Ski Review: 2018-2019 Åsnes Gamme 54 BC

Real reviews by real skiers. What a concept! Add your own today. Reviews only please, questions can be posted as replies but new threads looking for opinions should be posted to the main Telemark Talk Forum.
User avatar
fisheater
Posts: 1195
Joined: Fri Feb 19, 2016 9:06 pm
Location: Oakland County, MI
Ski style: All my own, and age doesn't help
Favorite Skis: Gamme 54, Falketind 62, I hope to add a third soon
Favorite boots: Alpina Alaska, Alico Ski March
Occupation: Construction Manager

Re: Ski Review: 2018-2019 Åsnes Gamme 54 BC

Post by fisheater » Sun Feb 14, 2021 10:21 am

Hello GCW, congratulations on making the right length decision for you. However for me at 190 lbs / 86 kg, Åsnes places me in the middle of the 200 cm range, and I am on the 210 cm. I really only ended up on the correct length for me, because there were other skiers on this site, that were a bit lighter than me, and on 210 cm skis that encouraged me to go longer.
So as far as the recommended weight size chart, I don’t think of it as a Bible. It’s more of a reasonable place to start.
I enjoyed reading about you finding your “kick”. I am not a trained XC skier, I came to this from resort Telemark. So I remember finding my “kick” well. I don’t live in an area with a thriving Nordic tradition, and I guess it wouldn’t matter if there was because it would probably be race centric and I am a back country guy. The best advice I can give is have fun, and you will develop a natural kick. Now I’ve been at this for a while, and always had fun, but somewhere along the line things just come together. The kick motion becomes easy, not effort. That doesn’t mean that more focus isn’t required in certain snow conditions, but focus isn’t effort. What I mean by focus, is when I have excellent grip and glide I find myself launching off the ball of my foot. When I slip, I need to FOCUS on launching off a flat foot to not slip.
I also think all my kick and glide skiing improved when I started skiing on my Gamme. However for me, I had been kicking and gliding for more than a few years. The power of the camber of the Gamme in release and positive grip allowed my to become a much faster skier. To be able to kick and gain speed while going down a grade at speed already! Although there definitely is a speed limit to that sort of thing. However, I now ski single cambered XCD skis faster, solely because what I learned from skiing Gamme.
So when I say just have fun and ski. It’s because I know you will think intellectually about your technique. I think it’s natural. However what I’ve learned since I began, and the improvement to my kick and glide that became part of my skiing from skiing the Gamme, that now I have on all my skis. It’s all muscle memory!
The one thing I find myself intellectually reminding myself is the first thing I learned alpine skiing. That is flex the knees! Since I’m not a trained track skier, I have no idea if that is counter to established technique. However when skiing in the backcountry, the old adage, flex the knees makes all the difference in the world.

User avatar
The GCW
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2021 11:39 am
Location: Summit County Colorado
Ski style: Alpine, Alpine B.C. Nordic B.C.

Re: Ski Review: 2018-2019 Åsnes Gamme 54 BC

Post by The GCW » Sun Feb 14, 2021 12:23 pm

Fisheater,

I've got a good grip (intended pun) on kick and glide. Been on Fischer E99 Crown's since 2006. Since I don't know how to tele, K&G is an ever-present honed focus. Pure fun. Hardly think during the different minute change ups between constant quick changes in conditions, terrain, dry powder snow, sometimes next to slick track, bumps humps, different levels of waxing success and how they work better or not as good on all those different dynamics etc.

When the wax is good - perfect, it's still sometimes not as good for short particular instances with those ever changing dynamics.
When wax is not as good but still ok, sometimes it is perfect here and there when going around a corner, etc.

Along with flexing the knees, be sure to also flex the back. Imagine playing soccer: (while) standing up and suddenly moving. In the ready set position with knees bent and back also bent toward the objective, motion is quicker and more efficient. And then there's the arms. It's the whole body.

It is: "It’s all muscle memory!"

