78 Traverse / 88 Excursion which one? Or another?

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lilcliffy
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Re: 78 Traverse / 88 Excursion which one? Or another?

Postby lilcliffy » Sun Mar 19, 2017 4:59 pm

fisheater wrote:Al, I really like my S-112, but it is very possible the S-98 may be the sweet spot between the S-88 and the S-112. Canna posted a nice review of the three from Ski Haus Steamboat, the reviewer put the s-88 more in the s-98 class.

I don't own any of these skis- have skied on older incarnations of them many times...The S-98 has the same waist as the S-88, but with much more sidecut and parabolic shape. The S-98- in my limited experience is much "turnier" than the 88. There is no effective difference in flotation between the 88 and the 98. I would much prefer the 112 over the 98 as it offers the "turniness" of the 98, but the 112 is wide enough to be an effective powder Nordic touring ski- IMO. The 98/88 are not wide enough for me to consider them powder skis- therefore, I would rather be on a narrower "turny" ski that is lighter and more responsive with light-duty boots. I would buy an 88 in a second for a distance-oriented powder ski if it came in lengths of 205+cm...

The reviewer seemed to indicate the s-78 was stiffer cambered and also noted that it was a straighter ski with less sidecut. I could use a waxless or kicker skinned k&g trail ski. Sometimes all I have is trail skiing, just not enough snow to make turns. I am happy just having a session of hot foreplay (k&g), I don't need to go downhill and make turns (going all the way) all the time. I am much happier tacking a kick through the trails in the woods, than not skiing at all.

The 78 will perform more like your USGI Combats than the wider, less cambered, and curvier skis.


Canna, thanks for the heads up on the e-99. I have read the positive reviews, I not quite ready to go to that class of ski. Maybe after I skied an e-109 or s-78, I may be ready for an e-99, just not now.

I think you might be really surprised by how light, responsive and fun a ski like E-99 is- a stiff double-cambered track ski it is not- it is finely tuned for the backcountry. If you really like the USGI Combat- you would love the E-99. The E-99 is certainly a XC-focused BC ski- but it is a ton of fun on the downhill!

Does anybody have any experience with the Rossignol BC 70?.

Stiff (stiffer than the E-99), double-cambered (more cambered than your USGIs), short...
The pursuit of XCD balance: cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry

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lilcliffy
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Re: 78 Traverse / 88 Excursion which one? Or another?

Postby lilcliffy » Sun Mar 19, 2017 5:03 pm

fisheater wrote:LC, glad see you back, hope you have been getting some tours in between work and other responsibilities.


Still skiing every day. It has been a winter of constant extremes but we have had a ton of snow. We are now into spring skiing full swing. I even put some klister on this afternoon so that I could use my Combat Natos without the Skin-Lock!
The pursuit of XCD balance: cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry

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lilcliffy
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Re: 78 Traverse / 88 Excursion which one? Or another?

Postby lilcliffy » Sun Mar 19, 2017 5:14 pm

Woodserson wrote:I hope I'm not putting a wrench in the works here, but I have 78's and 88's and I go for my 88's all the time. There's pretty decent Nordic rocker (Excursion version) and they turn OK-- I am mounted slightly forward FWIW. Since I tend to be on trails that have snowshoe tracks they have been more stable than the 78's. My 78's are actually kind of collecting dust.

I dont' doubt this. Those extra millimetres at the waist make a big difference. I am not sure why- but, I don't find the E-109 to offer any more stability or float than the E-99- the big difference is the flex- the E-109 is softer. But my skis that approach the 70mm waist (Epoch/XCD 10th Mn/USGI Combat) are more stable and offer noticeably more float than the narrower skis...The only ski I have with a waist less than 62mm that seems to offer as much stability as those with a 68-70mm waist is my Asnes Combat Nato- there is something amazingly supportive and stable about the flex of that ski...

Woods- how would you compare the flex and camber of the 78 vs. 88 vs. 98?

Ditto on Rongons comment on the Outtabounds, they are a fun ski with serious camber but turn-able with decent technique. I now also have the Boundless, which have an even, smooth flexing alpine camber and they are just the shizniz. Woah whatta ride. But I digress.

