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Trouble deciding on all-mountain skis for northeast

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Having trouble deciding on a good all-mountain ski...I've gone through all the reviews, talked to many shops and researched as much as possible.

I am 6'4" 245 lbs, board and ski, have been for a while, would describe myself as advanced (although a recent trip to Zermatt had me second guessing myself surrounded by all the pros). I ski mainly the Northeast-Smuggs, Jay, Stratton, Poconos...spend most of the time in the glades when in VT, but really looking for a ski that can cover the typical NE terrain, which is not always very predictable.

It seems I've narrowed it down to Mantras, Aramada TST, LINE Prophet or SFB, also not sure what size will be best. I skied on crossmax 180s for the last 3 yrs. Any suggestions, feedback, experiences, comments are much welcomed to help me get this decision complete and ready to go this season.
post #2 of 14

How in the world did you come up with that assortment? Your choices are ranging from the stiffest of the 98's (Volkl) to one of softer, soft snow oriented skis (Line SFB). Given that you are looking for a daily driver type ski the 98mm range (give or take a little) is a reasonable place to be.

 

There are a ton of awesome skis in the 98mm range. While the Mantra is my least favorite of that group of skis, with your size it would be fine. Others to consider might be the Line that is on your list, the Rossi Experience 98, Blizzard Bonafide, and Nordica Enforcer. Given the typical NE conditions that I experienced when I lived there, the two softer skis you are considering would be optimal only perhaps 10-20% of the time.

 

SJ 

post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 

I appreciat the feedback, and that's why I'm asking.  Some of the feedback I was getting at local shops sounded off base and I wasn't sure why people were skiing some of those options in this area.

 

So, it sounds like the Line Prophet, Armada TST, Volkl Mantra and Bonafides are on the right track.

 

Any personal experience that would set one apart from the rest?

post #4 of 14

NO!  did you read what Jim posted?  Now take those ski's he suggested and do some searching here for the reviews. 

post #5 of 14

Blizzard Bonafide, and Nordica Enforcer.

 

Are you sure you can handle something that wide? as a every day ski.

 

I have Volkl Kendo's that I use as my everyday ski at Okemo. But I have the skills to use them and tune them.

 

I have Gotama's for the deeped snow.

 

I wouldsuggest you take a lesson after you dicide and get new skis.

 

I enjoyed hte Enforcer when I demoed it. Felt it was alot like the Volkl's. Have heard good things about Bonifide too.

 

I think you need to demo and take a lesson on the demo's, may be that will help you decide.

post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 

Well Finndog, considering Jim's review of the Mantra was purely subjective, and he agreed on the application, I'm leaving it on the list because I know plenty of guys who love the ski.

That said, I took his advice on SFB and others, and have heard very good things about the Bonafides.

 

The Armada appear to be highly recommended everywhere, and I won't be taking it off the list.

 

Max, thanks for the added feedback, and great suggestion on the lesson, I will definitely do that.

post #7 of 14

I have a shiny new pair of 184 SFB's waiting to get broken in this weekend at Stowe. They will be my only ski this season but I plan to stay on mostly ungroomed trails. They are extremely soft though, so I personally don't think they would work for you considering I weigh almost 100lbs less. wink.gif

 

I'm not sure how/if they changed the Enforcer at all from last year, but it got great demo reviews.

 

From what I've heard the Bonafides are great ski, definitely a charger and they would be somewhat comparable to the Line Influence 105 in the sense that they are built pretty sturdy.  

The Prophet 98 also looks killer.

post #8 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by gmann14 View Post

I appreciat the feedback, and that's why I'm asking.  Some of the feedback I was getting at local shops sounded off base and I wasn't sure why people were skiing some of those options in this area.

 

So, it sounds like the Line Prophet, Armada TST, Volkl Mantra and Bonafides are on the right track.

 

Any personal experience that would set one apart from the rest?

 

OK.....allow me to restate.

 

First.....you can ski anything......anywhere.......that doesn't mean it's an optimal choice.

 

I did not specifically suggest that you scratch the TST but I should'a. Instead, I referred to the two softer skis.........my omission. I should'a said specifically to scratch the TST and the SFB. Both are too soft for typical NE snow conditions given your weight.

 

As far as the others, my own distaste for the Mantra is based on a very stiff back half and the fact that despite their stiffness, they are not very well damped. I just plain don't like those characteristics. That's my taste but not necessarily yours. Among stiffer skis, the Rossi Experience 98 gets my nod over the Mantra. I personally like the "mediums" such as the Bone or the Enforcer. The P-98 is medium-soft but it is a superb ski and very user friendly for one who values maneuverability over stability.

 

SJ

post #9 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks SJ. Clear now, thanks for the suggestions.

Moving on to a boot for a size 15 (31.5-32), again,245, 6'4" mostly trees when skiing in Vermont as all as the groomers.

I'm assuming limited choices here?
post #10 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by gmann14 View Post

Moving on to a boot for a size 15 (31.5-32), again,245, 6'4" mostly trees when skiing in Vermont as all as the groomers.
I'm assuming limited choices here?

 

Incorrect assumption.  There are plenty of boots on the market that will fit you, you just need to find the one that fits correctly.  Go to the "Ask the Boot Guys" forum, read the wikis about fitting and terminology, then check the "Who's Who" to see if there is a fitter listed near you.  If there is, make an appointment.  The list is only of fitters who are active on EpicSki to some degree so if there isn't one near you, ask and someone here will be able to recommend a competent fitter.  Do not trust your feet to anyone who doesn't do a shell fit.

post #11 of 14

Clarification time.

 

The availability of boots in larger sizes will depend upon your true measured size as conversion tables don't work. Keep in mind that your shoe size is irrelevant to the conclusion. The solution will also depend upon your foot shape (narrow, med, wide) and fit preferences (tight, medium, flip flop). This is complicated by your size which will dictate a pretty stiff boot. Some high end, high performance boots stop at sz. 29. If you measure a 30, you will have some number of choices. If you're a 31, there are way fewer and in a 32, not much at all except buckety low end stuff.

 

This is not a subject that warrants much debate on the interwebz. You are best suited by finding a boot specialist in your area and said specialist will not be found under every rock. Best get lookin'.

 

SJ

post #12 of 14
Thread Starter 

Good to know, I measured a 31.5, I'll get looking for a specialist.

post #13 of 14

Gmann14,

 

I am 6' 4" and 250 lbs. I rate myself an expert skier and ski all over New England. I bought three pairs of skis in the last year. For a ski that fitts the group you are looking at, I own a Ullr's Chariot from Ski Logik, in 178 cm. To qualify my recomendation, I haven't skied your list, but I would put the Chariot at the top, followed by the Bonifide. People our size have to focus on different requirements than average sized people. PM me if you wish to discuss further, and I can guarantee you won't be happy with the "soft" skis that SJim mentioned, he is giving you good advice.

 

PS.  I ski a Lange RS 140 boot (not the 130) in 29.5 size and really like them. They are great for narrow feet which describes mine.

post #14 of 14

Where do you ski in VT ?

 

In Ludlow, there is one of the best boot fitters in the northeast, Shon at The Boot Pro. Right at the base of Okemo's axcess road.

 

He is that good, ah great.

 

While your there talk to Randy, he's the big guy that takes care of the tuning end. He'll be able to recommend a few skis for you.

 

Just tell them Byron sent you. They'll take great care of you.

 

If your serious about boot's call ahead and set up a week day appointment with Shon. May be it's early enough in the season a weekend will be ok too.

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