What's new for Me is wax.

That is working very well for Me, however, primarily with the help of this forum.

Another poster pointed out how perhaps the Gamme isn't a good beginner ski, I think for kick and glide but also regarding wax.

Forum topics ranging from lilcliffy and Pinnah's along with many other posts including the newbie wax post from Breck...
Wax is good.

Better kick and better glide that My E-99's. When things are not dialed their as good as the Fischer's.

With all the help, here, I haven't had a wax failure: only wax adjustments.





User avatar
The GCW
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2021 11:39 am
Location: Summit County Colorado
Ski style: Alpine, Alpine B.C. Nordic B.C.

Re: Ski Review: 2018-2019 Åsnes Gamme 54 BC

Post by The GCW » Sat Feb 20, 2021 9:43 pm

Fisheater,

I just re-read Your last post, and I can relate to what I believe You're describing.

Succeeding on the GAMME makes a skier improve.

And other post's regarding the Gamme:
-It's a sports car.
-It's not for a beginner waxer.
* I can relate to them too.

I don't mind stopping to adjust wax (many times), figure it out and learn... (love learning) -addicted to learning.

Wide, wide range of terrain changes, temperature changes. -Today going from packed frozen trail to untracked with some sign of where skiers were before last snow; going from overnight low of 11°F to 21°F starting out to 33° to 35° when gettin back, with areas of sun, clouds etc. It's a beautiful game.

Experiencing how Gamme grabs better on every minute convex piece of snow, how it behaves different just off the sides of packed trail, quick decision making is rewarded. A great wax job isn't great everywhere: where You are standing has more then one option where to place the ski in order to gain traction. Sometimes, dealing with a short term, short comings, so that up ahead, where You know, it will be shaded, things will get better.

The Oh's and the Ah's,

Any and all waxing achievements I've experienced are due directly to this website.

And I get to ski again tomorrow.





Stephen
Posts: 248
Joined: Thu Aug 06, 2020 12:49 am
Ski style: Aspirational
Favorite Skis: Either the last ones I skied, or the ones I should have skied.
Favorite boots: Alfa Guard Advance

Re: Ski Review: 2018-2019 Åsnes Gamme 54 BC

Post by Stephen » Fri Mar 05, 2021 7:32 pm

EDIT:
Thanks to all those who offered opinions / thoughts / suggestions / points of view / ... towards my original question “Do I want a Nansen or Gamme?” All were helpful, and appreciated.


Turns out, I wanted a Gamme (but maybe I still want a Nansen, who knows).
The real deciding factors were:
1. No Nansens in my size to be had, and;
2. The Gammes sounded good.

Think I might have got the last pair of 210s in the US (Neptune).
Me:
6’3” / 167 out of the shower / about 185-190 geared up for the day.
Medium ok skier (I think I’m a hack, but maybe I’m 1/2 way competent).

I’ve been out on them four times in extremely different conditions:
- 1st time, after heavy snowfall, fairly dense powder on top of a partially consolidated base (12”), 6 miles, 760 feet;
- 2nd time, snow machine track with settling powder, 11 miles, 1,800 feet;
- 3rd time, overnight camping trip, 40# pack, 6.5 miles, 500 feet, 8” of new snow overnight;
- 4th time was 10 miles, 2,000 feet, mostly snowmobile trails, but also anything from solid sun crust, to breakable crust, to mashed potatoes, to five day old “powder” on NE faces, after warm weather.

There will be Pluses and Minuses here, but that’s the nature of most choices we make — most choices are a compromise.
So far, I find no real faults with these skis.

I really like these skis. They remind me of my 220 Asnes Tur Langrenn woodies of long ago. They are bit wider than those were, but have the feel. Light, springy, fast.

