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Looking to getting back into skiing--need advice!

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

Hey all, new to the forum. 

 

I will be skiing mainly eastern US, ie NC & West Virginia (Snowshoe).  Maybe a trip out west this year, but doubtful.

 

In terms of terrain, I prefer groomed runs.

 

Yearly, I plan on skiing once every week or so.

 

I am not a very advanced skier.  I am currently 23.....and last time I went on a consistent basis was in middle school--so, yeah, it's been a while!  Hopefully it will be like riding a bike tongue.gif

 

Ultimately, I am looking to get back into the sport as a recreational hobby.  When I did ski, I always rented my gear.

 

Now, however, I am looking to get all the equipment and apparel that I need--but on a budget!

 

I am 6'1", 250lbs.

 

I am looking for one ski to serve all purposes.

 

What's most important to me is comfort, comfort, comfort.  When I rented gear, my feet would absolutely be killing me by the end of the day.  

 

I have no idea what makes a ski a good performer, or for that matter what would be best for me.

 

So, yeah---with all that said, I am seeking advice for equipment and apparel, without breaking the bank.

 

Any advice is appreciated!

 

-I3

post #2 of 17

Hi welcome!

 First thing I'd do if I were you is find a decent bootfitter, you have obviously had problems with your feet previously, you won't solve that with skis. Tell us where you are and I'm sure someone closer to you will be able to give you an idea of fitters of good reputation near you, or check out the boot guy forum for opinions from the experts.

 

 Ski wise I'd hold out til you have comfortable boots, if your returning after a break and taking a couple of refresher lessons (I would!) you might find you'll progress quicker than you think and quickly outgrow the skis people might recommend straight off. An instructor might give you better advice and you might find a demo day near you too.

post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 

I see!

 

There's a place called CBS sports http://www.cbssportsnc.com/

 

That I think does boot fitting.......

 

May plan a trip there.

post #4 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by I3eyond View Post

Hey all, new to the forum. 

 

I will be skiing mainly eastern US, ie NC & West Virginia (Snowshoe).  Maybe a trip out west this year, but doubtful.

 

In terms of terrain, I prefer groomed runs.

 

Yearly, I plan on skiing once every week or so.

 

I am not a very advanced skier.  I am currently 23.....and last time I went on a consistent basis was in middle school--so, yeah, it's been a while!  Hopefully it will be like riding a bike tongue.gif

 

Ultimately, I am looking to get back into the sport as a recreational hobby.  When I did ski, I always rented my gear.

 

Now, however, I am looking to get all the equipment and apparel that I need--but on a budget!

 

I am 6'1", 250lbs.

 

I am looking for one ski to serve all purposes.

 

What's most important to me is comfort, comfort, comfort.  When I rented gear, my feet would absolutely be killing me by the end of the day.  

 

I have no idea what makes a ski a good performer, or for that matter what would be best for me.

 

So, yeah---with all that said, I am seeking advice for equipment and apparel, without breaking the bank.

 

Any advice is appreciated!

 

-I3

Welcome to EpicSki!  There are boot fitters in Asheville and Boone.  In the long run, you are better off spending bigger bucks on good boots and not worrying that much about skis just yet.  Sugar will have the SugarFest Demo Days in mid-Dec.  That's a good chance to try out options.

 

Ski shops in the southeast are likely to have sales in Nov and Dec.  You may be able to get last year's boots for relatively cheap.  I got my first pair of Nordicas for something like $250 across the road from Sugar during SugarFest several years ago.

 

Check out the articles here.  Includes the basics about getting boots.

 

http://www.epicski.com/atype/9/Level_One

 

By the way, I learned to ski in middle school long ago.  Then didn't ski at all until I was about 23.  Even though that was still the days of straight skis (harder to turn), I did pretty well at Sugar.  Didn't try shaped skis until much, much later.

post #5 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by I3eyond View Post

I see!

 

There's a place called CBS sports http://www.cbssportsnc.com/

 

That I think does boot fitting.......

