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Help me choose my first West Coast Ski

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hey all,

 

I'm in the market for new skis and would love some input from you guys as other forums on this site have helped me immensely already in my search.  I ski at Copper Mountain/Winter Park, CO

 

Ski Type/Length Info:

I'm 5'9 165lbs, love skiing all over the mountain (mainly blues some blacks)/LOVE dipping into any trees I can find/hitting kickers/maybe some bump skiing/NO Moguls (yet).

 

Conditions out here are mostly packed powder and at times groomers.

 

I think I want a ski in the 95-105mm waist skis.  Please give me you recommendations including length.

 

P.S. There's a demo shop near me selling Atomic Ritual 174cm (103mm waist), any thoughts?

 

You guys rock and thanks for any help you can give me!

post #2 of 10
IMO 103 waist is to much. But I know a friend just bought the NRGY 100 for his everyday ski at Okemo.

I still like a upper 80's waist for every day, then get a 110+ waist for the good snow.

If I had a 100 waist for every day, I'd have a hard time justifying buying a wider ski.

I'm having a blast on my 88mm waist Kendo's from 3 years ago.

IMO you'll want a 170cm ski.

When you want a powder ski step up to a 180cm or so.

Of course your boots must fit great before you by skis.
post #3 of 10

I demoed the Ritual last season and bought a pair this year.  I'm a bit shorter and light than you and bought 174s.  I really enjoy the Rituals and have been skiing them a lot lately since the snow here has been so good.  I ski mostly off-piste and they're been great.  They're great in powder, quick in the trees and good enough for me in bumps.  I lived in Denver for 20 years and IMO the Ritual would be a great ski for CO.  I have not had them on really hard snow so I don't know how they would be.  For me, they're just OK on groomers, but then I'm used to my Nordica Steadfasts which are really excellent on groomers.  Ask the place selling them if you can demo them.

post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the quick replies!

 

Max Capacity, definetely still debating if 103 is too wide, however I am only have funds for one ski to use everyday so I am trying to find a one ski quiver that handles a wide range of conditions.

 

MtCyclist, your comment is exactly what I am feeling, been a great winter so far full of powder which is why I am leaning towards a ski in the ~100 range.  One question, is this going to be too much ski for me (I have read it is for experts on many websites)?  I plan on getting to that level throughout this skis lifespan, however, I love an easy turning, playful ski that I can bounce around with.

 

Please keep the feedback coming as I am planning on buying/demoing this weekend.

post #5 of 10

I'm 5'8" and weigh 165 lbs and started skiing on the Atomic Ritual early last season.  I live in Utah and they've become my "go to" ski -- I very rarely ski my Rossi S7s, I only get out my Rossi CX80 carving skis when I'm really trying to hang with my racing friends, and while I love my Surface AT setup for bc powder, they don't hold a candle to my Rituals in all conditions.  

 

The Rituals are a great ski with enough stiffness for the groomers, yet with the width and the early rise, they perform wonderfully off piste.  The only place I'm not too keen on them is in the moguls, where I would prefer a skinnier ski.  I even skied them in early season conditions at Copper in November, and they did fine.  They didn't rail on the groomers as good as a true carving ski, but they do surprisingly well.  Besides, this is only one aspect of skiing all mountain in mid-season conditions in CO or UT.

 

I ski the 182cm length and while I was hesitant to buy such a long ski, since I usually skied a 170-174cm length, I wouldn't want them shorter.  Because of the early rise and the slight rise in the tail, they ski like a shorter ski, but the extra length really helps out off piste.

 

At your weight, height, ability, and the fact you live in CO, I'd strongly recommend the Ritual in the 182cm length.  Also, for here in the West, a ski with a 95-105mm waist is the perfect one ski quiver size.

 

Hope this helps in you making your decision.  Good luck, ski hard!

 

T. - www.wasatchreport.com

post #6 of 10

Regardless of the model of ski you choose, a 174-178 length will be a better choice for your fairly light weight and especially your current ability. A longer ski would give you some extra stability in some conditions but you'll pay a price in terms of maneuverability and nimbleness. That might perhaps be a poor tradeoff while you are developing your skills.

 

The Ritual is a fine ski in it's width range and assuming you have the skill set to ski deepish (maybe 12" plus) snow in off trail conditions the Ritual will do very nicely. That may be as much as 20-30% of your skiing. For the remaining 70-80% of what you'll be doing, you might find something narrower to be a better tool. If you are buying from a demo shop......demo the Ritual and maybe an Atomic Theory (95mm) or Nordica Steadfast (90mm). That should tell you what you need to know about width.

 

SJ 

post #7 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by eaglez21 View Post
 

Ski Type/Length Info:

I'm 5'9 165lbs, love skiing all over the mountain (mainly blues some blacks)/LOVE dipping into any trees I can find/hitting kickers/maybe some bump skiing/NO Moguls (yet).

 

Conditions out here are mostly packed powder and at times groomers.

 

P.S. There's a demo shop near me selling Atomic Ritual 174cm (103mm waist), any thoughts?

