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Blizzard Black Pearl - what size? - Page 2

post #31 of 55

She grew up skiing at Badger pass in Yosemite once a week when she was young since college and tight budgets we have only been going once a season. Last year we went over new years and had a blast and decided to try every ski resort in Tahoe (we live in Monterey, CA). We were able to get 7 days in from Jan 1 till the end of the season. In march we bought the epic season pass which grants access to Kirkwood, Northstar, and Heavenly. We are using this off-season to re-build our gear stash.

 

She is a good all mountian black and double black skiier except she has a really hard time in moguls and deep powder. We have been renting her gear this last season but she outpreformed it by a long shot. She usually rides 156 ish but she is not gear orientied. She is better than she will admit to but wants skis to turn easy and float in powder easier. We are plannign on going very often this coming season and want gear to last at least 5 years. She has never skied rockered skiis but i have done hours upon hours of research about what makes skis work, how the rocker works, etc. I have found that this ski should fit her based on her profile, but im a little nervous about actually riding.

post #32 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by poodleracer View Post

She grew up skiing at Badger pass in Yosemite once a week when she was young since college and tight budgets we have only been going once a season. Last year we went over new years and had a blast and decided to try every ski resort in Tahoe (we live in Monterey, CA). We were able to get 7 days in from Jan 1 till the end of the season. In march we bought the epic season pass which grants access to Kirkwood, Northstar, and Heavenly. We are using this off-season to re-build our gear stash.

 

She is a good all mountian black and double black skiier except she has a really hard time in moguls and deep powder. We have been renting her gear this last season but she outpreformed it by a long shot. She usually rides 156 ish but she is not gear orientied. She is better than she will admit to but wants skis to turn easy and float in powder easier. We are plannign on going very often this coming season and want gear to last at least 5 years. She has never skied rockered skiis but i have done hours upon hours of research about what makes skis work, how the rocker works, etc. I have found that this ski should fit her based on her profile, but im a little nervous about actually riding.

Definitely would not go shorter than 166 for BPs.  My BPs are fine in 10-15 inches of powder, but I don't expect them to float as well as a powder ski that's 95+ underfoot.  They certainly do better than my all-mountain Rossi Attraxion 8's that are only 75 underfoot even though I can have fun with them in powder because of the big shovel.  Technique makes as much of a difference as ski width.

 

Were you renting her boots too?

post #33 of 55

Ya thats good to hear thanks for your input. Boots have been rented as well up to now. We are starting the boot fiting journey as well. The problem we are running into now is limited selection in stores. Slow and stead with lots of research is my plan. I have also done a lot of learning about boots and how important fit is above tech. All in all i want her to have gear that she can grow her skills with.

post #34 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by poodleracer View Post

Hi guys,

I hope this thread is still active. There is a lot of great info here. I just bought some used demo Black Pearls from powder7.com for my girlfriend and when we got them last night we realized they are hammered. The tips have gouges deep into the white mid layer and look like they could delam. I am going to return them and buy a pair of new ones instead but what really worries my is that my girlfriend thinks they seem too long at 166. She is 5'7" ish 130ish lbs and a solid all mountian intermediate/advanced skier(again she is better than she thinks but wants skis to be as easy to turn as possible). I am having second thoughts about the 166 even though reviews here seem to warrant that size. Do you think I should go with her or stick to what is the general consensus here? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Welllllll, my first recommendation is to go with the 166 for her size, but if she's a timid skier and the length is intimidating to her, then a 159 may be the way to go.  

 

But first, let me ask a few questions: 

Does she do moguls, trees or venture off piste much at all? 

Does she like to ski at speed when she's on groomers? 

 

 

Reasoning on the different lengths: 

The longer ski is ideal for her size and "stated" ability and will help her make advancements in her skiing because it should inspire her to "do more" and give her the stability at speed if she's ready to go to the next level, IF she's not excessively timid. 

