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04-03-2006, 06:45 PM #1
Volkl Gotama: The ultimate Euro Powder Ski?
This is my first post, although I've been checking this gear forum for the last two years. First, let me say I've learned a lot about new gear since I've discovered this website. Thank you very much.
To give you a little bit about my background:
- 35 years old, athletic and fit (rock/alpine clinbing).
- 22 years of alpine skiing experience (mainly in the Andes, although Alps and Pyrenees in the last 4 years since I moved to Europe).
- Weight: 73 kg. (~165 lbs.)
- Height: 1.75 m. (~5'10")
- Skill Level: On a 1-10 level, I guess I could be considered a 8-9 level skier.
- Terrain preferred: Backcountry, although in any given season I will spend 40% of my time on piste.
- Style: Mostly powerful and aggresive, finesse at the end of the day when I am tired .
- Main ski location: Pyrenees and Alps, AKA Euroland (although I dream of one day experiencing Alta and that champagne powder I've heard so much about).
Ski days per season: ~40 days.
My current quiver is composed of:
Hard Snow / Piste: Volkl Allstar 168cm. (unbelievable edging).
Crud / Mid-fat: Dynastar Legend 8000 178 cm. w/ Fritschi Freerides (also great for day backcountry tours).
Lightweight AT Rig: Atomic R9 170 cm. w/ Fritschi Diamir III (excellent for long multi-day tours like Chamonix-Zermatt or Monte Rosa Tour!)
Boots: Lange Comp 100 (Alpine) and Scarpa Matrix (AT).
Sorry for the long presentation, but I felt it adequate to put you in context for the questions ahead. I am trying to complete the quiver with a specialty ski: a big-mountain powder ski. Given my current skis, I don't feel the need for a "compromise" ski as I believe I'm well covered for other snow conditions. I am looking for a pure powder machine. For pure powder use, I don't believe I need the stiffness of a Legend Pro but I don't want a very flexible ski a la Pocket Rocket / Gun.
Given my weight and my powder experience (humble), I was thinking in the 05/06 Volkl Gotama. I can get this locally for $420 flat which I tend to believe is a good deal after checking Froogle and ski internet shops (maybe not?). I've done a search and read lots of Gotama and fat skis posts here and in Epicski, but I've never owned a fat ski so want to make sure. My questions are:
1) Gotamas: Is this an excellent powder ski? Specially interested in answers from people that own/demoed this ski EXCLUSIVELY in 24"+ powder conditions. I know, who would demo on a powder day? But I ask just in case...
2) Length: Given my weight and the twin tip feature, I believe 183 cm. should be fine with the 105 mm. waist. Right?
3) Bindings: At first I was thinking of a pair of Fritschi Freerides for this but then I remembered of a friend who started the Chamonix-Zermatt with this setup and bailed out on the second day due to its weight. And as this would not be used for touring I believe a Look PX 12 Ti Lifter Wide would do the trick after bending the brakes a tiny bit. Comments on any other binding that might work with this 105mm-waisted ski? Marker M12 Free w/ Big Air Pads?
4) Opportunity: Should I go for the $420 deal given I would only use this a limited number of days per season? Please keep in mind this will not be my primary ski (Alps ain't no Utah, as you may well know), not even my secondary ski on a piste day, but just a specialty ski for those few epic days.
Thanks for all your input.
Last edited by Alpinist; 04-03-2006 at 07:00 PM.
04-03-2006, 06:55 PM #2
Great pow ski, but maybe quiver overlap with 8800. The more I think about it, either go 190 goat, or maden/sanouk. Wider may be better, as the gotama is extremely versatile.
04-03-2006, 06:58 PM #3Originally Posted by Catbert
04-03-2006, 07:04 PM #4
whoah, didnt see the 8000. If you are primarily skiing over 24 inches on these skis, get the 190s for open terrain or if you are a strong skier. My buddy skis his 190s everyday and loves them. You might find they turn into your overall resort ski. Should be great in pow at that length.
I'm 5'10, 133 pounds, and would get the 183. You are a bigger guy. I vote 190. The huge twin tip kills the running length.
04-03-2006, 07:11 PM #5
1st there is a search button
This will enable you to find more info.
As far as only riding a ski exclusivly on 2' pow days that seems like that ski wouldn't see a lot of use.
Gotamas rock they are weapons of mass powder destruction.
Mounted w/ Naxos nx21s, while being a heavy touring rig, you would be able to find 24" stashes of pow days after the dump.
If your just gonna ride em on big powdays inbounds. Put an alpine binder on
You could even use them on 23" days that are almost epic.
420 is a good number/price.
The gapicgang can tell ya a lot more
04-03-2006, 07:42 PM #6
Go 190, it aint even a question. They ski shorter than you would expect."If you're gonna be dumb, you gotta be tough."
04-03-2006, 08:11 PM #7Originally Posted by skifishbum
Also, lots of the posts are about skiers (west coasters) using their Gotamas as their primary ski, which is not my case as I don't live out west but in Euroland. This is intended to be a powder ski for me, period. The 2-feet mark was just given as threshold in which I do believe I could get something more comfortable than my Legends 8000. I am sure that at 23" deep I will do fine with Gotamas . But I tend to feel comfortable on the Legends up to above 18".