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by eaglez21 View Post

 

MtCyclist, your comment is exactly what I am feeling, been a great winter so far full of powder which is why I am leaning towards a ski in the ~100 range.  One question, is this going to be too much ski for me (I have read it is for experts on many websites)?  I plan on getting to that level throughout this skis lifespan, however, I love an easy turning, playful ski that I can bounce around with.

There is some good info here, @eaglez21, but you have to put it in context.

 

Reality check time:  When you say "no moguls (yet)" I read that to say that you are not confident in the bumps and that you are largely skiing groomed runs on the Front Range.  Given that, and your size, with all due respect, I think that the Ritual is a bit too much ski for you, both in terms of width and in terms of flex pattern.  The Ritual is a nice ski, I've spent significant time on it, and it is the daily ride of a couple of friends out here in the PNW.  It has a light, crisp feel, but it is still a pretty strong ski, the metal spine makes it reasonably stiff, powerful and stable.  I think that it benefits from some competent input to really work.  It isn't a particularly "hard" ski to ride, but if you aren't yet skiing bumps, going to a Ritual will make your ski days tougher - and if you are mostly skiing the groomed with a bit of low angle natural snow I don't see the point of the width (although for the right skier, someone who primarily skis off-piste, someone comfortable in bumps and natural conditions, I do think that the Ritual makes a fine, western all purpose ski). 

 

I get that you found a deal, but there are going to be insane deals all over the place in the next month (check in with any PNW shop - lots of stock floating around out here, lots of deals to be had).

 

Net, I think that you'd have less fun on the Ritual than something better tuned to your current level, especially given your size.  Rather than the Ritual, I think that the Atomic Theory is more along the lines of something that would make sense for you.  A bit narrower, a bit less stiff (no inlaid metal spine), a  more compliant, easy-going version of the same concept.  Or maybe the new Crimson Ti (which I haven't tried), but I understand is softer and more soft snow friendly than the prior version, but still a nice groomer ski.  Or look at some of the other more compliant skis in the 88-100 range - Sin 7, Sollie Q98/90.  Maybe a Blizzard Bushwacker.  Maybe a Prophet 90/98.

 

As for length, at 5'9, 165, in the Atomics, 174 is the length - 182 would be nuts at your size and level (that is my size, and I'm 5'11, 185).  If you aren't comfortable skiing moguls yet, the 182 Ritual would ski you (in the bumps and everywhere else).

 

Good luck and have fun demo'ing.

post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 

This feedback has been amazing and EXACTLY what I was looking for....I am going to look for a pair of atomic theories, for some reason haven't read to much about them until today in my search (ski's with waists 91-97 don't get as much attention for some reason)

 

These seem to match my weight/skill level/ski style perfectly.  The alibi's seem good too but have read really mixed reviews whereas the Theory's have excellent reviews.  Ritual's are still appealing but I think going from a 74mm ski to a 95mm will be a big enough jump for now.

 

And I would love to learn moguls and more challenging trails but I always go with a bunch of snowboarders who take easier trails - lame!!

 

One more question!

 

Theory's only come in 169 or 177cm length....which would suit me better?  I was hoping for a 172-175 option, so this gives me another damn decision to make.

 

I do want a ski easy to control for tree runs and overall playfulness, however, I don't want it to interfere with improving as an overall skier

 

Thanks again.

post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by eaglez21 View Post
 

Theory's only come in 169 or 177cm length....which would suit me better?  I was hoping for a 172-175 option, so this gives me another damn decision to make.

 

I do want a ski easy to control for tree runs and overall playfulness, however, I don't want it to interfere with improving as an overall skier

 

Thanks again.

At 5'9, 165, motivated to grow your skill set, I think that 177 in the Theory is probably right.  169 would probably be awfully short - and the Theory is a compliant ski so I doubt that 177 would leave you over-matched.  You'd probably be pleased with the choice because you'd have better stability on groomers and in softer snow over the 169.  The difference between 175/177 is marginal, when considered ski-to-ski and who knows what they really measure anyway.

post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by eaglez21 View Post
 

Theory's only come in 169 or 177cm length....which would suit me better?  I was hoping for a 172-175 option, so this gives me another damn decision to make.

 

I do want a ski easy to control for tree runs and overall playfulness, however, I don't want it to interfere with improving as an overall skier

 

Thanks again.

 

With a ski with a fair bit of rocker profile, 177. On a ski that has a minimal rocker or camber, the 170 range.

 

I don't think something like the Ritual would be terrible, but I concur that if you are not skiing moguls it sounds like you are getting a handful of powder runs when it snows them moving back to groomers. A 100ish waist ski would be on the wide side for that type of use.

 

An unconventional suggestion- Demo a set of 5 point skis like those found in the Rossignol 7 series. You will want to go on the longer side with this type of ski, closer to 180 than 170.  The key hallmark of these skis are tapered tips and tails with a pronounced rocker profile, with camber and sidecut underfoot. Many people find the result is a go-anywhere ski. Because the tip is no longer the widest part of the ski, it does not catch in deep snow and crud. These are surprisingly effective in moguls, again because the ski is built for quick pivots. On the groom they are surprisingly capable because unlike a conventional sidecut rockered ski, the widest part of the ski is still in contact with the snow and functions as a ski tip to apply pressure.

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