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Bushwacker vs Watea 84/88

GolfingOwl

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I am looking at getting new skis and am down to these two. Ski primarily VT and PA (Elk mostly). Coming out of Fischer AMC79s and want something softer, quicker turning and lighter as I'm spending a lot more time these days following my 11 year old into the trees and bumps. After skiing 4 days on the AMCs in trees, bumps and spring conditions I'm ready to move on. Want something that still is skiable on East Coast hardpack but willing to sacrifice for something that handles more variable conditions and excels in trees and bumps. Have done a search and can't seem to find where anyone compares these two skis though they seem to be in the same category.

Oh, and in case anyone cares, I'm an "advanced" skier (by no means expert), 5'8" 165 lbs. Considering the 173 in the Bushwacker (though at first thought the 166 was the right size) and the 168 in the Watea. My AMCs are 170s.
 

timm

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Wateas are much softer than the Bushwackers. I've skied the Bushwackers and Watea 88s. I found the Wateas much softer and much better in bumps. Being sturdier I found the Bushwackers better on hardpack. Equal in trees to me. You can't go wrong with either if you ask me. They both skied short to me FYI. If it's going to be your only ski in the east I'd lean Bushwackers personally.
 

gmcunni

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i demo'd the bushwacker only, really liked it as a 1 ski quiver. only "issue" i had was i felt like i wanted something wider.
 

GolfingOwl

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Wateas are much softer than the Bushwackers. I've skied the Bushwackers and Watea 88s. I found the Wateas much softer and much better in bumps. Being sturdier I found the Bushwackers better on hardpack. Equal in trees to me. You can't go wrong with either if you ask me. They both skied short to me FYI. If it's going to be your only ski in the east I'd lean Bushwackers personally.

Thanks timm. Sounds like I'd have no problem with the 173s as I was fearing they might be a little long (though people consistently say they ski short).
 

timm

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I'm 5'10" and 175(ish). I was happiest on the Wateas at 176 and the Blizzards I liked in 173 and 180. I wasn't trying them for an only ski though so ymmv. Even being a bit smaller than me, I definitely wouldn't go shorter than 173 where you are looking for this to be your everyday ski. If you can wait till next year I'd definitely suggest demoing to dial in the size and which ski as they do ski pretty different. The Bushwacker seemed like much more ski to me, while the Watea was borderline "playful", to elaborate a bit more.
 

GolfingOwl

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I'm 5'10" and 175(ish). I was happiest on the Wateas at 176 and the Blizzards I liked in 173 and 180. I wasn't trying them for an only ski though so ymmv. Even being a bit smaller than me, I definitely wouldn't go shorter than 173 where you are looking for this to be your everyday ski. If you can wait till next year I'd definitely suggest demoing to dial in the size and which ski as they do ski pretty different. The Bushwacker seemed like much more ski to me, while the Watea was borderline "playful", to elaborate a bit more.

That's helpful. I was originally thinking the Wateas (coming from the AMCs), which I demoed a couple years ago, but after reading and speaking with a bunch of ski shop employees when I was up in Stowe last week, the Bushwackers seemed like they may be more of what I'm seeking. I would like to demo but it's not always feasible.
 
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