The shorter ski will be more nimble in the trees and moguls for someone who's starting to venture there and will help in that learning curve if this is a skier who's more timid and is looking for something playful.  BUT with the shorter ski, she'll lose some stability at speed when she's on groomers. 

post #35 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by poodleracer View Post

Ya thats good to hear thanks for your input. Boots have been rented as well up to now. We are starting the boot fiting journey as well. The problem we are running into now is limited selection in stores. Slow and stead with lots of research is my plan. I have also done a lot of learning about boots and how important fit is above tech. All in all i want her to have gear that she can grow her skills with.

If you're thinking of boots and are looking for someone in the Tahoe area, you should shoot Philpug a PM.  The staff at Start Haus is top notch in this department. 

post #36 of 55

I really appreciate the feedback thank you all!

 

She is not timid but doesnt really know how to ski moguls. But last time she ventured into the park and had a ton of fun with little jumps and even a box or two and some acciental stairs...!  Most of the times we have tried the moguls they were more like rock hard VW bugs not really moguls. We do venture off piste as long as the conditions permit. When on the groomers we do go really fast with big wide sweeping turns in all black and double black runs. I like the 166 for the stability at speed but also want turning with ease. But also keep in mind that she will be comparing these BP's to the hoardes of crappy rentals she has used over the years, mostly junk. This year we we looking to both progress in the trees and in powder when available. I am looking for one ski with minimal trade offs good at speed but still fun in the soft/trees. Im just nervous about pulling the trigger and her being disappointed and us being out $600....

post #37 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by poodleracer View Post

I really appreciate the feedback thank you all!

 

She is not timid but doesnt really know how to ski moguls. But last time she ventured into the park and had a ton of fun with little jumps and even a box or two and some acciental stairs...!  Most of the times we have tried the moguls they were more like rock hard VW bugs not really moguls. We do venture off piste as long as the conditions permit. When on the groomers we do go really fast with big wide sweeping turns in all black and double black runs. I like the 166 for the stability at speed but also want turning with ease. But also keep in mind that she will be comparing these BP's to the hoardes of crappy rentals she has used over the years, mostly junk. This year we we looking to both progress in the trees and in powder when available. I am looking for one ski with minimal trade offs good at speed but still fun in the soft/trees. Im just nervous about pulling the trigger and her being disappointed and us being out $600....

With your added information.  I'd stick with the 166. 

post #38 of 55

Thank you all for your feedback, it helped us out a lot. I decided to send the hammered demo BP's back and order a new set of the 2012 166's. Now for the boot fitting journey...

 

Thanks again!

 

-Josh

post #39 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by poodleracer View Post

Thank you all for your feedback, it helped us out a lot. I decided to send the hammered demo BP's back and order a new set of the 2012 166's. Now for the boot fitting journey...

 

Thanks again!

 

-Josh

I know you are watching the budget, but consider getting custom footbeds with boots.  The footbeds last 10-15 years, so are not tied to the boot you buy them with.  I've had good boots for quite a while, even before I bought good skis.  Got the footbeds a few seasons ago to add to good boots that I'd bought the year before.  Definitely made a difference in the sense of how easy it is to control my skis with minimal movement.  A bit more comfortable too.

 

At the very least, worth using third party footbeds instead of the basic footbeds that comes with most boots.

post #40 of 55

We found a shop called Mel Cotton's about an hour from us that has certified boot fitters but when we went in there last week they were somewhat thrown off that we were looking for ski boots in june. The guy who helped us was very nice but admitted that he didnt know much about boot fitting. When we are ready we will make an appointment to get the boots custom fit. I'm not worried about price as much as good fit. What price range would you put on custom foot beds? 200...500???   50?  We will probablly have this gear for then next 10 years so I dont mind spending a little extra. I'm hoping to get her all set up for an end result of about $1,000.

post #41 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by poodleracer View Post

We found a shop called Mel Cotton's about an hour from us that has certified boot fitters but when we went in there last week they were somewhat thrown off that we were looking for ski boots in june. The guy who helped us was very nice but admitted that he didnt know much about boot fitting. When we are ready we will make an appointment to get the boots custom fit. I'm not worried about price as much as good fit. What price range would you put on custom foot beds? 200...500???   50?  We will probablly have this gear for then next 10 years so I dont mind spending a little extra. I'm hoping to get her all set up for an end result of about $1,000.

