I approach 300 pounds and found that last year when I "rented" my skis at the Tahoe resorts they were squirrly as hell to learn on. Could that be because rental skis in general are not meant for jumbo guys like me? I would be willing to buy my learning skis next year if it would help. What say you? Thanks...
Novice skis for jumbo folks?
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As a big guy myself (6'6", ~260-270) I definitely find I can easily overpower typical 'rental' skis if I try to push them hard. They won't hold on hard snow at any kind of speed, for instance. However, they work fine at low speeds and on easy terrain.
Teaching beginners, if their feet/skis are extremely 'squirrelly' it's almost always because their boots don't fit right. If you don't have your own boots: get those first, then try some ski rentals again. A good-fitting pair of boots is the most important piece of equipment to own, bar none, full stop.
If you get properly fitted boots and the rental skis still aren't getting it done, at most resorts you can also get "demo" skis that are much higher performance (though also somewhat less forgiving). This is a good way to try some 'real' skis before making a purchase. Often a shop that does demos will let you deduct the cost of demoing on one or more days from the purchase price of a pair of skis.
Edit: shameless plug: if you're up in Tahoe, try Start Haus in Truckee (ask for Phil) or Snowind Sports in Reno (Bud Heisman's shop). They are both frequent contributors here on Epic and can help you out with boots and/or skis.