 

May plan a trip there.

While CBS sports may carry ski boots, that's not the type of place I would go to buy boots.

post #6 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by I3eyond View Post

There's a place called CBS sports http://www.cbssportsnc.com/

 

That I think does boot fitting.......

 

I am willing to bet a fairly large amount of money that this place does not have a true boot fitter.  Yes you can sometimes find someone who knows what they're doing in a place like that but the odds are seriously against it.  I wasted a lot of money always going for the next "hot" ski and always being disappointed that my skiing never improved and that my feet always hurt.  I was lucky if I could tolerate a boot for 2 seasons.  Every boot I bought, except two, was a bargain boot that felt really comfortable in the store, but was in reality probably 2 sizes too long and also too wide.  A few years ago I was finally talked into getting boots from someone who knew how to fit boots.  I learned I actually have a fairly narrow foot while I always thought it was at least medium width.  The first day I used the new boots I was astonished at how much better I was skiing, the improvement was dramatic and almost instantaneous.  I have now replaced those boots with a different style complete with heat-molded Intuition liners and custom foot beds.  You probably don't need that much but I ski a lot and I need my boots to be comfortable whether I'm standing around in them or skiing.  Go to the "Ask the Boot Guys" forum and read the wikis about fitting and terminology.  Then look at the list of fitters and call either the one in Asheville or Boone and make an appointment.  Boots are the important gear for skiing.  If they don't fit right your feet will hurt and you will have trouble controlling your skis.  It may cost more initially, but if you get them from a reputable fitter, you won't need to buy new ones for 4-6 years depending on how much you ski and maybe even longer.

post #7 of 17
Thread Starter 

That makes a lot of sense.  Skiing when I was younger wasn't ever fully enjoyable because my feet would always hurt SO bad sometimes even after having the boot on for only a run or two.

 

How much should I expect to spend on fitment of boots and the boots themselves?

post #8 of 17

 I live in the UK so have no idea of US prices! However your question is a bit like asking for the square root of a box of frogs!

 If you have really ordinary feet and are unusually lucky in being able to fit standard boots out of the box and get last years at a sale then could be real cheap but if you have really odd feet and need lot of custom work done then the price could shoot up. Best advice to you, decide your budget and be honest with the fitter, he will do his best to deal with your budget, I have known fitters to tell someone to find "boot x" online as cheap as you can andf bring it to the shop for custom footbeds/alignment etc

post #9 of 17

Its definitely worth it to listen to these guys and go to a "real" boot fitter. I went the bargain store route once, and I'll never do it again. The boots were two sizes too big, insanely wide, and forced me to wear duct tape on my feet to avoid blisters. I went to a shop in Colorado and shelled out 450 for a mid range boot and I couldn't be happier, they have worked great for two years (need new liners) and have always been comfortable, on top of that I was one of the lucky ones that has a foot that fits this certain shell in the right length and width quite well without any adjustments.

I still remember my first day of skiing in the new boots, my feet got sore, as with any new shoe or boot, but I also couldn't believe how connected my skis were to my lower leg and foot movements. It was like going from a 1980's ford to a 2012 BMW, really unbelievable difference in the feel of my skiing . On top of that, my feet don't get cold often and are rarely sore after skiing.

post #10 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by I3eyond View Post

So, yeah---with all that said, I am seeking advice for equipment and apparel, without breaking the bank.

If you can get to Charlottesville, VA this weekend, there is a ski swap there Oct. 27-28 that starts Sat morning at 9am.  It's at a true ski shop so there will be people are who can help you find suitable stuff for southeast skiing.

 

http://www.freestyleonline.com/

 

Here's some tips on how to buy used skis.

 

http://www.theskidiva.com/how-to-buy-used-skis/

 

I'd put off a trip out west until after this season.  Figure out what gear you want first.  Watch the sales in the spring, summer, fall.  Spend some money on lessons.  Then you can do it right for the 2013-14 season.