I believe most shops around here charge $180-ish.

 

What you need to do with (or without) footbeds is something that a reputable bootfitter can help you figure out. 

If you want to check for certification you can check out this site. 

http://www.bootfitters.com

A few of our esteemed "ask a boot guy" pros are Masterfit Instructors. 

post #42 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by poodleracer View Post

We found a shop called Mel Cotton's about an hour from us that has certified boot fitters but when we went in there last week they were somewhat thrown off that we were looking for ski boots in june. The guy who helped us was very nice but admitted that he didnt know much about boot fitting. When we are ready we will make an appointment to get the boots custom fit. I'm not worried about price as much as good fit. What price range would you put on custom foot beds? 200...500???   50?  We will probablly have this gear for then next 10 years so I dont mind spending a little extra. I'm hoping to get her all set up for an end result of about $1,000.

Looking at the Mel Cotton website, it looks more like a "big box" sports store that sells ski equipment than a ski shop that is more likely to have a good boot fitter.  Even in central NC, it's possible to find a ski shop that can work with a customer who wants to consider "new old stock" to get started with a good ski boot.  Of course, the choices are limited.  But might end up with a good deal.

 

Are you thinking $1000 for ski, boots, poles?

 

Sometimes can find a useful EpicSki thread about a boot fitter near you by a directed Google search such as "San Jose: epicski.com"  Or can try asking by starting a thread.  But more likely to get replies closer to ski season. Say in Oct.

post #43 of 55

If Mel Cotton's isn't doing it for you, check out Helm of Sun Valley on Saratoga Ave.  As with any place, call ahead and make sure an actual boot fitter will be able to help you when you visit.

 

Honestly, though, the best ski shops tend to be in ski towns.  Even if it's inconvenient, a trip to Tahoe can yield better results.

post #44 of 55
I think the 166s would be fine for her. I weigh the same but am 21/2 inches shorter. They love to be agile and I think she ll be fine.
post #45 of 55

hey guys,

Thanks for all the help and input. I ordered from christy sports two weeks ago and they just now notified me that they are sold out. I looked around and so is the rest of the internet. So now my oprions are 159's from christy sports or ordering the new ones for 600.00. Any advice?

post #46 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by poodleracer View Post

hey guys,

Thanks for all the help and input. I ordered from christy sports two weeks ago and they just now notified me that they are sold out. I looked around and so is the rest of the internet. So now my oprions are 159's from christy sports or ordering the new ones for 600.00. Any advice?

 

Hold out for the right size. 

post #47 of 55

Thanks, that helps. Just feeling like i got hosed

post #48 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by poodleracer View Post

Thanks, that helps. Just feeling like i got hosed

Check your PM's. cool.gif

post #49 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post
 

Welcome to Epicski!  Would help to know a bit more about your GF's ski experience.  What length is she used to?  Has she skied on rockered skis before?  Where do you ski most often?

 

Given that I have lots of fun with 159cm BPs and I'm only 5'0", 115 pounds, it does seem that going shorter than 166 doesn't make much sense.

 

I was told to buy 152's in the Black Pearl 2014 by the ski shop. I am an advanced to expert skier.  I used to be an aggressive, expert in my younger years (20-40's) and, even though I can ski the same now, I am a tad bit less aggressive now. I need a ski that will perform for me in the trees, in variable conditions from small bumps to powder. I ski aggressively in the trees and I love it!   

