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What is your ideal ski width for "new snow, but not a ton". Why?

Poll Results: What is your ideal ski width for 8" of high quality new snow and crud?

 
  • 3% (1)
    sub 70mm-I like very precise skis and don't mind being down in the snow. Slalom skis are fun in pow!
  • 15% (4)
    70-85mm: a bit of float, lots of precision, very quick in the fall line
  • 34% (9)
    85-94mm: getting a decent amount of float, still very precise, quick in trees
  • 34% (9)
    95-104mm: lots of float, probably a more forgiving tail, still quick enough in fall line stuff and trees
  • 7% (2)
    105-115mm: give me plenty of float, I want to surf the top of the snow, not ski in it.
  • 3% (1)
    116-140mm: no speed limit: i don't need to turn much, will bounce right over any crud piles, and want a big ski for landings.
26 Total Votes  
post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 

What is your opinion, with regards to width for conditions as described?  I was skiing the past few days in what was excellent pow for Bachelor, with a few wind-packed spots here and there.  11 degree snow one day, 15 the next.  Terrain was moderate, like a 28-degree pitch, and things stayed fresh most of they day. Lots of trees, not much big-mountain terrain available. Bouncing between uncut sections and slightly skied out crud, and eventually over some frozen bumps underneath.  

 

Skiing various skis this day got me to think what the ideal width of ski would be for these conditions specifically.  I know that I ended up having a ton of fun, the most fun by far, on the ~100mm skis.  I found the wider 110-120 skis to be be kind of boring, and the narrower ski to be a lot of work in the crud.  He is what I noticed:

 

The narrow 80mm ski didn't have much float, and I was getting caught up the snow too often.  It was fine in new snow, when I had speed, but on narrower pitches, I wasn't rolling fast enough to turn.  In crud in the steeper sections, I was having to work a lot to get the ski released. I could do it, but really had to be dialed an on my game for a narrower ski such as this.  

 

The ~100mm skis were money.  Just enough float to let rip and keep up speed (very important at Bachelor, which is a notoriously flat mountain).  Enough narrowness to encourage me to ski very actively: working the ski tip to tail, releasing at the end of the turn and causing the ski to move in and out of the snow, and feel the power of a release that has you completely unweighted between turns, flying down the fall line.  Also the best width to work in the soft, cruddy bumps.  Very active width; gives you feedback without being too much work.  Also very rewarding. 

 

Bigger 110-120mm skis: were fun, but just kind of planed over the snow, so I felt more like I was skiing a groomer. That can be a huge plus at Bachelor when the snow is heavy, but for this particular day, wasn't as much fun.  Also, It felt like because I was so on top of the snow, skiing it like a groomer, I didn't have to ski all that well and release actively at the end of the turn. It was more like a park-and-ride feel. Sure, that is less work, but I was missing out on some of what makes skiing pow so unique.  The true weightlessness of a downward release/retraction/extension turns wasn't there.  That feeling of absolutely setting up a turn perfectly (and getting the reward when loading up the ski at the bottom of the next turn) wasn't as prevalent. It was more of a "go fast and really straight" feel.  

 

For these conditions, I have to say I was having the best time on those skis closest to 100mm (which, on these days, were the ON3P Vicik, Head Inferno, Blizzard Bonafide, and Kastle BMX98).  This isn't really a ski review though, just more of a width review/discussion. 

 

So, what would your take be in conditions as described above? I see everything from race GS skis to K2 Darksides on days like that up at the hill. 

post #2 of 23

98 the answer is always 98 don't ask me whybiggrin.gif

post #3 of 23

 I said 105-115 because the 2 skis I would be choosing between for those conditions fall in that range. For me, where I'm skiing and how I'm skiing is going to determine what I ski as much as snow fall total + the beauty of wide rockered skis is that 8" is a full-on powder day if you can keep moving to different stashes. If I was at a mountain I didn't know well I'd probably choose a ski in the mid ninety range knowing that I'd be skiing soft bumps as soon as the hill got tracked out... so by my fourth run. Skis that are too wide to be fun in soft bumps are pretty lame in my opinion.

post #4 of 23

Although I picked the 95 - 104 magical "98" category, it would still depend on where those 8 inches are.

