or Connect
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Buying new skis - Piste vs off-P
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Buying new skis - Piste vs off-P

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Many of the skis are advertised as xx% Piste and xx% Off Piste. Is this the same as percent Groomed/Ungroomeed?

 

Does the term Off Piste (used in ski advertising), mean any trail that is not groomed, e.g. moguls, bowls?

post #2 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by waltzonice View Post


Does the term Off Piste (used in ski advertising), mean any trail that is not groomed, e.g. moguls, bowls?


That explanation works about as well as any other.

 

piste/Op is a transplanted Euro usage, and therefore carries with it European  preconceptions of what a "piste" looks like.   

 

This is why piste/Off-piste doesn't match up to hypothetical trail/off-trail distinction (where "trail" is meant in the North American sense).

 

Peter Keelty's  technical/tactical  distinction is IMO closer to piste/off-piste.

post #3 of 9

off-piste is off trail, typically meaning trees, bowls, side country, hike to and ungroomed however, the differentiator is that it really means on terrain that is not a run or trail.  Ungroomed trails are similar to an extent.

post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post

off-piste is off trail, typically meaning trees, bowls, side country, hike to and ungroomed however, the differentiator is that it really means on terrain that is not a run or trail.  Ungroomed trails are similar to an extent.



This is a good definition of "off piste" -- but is that what the advertisers mean when they say 50% off-piste for their skis?

 

post #5 of 9



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by waltzonice View Post





This is a good definition of "off piste" -- but is that what the advertisers mean when they say 50% off-piste for their skis?

 



A 50%piste/50% off piste ski is designed to work well on groomers and ungroomed runs. However a 50/50 ski will not work as well on groomers as say a 70/30 or 90/10 ski. Nor will a 50/50 ski work as well as a 30/70 or 10/90 ski in ungroomed snow.

 

Every ski is biased towards groomers or ungroomers to a degree by design or definition.

 

 

 


Edited by Mr5150 - 3/22/11 at 3:21pm
post #6 of 9

Off piste means off the trail, untouched, unadulterated snow.  Whether the snow on the trail is packed down by so many skiers going down the run, or groomed by a machine, it is not the same as snow that you would find untouched by others.  Of course, some snow even on a trail map is closer to virgin snow without being off-piste, while other snow is pretty experienced if you know what I meanwink.gif.   The greater the off-piste percentage, the more the ski will work well in soft deep snow, and the more "on-piste" percentage, the better it will work on boiler plate.

post #7 of 9

I agree with previous postings, but not ^^^^^.  Ghost's comments seem to suggest that off-piste is always soft and deep, and that is nowhere near accurate.  Sometimes off-piste is harder, more re-frozen, than fresh groomers.  My own take is more 2D vs 3D.  Piste suggests grooming that has flattened the run so that it is smooth.  It may be icy or it may be fresh packed, but it is smooth.  You can arc without worrying about bumps or irregularities.  Off-pisted suggests nothing has been done to the snow: it may be soft and fresh powder, it may be pushpiled crud, it may be frozen crust.  But it is always 3 dimensional.

post #8 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost View Post

Off piste means off the trail, untouched, unadulterated snow.  Whether the snow on the trail is packed down by so many skiers going down the run, or groomed by a machine, it is not the same as snow that you would find untouched by others.  Of course, some snow even on a trail map is closer to virgin snow without being off-piste, while other snow is pretty experienced if you know what I meanwink.gif.   The greater the off-piste percentage, the more the ski will work well in soft deep snow, and the more "on-piste" percentage, the better it will work on boiler plate.


Nope, off-piste means off-groomed, but near lift served. Period. It can be woods between eastern groomers, faces you hike to and lap back to the lift, back bowls that have trails to the lift like Vail, or if you're in Yrp, it can mean 60 degree madness plunging down to a glacier that eventually leads you to another country, lunch, and a lift. 

 

And as tsch, others say, off-piste is seldom unadulterated. Unless you're in the first chair crowd, it'll have some lines used up. By noon it'll be chopped all to hell and big bumps forming down toward the woods and within. If you're talking about stuff further away, and less "touched," there are also  these things called sun cups...and crust...and wind scoured chalk...and refrozen under a bit of pow and well, you get the idea. If you live 30 minutes from a big mountain, and can abandon work at will, or if you have a buddy with a helicopter, then get a ski that's dedicated to deep fresh pow. The new Toons look sweet, and the Praxis Pows are always popular. Otherwise, something that's 50/50 to 30/70 will make you much happier in soft snow. My rule is if I can't get it to carve decently in a pinch - or icy chute - it's gone. (This doesn't eliminate as many as you'd think, incidentally. There are a number of 115 mm waisted powder skis that can carve hardpack without heroics. Not as securely as a midfat, but they get it done. In fact, I've heard that at least one 128 mm ski can carve very smoothly. Go figure...)

 

Put another way, if you're interested in off-piste, you'll be happier getting a midfat or higher (50/50 and up) that can edge than getting a 70/30 carver and trying to make it work in soft chop.

 


Edited by beyond - 3/22/11 at 7:41pm
post #9 of 9

While it's true that off-piste need not be soft (although most of my off-piste experience has been soft and deepsmile.gif), it can be sun cups, freeze-thaw-refreeze, wind pack, and a host of other things.  It is not the hard snow and ice that makes a good on-piste ski not so good off-piste.  On the other hand you don't want to go all the way to a powder ski.

 

Perhaps there are different regional interpretations of off-piste, but to me if it's on the trail map and packed down by lots of skiers (and that includes bump runs that are never groomed), even if a groomer can't get up it it ain't "off-piste".

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Ski Gear Discussion
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Buying new skis - Piste vs off-P