2014-2015 RMU Apostle

Review of the Rocky Mountain Underground Apostle, Blister Gear Review.
14/15 Apostle

Ski: 2014-2015 RMU Apostle, 185cm

Dimensions (mm): 126-132-105-120-114

Sidecut Radius: 17.3 meters

Boots / Bindings: Rossignol Experience Sensor 130 / Marker Jester (DIN at 11)

Mount locations: Recommended Line

Test location:  Taos Ski Valley; Crested Butte, CO

Days skied: 7

[Editor’s Note: Our review was conducted on the 11/12 Apostle, which was not changed for 12/13, 13/14, or 14/15, except for the graphics.]

In the past five years, the evolution in all-mountain ski dimensions has resulted in a vast array of ski designs, and the 2011-2012 Apostle, by Rocky Mountain Underground (RMU), is one of the more unusual.

The Apostle has a progressive five-point design in which the widest sections of the tip and tail are at the snow surface contact points. Traditional camber under foot reinforces ski-to-snow contact at these points, and a rockered profile extends beyond them to the front and rear of the ski. But what really makes the Apostle unique is the shape of the tip and tail throughout this rockered section.

Unlike similar skis with five-point dimensions, the Apostle’s linear tip and tail don’t form a round ‘bowling ball’ taper from the widest points out to the end. Instead, RMU has applied a linear design beyond the widest points. While it may seem counterintuitive to have straight and narrow end sections, the design appears natural and seamlessly incorporated.

My first impressions of the Apostle were very positive. The unique dimensions, 185cm length, and gorgeous orange and white graphics made for a ski that had me unexpectedly giddy from the start. The Apostle not only looked progressive, but felt balanced and perfectly shaped for all-mountain fun.

The Apostle also has some bomber construction qualities. The ski has an American-grown poplar wood core that is reinforced with ultra high molecular weight (UGMW) polyethylene sidewalls, and 2.2mm-thick edge. The flex of the ski was beefy throughout the cambered section and expectedly soft throughout the rocker sections. This particular demo pair had been skied more than 100 days, yet the camber underfoot felt sturdy, and the vertically laminated top sheet was in excellent shape. Fabricated in the Never Summer factory in Denver, Colorado, this ski is a superb reflection of the term “MADE in the U.S.A.”

My first run on the Apostles consisted of mixed-radius turns on the groomer “Porcupine” at Taos Ski Valley. I typically start on Porcupine because of its medium pitch, consistent fall line, and corduroy that lasts long into the day. I was instantly delighted by how easily the Apostle transferred from medium-radius GS turns to faster, short-swing slalom turns on firm snow. The ski felt remarkably nimble and super quick edge to edge. I thought to myself, “Seriously?  Did this oddly shaped, rockered-tip ski just perform like an all-mountain GS ski and then a mogul ski in the same run?”

Yes, it did. And without hesitation, I opened them up into even larger super G turns back to the lift.

Large-radius carves on the Apostle were easygoing and stable, which was a direct result of the Apostle’s straight, rockered tip. As I’d push harder into turns, the skis front contact point would transfer farther into the tip, extending my ski-to-snow contact and creating a more stable ride.

This intuitive design proved to be extremely beneficial in the front half of the ski, but I began developing conflicting views for the overall length of the ski, particularly the rear. The rockered tail section didn’t retain the load I typically put in the tails to rebound into the next turn. If, however, I applied forward pressure while initiating turns, then center pressure through the completion of turns, I could ride neutrally with minimal effort. Despite this technique change, the overall length of the ski also came into question, as I couldn’t depend on the tail section when pressuring big, heavy turns.

Regardless, I still felt I had a super fun ski under me, and it was time to take the Apostle off piste.

13 comments on “2014-2015 RMU Apostle”

  1. I agree on all points. If you move the mount forward by 1-2cm you can definitely feel the tail a bit more, it’s all really just personal preference.

    Good review!

  2. I wish I could have spent more than a morning on em at Breck this year. It was 5 deg F and Peak 10 was icy as hell. They absolutely hated that stuff. I bailed on em after 3 runs and went back to the Line Opus. I expect that when I moved over to the softer stuff they would have woken up and been a blast. Can’t say enough about the company though. I mentioned I wanted to demo and within 3 hours they had a pair over from the factory for me to ride.