Remind me- what are the dimensions of the Outtabounds and Boundless again? I can never remember...
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Re: 78 Traverse / 88 Excursion which one? Or another?

Postby lilcliffy » Sun Mar 19, 2017 5:21 pm

fisheater wrote: I could use a waxless or kicker skinned k&g trail ski. Sometimes all I have is trail skiing, just not enough snow to make turns. I am happy just having a session of hot foreplay (k&g), I don't need to go downhill and make turns (going all the way) all the time. I am much happier tacking a kick through the trails in the woods, than not skiing at all.

If a straight-forward BC-XC ski would do- then I think you should seriously consider a ski like the E-99 or even the Glittertind (you can get the Glitt at amazing sale prices). In my limited experience- the only advantage you get with the curvier and softer Eon/S-78/Ingstad is that they are easier to turn and climb with. In my experience- the reason to choose an Eon over a Glitt has more to do with terrain than stability or flotation...And the Glitt is WAAY faster than the Eon...
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Re: 78 Traverse / 88 Excursion which one? Or another?

Postby Woodserson » Sun Mar 19, 2017 6:50 pm

lilcliffy wrote:I dont' doubt this. Those extra millimetres at the waist make a big difference. I am not sure why- but, I don't find the E-109 to offer any more stability or float than the E-99- the big difference is the flex- the E-109 is softer. But my skis that approach the 70mm waist (Epoch/XCD 10th Mn/USGI Combat) are more stable and offer noticeably more float than the narrower skis...The only ski I have with a waist less than 62mm that seems to offer as much stability as those with a 68-70mm waist is my Asnes Combat Nato- there is something amazingly supportive and stable about the flex of that ski...

Woods- how would you compare the flex and camber of the 78 vs. 88 vs. 98?


Remind me- what are the dimensions of the Outtabounds and Boundless again? I can never remember...


The flex and camber are progressively stiffer and more pronounced the smaller waisted you get, but it's subtle and not entirely obvious. I notice it most when I squeeze them with one hand.

Fisheater: I find little difference between the 98 and the 88 except the additional sidecut on the 98 is nice, HOWEVER there is more Nordic rocker on the 88 than the 98 and I find them just as easy to turn. I'm actually a little frustrated with my 98s. I wouldn't change my 88's but I wanted more turning on the 98s and I don't feel like I'm getting it. They are fine, they turn well, but I wanted MORE. It's almost like the less Nordic rocker and the more sidecut evened each other out and all I get is a slightly bigger shovel to climb on top of the snow. I may actually get a pair of 98's in a 179 and see if that makes a difference (because I am way below their weight recs), but that's a big "may".

The Outta and Boundless correspond to the 88 and 98, same dimensions, but the Outta is aggressively cambered and the Boundless is a soft even flexing alpine flex. Very very different from the 98 and WONDERFUL. I have it in a 179 and it's a WAX, so I'm not dragging scales. I also use if mostly with lift-access and skins. They wouldn't be great with positive scales or kickwax with that kind of flex.

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lilcliffy
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Re: 78 Traverse / 88 Excursion which one? Or another?

Postby lilcliffy » Sun Mar 19, 2017 9:26 pm

Woodserson wrote:Fisheater: I find little difference between the 98 and the 88 except the additional sidecut on the 98 is nice, HOWEVER there is more Nordic rocker on the 88 than the 98 and I find them just as easy to turn. I'm actually a little frustrated with my 98s. I wouldn't change my 88's but I wanted more turning on the 98s and I don't feel like I'm getting it. They are fine, they turn well, but I wanted MORE. It's almost like the less Nordic rocker and the more sidecut evened each other out and all I get is a slightly bigger shovel to climb on top of the snow. I may actually get a pair of 98's in a 179 and see if that makes a difference (because I am way below their weight recs), but that's a big "may".