I trusted the advice given regarding the size, at first, but have had second thoughts. I have always had skis in a longer length for my size and found them to be very stable when skiing fast, ice, and in fresh snow. I am only 4'11 and 115 lbs. I thought 159's would be better, although 3" over my head.  Do you think these skis will do what I want and what about the size?

post #50 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pamela View Post
 

 

I was told to buy 152's in the Black Pearl 2014 by the ski shop. I am an advanced to expert skier.  I used to be an aggressive, expert in my younger years (20-40's) and, even though I can ski the same now, I am a tad bit less aggressive now. I need a ski that will perform for me in the trees, in variable conditions from small bumps to powder. I ski aggressively in the trees and I love it!   

I trusted the advice given regarding the size, at first, but have had second thoughts. I have always had skis in a longer length for my size and found them to be very stable when skiing fast, ice, and in fresh snow. I am only 4'11 and 115 lbs. I thought 159's would be better, although 3" over my head.  Do you think these skis will do what I want and what about the size?

If you're like me, you've come to a place in life where you prefer a nimble ski a bit more than a hard charging ski for trees. 

 

At your size and stated ability the 152 is what I'd recommend.  You could do well with the 159, but the 152 is probably better. 

post #51 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pamela View Post
 

I was told to buy 152's in the Black Pearl 2014 by the ski shop. I am an advanced to expert skier.  I used to be an aggressive, expert in my younger years (20-40's) and, even though I can ski the same now, I am a tad bit less aggressive now. I need a ski that will perform for me in the trees, in variable conditions from small bumps to powder. I ski aggressively in the trees and I love it!   

I trusted the advice given regarding the size, at first, but have had second thoughts. I have always had skis in a longer length for my size and found them to be very stable when skiing fast, ice, and in fresh snow. I am only 4'11 and 115 lbs. I thought 159's would be better, although 3" over my head.  Do you think these skis will do what I want and what about the size?

 

Pamela: Welcome to EpicSki!  I would agree with Trekchick that 152 is probably better for you given that your a bit more petite than I am.  While the 159 works for me, it's very close to being on the long side.  However, I'm not that aggressive and only became on advanced skier after age 50, although I learned to ski a long time ago on straight skis.  for the way skis are made these days, there is not much reason to have skis that are over your head lengthwise.

 

Where do you normally ski?  What skis have you used recently?

post #52 of 55

Thank you for your reply's. I used to be a ski instructor for about 10 years in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, Ca from 1989-1999. I started to ski at 3 years old, but didn't really get serious until 20 and had some excellent teachers along the way! I worked hard to master ski technique with consistent, effective turns with style and grace, and to ski everything. My ski partners and I challenged each other everyday in all conditions on steep terrain, through narrow shoots and trees, and gnarly crud (which oddly  i enjoy the challenge). My confidence grew over the years, and so did my muscles. Skiing traditional skis were always very hard to ski. I am very glad the skis today are easier to use and will help me to tear up the mountain once again. 

 

The skis I learned on were always too long for a petite girl like me. They just didn't make them in my size and skiing ability. I can't believe I used to ski a 180! Many years ago I bought a pair of Volkl race GS skis owned by Tamara McKinney, who won 18 World Cup Victories and other medals. Tamara's name was etched on the ski and I was so proud of those skis. : ) They were stiff and fast! I won a few medals racing on those skis. Skiing will always be second nature to me no matter how old I get. 

 

People still ask to follow behind me because they like the lines I pick and my consistence turns. How little I ski now, I am always pleased to be so comfortable on the snow. I do not live close to the mountains any more, and I ski around 15 days a year. I used to buy new skis every 1- 2 years, but haven't needed to do that. My last ski was a Men's Rossignol Bandit All Mt ski in a 160, which served me well enough cause I could ski everything in them. However, it is definitely time to upgrade. 

 

I am going to be skiing more now and am physically ready! I was told the BP are very well liked and could do everything well. But, i am concerned I will out ski them or they will not perform on steep terrain. Will they be too soft for fast groomed runs because of the rocker tip? Will they limit me? 

