ inches of fresh fluffy powder. Had a very good time on groomers, in bumps, and powder in the trees. That may be a better fit for your region than the SA88.

The other all-mountain skis I've demo'd at Alta that you might consider are:

Fischer MY Pro MT 86
Dynastar Legend W88
Rossi Experience 84

My all-mountain skis that I use on trips out west are 85 underfoot. I rent powder skis that are 100 wide for more than 8-10 inches of fresh snow. But of course that requires being lucky and catching a storm since my trip dates are set well in advance.
 

mahgnillig

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#6
I am also in Tahoe. I like to have an 80-something width for groomers, off-piste and bumps around here as I find anything much wider to be too heavy to ski hard all day (I have Rossi Soul 7's for powder days) . I'm also not a fan of the BP88, although I know it's very popular. My current groomer skis are Volkl Kenjas, though I have just replaced them with Stockli Stormrider 85's that are in the shop having the bindings mounted. I did a demo day at Mt. Rose last weekend... besides the Stormriders I enjoyed the new Kenjas just as much as my old ones, and also liked the Dynastar Legend 88 quite a lot.
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
#7
I am also in Tahoe. I like to have an 80-something width for groomers, off-piste and bumps around here as I find anything much wider to be too heavy to ski hard all day (I have Rossi Soul 7's for powder days) . I'm also not a fan of the BP88, although I know it's very popular. My current groomer skis are Volkl Kenjas, though I have just replaced them with Stockli Stormrider 85's that are in the shop having the bindings mounted. I did a demo day at Mt. Rose last weekend... besides the Stormriders I enjoyed the new Kenjas just as much as my old ones, and also liked the Dynastar Legend 88 quite a lot.
As I remember, you and I are more or less in the same size category, meaning on the petite side. Interesting how we have tastes in common, but also different. I had a great time on the Soul 7 at Big Sky for powder skiing this season. Love my Stormrider 85s (2017, 159cm). Like the new Black Pearls (BP88, BP98) but opted to buy the Stormriders instead. But have found Volkl skis are usually too stiff, although the Yumi (pre-metal) was fun for a couple short demo day runs. My go to brands that I always like are Rossi, Dynastar, Head, and Nordica.
 

lisamamot

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#9
Don't worry - the BP 88 was a yawn instead of a yippee for me. No issues skiing them they just didn't wow me.

Sizes are running lean right now at REI - were you looking to take advantage of end of season sales or thinking ahead to when the 2020 skis come out?

For skis that REI sells that are solid on groomers but also low effort in bumps/trees. For me that means some rocker, not much metal. I really love the Blizzard Sheeva 9 - sadly REI does not carry the 9, only the 10.
  • Nordica Astral 84 - recently demoed these and cannot believe they don't get much press - the Santa Ana line seems to get all the focus but I thought these were a great all mountain ski. They have the Santa Ana tip but a flatter tail - I think "fun in the front and business in the back" was a quote I read that about sums it up. I preferred these to the Santa Ana 88 which I found to be plank like. The Stockli Stormrider 85w is amazing - super crazy smooth and confidence building, but still had the fun factor. Alas, quite expensive and not sold by REI.
  • Elan Ripstick 86w. I own the Ripstick 94w. If these ski anything like the 94s they should be a blast. Lightweight but strong, surfy tip, flatter tail.
  • Dynastar Legend 88w. From the descriptions I read, I may put this model in the same category as the Nordica Santa Ana 88, Volkl Kenja, and Volkl Secret and find it not playful enough. Certainly worth a demo.
  • K2 Alluvit 88ti. I have not demoed but others I have spoken with have. If I remember properly this was enjoyed by someone that liked the Volkl Secret and eventually bought the Santa Ana 93.
 
