Three Questions – #1: Firm Conditions
I haven’t seen such conditions yet, and I’m very curious.
Again, I’m not expecting miracles out of this ski, so basically, the obvious question is how damp and composed can this ~1350 gram ski can possibly feel?
We certainly were impressed with how well the 185 cm Zero G 108 handles variable conditions, but that Zero G 108 is ~200 grams per ski heavier than the Zero G 95.
Question #2: Would I Ski This In The Resort / Use it as a “50/50” Ski?
If this seems like a silly question to you, well, I’m with you.
And yet, the very first question we received about the Zero G 95 was asking about its performance vs. that of the Blizzard Bonafide.
My initial reaction to that question was, You people are crazy. This isn’t a legitimate question.
Then again, I have to admit that the Zero G 95 felt very good on those first turns under Crater Rock, and I can’t say with certainty that the Bonafide would have felt better.
But I would also say that the Bonafide will outperform the Zero G 95 basically everywhere else. The Bonafide is one of the absolute best all-mountain skis in its class, and I am overdue in posting my update to spell that out.
We are not at the point where you can reasonably expect a 1350 g ski — even a damn good one — to perform like a ~2175 g ski. And especially one of the best 2175 g skis on the market.
So how interested am I in using the Zero G 95 as an inbounds ski? Not at all. But if you know you like lightweight skis, and also find the Bonafide to be far too heavy … then … maybe. But don’t get mad when your 1350 g ski doesn’t possess the durability of a well-made (and heavier) ski that’s designed for inbounds abuse.
Question #3: 185 cm Blizzard Zero G 95 vs. 184 cm Salomon Explore 95?
We haven’t yet A/B-ed these two skis, but I know a lot of readers will be wondering about them.
So here’s my take for now:
If you’re considering one of these skis to serve as a ‘50/50’ ski, my best advice — and again, I say this without having skied these two skis back to back — is that I would opt for the extra weight of the MTN Explore 95.
While my first impressions on the Zero G 95 have been quite good, we were very impressed with the MTN Explore 95. So for now, let’s keep this simple:
(1) The more you care about going uphill, go with the lighter Zero G 95
(2) The more you care about downhill performance, opt for the extra weight of the Salomon MTN Explore.
Again, if we were less impressed with the MTN Explore, I wouldn’t be advising this way.
It may turn out that we are equally impressed with the Zero G 95 even though it is also lighter … but we’ll have to wait to see about that.
We’re not in a position yet to make a definitive statement regarding weight-to-skiability, but I’m already willing to wager pretty heavily that the Zero G 95 will be a top contender in its class for its combined low weight and downhill performance.
Again, low weight isn’t everything when it comes to a touring ski, and there are very legit reasons to opt for a heavier ski. But for those of you who are weight conscious but also want to ski hard on the way down … the Zero G 95 has struck an impressive balance so far.
We look forward to getting more time on these skis, and will update as we do.
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