Blizzard Brahma (2014)
If you’re an Easterner looking for an all-mountain slayer or a Westerner in search of something to ride between storms, you won’t find a better ski than the newest addition to Blizzard’s eminently versatile Free Mountain collection. Even the crustiest adherents of ski/binding systems will have to admit that the freeride-inspired Brahma, which is sold flat, delivers a top-shelf carving experience. And with plenty of rocker, it smears easily through tight and crud-riddled terrain.
The 88-mm Brahma is the least-expensive model of Blizzard's Free Mountain series (see Bodacious, Cochise, Bonafide). But it's identical in construction to the others - the price savings are strictly a result of its being narrower, which also makes it quicker and carvier than the fatter bulls in the series. Blizzard's Full Rocker profile, in this case, combines a cambered section under the binding with rocker fore and aft. (Same as the Bodacious, while the fatter models in the series are zero-camber underfoot.) All Free Mountain skis are built with Blizzard's Flipcore construction method: The ski mold is built with rocker in it, and the wood core is flipped so that it fits the rockered mold (arched surface down). Blizzard says no extra pressure is needed tip and tail to bend the ski into a rockered shape, so there's no material-memory tendency to spring back to an unrockered shape, and pressure distribution is even along the ski's length. The Brahma is a metal-reinforced (two sheets), wood-core construction with vertical sidewalls, built for maximum stability and edge-grip. Each ski in the successful "bull" series is named for a different legendary bull on the professional rodeo circuit. All Blizzard skis are built in the company's Mittersill, Austria, factory headquarters, near Kitzbuhel and the Kitzsteinhorn.
|Awards||Tester's Choice, Official Selection|
|Lengths||166, 173, 180, 187|
|Rating: Stability at Speed||3.84 / 5|
|Rating: Maneuverability||3.57 / 5|
|Rating: Hard Snow Grip||3.75 / 5|
|Rating: Crud Performance||3.44 / 5|
|Rating: Forgiveness||3.28 / 5|
|Rating: Energy/Liveliness||3.40 / 5|
|Rating: Versatility||3.37 / 5|
|Rating: Overall||3.53 / 5|