I’m looking for a ski that’s a beast in powder, nimble in the trees, while still being usable for carving groomers (ya gotta dream big ). I did some searching and put together a list of possible skis that might fit the bill based on what seemed to be popular recommendations and commonly compared skis for this task. Here's what I came up with: Icelantic Keeper, Icelantic Shaman, Armada JJ, Atomic Bent Chetler, Line Sir Francis Bacon, Line Mr Pollard's Opus, Moment Bibby, Rossi S7, ON3P Billy Goat. Here's a spreadsheet I put together with all their specs: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AnlH5RgTUYx1dG1KeE5ZcUZwQnhsM1hQLTVCM1NickE . I'm not sure where to begin in regards to narrowing this list down.
Background: I'm around 5'8" (~172cm) 170 pounds and ski in Tahoe (Kirkwood, Alpine, Homewood this season). I like to search for pow in the trees and hit the side country, but the conditions out here don't always play along, so I end up doing a bit of everything. Besides picking a model, I'm also struggling with choosing an ideal length. If you check the spreadsheet you'll notice that I listed the shortest length available for each model. That's because I'm coming from fat skiboards ( 110cm 165/137/165 tip/waist/tail), so all these skis sound huge (its been years now since I've been on normal skis). My initial thought was to go on the shorter end of the recommended length for my height/weight, but after reading user reviews of most of these models it sounds like it might be better to go with something in the 170s or even 180s at my weight. My main goal with these skis is to be able to charge faster in pow while retaining some of the playful feel I'm used to on skiboards. Something that is easy on the quads and doesn't need to be muscled around too much. Any suggestions?