Dimensions (mm): 143-118-134
Actual Tip-to-Tail Length (straight tape pull): 182.0cm
BLISTER’s Measured Weight per Ski: 2,158 grams & 2,222 grams
Sidecut Radius: 24.5 meters
Boots / Bindings: Full Tilt Konflicts / Marker Jesters (DIN at 9)
Mount Location: Factory recommended line
Days Skied: 25+
(Editor’s Note: Our tests were conducted on the 10/11 Bibby Pro, which is unchanged for 11/12, and 12/13 except for the graphics.)
If you know Josh Bibby, you’re familiar with his friendly Canadian attitude and big mountain shredding. More likely to be dropping lines in the backcountry than throwing double flips in the park, Josh’s pro model ski caters to his favorite style of riding. At a substantial 118mm underfoot with a full aspen/pine wood core, the Bibby is set up to charge. Two days at Vail and Arapahoe Basin gave me the chance to put them to the test.
The word in the parking lot on February 5th at A-Basin was 5″ of light and dry snow since 5am that morning. As I headed up the Pallavicini lift, looking off to my right into the rock garden around West Turbo, it was clear that some generous wind-loading had deposited snow in the 10″ range on the leeward side of gullies. The conditions were fairly inconsistent from aspect to aspect. Things were fat in the trees, but a bit chopped and scoured in the bowls.
Looking down at the Bibbys, MOMENT’s trademark square-tipped design struck me as mean looking and confidence inspiring, with a stance similar to that of Rossignol’s Phantom Pro RC112. In terms of pure aesthetics, these boards scream “Send It!” MOMENT ought to receive some kind of medal for the artwork on this year’s Bibbys. In a market with plenty of rather hideous and dizzying top-sheets, anyone can appreciate a ski with some simple style and general creativity. If my experience is any indication, the Bibbys are guaranteed to turn heads in the lift line.
For the first couple runs, I decided to open things up with some big, fast turns under the Pali lift, down The Spine. Despite the new snow, the bumped out hardpack was still somewhat noticeable underneath, making for a nice testing ground for a ski’s dampening qualities. Riding the 184cms – a much shorter length than I’m used to with a ski of this girth – I wasn’t sure how the Bibbys would handle at higher speeds in a longer radius turn. The ride was impressively smooth and stable as 250mm of tip rocker helped blast over and through the chop. The Bibbys stiffness and dampening qualities showed in hitting drifts of harder, older snow, keeping the tips on track and the skis quiet under my feet. These skis love the fall line. Give them a chance to run, and with 5mm of camber underfoot, you’ll be nuking before you know it, yet still be able to shut down speed in a second. At no point did I feel like I needed a longer ski (the 184cms are the opposite of squirrely) and I was surprised at how eager the Bibbys felt. They’re very poppy for a big ski, I had a blast boosting off every little knuckle I could find.
Playing around in pockets of deeper snow on my way back to the lift, the Bibbys performance in untracked snow was in no way surprising. With a width of 142mm at the tip to ensure plenty of float and tapered profile to prevent any hooking, the Bibbys performance in pure fluff is stellar.
Waiting in the lift line after another four or five runs, one thing was certain: these things are solid and can charge. They will gladly push your speed limit and bomb over anything in sight. But how would the Bibbys handle in the trees? Could they make a quick move if I needed them to?
Looking for an answer, I traversed skier’s left off the Pali Lift and headed into the trees to the left of The Spine. At lower speeds the tip and tail rocker became more noticeable. The Bibbys felt livelier in tight, smeared turns than my K2 Kung Fujas (even though the K2s are considerably narrower, lighter, and worlds softer). For a ski of their size and stability at high speeds, the Bibbys are remarkably maneuverable, and ready for a quick change in direction. I could easily throw the whole ski sideways to scrub off speed in tight spots or bust a fun slash turn over a wind lip. I really came to appreciate their nimble characteristics in playing around on some pillows around 3rd Alley. Making short hop-turns to get into a line or committing to quick, critical moves was not a problem.
With 18″ of new snow the day prior, a morning at Vail gave me the opportunity to show the Bibbys some bigger drops and assess their swing weight in the air. The consensus: they’re pretty much stomp machines. The ski’s dampening quality takes the worry of sketchy take-offs out of the picture, while a solid platform underfoot adds some serious confidence for those flatter transitions. Carbon fiber stringers reinforce the core and contribute to the ski’s lightness. A backflip off the cornice in Rasputin’s Revenge discounted any doubts I might have had about the Bibbys performance in the air.
A key component to the Bibbys is their tail construction. I was happy to find that the tail rocker did not feel too prominent, and the skis were not prone to washing out. Bucked in the backseat on a landing or two, the added stiffness in the tail helped me get forward again with little trouble. Due to their “Mustache” profile with camber underfoot and rocker in the tip and tail, a neutral stance was by far the most comfortable on the Bibbys. With the small amount of true carving I have had the chance to do on them, I found that a more forward and aggressive drive of the ski didn’t seem to change much. For a person of my weight, overpowering these skis would be a feat. I found it easier just to stay strong and let the Bibbys run.
For now, in my book, the Bibby Pro receives top marks in all areas freeriding. For a person looking to take their big mountain skiing to another level, the Bibby can provide the confidence to do so, and they’re ready to handle anything you can throw down. Tell this ski what you want to do, and they will deliver
To be continued….
(Part 2 of Will’s Review, “Hardpack Performance,” can be found here.)
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