#10
Forgot about the Wild Joy, 90mm, because I haven't demo'd it. I own the Absolut Joy and have liked the Total Joy on short demo runs on groomed trails. For an introduction to the Head Joy line:

https://blog.skis.com/2019-head-joy-series-ski-review/
I'm a similar size and really enjoyed the Wild Joys in a 153 in Tahoe last year at Heavenly in varied conditions. I'd probably buy a pair if I could find a cheap pair. Skiing this week at heavenly (great conditions) on black crow camox birdies and blizzard sambas
 

contesstant

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#11
Blizzard Sheeva 9
Nordica Santa Ana 88 (or 93.)
Holy cow the Santa Ana 88s just make me happy every time I ski them, in the biggest mixed bag of conditions, which is typical for spring here.
 

Soujan

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#12
I just bought the Wild Joys myself. I'm 5'2" and 150 lbs. I got them in 153. First I tried the 158 because my daily drivers are the Kastle LX82 in 156, but I found them to ski long and had a hard time pressuring the tips no matter how far I reached forward. The Wild Joys are light but stiff making them good on piste. It's also the least forgiving ski I've ever been on (not that I've really been on that many skis) and punishes backseat skiing by being very squirrelly. It really forced me to be forward. Once I got the hang of them, they rewarded me by really popping out of the turns. I'm just starting to move into trees and bumps. I found them easy to maneuver and pivot because of the light weight. No idea how they handle powder since I only skied them for a day and a half and we hardly get the fluffy stuff in the East. Hoping to maybe bring them to Diva West next year.
 

lisamamot

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#13
There are so many great skis out there. Sadly REI does not carry the Blizzard Sheeva 9 (only the 10), the Nordica Santa Ana line (not the 88, 93 or 100), or the Head Wild Joy (they carry the Total and Absolut). GAH.

The Total Joy could be an option as well. I haven't been on a Joy series ski for many years - I wasn't a particular fan when I tried them back then but many, many are.

@skiwest if you choose to purchase somewhere other than REI then put the Blizzard Sheeva 9 on the list!!! I have skied it in New England and brought it to Big Sky. It has been in a bit of everything - groomers, boot top snow, trees, moguls, steeps. It does everything well and I have been loving it.
 

skiwest

Certified Ski Diva
#14
Thanks for the great suggestions, everyone! I'll have to reconsider whether to buy the skis at REI or not. I hope to demo skis at Sugar Bowl this weekend and it looks like they have Kastle, Volkl, and Nordica skis to try, so hopefully I'll be able to hit a few from this list and report back!
 

HikenSki

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#15
I believe if you wait until July, you can cash out the dividend. Not sure if that is still an option but I did that a few years ago. It's just you have to wait until July and well, there's so much at REI that can be purchased between now and then... :tongue:
 

Ski Around Sue

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#16
I second @lisamamot's recommendation of the Nordica Astral. If the Astral 84 is anything like the 78 - it is one fun ski! I recently demoed and then purchased the Astral 78 and have had the chance to ski them about 5 times and they are playful, solid and very forgiving - really just a blast to ski. They will allow you to ski in the back seat but really shine when you are appropriately balanced. While the 78s are probably too narrow for the OPs uses, the 84 may be perfect.
 

skiwest

Certified Ski Diva
#17
Update - I went to the demo shop today and they were nearly out of everything, but as luck would have it, the Voelkl rep was there and some Voelkl skis were available to demo (for free!). I ended up trying what they had, which included the Secret (156 cm), Yumi (forgot the length but similar), and the men's Kanjo in 164-ish cm. I ended up really liking the Secret! I tried them first thing in the morning and I wish I had gotten another chance to try them again after it softened up quite a bit, but they were great on the firmpack and they turned SO MUCH more easily than my Rossignols in crust/bumps/crud. I honestly felt like a different, better skier. I also think the 156 cm length is perfect for me (it's what I used to ski on before the Temptations and those skis took me all over the country in all kinds of terrain). I didn't love the others I tried - neither felt like they held an edge as well as the Secrets and they felt a little less stable overall, although I wouldn't say they were bad. They just didn't blow me away or feel like the perfect fit. On the way home, I ended up making an impulse decision to buy the Secrets since they were on sale at REI and it seemed meant to be. Already can't wait to try them properly, hopefully in two weeks or so!
 

Members Online

No members online now.

Latest posts