This is interesting stuff Woods- and consistent with my experiences as well...Tip rocker is a big deal in terms of turn initiation- a true game changer. As a current comparison in my current day-to-day skiing- the tip rocker in my E-109/E-99s make them surprisingly "turny"- despite their stiff second camber. As a comparison, my Asnes Combat Natos have no tip rocker- and although they have a wonderful flex on the downhill, and lots of sidecut- they don't offer the easy turn initiation of the E-109- in fact- and this may sound crazy- I think that my E-99 Tour (they open up even more than the E-109!?) offers easier turn initiation than the Combat Nato...BUT- on the flip side- unless the snow is ideal- I increasingly find the Nordic rocker on the E-109/E-99 a source of frustration when XC skiing- especially on the narrow-waited E-109. Sure that tip "rises to the top", but it leaves the rest of the ski behind...

You mention the tip of your 98 "climbing up on top of the snow"- what's the overall flex of the ski like for you? Does the rest of the ski support your weight and "kick"? What length 98 do you have?

Sounds like the current 88 is a better design than the 98...I like the dimensions better. I would rather have more width through the waist, and a nice open tip for early tip rise and turn initiation. (I am secretly hoping that if Asnes adds tip rocker to the Ingstad, that they give it more width at the waist- more grip, more float, and greater stability).
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Re: 78 Traverse / 88 Excursion which one? Or another?

Postby lilcliffy » Sun Mar 19, 2017 9:48 pm

OH! And BTW- I keep think of this and then forgetting to post it...

Fisheater: Have you looked at Alpina's BC Nordic lineup? They should be suitable and they are often super cheap on sale...
http://shop.alpinasportsus.com/en/categ ... ry_id=8817
https://www.backcountry.com/nordic-back ... lpina&nf=1
https://www.rei.com/product/892158/alpi ... untry-skis
I have never tried Alpina BC nordic skis...They are typicaly relatively short, low-cambered, and have a ton of sidecut..All skiing in Slovenia is in the Alps- so it kind of makes sense that their BC Nordic skis are very turny...

Glitt on fo $210:
http://www.akers-ski.com/product/17MG1.html

Also- you mentioned the BC70...

I know a number if skiers that actually genuinely love the BC65 for the type of skiing you describe (I believe Connyro has a pair as well). An if you want a pair of inexpensive waxless, metal-edged touring skis- the BC65 can be had for a steal in the off-season.
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Re: 78 Traverse / 88 Excursion which one? Or another?

Postby fisheater » Mon Mar 20, 2017 8:41 am

lilcliffy wrote:OH! And BTW- I keep think of this and then forgetting to post it...

Fisheater: Have you looked at Alpina's BC Nordic lineup? They should be suitable and they are often super cheap on sale...
http://shop.alpinasportsus.com/en/categ ... ry_id=8817
https://www.backcountry.com/nordic-back ... lpina&nf=1
https://www.rei.com/product/892158/alpi ... untry-skis
I have never tried Alpina BC nordic skis...They are typicaly relatively short, low-cambered, and have a ton of sidecut..All skiing in Slovenia is in the Alps- so it kind of makes sense that their BC Nordic skis are very turny...

Glitt on fo $210:
http://www.akers-ski.com/product/17MG1.html

Also- you mentioned the BC70...

I know a number if skiers that actually genuinely love the BC65 for the type of skiing you describe (I believe Connyro has a pair as well). An if you want a pair of inexpensive waxless, metal-edged touring skis- the BC65 can be had for a steal in the off-season.



What about an Eon? I just found a 205 for $205.

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Re: 78 Traverse / 88 Excursion which one? Or another?

Postby StormyMonday » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:18 am

lilcliffy wrote:OH! And BTW- I keep think of this and then forgetting to post it...

Fisheater: Have you looked at Alpina's BC Nordic lineup? They should be suitable and they are often super cheap on sale...
http://shop.alpinasportsus.com/en/categ ... ry_id=8817
https://www.backcountry.com/nordic-back ... lpina&nf=1
https://www.rei.com/product/892158/alpi ... untry-skis
I have never tried Alpina BC nordic skis...They are typicaly relatively short, low-cambered, and have a ton of sidecut..All skiing in Slovenia is in the Alps- so it kind of makes sense that their BC Nordic skis are very turny...

