Thoughts about Blizzard Brahma 88, Enforcer 104Free, Augment SLpro and Augment AM98: Part ONE

XSki

Putting on skis
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Joined
Jun 15, 2020
Posts
83
Location
Gulberg
Last season - 2020/2021 - zero skidays. So a couple of the skis I am going to review here were laying in my garage for quite some time. Then, in the summer of 2021 - I consider this as a part of the new season - I took the liberty of doing some summerskiing at the Hintertux glacier: Blizzard Brahma time.
To take full advantage of the possiblities given, I went to Italy the last weekend of november (time to test Augment SL, Enforcer 104 and again Brahma 88) and finally in 2021, 6 days in France (with one extra ski; the Augment AM98 and the Brahma in different trim)

Me: male, 5.11", 180lbs, very advanced/expert but no local hero.
Hintertux conditions: very hard, ice and soft.
Italy: combination of fresh on piste with scraped off hard spots. Bit offpiste in tracked out snow with patches of untracked, just enough to get an idea
France: everything but fresh, including (big) moguls.

Blizzard Brahma 88/180:
I bought the Blizzard Brahma to act as a hard snow biased allmountain. I had an Enforcer 100/185 (2019), fantastic ski but on very hard/ice obvious not so fantastic. Enter a narrower, bit stiffer, hard snow biased allmountain: good grip on 'ice' and good in tracked out or fresh snow within certain depth limits.

Has the Brahma turned out to be the right choice for me? The first few runs confirmed it is 'more' ski than the Enforcer. Much more serious, less playful and if I went tailward - aka backseat - I immediately had the feeling the Brahma tried to throw me off. A few runs later we became friends. Just a bit of repositioning and a bit more concentration was enough. Actually not a difficult ski at all but still not as playful or fun as the Enforcer. To be honest: I found them a bit boring, slow edge to edge, and it wanted to go fast, constantly. On the other hand, easy to slide, (very) good grip on hard stuff and it wants to go fast.

In Italy I had the change to ski it in a bit of fresh on and off piste. The Brahma performed beautifully. But... still not my ski. Too serious, still a bit boring, still felt a bit burly.

But then... I removed the Pivots and replaced them for Attack demo's and tried that combi in France. At last I really liked the Brahma. What a change. Now the Brahma is much faster edge to edge, more agile, easier to achive higher edges and more fun overall. I was planning on selling them but after this change not anymore, until...

Augment AM98/187
What a terrific ski. Some time ago Phil called it a better Enforcer and I fully agree. Again, the first day I had to adjust. Not very impressed at all so not love at first sight. Much stiffer tail, stiffer overall (flex 5) and ridiculously fast with a smaller sweet spot. But oh boy, when I got used to this beauty, what a party on snow it was.
Fast, agile (for 98), playful, incredible amount of grip on hard pack, and I mean hard pack, for a ski of this width, actually for a lot of ski's whatever width. I can go on and on raving: smooth, stable, quiet, confidence inspiring and fantastic carve prowess. What else do you want in a ski. Moguls, piles of soft snow, crud, tracked out terrain: they do it all.

This ski has me convinced me so much that I know for sure that we are going to grow old together. It is so good at handling very firm circumstances that I don't see the need for a semi-narrow all mountain like the Brahma. The Augment 98 does everything the Brahma does and better. It makes the Brahma in my quiver obsolete. Now I am thinking more Stöckli AX, Blossom AM77, Augment AM78 or any other sub 80mm ski which is very quick edgewise, very capable in hard conditions and reasonable capable in bootdeep.

And what about the comparison with the (old, 2019) Enforcer? I loved that ski for its carving, the possibility to fool around, the ease of skiing without beiing a noodle and its ability to crush crud and still perform very nice in deeper snow.

To be continued...
Why then prefer the Augment? Well, it does everything the Enforcer does but better. It is more precise, more powerful, feels more capable, it is more capable. Only downside: it is not as easy to ski as an Enforcer but It took me not too long to get used to it. The Augment will let you know when you're making mistakes but will not punish you very hard, the Enforcer was friendlier. Mistake? oh well, no biggie.
 

tch

What do I know; I'm just some guy on the internet.
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Nov 13, 2015
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New England
OK, so curious: what was the reason the change in bindings made such a difference? Mounted in the same place? Stack height?
Curious minds want to know.
 