They are undeterred by crap — rutted snow machine tracks, crust, ruble. They just like to peacefully continue in the direction they are going. So, this can be a plus or a minus.
The Mountain Race 48 wax (with flexible tips and tail) I skied a few times seemed to snake along the path of least resistance. Sort of a plus on twisty turny bobsled runs with no exit options.
So, the Gamme takes more work to keep it on those twisty turny paths. More active steering or step turns.
But, that solidness feels so reassuring when traversing crust, or intending to ski up and out of a trail that takes a turn.

I debated (agonized) whether to get the 200cm (recommended length) or 210cm. In the end I finally had to realize that I was just going to have to decide which compromise I wanted to make: speed or grip.
I went for speed. I feel like I have quite adequate grip. I imagine I would have had more grip and a bit less speed with the 200cm, but don’t have 200cm for a side-by-side comparison.

As a side note, I am super happy, almost all the time, with the 35mm Mohair X-skins on these skis. Good grip AND glide (and, I have not even bothered to cut off the 2” of skin that is behind the heel). With a Gamme 200cm, I might be less impressed with the glide, due to more skin contact with the snow. Sometimes, the glide seems almost as good as wax, and the climb is much more dependable.
It does take a bit of care in ski placement when climbing and there are undulations in the snow surface. Less likely to get grip if grip zone is placed over any sort of depression. But this is alway more or less true.

If I contrast the Gammes with my Ingstads, there are of course many differences. One difference that is front of mind for me is that these feel much more predictable and solid traversing firm snow. Maybe it’s a stiffer ski. Maybe it’s just because it’s a narrower ski and easier to leverage on edge. Not sure, but I like it.

Have I said they’re fast? I think it’s easy to think of fast as in power, like a fast car. This is almost the inverse: they are fast because there is so little resistance to sliding on snow — it’s a joy!

Trip #1:
Just getting used to the skis. It got late, but was able to try a few turns in deeper, new snow and was really happy with turns in those conditions.

I notice one negative the 1st time out (#1 above). The tails sank into the snow more than the tips, and so there was the effect of walking uphill on the flats, or walking up a steeper hill on the hills. I would not equate that to the “pool cover effect” that has been mentioned. It was not like the middle of the ski was not supporting me, just that the tails sank. This could almost be a result of the stiffness of the ski. The foot is behind the balance point of the ski. The tip is wider than the tail. Logically, it does not seem surprising that the tail would sink more than the tip. Also, on each step forward, the tail is being place into a partially depressed track created by the ski of that foot, from the previous step, whereas, the tips are being supported by uncompressed snow.
I found this fairly annoying, but have not seen it again, and think it may result from a combination of snow conditions and the thought process outlined above. That’s enough words on that one!

Trip #2:
Was a joy. Fairly long distance (for me), fast progress on snow machine trail, fast ride out on the 1,800’ of vertical.

Trip #3:
I was a little concerned about the 45# pack (out and 40# back) on the narrower ski. Everything seemed to go well. Found a few hills to practice a few turns on days old powder. Woke up to 8” of fresh the next day, and skied out. Didn’t have too much time to fool around.

Trip #4:
Yesterday, just a fairly long push up 2,000. Switched to the 35mm X-Skins for most of it. Great glide on the warm snow, although they did get wet and then ice up in the shade (even though I have waxed them).
The ride down required use of the “rear brake” way more than I would have liked. First the trail was narrow, and once my max speed was exceeded, there was no way I could control speed (except with the rear brake). The sides were fast crust, the trail too narrow to snowplow. Then, out onto the North / South ridge. One side mush (W), the other side mostly breakable crust (E). I don’t have the skill for either. On the mush, I can make BIG turns, but those are no good for controlling speed. I never did figure out breakable crust. So the parts with a “reasonable” slope angle were great — big smile. The rest of it was a “learning experience.”

