Hi everyone. I have read some of the posts here in the beginner forum and decided it would help to make my own post and you guys could help me out...
I am 16, a guy, about 5'11" and 125lbs. I live in Connecticut and most often ski in New York. I learned to ski at somewhat of a young age but not very often, I started skiing more often around 10 when I took lessons weekly for about 6 sessions a year for two years (12 sessions total) at Thunder Ridge mountain, a rather small one in Patterson, NY. I got comfortable skiing and pretty good for my (young) age but in the years following my parents didn't take us skiing more than once or twice a year. I have however gone to a bigger mountain at least, Belleayre, which is significantly larger. To give you an idea I can ski every black diamond at Thunder Ridge except for the freestyle jumps one, I can't even touch the blacks at Belleayre. I anticipate skiing a few more times a year at least, possibly 2 or 3 with the family and maybe a bus trip or two to vermont.
Anyway I got a couple pairs of skis hand-me-down from my Uncle and Cousin, they are Rossignol Power Viper's size 150cm and Salomon Axendo 8's size unknown but about my height so probably 180? I know the Salomons are older than 1999 because they have no "pro link" in the back and the Rossignols circa 2001-2002. I had always rented at the mountain for the day. I got Rossignol ROC boots at a garage sale, the guy at the (big) local ski shop said they will work for me but also that they are a little bigger than my size (11 shoe size 295 boot size how does that sound to you guys). The man at the shop also said the Rossis were better for me because their size fits me better and they are newer too, I told the shop to do whats necessary to get them ready and they did for 30 bucks. Another thing to note is that the poles I have are the old type with the molded in hoops your fingers go through, my dad says they had problems with hurting your thumb so maybe I should replace those?
Today I skied for the first time with the Rossignol boots and Rossignol skis, the boots seemed plenty tight, nothing really too flexy or floppy but I read many posts where you guys say boots are basically terrible unless fitted by the pros (sounds expensive). Since I haven't skied in a year it was hard to judge the new setup but from my memory the new skis seem to be harder for me to use than my rentals over the years. My theories are as follows: either A I got used to more modern rentals with better shaping and now the old ones aren't as easy to use, B the skis are more intermediate than rentals and harder to ski on, or C they were just sharpened and that caused different feel (I doubt it cause rentals are sharpened too right?)
I realize I should go into more detail on how the skis seem wierd/different/harder, so here it is: Basically I seem to have more trouble turning then in previous years. I can turn left ok, but still not as good as I remember (Im righty so left turns are dominant), right turns are even harder and I can't really do parallel rights. The way the turns are difficult seems to be the inside ski not getting up on edge, instead it kinda almost seems to dig in and make it hard to turn (I don't know how else to explain it...) Also the skis are squirrelly, especially when turning, my dad says this is due to them being freshly sharpened/tuned but I want your advice on this.
Basically now that I have established my background, my questions are:
- First of all what do you think of the boots, since you say those are most important, should I get super boots, is it not even worth skiing on the basic ones I got at the garage sale even though they are kinda new?
- Also what do you think of the skis, I think its obvious the Salomons at about the top of my head are to big for my weight and skill, are the Rossis at 150cm big, small, or just right?
- Are the Rossis I skied on today not as curvy as the modern rentals I'm used to? If so is it because they are old, because they are more advanced, or both?
- My neighbor is a pretty avid skier, he gets new skis every 3 years, he currently has K2 Apaches and is selling his old ones, I don't know the model, they are probably like the Apaches, but they are 167cm, is that a little too big? How long till I would grow into those if any growing time is necessary?
- Like I mentioned earlier, should I ditch those poles with the molded hoops? New ones probably aren't pricy are they?
My thoughts currently, which are really educated guesses with common sense are that the Salomons are too big and too old, probably toss em, and the Rossis are probably too old but theres a slight chance they are just more advanced than I'm used to and thats what is causing me trouble. I think I might just need to get some more modern more curved skis, the Rossis aren't curved much at the back at all! I'm thinking that my neighbors old skis could suit me very well, his current ones seem to be to my taste, so the olds ones would be similar, and maybe he would let me try them for a day before I decide. Obviously I need to get the info on them, but for now just tell me if a 167cm could work for me. I think it could based on my height and the fact that I was quite confident back when I was skiing the modern rentals. To my (very) untrained feet the boots feel fine, tight and all, and the guy at the ski shop said they would work for me (he didn't even try to sell me boots!), but maybe I should look into better ones soon, I really have no clue...
I realize I have written a little essay here, I hope some pros read it and help me out...
Also I realize I may end up having to spend way more than the almost free price of my current gear, but at the same time I am saving for a car so I'm not as big budgeted as a salaried adult... Please tell me if there are different levels of equipment and cost, but feel free to mention expensive ones if thats whats necessary for me to ski successfully.