Thread Starter
TS
XSki

XSki

Putting on skis
Skier
Joined
Jun 15, 2020
Posts
83
Location
Gulberg
Stack height. The Pivot is one of the lower ones and the attack Demo one of the higher. I thought it could make a difference. Never thought this much.
 

djetok

Low Lander
Skier
Joined
Oct 1, 2017
Posts
420
Location
Edmond, OK
Last season - 2020/2021 - zero skidays. So a couple of the skis I am going to review here were laying in my garage for quite some time. Then, in the summer of 2021 - I consider this as a part of the new season - I took the liberty of doing some summerskiing at the Hintertux glacier: Blizzard Brahma time.
To take full advantage of the possiblities given, I went to Italy the last weekend of november (time to test Augment SL, Enforcer 104 and again Brahma 88) and finally in 2021, 6 days in France (with one extra ski; the Augment AM98 and the Brahma in different trim)

Me: male, 5.11", 180lbs, very advanced/expert but no local hero.
Hintertux conditions: very hard, ice and soft.
Italy: combination of fresh on piste with scraped off hard spots. Bit offpiste in tracked out snow with patches of untracked, just enough to get an idea
France: everything but fresh, including (big) moguls.

Blizzard Brahma 88/180:
I bought the Blizzard Brahma to act as a hard snow biased allmountain. I had an Enforcer 100/185 (2019), fantastic ski but on very hard/ice obvious not so fantastic. Enter a narrower, bit stiffer, hard snow biased allmountain: good grip on 'ice' and good in tracked out or fresh snow within certain depth limits.

Has the Brahma turned out to be the right choice for me? The first few runs confirmed it is 'more' ski than the Enforcer. Much more serious, less playful and if I went tailward - aka backseat - I immediately had the feeling the Brahma tried to throw me off. A few runs later we became friends. Just a bit of repositioning and a bit more concentration was enough. Actually not a difficult ski at all but still not as playful or fun as the Enforcer. To be honest: I found them a bit boring, slow edge to edge, and it wanted to go fast, constantly. On the other hand, easy to slide, (very) good grip on hard stuff and it wants to go fast.

In Italy I had the change to ski it in a bit of fresh on and off piste. The Brahma performed beautifully. But... still not my ski. Too serious, still a bit boring, still felt a bit burly.

But then... I removed the Pivots and replaced them for Attack demo's and tried that combi in France. At last I really liked the Brahma. What a change. Now the Brahma is much faster edge to edge, more agile, easier to achive higher edges and more fun overall. I was planning on selling them but after this change not anymore, until...

Augment AM98/187
What a terrific ski. Some time ago Phil called it a better Enforcer and I fully agree. Again, the first day I had to adjust. Not very impressed at all so not love at first sight. Much stiffer tail, stiffer overall (flex 5) and ridiculously fast with a smaller sweet spot. But oh boy, when I got used to this beauty, what a party on snow it was.
Fast, agile (for 98), playful, incredible amount of grip on hard pack, and I mean hard pack, for a ski of this width, actually for a lot of ski's whatever width. I can go on and on raving: smooth, stable, quiet, confidence inspiring and fantastic carve prowess. What else do you want in a ski. Moguls, piles of soft snow, crud, tracked out terrain: they do it all.

This ski has me convinced me so much that I know for sure that we are going to grow old together. It is so good at handling very firm circumstances that I don't see the need for a semi-narrow all mountain like the Brahma. The Augment 98 does everything the Brahma does and better. It makes the Brahma in my quiver obsolete. Now I am thinking more Stöckli AX, Blossom AM77, Augment AM78 or any other sub 80mm ski which is very quick edgewise, very capable in hard conditions and reasonable capable in bootdeep.

And what about the comparison with the (old, 2019) Enforcer? I loved that ski for its carving, the possibility to fool around, the ease of skiing without beiing a noodle and its ability to crush crud and still perform very nice in deeper snow.

To be continued...
Why then prefer the Augment? Well, it does everything the Enforcer does but better. It is more precise, more powerful, feels more capable, it is more capable. Only downside: it is not as easy to ski as an Enforcer but It took me not too long to get used to it. The Augment will let you know when you're making mistakes but will not punish you very hard, the Enforcer was friendlier. Mistake? oh well, no biggie.
Burly and not playful is exactly how I describe my Blizzards.
 
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