I don't want to rig AT bindings in these because I am not going to be skining in 2ft. of wet euro powder with such a a heavy rig. Done some touring already in this type of situations and unless the powder is superlight (which generally in Europe is not, more like the Sierras and Cascades) the value proposition (uphill effort vs. downhill enjoyability) is negative. I rather use my (lighter) Legends/Freeride in this conditions for touring in deep wet snow or bootpack if its Gotama deep.
Pardon my ignorance but, what is the gapicgang?
04-03-2006, 08:16 PM #8
epic = gapic
04-03-2006, 08:24 PM #9Originally Posted by skifishbum
04-03-2006, 08:38 PM #10
No it just seems there are a lot of instuctor, groomer riding, turn anaylizers, over there and a lot of stoke posting freaks here.
To each his own.
No one will want to follow you on gots. Blinding roostertail.
04-03-2006, 10:11 PM #11
You won't regret it.
04-03-2006, 10:24 PM #12
What is your budget if you opt against the Gotama?
If you are saying you only plan on using them on days with 2 or more feet of snow, I would try something even a little more extreme. Like swallow tail, reverse side cut, etc...
I can't recommend any skis from experience, but that would be the direction I think I would be wandering in.
04-03-2006, 10:30 PM #13
I believe these will get more use then you think which is pretty common with the gotama. I also think you can go 183 as it isn't a noodle and still has good stabilty despite the large twin. You will also be surprised how well this does in variable snow as well as pow.
04-03-2006, 11:25 PM #14
if its a 100% powder only ski, then go with the DP's that Ty mentioned over on Epic. Why compromise with a ski that is only pulled out in 2+ feet of snow?
Maybe some pontoons.
All in all, the Gotama's will be fine, you'll probably like them.
The Lotus' and other designs with zero or (-) camber seem to be fantastic and spreading like wildfire. Might as well hop on the wagon now
04-04-2006, 01:45 AM #15
i'm about your size and have just got the 183 off ebay.de for 290 euros, look on there. i think with wetness of the late season storms (somehow i've managed to hit every march dump in cham, amazing), you'll be able to get some good use out of them yet....
on the binder front, the new looks have had problems. go with the older look/rossi pivot or some salomons.
04-04-2006, 03:45 AM #16Originally Posted by Alpinist
Powderskis; dp lotus 120, dp lotus 138, k2 pontoons, the new atomic bigdaddy (125 width) and more.
Gotamas are versatile all mountain skis. That being said, you appear to be in dire need of a 100+- width ski. But it is not a pure powderski.All work and no play, ... you know...
04-04-2006, 08:21 AM #17Originally Posted by dirtybryan
Originally Posted by gforce
Originally Posted by XtrPickels
And to El Chupacabra, thanks for the tip. I never looked into swallowtails. Might need to get educated on it, although I don't believe I would be able to demo them in Euroland.
Originally Posted by KANUTTEN
ulty_guy: Given that you are my size, have the 183 Gotamas and ski where I do (Chamonix), would you care being a little more descriptive regarding the performance of the skis? Thanks a lot.
04-04-2006, 08:52 AM #18
i wish i could alpinist, but i just picked them up on ebay.de yesterday! will report back when i get out on 'em.
04-04-2006, 09:18 AM #19Originally Posted by ulty_guy
04-04-2006, 09:47 AM #20
I have a pair of 05-06 goats, 176 w/ Freerides. I'm 140lbs, former patroller, approaching 50. These were supposed to be my powder ski, but they've now become my everyday ski. I usually ski G4's and have since they came out. I've been really impressed w/ the goats versatility. I haven't found any snow condition/terrain that they don't excel in. (Wind blown chalk is the closest we've had to bullet proof) I skied them during/after a 100" dump here at Wolf Creek and they absolutely rip'd everything from boot top up to my chest. I took them touring yesterday (2hrs) and they felt really light at least compared to my G4 set up.
I think you'd be happy w/ this ski and $420 is a great deal.
04-04-2006, 09:52 AM #21Originally Posted by Powder Ho
04-04-2006, 10:16 AM #22
I've had no problems w/ the 176's. The shorter length works great for me in the tighter trees and the chutes we have here. Even in the open bowls I tend to make more turns than most. On the few occasions when I arc'd big GS turns in the pow they were super stable. I never demoed the 183 so I don't know if I would've liked that one better, but I do know I love what I have and will buy another pair in the same length.
04-04-2006, 10:59 AM #23
Have the dynastar 8800 /w looks in 188 and the gotamas /w naxos in 190.
they weigh exactly the same.
love the 8800 but haven´t skiied the goats yet.
sport-conrad.de sells gotamas for 300 euros.
04-04-2006, 12:03 PM #24
I'm 5' 11" 85Kg uk based euro maggot who skis cham/engleberg/les2alpes etc.
I have a pair of the 05/06 190cm gotamas + a bunch of other fat skis. They are my ski of choice at the moment. I can use them on groomers fine, just don't try and carve them unless you're doing 30+mph. Moguls aren't much fun. Powder fun is awesome.
They ski very short. If you can get a set of 190cm gotamas for that price, you will love them. To be honest, unless your maching down couloirs at 90mph, you probably wouldn't notice the difference between the 190's and 183's.
to sum up.
183cms still bloody damn good.
edit: just saw the sport-conrad.de ........ if you don't buy them, i will
Last edited by wildstyle; 04-04-2006 at 12:06 PM.Semper in Pulveris .... Only the depth varies
04-04-2006, 12:44 PM #25Originally Posted by wildstyle