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First Time Buyer - Sick Of Renting [trip to Breck soon, 6'4"]

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

Hey guys, I'd classify myself as an aggressive intermediate as I grew up skiing since I was 5. However I've missed about 15 years since then and only been out west 4 times since 2012. I'll be demoing some boots to buy from a reputable fitter next week and hopefully they'll have a bit more flex as I'm pretty sure everything I've had has been real soft.. I'm really hoping those tecnica mach1 110s fit and feel like they're hyped to out of the box. Any input on those from anyone that's tried them?

 

I'm also hoping to buy skis at the end of season too as my 15/16 goals are a minimum of 30 days. Not to detract too much from the original post, but any input for good first skis for a guy like me - 6'4" 210#, would like to be pretty aggressive, i know asking for 50% frontside, 50% back is a stretch but I hear that's more realistic these days. Enjoy small bumps and slower trees. Guess I'm really looking for a good first time buyer all mountain ski.

 

Price is not something I'll sacrifice on if it's something that can help me get better.

 

Thanks!

 

Mod note: moved to Ski Gear

post #2 of 18

step 1 - get your boots.

step 2 - look at some reviews for candidate skis

step 3 - demo demo demo

step 4 - figure out what you liked, and buy a pair.

 

I haven't demoed any 50-50 ski recently so I don't know that my opinion would help you.  I did try the Blizzard X-Power 81 which might be a good fit for you - it's more groomer oriented than 50-50, but at 81mm underfoot it should handle deeper softer snow adequately well.  It definitely fits the 'aggressive' requirement.   I'd say put it on your candidate list if you can find a demo hut that has it. 

 

See http://www.epicski.com/t/125175/review-2015-blizzard-x-power-810ti

post #3 of 18

I did the same thing this year.  Bought my boots first (most important).  Then demo'd skis for a couple of days and found some I really liked.  The HEAD REV 90 was great and it has great reviews.  But I settled on one that just got okay reviews, but found it was perfect for me. Dynastar Powertrack 84.  They also have an 89.

 

Lesson is, don't buy on reviews or opinions of others.  You got to try them out first and find out what YOU like.

post #4 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
 Originally Posted by Walt
 
I did try the Blizzard X-Power 81 which might be a good fit for you - it's more groomer oriented than 50-50, but at 81mm underfoot it should handle deeper softer snow adequately well. 

Bingo great, those are actually on my list to demo and are available from the ski shop I'll be at week 2 in Breck. Here's a list of skis available for me the first week in Vail. Any ideas on ones I should try from these? 

 

Nordica El Capo

Nordica NRGY 90

Head Rev 85,90,98

K2 Potion 84 XTI

K2 Rictor 90

K2 Annex 98

Volkl RTM 81

Volkl Kink

Volkl Mantra

Dynastar Powertrack 84

Dynastar Cham 97 HM

Salomon Q90

Atomic Smoke TI

Atomic Vanatge Alibi

Atomic Crimson TI

Rossi Experience 88

Rossi Smash 7

Rossi Soul 7

Rossi Super 7

 

I've done a bit of research on these and am sure I'll try the Exp 88's and the Cham 97 HMs, hopefully there will be a pow day and I can get on the soul 7s, but anyone else see anything interesting for an intermediate looking to take it to the next level?

post #5 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bamaman View Post
 

I did the same thing this year.  Bought my boots first (most important).  Then demo'd skis for a couple of days and found some I really liked.  The HEAD REV 90 was great and it has great reviews.  But I settled on one that just got okay reviews, but found it was perfect for me. Dynastar Powertrack 84.  They also have an 89.

 

Lesson is, don't buy on reviews or opinions of others.  You got to try them out first and find out what YOU like.

Awesome! Thanks for the input! Good thinking.. Just thought I'd narrow a list down as I'll only have 14 days this year.

post #6 of 18

Don't go boot shopping with preconceived notions of what boot brands or models you're interested in.  Find a boot fitter in your area (or near your favorite ski destination) -- ask around on the hill or ask here for recommendations.  Tell your bootfitter how you ski, what you like to ski, etc. -- i.e., basically what you said above.  They'll look at your foot shape, your build, your skiing type and come up with something that works.

 

I've never understood the point of boot reviews; if the boot fits your foot and your skiing goals, it'll work.  If it doesn't fit, you'll hate it.  We can't see your foot and test your flexibility here, and neither can any on-line review site.

