I know that there are dozens of threads discussing the optimal selection for a one ski quiver and I've read most of them. While there is great advice in them, it's hard to distill it down, so I thought it may be worthwhile to repeat the exercise with some limiting parameters for that one ski recommendation:
- Assume it will be used 80% of the time in the North American west but not limited to one specific region (ie, should be able to competently handle variable western snow conditions from the Sierras to the Wasatch as well as some of the further reaches of the CanAm Rockies). The other 20% of the time, the ski will be used on the ice coast, from the Poconos up through ME High Peaks.
- Assume the ski must be durable and probably should use some reinforcement in its construction, such as Ti or composites.
- Assume the ski must be suitable for use at least down to the Level 7 ability range (ie, not limited to expert skiers).
- Assume that the ski needs to work well for a Level 7 skier in the 180 - 200 lb weight range.
- Assume the ski should have an MAP no greater than $750.
I'm sure we all agree that given the parameters above, one ski only is far less than ideal and will result in some compromises. While the best answer is to have at least two sets of skis and probably more since the range of conditions is so broad, that's a different exercise.
Thoughts and suggestions? Are there things that haven't been properly accounted for in the exercise (which as must be obvious, is slanted toward a particular size/ability level)? Since for those of us the northern hemisphere at least, it's a long, hot slog through until ski season, I hope it will be a bit of relief to get some folks to pretend to put on their Moriarty hats (dating myself with this reference) and think snow as the weather continues to warm.