 

Out west, and sticking to the open trails here in the east, then "98" is a great width and if you need to you can pick up a bit of speed too.

 

But, if I were skiing the trees here in the east which are tighter then the "trees" out west, I'd be looking for something with more float and more of a point and shoot quick turning ski.  So something in the 105 - 115 category and with some rocker too is what I would pick for that.

post #5 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by dawgcatching View Post

The ~100mm skis were money.  Just enough float to let rip and keep up speed (very important at Bachelor, which is a notoriously flat mountain).  Enough narrowness to encourage me to ski very actively: working the ski tip to tail, releasing at the end of the turn and causing the ski to move in and out of the snow, and feel the power of a release that has you completely unweighted between turns, flying down the fall line.  Also the best width to work in the soft, cruddy bumps.  Very active width; gives you feedback without being too much work.  Also very rewarding. 

 

....


really like my 99s

found them to be the most versatile skis I've ever been on. Great even carving on relatively hard pack, but really come alive once there's some soft/loose pack.

Found out last season that even into fresh of 24" to 28" I luv'd the way they stay down and porpoise in the snow and were still very comfortable turners - these are traditional full camber skis.

when the rocks finally get covered they will come out and be my daily riders - until then the low 80's skis will take the abuse.

 

post #6 of 23

wait, that's impossible. let's test the theory, let's see, just some arbitrary question....

what's your favorite Oldsmobile?

98. 

unbelievable, and that proves it.

 

On point: 97 to100, three of the best skis I've ever had the pleasure of bashing the hell out of snow with.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by UGASkiDawg View Post

98 the answer is always 98 don't ask me whybiggrin.gif



 

post #7 of 23

I actually like 110 plus whenever I can stay of the bottom.

 

I feel they actually turn faster than the narrow widths. I can also make pretty good retractions turns them as long as i am not hitting really hard snow.

 

Josh

post #8 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post

I actually like 110 plus whenever I can stay of the bottom.

 

I feel they actually turn faster than the narrow widths. I can also make pretty good retractions turns them as long as i am not hitting really hard snow.

 

Josh



Is that shorter or longer lengths? It seems like I always end up skiing a mid 180's ski in a 110mm waist ski, whereas I am closer to high 170's/low 180's in the narrower skis, so they feel quicker.  If I lived back East, I bet I wouldn't need as much length.  It is probably a hinderance in tight trees, but a plus in wide open spaces.

post #9 of 23

I think 88 mm is good.

post #10 of 23

Perhaps my answer would change if I had the inventory of a ski shop to pick from but right now my quiver jumps from 85 to 118 and I don't see a reason to bridge that gap.  I love my 118s in any amount of soft snow and being on those in 8" of fresh is nothing at all like skiing a groomer.

 

$0.02

post #11 of 23

I'm not sure exactly how much snow we are talking about, but it sounds like MX88 to me. If it's wet and heavy, maybe I'd rather have an S7 type of deal.

post #12 of 23

Define "not a ton" versus "a ton" of snow.  Under 8 inches and I'll go with an 80.  9-12 inches and I'll go 91.  Over a foot and I'll go with my fattest ski (99).  

post #13 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by dawgcatching View Post



Is that shorter or longer lengths? It seems like I always end up skiing a mid 180's ski in a 110mm waist ski, whereas I am closer to high 170's/low 180's in the narrower skis, so they feel quicker.  If I lived back East, I bet I wouldn't need as much length.  It is probably a hinderance in tight trees, but a plus in wide open spaces.


whats short and whats longer?

 

last year I had 183cm 111mm waist that measured 181 this year I have a 186cm that measures 183cm  110m.  I also used a 192cm 120mm waist that measured 192.

 

I would go MUCH longer at snowbird or Jackson. The 193cm Cochise was my favorite riding the tram at the bird ski I have ever been on.

 

I feel that mid 180 are the perfect lenght for alot of skis for me. On my 186cm Sickles I feel like they are just narrow enough to not be horrid on bumps and skied out spots while being just long enough I can pressure the tip and have alot of ski to "platform" against the snow.  the shorter 174cm was outta of the question IMO.