Glitt on fo $210:
http://www.akers-ski.com/product/17MG1.html

Also- you mentioned the BC70...

I know a number if skiers that actually genuinely love the BC65 for the type of skiing you describe (I believe Connyro has a pair as well). An if you want a pair of inexpensive waxless, metal-edged touring skis- the BC65 can be had for a steal in the off-season.


I use 2 skis for xcd, my Outtabounds which I've had seemingly forever, and some NOS Alpina Cross Terrains, which I think is now the Discovery 102. The Alpinas at 102/64/87 and an alpine like camber are not k&g skis. They are waxless and climb like a goat and as the dimensions suggest are plenty turny. They are also stiffer than the Outtas. I ski my Outtas in 179 and my X Terrains in 170 (I'm 5'10" 170 lbs). In east coast powder I find both to be just fine despite the skinny waists by today's standards, but I grew up on really skinny straight skis so more modern skiers may not agree with that. Here our powder is usually followed by some rain so we get deep wet snow. I suppose some may call it corn. In these conditions in the trees the Outtas get pushed around a bit, I find them a lot of work with my Asolos or my Excursions. The Alpinas seem to handle variable snow much better, especially if that rain turns into a crust (always). In soft snow I find the Outtas to be really easy to initiate a turn, I have to work a little more with the Alpina despite lower camber. That might be because I've been on the Outtas for 10 years and am just getting used to the Alpinas (skiing both with pins). I'm not sure the Alpina is a great touring ski, it's really good for quickly climbing a relatively small hill and coming down in the trees, and it can plow through snow that challenges the Outta. Together they make a pretty good quiver of 2 for me though and as noted you can pick up Alpinas pretty cheap...

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Re: 78 Traverse / 88 Excursion which one? Or another?

Postby lilcliffy » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:13 am

fisheater wrote:What about an Eon? I just found a 205 for $205.


The Eon is a wonderful ski- I myself put a ridiculous number of hours (and 1000s of kms) on first my waxless Eon Omintracks, and then my Eon Wax. We have a number of Eons- it remains my 12 yr-old daughter's favorite (she is very light and strong)- it is the first ski I put anyone on that is skiing with us and is new to backcountry XCD touring.

The Eon is very soft for a double-cambered (or rather camber-and-a-half) ski- and, the tips are slightly rockered and extremely soft- the tail is stiffer than the tip and straight. Despite being so soft, the Eon still has an effective "wax pocket" (that stiff low second camber is still there) and it tracks very well as a XC ski. Overall- I have always found the Eon too soft for my preferences- BUT, it is an extremely popular XCD touring ski, and for good reason. The waxless-scaled "Omnitrack" is finely tuned for XC skiing, not climbing.

The soft smooth flex, and the very soft, slightly open tips make the Eon very easily managed on the downhill.

The Eon is- IMO- very different than your Combat USGI. As a XC ski- you will find the Eon MUCH slower than the USGI (despite it being much lighter). As a downhill ski- you will find the Eon much more responsive and easier to turn than the USGI.

Despite the "made in China" paranoia- we have found the Eon well made, and very durable. It is wood-cored and therefore there is some variability in the flex from ski to ski.

I weigh 185lbs, and I find the Eon soft enough that I actually hate being on the shorter 195cm- I have two 205cm Eons (wax and waxless).

We have favoured the Eon and other Madshus XCDs for a lot of reasons- the fact that they are excellent value (even with a weak $CAN) is one of the biggest reasons.

I was out with a group of friends recently and we had the 205cm Eon Wax, the 205cm E-109 Tour, the 210cm Combat Nato, and the 210cm Combat USGI between us. It was fun switching between them. It's funny- although I always think of the Eon as having a lot of XC DNA- but out of all of the above group, it is easily the best downhill ski. But the Combat Nato is currently my favourite of the bunch...

But you know- if I had to choose just one distance-oriented XCD ski- I would have a hard time choosing between the Combat Nato/Ingstad and the E-99 tour Easy-Skin...
The pursuit of XCD balance: cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry


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