DISCLAIMER: This rating is if you are going to be using this ski as a POWDER TOOL. Everything is changed if you are planning on using this ski in the crud, or on the ice. That being said, if you are buying this ski for what it is supposed to be used for, powder days (doesn't have to be that much powder), it is a perfect ski. It is very easy to throw around in the trees, it floats miraculously in the powder, and riding switch anywhere is a charm. DO NOT BE SCARED OF HOW SOFT THE SKI IS!If you like skis that are a little more on the soft side, getting a ski this soft is a scary idea, but once done is a wonderful feeling. Being able to feel the full flex of the ski at a whim is amazing.As alluded to before, if you are skiing in snow that is chopped up, or even really heavy tracked powder, the EP pro is less than desirable. It is not horrible, but it is an interesting feeling going from absolute heaven to actually having to work. This ski is definitely a ski to add to a quiver, it is not a one ski/all conditions tool. Keeping this in mind, if you want a one ski quiver, go with something more like the 08/09 JP, but if you want the best of the best for a powder killing ski, look no further.
I absolutely love the way that this ski performs in the powder. Given that I do like soft skis, I could not ask for a better ski for a powder day. The elliptical sidecut is not just a gimmick, you can actually feel the difference between it and a normal radial sidecut. In the trees, this ski is incredibly nimble and easy to throw around, and when you get it in its element you will wonder why you ever settled for anything less.
The design of this ski is about as close to a hellbent as you can get. The rocker is nearly the same, the length is about the same as the 179 hellbent. It is just amazingly softer, has an elliptical sidecut, and has a recommended mounting point that is about 4 cm further forward. With all of these things in mind I cannot think of one thing I would change about the design of the ski. The graphics for this year (08-09) are definitely more plain, but I still love them. It is nice to see Pollard's art on a ski that he obviously has spent so much time testing and designing.
If you are looking for a super soft, playful, powder ski to add to the quiver, this ski is the best value by far.
I am 6'1" 170lb and was a little worried about the size (being that it is practically a center mounted powder ski), but all of these worries have been laid to rest. Getting these skis near the end of the year, I have taken them out a total of probably 8 times, 6 of which were in more than a foot of powder, and have never felt like I needed more of a ski. Whether you are big or small, don't be scared by the length of the ski, riding a rockered ski is a completely different game. On the groomers it will feel small, and in the powder it will be perfect because of the rocker.
This is by far the softest ski you will ever lay your hands on. From the tip to the tail, you will be blown away by how soft this ski truly is. I remember before I got these skis and just played around with them in the shop, I was confused at how a ski like this could actually do anything, but after riding it I have come to realize how amazing it is. If you want a soft, nimble ski for the powder, the flex is absolutely perfect on the EP Pro.
Before you even take the ski to the mountain, file down the topsheet. Where the topsheet meets the sidewall is a perfect 90 degree angle, making for a very easily chipped topsheet. This can be easily avoided though by either filing down the edge and making it a 45 degree angle. By doing this, it will make the ski less prone to chipping.