Two pairs of skis would be OK  too, one for pow and one for everything else.  I like the Pandora ratings and am very, very interested, but don't know how to ski them.  About 3 years ago, I tried demoing powder skis for 1 run and I didn't like them. Well, they were too long, fat and straight, and basically I didn't know how to ski them.... That was an odd feeling....

Thanks for listening and giving me your feedback. 

post #53 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pamela View Post
 

Thank you for your reply's. I used to be a ski instructor for about 10 years in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, Ca from 1989-1999. I started to ski at 3 years old, but didn't really get serious until 20 and had some excellent teachers along the way! I worked hard to master ski technique with consistent, effective turns with style and grace, and to ski everything. My ski partners and I challenged each other everyday in all conditions on steep terrain, through narrow shoots and trees, and gnarly crud (which oddly  i enjoy the challenge). My confidence grew over the years, and so did my muscles. Skiing traditional skis were always very hard to ski. I am very glad the skis today are easier to use and will help me to tear up the mountain once again. 

 

The skis I learned on were always too long for a petite girl like me. They just didn't make them in my size and skiing ability. I can't believe I used to ski a 180! Many years ago I bought a pair of Volkl race GS skis owned by Tamara McKinney, who won 18 World Cup Victories and other medals. Tamara's name was etched on the ski and I was so proud of those skis. : ) They were stiff and fast! I won a few medals racing on those skis. Skiing will always be second nature to me no matter how old I get. 

 

People still ask to follow behind me because they like the lines I pick and my consistence turns. How little I ski now, I am always pleased to be so comfortable on the snow. I do not live close to the mountains any more, and I ski around 15 days a year. I used to buy new skis every 1- 2 years, but haven't needed to do that. My last ski was a Men's Rossignol Bandit All Mt ski in a 160, which served me well enough cause I could ski everything in them. However, it is definitely time to upgrade. 

 

I am going to be skiing more now and am physically ready! I was told the BP are very well liked and could do everything well. But, i am concerned I will out ski them or they will not perform on steep terrain. Will they be too soft for fast groomed runs because of the rocker tip? Will they limit me? 

Two pairs of skis would be OK  too, one for pow and one for everything else.  I like the Pandora ratings and am very, very interested, but don't know how to ski them.  About 3 years ago, I tried demoing powder skis for 1 run and I didn't like them. Well, they were too long, fat and straight, and basically I didn't know how to ski them.... That was an odd feeling....

Thanks for listening and giving me your feedback. 

I have some idea what you mean about straight skis over your head, and I was never more than an intermediate back then.  In some ways that made it easier to adjust to shaped skis because I never did get to the point of having a consistent parallel turn or a tight feet-together stance.  I didn't bother to start understanding ski design until I started skiing out west more often and had high level lessons that meant I could become an advanced skier skiing 10-15 days out west plus 15-20 days in the southeast.

 

My BPs are 159cm long (some rocker), 125-88-110, radius 17.  My Rossi Attraxion 8s are 154, 127-75-108, radius 12.  Needless to say, they ski quite differently.  I can ski the Attraxions in 6-10 inches of powder and have a good time.  The big shovel gives me more than enough float, but as I'm sure you can understand, the skis are below the surface more than with the BPs.

 

My suggestion would be to wait before buying.  Plan on spending a day checking out demos from a shop on mountain during your next trip out west.  Pick a few models to try.  Try at least one model in more than one length.  With your background, it's extremely hard for anyone else to know what you might like.

post #54 of 55
Or, Sierra Trading Post had Bushwackers for $249 in size 166, if that works for you. Same ski, different graphic, as Black Pearl
post #55 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dino View Post

Or, Sierra Trading Post had Bushwackers for $249 in size 166, if that works for you ...

 

It works for me.  Thanks for the tip.  Think I just bought the last pair.

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