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Bought my first pair of skis this weekend

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

I'm 25 years old and this will be my 3rd year of skiing. No more rentals for me!

 

I picked up a used set of K2 Apaches last weekend (163cm, and I'm 6ft 1) for $199. They are only a few years old at the most and the overall condition is very good. They came with a pair of Marker 10 bindings. Looked around for boots, but they're weren't very many in my size (12) so I'll have to get a pair at the ski shop.

 

Last year I was looking into a good type of ski to buy for a first time buyer. My ski level is intermediate, and from what I read about the K2 Apaches, they are an excellent intermediate ski and are good to go for just about any kind of terrain. So when I saw them on the rack I pounced on them!! 

 

My buddy bought a pair of Volkl P60s for $150 which were in amazing condition for used skis.

 

Now all I need is some tuning and boots, and I'm good to go!

skis.JPG

 

 

post #2 of 10

Congratulations and welcome.

 

Getting away from rentals is often associated with increases in ability and enjoyment.

 

But...  The single most important piece of equipment is boots.  Get fitted properly for boots that fit your feet and aren't too big/cushy.  As has been said: you date your skis, but marry your boots.

post #3 of 10

Congrats, I did the same thing two years ago (granted I had more like 12 years on rentals) and it payed off. Don't skimp on the boots, get a good boot fitter, I thought I had gotten a good deal on my first pair but they ended up packing out and were a full size too big for me. I went to a good fiter this year and hope my newer boots fit better.

post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bielz View Post

Congrats, I did the same thing two years ago (granted I had more like 12 years on rentals) and it payed off. Don't skimp on the boots, get a good boot fitter, I thought I had gotten a good deal on my first pair but they ended up packing out and were a full size too big for me. I went to a good fiter this year and hope my newer boots fit better.



 



Quote:
Originally Posted by Xela View Post

Congratulations and welcome.

 

Getting away from rentals is often associated with increases in ability and enjoyment.

 

But...  The single most important piece of equipment is boots.  Get fitted properly for boots that fit your feet and aren't too big/cushy.  As has been said: you date your skis, but marry your boots.


Thanks guys, I plan on getting fitted for boots. There's a ski shop near by that's supposedly excellent from everyone I've talked to. Out of curiosity, what kind of ballpark price is this going to cost? Seems like boots are more expensive than the skis I bought!
 

 

post #5 of 10

I think you got very, very lucky that you did not find a boot in "your size."

 

As others have said, boots are the most important part of the whole ensemble, and to get ath right pair of boots, you need to try on LOTS with a professional bootfitter.

 

Used boots, packed out to somebody else's foot, fitted by somebody who doesn't really know what they are doing (which is most everybody that does not professionally bootfit for a speciality ski store (Note that I did NOT say "for a big box sporting goods store")), will be a recipe for disaster.

 

Find a local ski specific store. Try on a bunch of boots. You will find that certain manufacturers will fit your feet, others not at all. In a brand new shell, you are looking for something that has a FIRM handshake feel on your feet, but does not put uncomfortable pressure on your feet anywhere.

 

The most common mistake is aiming for street shoe comfort in a brand new boot, and thus buying something 2 sizes too large. Been there, done that. What then happens is you go to the mountain, skiing forces that you cannot apply in a shop pack in the lining, and your feet start to cramp hard because they are getting pressure applied to the little spot where your foot movement crushes them into the shell rather than all around the foot like they should.

 

So, with the experienced boot guy, you will find a manufacturer's shell that fits. Hopefully it is for a great price. If the price is not in your ballpark, it is important to understand that for most shell designs, a manufacturer makes several different performance levels. They also tend to make the same shell design for several years.

 

So, when you find the right shell at a price out of your budget, important questions are...

1. Do you have any of last year's boots that used this shell in my size?

2. Is there a lesser performance model of this boot that uses the same shell?

 

For an intermediate skier just getting their first gear, even the lower end stuff at a reputable ski shop should last a few seasons before it is time to upgrade boots for performance.

 

If you can't get to a workable price, the next step would be to look for the boot online. IF you do this, either pay your bootfitter $50 or therabouts for their time, or make sure when you find the boot online, you give them a chance to come close to the price. Nothing makes you more of a douche than spending 1 1/2 hours trying on boots just to leave and buy boots online for $20 less.  You really, really don't want a world where ski boots are only sold online.

 

Also recognize that ski boots are very hard to get "deals" on. The right boot is the one that fits, and if it happens to be the $400 boot instead of the $200 boot, you will likely endure more than $200 worth of pain trying to use the wrong boot, and the end result is likely you going back and spending the $400 the next year.

post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by anachronism View Post

I think you got very, very lucky that you did not find a boot in "your size."

