I was quite intrigued when Phil reached out and let me know he had an Augment 77 in an 159 (121.5/77/107.5, 14m radius) available for testing. I've only read about Augment on Pugski, but have yet to see one in the wild in Tahoe. And I have a 2018 Stockli Laser AX in a 159 (123/78/109, 13m radius) - so close in specs, so I was definitely curious to see how they compared.
Conditions: Spring-like sunny day at Alpine. We haven't had any fresh snow in a while here, so I knew it would be a zoomer groomer day and I planned on taking the AXs to the mountain.
I took my first run off Roundhouse on the Stocklis, and then switched to the Augments. Wow. There is a 1mm difference in the waist between the two skis, but the Augment was noticeably faster edge-to-edge. It also skis a bit longer with less tail and tip rise. It is a fantastic ski that needs to be skied hard. I was reading on the Augment website that a purchaser can select a stiffness from 1-10, 1 being a steel beam (my interpretation) and 10 being "flimsy", and I believe these were an 8. For a 159 ski, these were plenty stiff. Now I'm curious what the hell they think flimsy is.
This ski wants to carve. That quick edge-to-edge transition made experimenting with turn length really fun. I tend to prefer short and medium turns, but I was making long arc turns as I headed down Sherwood. and I loved it! The ski loves being on edge. It was like slicing through butter on the soft corn snow. I don't know how the ski performs in Sierra cement chop, but I'm guessing quite well. On the groomers, corn, and a little mashed potato, they ripped. I also skied through those mushy moguls that form at the end of the day with no problem. I think they felt faster than any ski I've skied. (I've never skied a legit race ski.)
A shout out to the factory tune as well. The skis were smooth as silk.
Have I made it clear this is not a beginner ski? Or an intermediate ski? This is not a forgiving ski. As the day went on and I started to get a bit tired, it did not like when I made mistakes, made a sloppy turn, or slarved a turn. This is not a ski for the lazy. This is a ski that must be skied at all times, and preferably on edge. If you are an aggressive skier, who skis into your ski, likes to turn and go fast, this is the perfect ski for you.
After 15 runs on the Augments, I took my Stocklis out for my last run. And I loved how they felt. I love those skis. The Augments were like going on vacation where your senses are heightened, but the AXs felt like coming home for me.
- Who is the Laser AX for: Intermediate to expert skiers looking for a joy-inducing front-side ski that can help you conquer the whole mountain.
- Who is the Augment 77 for: This is a serious ski for the advanced skier who lives to carve. You see a ski run and you want to carve. You see a Thanksgiving turkey, you want to carve. You see a slab of marble....you get the picture.
- Insider Tip: Don't demo either of these skis if you aren't ready to drop some coin. They are both at a higher price point and both will put a huge smile on your face, so then you will have a dilemma.
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