 

Early season group lessons can be a good deal.  Especially if you go mid-week or early in the morning on weekends.  Instead of a group of 5+, you might end up with a private or semi-private from an experienced instructor.  My guess is that part-time instructors who may not have as much experience don't really start working a lot until late Dec.

post #11 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by I3eyond View Post

That makes a lot of sense.  Skiing when I was younger wasn't ever fully enjoyable because my feet would always hurt SO bad sometimes even after having the boot on for only a run or two.

 

How much should I expect to spend on fitment of boots and the boots themselves?

If you buy from a ski shop with a boot fitter, there is usually no extra fee for the fitting itself.  Helps to call and make an appointment.  Note that the advantage of getting boots near somewhere you are likely to ski is that it's easier to go in for tweaks as you use the boots more.

 

Ski Country has several shops in western NC.  I got my first good 4-buckle boots at their place across from Sugar about five years ago.  About $250 for boots good for beginner/intermediate from the previous season.  Still use them when skiing at Massanutten if conditions are just so-so.

 

http://www.skicountrysports.com

 

The other place in central NC that does boot fitting is C&R Sports.  Shops in Elon and Hillsborough.  Got my current boots during the spring sale at the Hillsborough shop a couple seasons ago.  $400 for the boots and another $120 for custom footbeds.

post #12 of 17
Thread Starter 

Well, you all have certainly been very helpful so far!  I was all about finding the right skis, but I'm really glad you all have pointed out that the boots are the most important part!

post #13 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by I3eyond View Post

Well, you all have certainly been very helpful so far!  I was all about finding the right skis, but I'm really glad you all have pointed out that the boots are the most important part!

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by I3eyond View Post

That makes a lot of sense.  Skiing when I was younger wasn't ever fully enjoyable because my feet would always hurt SO bad sometimes even after having the boot on for only a run or two.

 

Happy to encourage you given that you obviously fell in love with skiing in spite of poor rental equipment. smile.gif

post #14 of 17

As far as the skis/poles.


Poles are not expensive. so there's not too much savings or differences  to be had in this area.  The crazy expensive poles are better, and if given the choice, take the upgrade.  But they are not vital to your ski experience.  You can have just as much fun with your standard aluminum poles.

 

Skis can be expensive, there are threads and tips on how to reduce your costs.  Buying used skis or looking for deals on last seasons skis can greatly reduce your expenditure.  current model New skis are like new cars, relatively expensive on the lot, that drop in price quickly after 1 year. 

 

Regarding just renting skis/poles (once you have boots).  

Once you have some equipment, you might as well get the rest so you can skip the rental shop entirely.  There are cost savings not renting each time.  

A demo ski rental will cost you in the range of $45/day whereas obtaining the same skis "used" will be $450 or so.  So buying new skis will pay for themselves in 10days or so. You also will become more familiar with YOUR skis to a degree that you can push and know how they will react.  Versus getting a different pair of skis every time.

 

 

 

However, renting skis to start can be beneficial for certain factors:

1) You are still on the fast paced learning curve and progressing through beginners' skis (costs less to rent)  and into more advanced skis.

2) not exactly sure what skis you want to buy and you are demoing real skis(not rental fleet skis)

3) ski infrequently and want the newest skis all the time.

 

 

If you go through bootfitting, you can at least inquire at the same time for skis at the same shop.  They may be able to point you to some deals especially if you buy everything at the same place

post #15 of 17
Thread Starter 

Thinking of selling my gear....

post #16 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by I3eyond View Post

Thinking of selling my gear....

Care to tell us more?

post #17 of 17
Thread Starter 

Yeah, I was going to post in the FS forum, and it seems I have the required post count, but I can't it seems.


Any who, skiing last season wasn't all that fun for me...went 3 times total and it's just not for me anymore.

 

That said, 2012 Line Chronics (178s), Look Pivot 14 bindings center mounted,  Salomon Mission 6 28.5 boots,  and Goode 2013 Impact Carbon Superlite 10.4 Ski Poles, 52".

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