At the end of last season I demo'ed some things and more or less decided that I should just stick out another season on my current skis and put disposable income towards lessons. But now I have enough spare change laying around that I was thinking it would be nice to have a ski that did a little better with crud and powder than the narrowish ski I have now. (And still take plenty of lessons)
Me: 5'11, 180 lbs, hopefully 175 or less by ski season if I keep up my swimming/cycling/gym routine and stop drinking a beer or two every night. Essentially started skiing two seasons ago, ~35 combined days over those two years.
This year I hope to do 40-50 days, as long as a month of bumming in Tahoe goes according to plan. Either way, I'll be skiing a lot in Tahoe with a few days at Telluride and maybe a few in Utah thrown in.
My current skis: '07 Fischer AMC79s (thanks TheDad!) These have treated me well, but bumps are a little tough with the stiff tails and they're not so easy in crud and powder. Something a little fatter that can still carve a little bit on groomers would be nice.
Terrain: last year I skied maybe 50/50, though a lot of that was due to the lack of snow. I'd rather spend 70/30 off-piste. I was getting the hang of skiing trees at Heavenly and Telluride towards the end of last season and would like to do more of that. Closing weekend at Alpine I spent a lot of time skiing bumps and was really having fun. Maybe I was getting good at them or maybe I was having success because the snow was soft and wet enough to make it easier. The corn on Beaver Bowl closing day at Alpine was a highlight of the season. Mostly I ski Kirkwood, and really like skiing Lookout Vista back towards Chair 2 when the snow's soft enough for me to handle it.
Things I demo'ed:
Bonafide: Fun to rip fast GS turns, but I want something more suited to bumps and trees.
MX88: I think these were just too demanding for me. My technique isn't sufficient to maneuver them well; they were hard to turn and the tails spanked me around a bit.
Cham 97s: I skied these the day after the Kastle's and they were fun by comparison, but I wasn't skiing with any kind of precision. They handled the heavy wet snow of closing day at Telluride nicely, but I want something more precise.
Bushwacker: I stupidly didn't ride these in bumps or trees, but I'd like something stiffer and more stable.
Skis I've researched:
FX94: I was really interested in these since I had heard that they were more forgiving and easier than the MX series. But then I came across some talk that maybe they still might kick my butt like the MX88s.
LX92: These are what I'm leaning towards now? Would the 174s be too short for me?
DPS Wailer 99s: these are clearly divisive and I haven't seen any great deals on them. (I'm looking to buy some used skis in good shape before the season starts.)
(As you might tell by the skis that have attracted me, I'm into minimalist graphic design, which of course has nothing to do with what skis I should buy, but...)
Any recs? Should I just forget about new skis for another season and get better? I'd really rather get a good deal on something that may or may not ideal for me than spend a lot of time and money early in the season demo'ing. Low 90s seems to make sense. If I saw a pair of Watea 94s for $200 in my size like were on the gear swap forum I'd probably just buy something like that given the low cost and everyone's general enthusiasm.
Thanks for reading and please make it snow so I can think about something other than skiing.