After crowing about the Rossi T-Power shorty slalom, I found Vermont covered with the best snow I can remember [and I'm sixty years old in a few weeks more or less]. What were once my darlings became my curses: I lack the skill to handle shorty slaloms in deep snow. Not to be miserable in the best snow I've ever experienced, I did some research and ended up buying the K2 Mod 7/8. These are substantially wider under foot and overall, and far more shapely than the shorty slaloms. I anguished over the appropriate length, and then bought the K2 in 174 cm. This ski has the same waist width as the now famous K2 Mod X [now the K2 Axis X], but is wider in the tip and tail, giving it more shape. I believe it also is more flexible. When we had deep snow, these skis were GREAT! On eastern style hard snow, however, they felt cumbersome and did not hold well for me. I do believe that I would have a better time with a shorter length, such as the 167 cm, because these have so much width they probably will float as well or nearly as well as the 174 cm. That would make then a more versatile ski and maybe easier to use even in deeper snow. To put things in perspective, I weigh from 140 pounds to 145 pounds depending on season and recent eating. I am the quintessential truly mediocre skier. Sure, I probably could improve with continuing instruction - and then I'd be better, but still mediocre. I ski largley in Vermont and prefer "interesting" windy lumpy trails rather than the groomed superhighways. I would definitely recommend the K2 Axis to a friend - from intermediate to advanced, and probably expert. However, I will have a better handle on length should I have the opportunity to demo the Axis in 167 in both truly hard and truly deep snow. I also will appreciate soome feedback on these issues, particularly about length.
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10/16/01 at 10:02am