 

I am skiing woods about as fast as most people ski open areas

 

 

 

post #14 of 23

115, Rossi S7's of course.  Wouldn't want to be on anything else.

post #15 of 23

78, Head Monster iM78's.  Plenty of float at the speeds I like to ski and busts crud like a champ.  Easy enough to get up on edge for when that 8" turns into piles on boilerplate, too.

post #16 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanBoisvert View Post

78, Head Monster iM78's.  Plenty of float at the speeds I like to ski and busts crud like a champ.  Easy enough to get up on edge for when that 8" turns into piles on boilerplate, too.



please come to stowe before your meet up!

 

I would love to show how inadequent those things are.

post #17 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post


whats short and whats longer?

 

last year I had 183cm 111mm waist that measured 181 this year I have a 186cm that measures 183cm  110m.  I also used a 192cm 120mm waist that measured 192.

 

I would go MUCH longer at snowbird or Jackson. The 193cm Cochise was my favorite riding the tram at the bird ski I have ever been on.

 

I feel that mid 180 are the perfect lenght for alot of skis for me. On my 186cm Sickles I feel like they are just narrow enough to not be horrid on bumps and skied out spots while being just long enough I can pressure the tip and have alot of ski to "platform" against the snow.  the shorter 174cm was outta of the question IMO.

 

I am skiing woods about as fast as most people ski open areas

 

 

 



That is pretty fast skiing for trees!  Looks tight and fun.

 

I am pretty much on the same lengths: high 170's to mid 180's for a 100mm ski (depending on rocker), to mid 180's for a 110-115 ski (similar lengths in terms of feel) which is 178cm on my BMX98, 187 on my Bonafide, 183 on my Olympus, and a 193cm on my BMX128.

 

post #18 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post



please come to stowe before your meet up!

 

I would love to show how inadequent those things are.


It seems to me that the conditions dawg is describing would be a very close fit to those we had that day you and I and your friends skied Zero G Couloir.  I was on SS Magnums (71mm underfoot) and I thought they were perfect.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DanBoisvert View Post

78, Head Monster iM78's.  Plenty of float at the speeds I like to ski and busts crud like a champ.  Easy enough to get up on edge for when that 8" turns into piles on boilerplate, too.


I fully agree except that I would choose the SS Titan, which is also 78mm underfoot.

 

post #19 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post


please come to stowe before your meet up!

 

I would love to show how inadequent those things are.


I wish I could!  I'm super tight on vacation days this year, which is putting a real cramp in my weekday ski schedule.  I'm a pretty crap skier in general, so I'd probably be inclined to blame my skiing, but I'd be psyched to have an excuse to buy some wider skis. biggrin.gif

 

I'm trying to work out the scheduling to see if I can make your meetup, at any rate.  Hopefully it'll come together.  beercheer.gif

post #20 of 23

alot of the above video is less than a foot of new snow, but on wider skis it skis much deeper!

post #21 of 23

i have 107 gotamas perfect east coast powder ski...not the quickest in the trees mind you though but great on powder days

post #22 of 23

For lift-served 3-6" fresh over crust or refrozen, a 98-ish is the definitive "enough" ski IMO: Enough float to smooth things out, enough edge to deal effectively with the hard stuff underneath when you hit it, enough sidecut and edge bite to allow various turn species. Carving a 105+ is perfectly doable, if you're feeling leisurely, but kind of like urging Brady to run instead of pass...

post #23 of 23

82, thats what my old rossi bandit xxx's (193) are. Why? Theyre stiff enough to blast through any crud and still have float and excellent edge hold, very damp to smooth out bumps due to a metal topsheet, couldn't think of a better ski for crud/ tracked powder days. I have a 100 waist ski, but they get bumped around pretty well in chopped up powder and dont have an incredible amount of edge hold on hardpack. I ski at decently fast speeds so they float, if you ski slow, its just not going to happen. Im a big guy at 6' 215 but this ski has plenty of float for me on most days.

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