I recently upgraded my skis from a pair of K2 3s purchased in 1998 to the Head Rev 80 Pro Skis. I quickly grew into the 3s and learned the basics of skiing on them, but it was becoming clear that due to their age and design the 3s were limiting my progress as a skier. Plus comments from others (patrollers, instructors, etc) how updating my skis would be very helpful were all pushing me to new skis. The last snowflake in the blizzard was the Wisconsin Snowbunny suggesting the upgrade.
Head Rev 80 Pro Skis — My Decision
One of the things I was concerned about was getting into skis that provided me with plenty of room to grow into. Skis that would challenge and allow me to take on more challenging runs and be plenty of ski that would not begin to limit my growth. I never knew what to get. Last year I started to consider Head skis in addition to Nordica and Atomic skis and eventually zeroed in on Head Rev 80 Pro skis. Why? Yes, athlete sponsorship played a key role as many of my favorite pros ski on Heads.
I went on the Head site and used their ski suggestion guide. It led me to the Head Rev line and I was back and forth between the Head Rev 80 Pro skis and the other Rev models. What finally cemented the deal was our visit to the Windy City Ski and Snowboard Show of 2014. Head had a booth there and their representative talked to me and I told him of my skiing abilities, experience, goals, etc and he suggested the Head Rev 80 Pro skis as well. That was it.
As we were walking away from the booth the Wisconsin Snow Bunny whispered in my ear I could get a new pair of skis as her Christmas gift to me. I smiled but otherwise kept cool.
Head Rev 80 Pro Skis — Getting Them
I asked for Wisconsin dealers and heard Wausau, I forgot the shop name, but figured it would Google easily. When I searched I was unable to find a Head dealer close enough to my location so I decided to go online for the purchase. This is where skis.com came into play.
I already had the account and logged on and searched up the skis. I read through the descriptions of the various models (85, 80, 75) and then read up on the lengths. Many have counseled me to go to a shorter ski length (the K2 3s were 190 cm skis) and the Head Rev 80 Pro skis came in various lengths with the longest available being 177 cm. I selected the 177 cm and it was their last pair. The ordering went smooth and easy and a few short days later I found a long and square package waiting for me in our house entry way, grabbed it, opened it up and sure enough there were the new skis and the bindings. I took them and stashed them away in a safe place and then began the wait for Christmas.
The next part after officially receiving the skis for use was to take them to the Outdoor Outlet to have them mount the bindings. I have read about people doing this job themselves as it is simply “turning screws” and setting the binding DIN setting, but even with that being so simple my DIN needed revisiting since I lost some weight since buying the K2 skis and I’m definitely not the rookie skier I was when I bought them. I now ski faster and more aggressively.
Head Rev 80 Pro Skis — First Impressions
I spent about three to four hours on my Head Rev 80 Pro skis thus far and in one word my impressions are GREAT. I was able to get edge to edge much quicker and was able to make a wide variety of turns from slalom turns, to GS, to Super-G, to downhill, but I did not schuss any runs (yet). I entered the NASTAR course (when no one was racing of course) and started off with my usual very high line and started to drop the line as I progressed through the course and had no problem carving my way through the course. I skied out after I navigated the last gate (NEVER ski through the light unless it is an official run of yours) and would like to do that again soon taking a much lower line from the start. With my K2s I have been a bronze/silver skier with narrowly missing a gold finish once.
I never once felt the skis taking on mind of their own and once I set them on edge they were solid. The resort I frequent develops large ice patches on the final approach and final headwall of its premier run and traversing the ice did not feel any different to me than traversing snow. Mind you, that is pretty much how it feels on the K2s as well. I did find a small patch of soft and deep snow and that did not feel any different from than my old K2s either.
I concentrated on fundamentals, keeping my mass centered over the skis, keeping my shoulders square to the fall line, and driving by working the hips and legs. In that, I think these skis helped me perform much better than my old K2 skis. I was able to keep that upper body quiet and make my edge changes, they felt more stable than the K2s and I was more comfortable on these skis trying to tip them over as much as I would dare.
Recovery was good too. On the last run of the day I had to take a straighter line over the Bear headwall than I was planning. I launched, rolled down a window, and heard the distinct sound of a ski slapping the snow. I landed in the backseat and saw a future of my line intersecting with that of a downhill snowboarder. I managed to recover from that backseat incident rather quickly and made enough course correction to change the future and then a bit after that I was back in full control and laying down some carves. I have launched similarly on the K2s but am not certain how much control I would have regained in the time and distance I had and am fairly certain that would have ended with me on the snow and my gear scattered all over. Mind you, given an empty run I would have been able to hold on, but needing to avoid people was the complicating factor, the Heads helped me deal with that situation in brilliant fashion.
Head Rev 80 Pro Skis — The Numbers
Evo.com provides some hard numbers on the skis. I purchased the 177 cm length and it comes with these number:
- 177 cm Head Rev 80 Pro Specifications
- Tip width: 130 mm
- Waist width: 81 mm
- Tail width: 112 mm
- Turning radius: 14.8 meters
Head Rev 80 Pro Skis — The Looks
While I do not emphasize fashion or looks at the expense of function, I want to be noticed for the skiing I do and not the fashion statement I make. Still, I don’t want to look like a gaper. The Nordica Firearrows I was looking at a few years ago were psychedelic but I never was able to overcome many of the other barriers to purchase.
The Head Rev 80 Pros skis are not a loud or flashy pattern, basic color block design and in fact they match my parka quite nicely a fact noted by people I was talking to on the hill that day.
Head Rev 80 Pro Skis — The Last Words
As I stated at the top of this article I love my Head Rev 80 Pro skis and look forward to growing as a skier with them. The Head Rev 80 Pro Skis are good-looking and go good with my attire and allow me to lay down carves like I’ve never done before. If you are an intermediate skier looking for skis to help your frontside mountain skiing, I strongly recommend the Head Rev 80 Pro skis!