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Right boots and skis for steeps double blacks

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Hello everyone,

I am currently a lower blue skier starting to make parallel turn with traversing. Hopefully, I will make the link between the turns without traversing soon. I am 5'11 and 210 pounds.I have the Salomon Performa 7 and 174cm K2 5500.
Is the performa 7 allowed me to ski double black later as I advance ( hopefully 50 days/yr with ski lessons). Or should I skip the Performa 7 and buy the Salomon Xwave 8 or Xwave 9. The flex index of the Xwave 9 is 100 and the Performa 7 is in 70-80. I think the Performa 7 is a good boot but I don't want to buy another pair in a year or two as I am improved. Thanks in advance for your input.
post #2 of 13
Don't jump to stiff gear too early ! The best advise for you : try before you buy . X Wave is an exelent target but in the near future .
post #3 of 13
I'm sure so of the experts will get this post soon. IMO you do not want to get to stiff of a boot or ski just yet. You need to have the proper tools to help you progress quickly to the next level. At this point in the season it should be easy to find last years equipment.

You seem to be tied into one boot manufacture, is there a reason for that ? You should use the boot fitter link on this site and talk with one of them. Let the boot fitter tell you what boots will fit your feet. Be honest about your current abilites and where you want to go with your skiing.

The right equipment and proper instruction is your quickest way to get there.
post #4 of 13
There are a lot of freeride oriented boots out there these days that are don't have that much fore and aft stiffness but still have a performance fit and plenty of lateral stiffness. That's the kind of thing I would go for if I were you.

That is, you prob. want a good lower-volume boot that also isn't going to take you for a ride. Too much boot at this point wouldn't be a good thing, and honestly you don't need/want that stiff a boot for OP conditions anyway. I ski a 'race' boot (scare quotes intended) and in most conditions I would prob. be fine w/ a softer boot. (Then again, there are situations where having a strong boot is really good.) OTOH, you don't want a 'comfort' oriented boot that will get all mushy on you.

I assume that the X-Wave's prob. fit the bill -- you prob. want something about 1-2 rungs down from the ultimate boot that a typical store would stock in a line. Atomic is the line I'm most familiar w/ so like an AFT 9. I'm not sure that 'flex' rating really means that much except perhaps for comparisons within a line. As always, the most improtant thing is fit -- not brand, marketting, etc..

On skis I think almost any ski whose characteristics you like -- again a rung or two down from the top-of-the line -- will suit you. Skis are so manageable these days I don't think you could find one that would be too agro for you if you tried.

hth!
post #5 of 13
By the way, can I just add that the point -- for me at least -- is not really about having skied a particular challenging pice of terrain. It should be about skiing well regardless of the situation. I don't paly golf, but my understanding is that anyone can hit a golf ball at Pebble Beeach, but that is not the issue. If you really wamt to become a great skier forget about setting benchmarks based on what kind of gnarly terrain you can 'conquer'. After all, anyone can slip a chute at Alta and say they've 'skied' it. Instead set your goals based on making sweet carved turns, beinh able to aftrss the mountain properly, etc. End of OpEd...
post #6 of 13
Lodro, are you familiar with the Atomic R:10 of 2003? Would you recommend it to an upper intermediate/advanced skier (190 weight, athletic skier, prefers skiing blacks, double blacks and offpiste, but not at warp speed and skidding far too much).

(the other thing to solve is whether the ones the shop has are half a size too large, but I hope they'll be able to help with that).
post #7 of 13
Cedric, that's a good thought. That is not a ski you hear about much. Most people don't even consider it. It get's lost in the shadow of the R11.
post #8 of 13
Sorry Max, I meant the Atomic R:10 boot, not the ski!
post #9 of 13
well, you ski "blue" runs now but want to ski "steep double blacks"?

try learning how to ski. that will take you farther than any equipment changes.

our culture emphasizes "the right equipment" all too often. it's the handyman, not the tool. remember that and you will advance faster than any new $1750 setup of new skis, boots, bindings. take the $1750 and spend it on a good ski clinic, multi-day style.

this is the kind of advice I wish people would have been giving me when I was trying to become a better skier.
post #10 of 13
but then you would've missed the on-the-bandwagon ski selection skills that got you the Axis, the Scream Series, and all that came before those...
[img]graemlins/evilgrin.gif[/img] [img]tongue.gif[/img]

G is right. It's the technique and skills that will get you to the next level, not the skis. Take a lesson and/or crank up the mileage before concerning yourself with cutting edge gear; you have plenty of time, it sounds like, before giving undue thought to stepping up in equipment.
Skis and boots have no idea whether they're on blue or black trails, but they do know who's trying to drive them.

[ November 21, 2003, 09:46 AM: Message edited by: ryan ]
post #11 of 13
bwaaah hah hah ryan, don't poke fun at me for being a gear slut...

this year's trove:

180cm Fischer Big Stix 8.6 with Fischer RX12 binders
160cm Fischer World Cup Race SC with Rossi Axial 110 binders
173cm Black Diamond Havoc with Naxo AT binders

still running the 2000 model year Salomon Course X-Scream boot for alpine

have new 2003/4 Garmont Mega-Ride for the AT setup

this is why I eat so much beans & rice, PB&J, and cereal!

[img]graemlins/evilgrin.gif[/img]
post #12 of 13
Go to your local shop and tell them that you want to buy the most expensive, and therefore the best, gear they have. Everyone will leave the transaction feeling very happy.
post #13 of 13
Good points all. Though good equipment does help -- _especially_ I think for people who are learning -- good doesn't mean expensive or kickass.

Cedric sorry I didn't mean to suggest I'm an Atomic boot expert-not at all just happen to be a great boot for me...that said I ski the 10.50, which is I believe pretty much a direct ancestor of the Race:10, assuming that is what you mean. Yea, I'd say its too much boot from what you're describing. You really would be happier with a more flexible and forgiving boot I'd think. As it is again there are a lot of situations (especially in the bumps -- as my ankles are now reminding me!) where I would prefer a softer boot.

More importantly, do not, repeat _not_, buy a boot that is 1/2 size too big. 1/2 size too small is more like it. If you have been at a store that is trying to put you in such a boot, run away quickly.

hth!
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