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Help choosing skis

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

So, I was hoping I could get some suggestions on what skis I should purchase.  I recently moved out to Colorado and am excited to be able to ski on a more regular basis after living in Florida the last decade or so.  That being said, it has been a while since I needed to buy an ski gear (after renting).  I grew up skiing in the NE and have been skiing over that time once each year or so - mostly out west.  I'm in my late-30s, 5' 10" and about 195# and would categorize myself as an intermediate skier.  I typically hit the groomed runs and moguls with some off-piste skiing - I may be up for more as I get back into the groove and get out to the mountains a few times month now.  I am trying to stick to a reasonable budget for skis/bindings, knowing I should spend a little more on boots (not sure what I am doing with that).  Any suggestions on skis/ski length to go with?  My brother had said to stick around 168s but that seems kind of short, based on what I am reading.  I have seen some deals on last year's Line Prophets, but I am open to most anything that would be a good all-around ski.  Any help would be appreciated.  Thanks

post #2 of 6

One thing I'm very interested by with regards to ski length, is that all the charts seem to put people at a much shorter length than what real people recommend.

post #3 of 6

Ski length, assuming you have a half decent idea about how to ski, is mostly based on weight.  Each ski model comes in a range of lengths; people come in a range of weights.  Find your placement in the range of weights of the general population to whom the ski is marketed.  190 lbs, probably about the 3 or 4 out of 5.  Adjust slightly longer if you are tall.  Adjust longer if you ski open areas at high speeds.  Adjust slightly shorter if you want to make low speed tight turns.You probably want the 2nd longest length the ski comes in.

 

There was a thread about it (what is your ski size?), but I'm too lazy to search for it; the summary above should suffice.

post #4 of 6

If you put five skiers together you'll get about eight opinions on ski lengths.

 

Simple rule of thumb is about mouth high for early intermediates, tip of nose to eye high for upper intermediates, and above the eyes for advanced skiers.  Of course simple rules often overlook a lot of important stuff.  Twin tips will feel shorter than a flat-tailed ski of the same length, and so can be skied in a longer length (usually a full size longer).  Modern rockered skis tend to feel even shorter and you can go longer again.  Carving skis for hardpack conditions are often quite stiff and you can go with a shorter ski.  Skis with early rise in the tip (and possibly in the tail) can feel a tad shorter, but mostly just a little, and often they just feel a bit more eager to turn for the same length of ski.

 

For your size 168 might be appropriate for an eastern, hard snow carving ski, but you could go up a size at least and still be fine. For a wider all mountain ski (better for Colorado conditions) I would say 168 is definitely too short for you, and you'd be better off starting in the mid-170s and maybe longer (depending on the ski you choose).

 

You're on the right track.  Spend the majority of your money getting properly fitted with a great pair of boots from a reputable boot fitter, then find a deal on skis.  If you're on a budget go for a deal on second hand skis (there are some great deals going around) but don't skimp on the boots.  With good boots you can ski any pair of skis, but you can't do it the other way around.  Even with the world's best pair of skis a bad pair of boots can ruin your day.

 

At this point recommending a ski for you is a shot in the dark.  There are so many skis out there; different designs, different constructions, different attributes, different strengths, different weaknesses.  Your best bet is to buy your boots and demo as many skis as you can.  Demoing is a) fun, and b) the only way to be 100% sure you'll be happy with the skis you eventually decide to buy.

 

The only other bit of advice I have is this; if you're only going to buy one pair of skis, buy skis for the conditions you do ski, not for the conditions you would like to ski.

 

Best of luck. 

post #5 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by sinbad7 View Post

If you put five skiers together you'll get about eight opinions on ski lengths.



 



Simple rule of thumb is about mouth high for early intermediates, tip of nose to eye high for upper intermediates, and above the eyes for advanced skiers.  Of course simple rules often overlook a lot of important stuff.  Twin tips will feel shorter than a flat-tailed ski of the same length, and so can be skied in a longer length (usually a full size longer).  Modern rockered skis tend to feel even shorter and you can go longer again.  Carving skis for hardpack conditions are often quite stiff and you can go with a shorter ski.  Skis with early rise in the tip (and possibly in the tail) can feel a tad shorter, but mostly just a little, and often they just feel a bit more eager to turn for the same length of ski.



 



For your size 168 might be appropriate for an eastern, hard snow carving ski, but you could go up a size at least and still be fine. For a wider all mountain ski (better for Colorado conditions) I would say 168 is definitely too short for you, and you'd be better off starting in the mid-170s and maybe longer (depending on the ski you choose).



 



You're on the right track.  Spend the majority of your money getting properly fitted with a great pair of boots from a reputable boot fitter, then find a deal on skis.  If you're on a budget go for a deal on second hand skis (there are some great deals going around) but don't skimp on the boots.  With good boots you can ski any pair of skis, but you can't do it the other way around.  Even with the world's best pair of skis a bad pair of boots can ruin your day.



 



At this point recommending a ski for you is a shot in the dark.  There are so many skis out there; different designs, different constructions, different attributes, different strengths, different weaknesses.  Your best bet is to buy your boots and demo as many skis as you can.  Demoing is a) fun, and b) the only way to be 100% sure you'll be happy with the skis you eventually decide to buy.



 



The only other bit of advice I have is this; if you're only going to buy one pair of skis, buy skis for the conditions you do ski, not for the conditions you would like to ski.



 



Best of luck. 

 



As an example, I measured the running length of my new 190cm powder skis. They have tip rocker, some camber, and tail rocker. Running length is 140cm (when on hard snow)
post #6 of 6

Budget,intermediate, groomers, bumps, off-piste: rev85? I'm 215 and ski the 177 but find them a little short for me...at 195, could be ok...

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