To wrap up, I really like the ski. I will be interested to try it in other conditions, especially powder and soft predictable corn. Here I’m mostly thinking turns, and this is not a turny ski, but it will turn.
.
3E90CBC2-F7BB-4212-A593-B1C15E863337.jpeg
3CB3482C-2438-449A-ACB7-CE7F599628BB.jpeg
Trip #1 — Trying to show how tails sink in this snow.
06C1BBA1-9A4E-4A46-808E-44C4BD83EBEC.jpeg
Trip #1 — Turns in some fairly dense new snow.
E80A01ED-3103-4E13-9596-AEB5FE61E100.jpeg
Trip #3 Day 1
B3D98A19-D4B3-4FE9-8D77-F9703AD8D086.jpeg
Trip #3 Day 2
C74DE44E-447A-46D1-B998-84F09DBCB75A.jpeg
Trip #3, Day 1 — Older powder
98D8879B-96A4-4D1A-9F83-19D03A2E9E83.jpeg
Trip #3, Day 2 — 8” of new snow overnight
C97B8756-EFAD-4120-B706-11C0C1296329.jpeg
Trip #4 — Beautiful day.
87351E27-7149-4C0F-8E64-E26BC8D32023.jpeg
Trip #4 — Big turns in mashed potatoes.
54949B68-C947-4868-A6E3-A6C8AD84C6B0.jpeg
Last edited by Stephen on Sat Mar 06, 2021 12:47 am, edited 2 times in total.





User avatar
fisheater
Posts: 1195
Joined: Fri Feb 19, 2016 9:06 pm
Location: Oakland County, MI
Ski style: All my own, and age doesn't help
Favorite Skis: Gamme 54, Falketind 62, I hope to add a third soon
Favorite boots: Alpina Alaska, Alico Ski March
Occupation: Construction Manager

Re: Ski Review: 2018-2019 Åsnes Gamme 54 BC

Post by fisheater » Fri Mar 05, 2021 7:53 pm

Stephen, I think the turns look pretty good! Looks like a nice camp. What tent are you using? Just curious I am thinking more about some winter overnighters.

Oh, by the way,”Did I say they are fast?”
I feel the same!

I ‘m glad you’re happy with them. I really enjoyed your write up.





User avatar
Woodserson
Posts: 2115
Joined: Wed Feb 11, 2015 11:25 am
Location: New Hampshire
Ski style: Bumps, trees, steeps and long woodsy XC tours
Favorite Skis: DH: Voile V6, Altai KOMs, XCD: Asnes FT62, XC: Nansen, E99, Bonna 1800
Favorite boots: T2Eco, T4, Rossignol BCX10
Occupation: Retro Rager-grouch. Flailmeister. E99 Nerd

Re: Ski Review: 2018-2019 Åsnes Gamme 54 BC

Post by Woodserson » Fri Mar 05, 2021 10:39 pm

Yeah, Stephen! Good choice.





User avatar
Musk Ox
Posts: 151
Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2019 8:53 am
Location: North
Ski style: Bad
Favorite Skis: I am a circumpolar mammal
Favorite boots: Hooves
Occupation: Eating lichen, walking about

Re: Ski Review: 2018-2019 Åsnes Gamme 54 BC

Post by Musk Ox » Sat Mar 06, 2021 7:03 am

They're really good, aren't they?

I sold my Mountain Races to buy a pair a pair of Gammes and I've not been in a situation yet where I regretted it. They're much better in deep snow and on descents.





Stephen
Posts: 248
Joined: Thu Aug 06, 2020 12:49 am
Ski style: Aspirational
Favorite Skis: Either the last ones I skied, or the ones I should have skied.
Favorite boots: Alfa Guard Advance

Re: Ski Review: 2018-2019 Åsnes Gamme 54 BC

Post by Stephen » Sat Mar 06, 2021 2:22 pm

@Musk Ox The MR48 was great in the track and carried over onto trails nicely, but I had the sense I wasn’t going to use them enough to justify, and am, so far, very happy with the adjustment to my ski selection (AKA, quiver — I’m not much for jargon).
:lol:

Latest “adjustment” is trade FT62 188 for Objective 178 with NNN BC.
More to follow...





Post Reply