 

As others have said, boots are the most important part of the whole ensemble, and to get ath right pair of boots, you need to try on LOTS with a professional bootfitter.

 

Used boots, packed out to somebody else's foot, fitted by somebody who doesn't really know what they are doing (which is most everybody that does not professionally bootfit for a speciality ski store (Note that I did NOT say "for a big box sporting goods store")), will be a recipe for disaster.

 

Find a local ski specific store. Try on a bunch of boots. You will find that certain manufacturers will fit your feet, others not at all. In a brand new shell, you are looking for something that has a FIRM handshake feel on your feet, but does not put uncomfortable pressure on your feet anywhere.

 

The most common mistake is aiming for street shoe comfort in a brand new boot, and thus buying something 2 sizes too large. Been there, done that. What then happens is you go to the mountain, skiing forces that you cannot apply in a shop pack in the lining, and your feet start to cramp hard because they are getting pressure applied to the little spot where your foot movement crushes them into the shell rather than all around the foot like they should.

 

So, with the experienced boot guy, you will find a manufacturer's shell that fits. Hopefully it is for a great price. If the price is not in your ballpark, it is important to understand that for most shell designs, a manufacturer makes several different performance levels. They also tend to make the same shell design for several years.

 

So, when you find the right shell at a price out of your budget, important questions are...

1. Do you have any of last year's boots that used this shell in my size?

2. Is there a lesser performance model of this boot that uses the same shell?

 

For an intermediate skier just getting their first gear, even the lower end stuff at a reputable ski shop should last a few seasons before it is time to upgrade boots for performance.

 

If you can't get to a workable price, the next step would be to look for the boot online. IF you do this, either pay your bootfitter $50 or therabouts for their time, or make sure when you find the boot online, you give them a chance to come close to the price. Nothing makes you more of a douche than spending 1 1/2 hours trying on boots just to leave and buy boots online for $20 less.  You really, really don't want a world where ski boots are only sold online.

 

Also recognize that ski boots are very hard to get "deals" on. The right boot is the one that fits, and if it happens to be the $400 boot instead of the $200 boot, you will likely endure more than $200 worth of pain trying to use the wrong boot, and the end result is likely you going back and spending the $400 the next year.



 All very good advice and I appreciate the response. The boot fitter near by was highly recommended to me by some very experienced skiers I know. The name is Strand's Ski Shop in Worcester, MA. I've read reviews and they are apparently world class, top notch experts in ski equipment.

post #7 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by WhaleSlapper View Post

 

 

Thanks guys, I plan on getting fitted for boots. There's a ski shop near by that's supposedly excellent from everyone I've talked to. Out of curiosity, what kind of ballpark price is this going to cost? Seems like boots are more expensive than the skis I bought! 

 


 

What store/part of the country out of curiosity. Boots will deffinetly be more expensive than the skis, I was expecting to spend 450+ when I went to the ski store. Boots will last much longer than your skis if you get a good pair so keep that in mind. You will probably want to buy new skis in a few seasons as you improve and find what you like to do on the mountain, boots will last probably 5+ years if you take good care of them.

 

Since your MA (I am too) I have nothing but good things to say about Ski Haus in burlington, ask for Steve if your going for boots.

post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bielz View Post

 

What store/part of the country out of curiosity. Boots will deffinetly be more expensive than the skis, I was expecting to spend 450+ when I went to the ski store. Boots will last much longer than your skis if you get a good pair so keep that in mind. You will probably want to buy new skis in a few seasons as you improve and find what you like to do on the mountain, boots will last probably 5+ years if you take good care of them.

 

Since your MA (I am too) I have nothing but good things to say about Ski Haus in burlington, ask for Steve if your going for boots.


Strand's Ski Shop in Worcester, Ma.
 

 

post #9 of 10

I understand Strands to be an excellent boot fitter.

 

People may not agree with me here, but I always try on the next size down from the boot that seems right.  It can reveal more about fit.  I used to buy a 28 shell now a 27.  Keep in mind each boot will have different characteristics.  Lower end boots are often built with one thing in mind, comfort.  You can get comfort and performance if the fitter picks the right shell for you and makes the necessary modifications.

 

On price, don't expect to get the mark down that you can find with skis.  If you are going to a fitter, it makes sense to buy from him and maybe "push" a little on price directly with him (or her).  Make sure your fitter gives you a commitment to do all fitting as part of the purchase.  If you buy on line be prepared to pay for fitting out of pocket and that can be very expensive.  They get paid for their experience and reputation.  They need to make a living.

 

I like to be somewhat close to my fitter.  That way I can go back for "tweeks".

 

Most fitters will try to sell you a footbed.  I say, you gotta have one.

 

It won't be cheap but it will be worth it.

post #10 of 10

Apache will be a good ski for you.

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