Sadly, I need to replace my '04 Atomic R.11s due to an irreparable Atomic binding. I am looking to pick up a pair of last year's demo models (< $500), as I ski at most ten days per year. Primarily Tahoe (Squaw, Alpine).
Age: 46 (34 years skiing)
Level: 7 - 8
I split my time between groomers and bumps. On groomed surfaces, I go for speed, using both GS and slalom turns. The ski needs to be able to hold an edge on ice, as many of the peak runs get wind blown and scraped. Once the sun softens up the bump runs, I'll spend the rest of the day there until I start making too many mistakes.
I only ski crud by accident or when I need to traverse it to get to where I want to go. So, I'll just muddle through it with a narrow waist. Powder: I'll rent a pair of pontoons.
So, in sum, I need a good high speed carver that can hold an edge on ice but has enough flex left to enhance my mogul skiing. I'm still learning and improving my skills in the moguls (steeper, bigger) whereas I feel that I have the high speed carving nailed. So if I have to compromise, I'll compromise in favor of slightly softer to support my mogul aspirations.
I am used to carvers and mogul skis having very narrow waists (~70mm). If modern skis can deliver the same abilities with a slightly wider waist (~78 - 82) that would offer a little more float in the crud, I would consider that.
In the end, I think I'm looking for a soft slalom ski but I'm not sure where the line crosses over to a firm mogul ski. The one ski I've seen that looks like it may be a good fit is the Head iSuperShaper Magnum (71 mm waist).
I would appreciate any and all suggestions (and clarifying questions), including possible sources for used skis. Thank you!
P.S. The Atomics bindings include thick plate on which the boot rests (can't remember the generic term for this). It clearly enhances the carving ability of the ski but it also makes them very heavy. Is this type of geometry still used or recommended?