  3. Hey Garrett,

    I had a couple questions regarding the 2013 model of this ski.
    1. Did they change anything from the 2012?
    2 I am 5’8″ and 155 and was wondering if the 185 would be long enough for me? I know you said you had conflicting views about the overall length of the ski. Is it that there is a large amount of rocker? And do you know the actual Tip-to-Tail length?

    Great review and thanks!!!

    • Patrick,

      I checked in with RMU, and yes, they’ve made a few minor changes (aside from graphics) to the 13/14 model. They’ve added additional dampening, while slightly increasing the overall stiffness (~5%). They’ve also added 165 and 195cm lengths to the size run. Additionally, they changed the mounting position on the core and the mounting marks from 12/13. The new weight is coming in at 7.8lbs in 175, which is about 4 oz heavier then carbon competitors.

      The true tape measurement from tip to tip is on the 4’s, so the 195cm is a true 194, and the 185 is a true 184. My concern with the length being a bit short on the 185 was due to both the narrow profile at the tip, combined with the tip rocker. While this is pretty standard for five-point dimensions, I find the front 20cm of the ski fails to provide an effective edge when carving hard pack. If you’re 5′ 8″ and an aggressive skier who finds yourself charging off-piste conditions, I’d recommend the 195. If you you’re looking more for agility to take advantage of inbounds terrain and features, I’d go with the 185.

  4. Hi Garret,
    I’m 6’3″ and have been enjoying this ski for the past three years. It seems to work in everything for me, except for a few off days in Granite Canyon at Jackson hole. Will it still be as versatile in 195? I love the ski and am thinking about getting the new one due to core shots etc, but if there is something else out there that you think would be better I’ll give it a try.

    • TJ,
      Given your height, I’d suggest going with the 195cm. There may be a slight reduction in versatility since you’ll be working with a bit more effective edge underfoot, but you’ll likely find the ski to perform better in chop and on groomers. I’d also suspect the longer ski would provide more stability at speed so I’d make the decision based on your ability as a skier. If you ski confidently and aggressively at times, go long.

    • Hi Tjaard,

      on the first part of your question: the 16/17 Version is still the same shape, yet with a slightly stiffer tip and tail. So you should read the review in a sense that the ski handles even better with that “soft-tail-issue” being mostly eliminated.

      As you can see from ISPO and SIA Pictures, for 17/18 the Apostle 105 will get the shape of the Apostle 98 (i.e. less taper, more effective edge, more splay in the tip and more subtle – shorter and lower – tail rocker) and will get 1mm more in the waist and will return as the Apostle 106. In addition to the existing carbon and wood versions there will be a version with a metal sheet. I think the Apostle 106 – especially with the metal sheet – will be the better resort allrounder. However, I do not think that with the new shape it will shine as much as the current version in soft conditions.

      I am not the biggest overall-fan of 5 point shapes, but I have spent several weeks on the current Apostle 105 shape (13/14 version – black & white with red rmu print) and it is the most fun ski with this shape I have ever been on and I yet have to ski a 185cm long and 105 waisted ski that does better in soft and deep conditions (it is only mounted at -6,5 behind the line, but never had any tip dive issues). I would call it the best 105 waisted soft snow ski I have been on so far (yet you should read the Blister Review on the liberty origin 106, which I have not been on, but which might even outshine the Apostle 105 in the soft and deep). If you look for a nimble, durable and energetic allmountain soft snow ski that is not too wide and floats extremely well for its width, this could be the ticket. If you are looking for a one ski quiver that handles variable snow better, but is still nimble, it might be worth waiting until next season’s Apostle 106 in the metal version or look at already existing options like the Moment PB&J or Black Crows Atris (there are many others).

  5. Just picking your brains here. I destroyed my Apostles last season and just scooped some J Ski Metals. The Metal is more charger than the Apostle but less beefy than say the Supernatural 108…is that about right?

    • If you’ve been on a 179cm, have you been totally content? If so, then don’t change. If you find yourself wanting to ski faster, make larger radius turns, or float more in soft snow, then 185cm is your solution. Given you’re height, I’d go 185cm they ski relatively short to begin with. Then again, I’m biased toward longer boards.

Leave a Comment