2021 Armada Declivity 92 Ti

Andy Mink

I am a half fast skier.
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Long Term Update: It's been a while since I've been on the Declivities. We're having a resurgence of weather in the Sierras and Mt. Rose has been getting some nice, light snow over the past few days. Today was no exception and the morning greeted us with between 6" and 8" of the fluff. I wanted to get the Declivities in the powder even though it wasn't a lot. Once again, not disappointed. @Philpug and I spent the morning in the trees; we didn't ski one piste run top to bottom, only to get from here to there. Now, for the record, I'm not a hot dog tree skier. The snow we found in the trees was light, although pretty cut up already. I never felt like I couldn't make a turn when I wanted or needed to. Whether hopping the tails around, playing through the growing bumps, or just carving through the trees in the occasional untracked snow, the Declivities were just...fun. In the chopped up snow on the return to lift runs they just pop through, around, or over the piles. While I can definitely wait for spring conditions (I'm digging the winter conditions we have now!), I do look forward to these skis in those conditions.
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Andy Mink

I am a half fast skier.
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Long Term Update: I was able to beg another day on the Declivities from @Philpug today. We skied mid to late afternoon in some really nice spring conditions at Mt. Rose. Soft bumps, a few tips into the trees, and generally soft conditions with chopped sugar piles all over. I made mistakes in the bumps but came out none the worse for wear. They are nothing if not forgiving. As the days lengthen, the sun warms, and the snow thins, it's nice to have a flickable ski to avoid as many rocks and stumps as possible.

The 92s have plenty of surface area to keep on top of the soft stuff and enough spine to carve through the lumps and bumps that grow during the day. The tips and tails are supple enough to roll up and down bumps but strong enough to hold a carve.

So there you have it. A season worth of conditions all handled quite well by the Declivities, at least from my point as an advancing intermediate skier.
 

Andy Mink

I am a half fast skier.
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@Andy Mink have you had a chance to ski the DPS Piste Pagodas yet? Wonder how this ski compares.
I took the DPS Piste Pagoda 94 out today at Squaw to get a refresher on the ski. I'd say the Piste Pagoda is a bit more comfortable in the bumps, trees, and softer snow than the Declivity owing to its slightly more tip rocker and more tail rocker, though it still can hold quite well on harder snow. It wants to float over soft piles more than the Declivity which tends to slice through the spring piles. The Declivity is more on-piste oriented and, for me, is easier to drive on the groomers.

The DPS prefers a more neutral stance, a more "ride on", than the Declivity. I have found this same characteristic on a few other DPS skis. The DPS would be perhaps a 60/40 off-piste/piste while the Declivity would be 40/60. Both are fine skis. The pick would be where you spend most of your time and where how you weight your preferences. There is also the $$ factor, with the DPS having a comma in the tag. The DPS feels a bit lighter than the Declivity, which comes in around 1800 grams for the 180 length, though I haven't been able to find a weight on the Pagoda. That may come into play if you're thinking about hiking with the skis.
 

Dougb

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I took the DPS Piste Pagoda 94 out today at Squaw to get a refresher on the ski. I'd say the Piste Pagoda is a bit more comfortable in the bumps, trees, and softer snow than the Declivity owing to its slightly more tip rocker and more tail rocker, though it still can hold quite well on harder snow. It wants to float over soft piles more than the Declivity which tends to slice through the spring piles. The Declivity is more on-piste oriented and, for me, is easier to drive on the groomers.

The DPS prefers a more neutral stance, a more "ride on", than the Declivity. I have found this same characteristic on a few other DPS skis. The DPS would be perhaps a 60/40 off-piste/piste while the Declivity would be 40/60. Both are fine skis. The pick would be where you spend most of your time and where how you weight your preferences. There is also the $$ factor, with the DPS having a comma in the tag. The DPS feels a bit lighter than the Declivity, which comes in around 1800 grams for the 180 length, though I haven't been able to find a weight on the Pagoda. That may come into play if you're thinking about hiking with the skis.
Thanks for such a detailed answer! Pretty similar to what Blister had to say about both skis, although you made the very important point about the price difference! Just goes to show how wildly different skis can be if they are similar in their waist width.
 

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