 

Get boots first; then worry about skis.

post #7 of 18

What Kevin said.

post #8 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by bnapilot View Post
 

Hey guys, I'd classify myself as an aggressive intermediate as I grew up skiing since I was 5. However I've missed about 15 years since then and only been out west 4 times since 2012. I'll be demoing some boots to buy from a reputable fitter next week and hopefully they'll have a bit more flex as I'm pretty sure everything I've had has been real soft.. I'm really hoping those tecnica mach1 110s fit and feel like they're hyped to out of the box. Any input on those from anyone that's tried them?

 

I'm also hoping to buy skis at the end of season too as my 15/16 goals are a minimum of 30 days. Not to detract too much from the original post, but any input for good first skis for a guy like me - 6'4" 210#, would like to be pretty aggressive, i know asking for 50% frontside, 50% back is a stretch but I hear that's more realistic these days. Enjoy small bumps and slower trees. Guess I'm really looking for a good first time buyer all mountain ski.

 

Price is not something I'll sacrifice on if it's something that can help me get better.

 

Thanks!

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bnapilot View Post
 

Bingo great, those are actually on my list to demo and are available from the ski shop I'll be at week 2 in Breck. Here's a list of skis available for me the first week in Vail. Any ideas on ones I should try from these? 

 

Nordica El Capo

Nordica NRGY 90

Head Rev 85,90,98

K2 Potion 84 XTI

K2 Rictor 90

K2 Annex 98

Volkl RTM 81

Volkl Kink

Volkl Mantra

Dynastar Powertrack 84

Dynastar Cham 97 HM

Salomon Q90

Atomic Smoke TI

Atomic Vanatge Alibi

Atomic Crimson TI

Rossi Experience 88

Rossi Smash 7

Rossi Soul 7

Rossi Super 7

 

I've done a bit of research on these and am sure I'll try the Exp 88's and the Cham 97 HMs, hopefully there will be a pow day and I can get on the soul 7s, but anyone else see anything interesting for an intermediate looking to take it to the next level?


Welcome to EpicSki!  Although you may be a better skier than the OP of this thread asking for suggestions of what skis to rent during a trip to Colorado, you might get some ideas.  Pretty sure the OP learned as an adult.  

 

http://www.epicski.com/t/132622/advice-needed-please-demo-skis-intermediate-trip-to-snowmass

 

My return to the slopes as an adult based on skiing for a couple years in middle school (late 1960s) went pretty smoothly.  There are basic skills that can help, but at the same time those who were skiing parallel on straight skis are better off making some adjustments.  Have watched a few ski buddies go through the transition.  Much easier with the help of an experienced instructor, preferably one old enough to have made the adjustment themselves.

post #9 of 18

Also, I added the Clydesdale tag to this thread.  Can use the link under Topics Discussed (right hand column) to get to a list of threads for big guys thinking about what skis will work better for them.

post #10 of 18

Where do you ski most of your days?

 

You want to select a ski for typical conditions at the home hill. A demo in Breck may give you the wrong conclusions- a ski may feel great out there, but if home has firmer snow, it may be an expensive mistake.

 

Would you consider yourself an advancing skier that aspires to ski the whole mountain well, or are you pretty satisfied on intermediate/groomed slopes?

 

If you are an advancing skier, I would suggest considering buying an affordable intermediate- oriented ski. One's preferences change quickly as they advance, and it is common to find the playful ski you loved quickly becomes annoying as your skills improve. For a first ski purchase, it may make more sense to not spend top dollar, get a ski that will keep you from having to rent and gives you a consistent platform, and see what you like in a few years when you can drive a ski a bit more.

 

If you are having fun skiing the terrain you ski, that's great- buy the ski that you like best on conditions that your home hill sees.

post #11 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
 Originally Posted by marznc
 
Welcome to EpicSki!  Although you may be a better skier than the OP of this thread asking for suggestions of what skis to rent during a trip to Colorado, you might get some ideas.  Pretty sure the OP learned as an adult.  

 

Nailed it, thanks for the welcome and the link! Great help!

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by anachronism View Post
 

Where do you ski most of your days?

 

 

Home is Tennessee so I have nothing decent out here. I can do east coast, but considering southwest flies to denver for $81 each way from here that's hard to justify not going as it's cheaper than the mountain shuttle lol. My annual goal is at least 4 weeks in Rockies every year.

 

Quote:
 Would you consider yourself an advancing skier that aspires to ski the whole mountain well, or are you pretty satisfied on intermediate/groomed slopes?

 

Yes, Last trip I enjoyed back bowls at Vail and trees a ton and that's the first place i'm headed next week! My skiing goal is to be about 50-50 front/back as most of my friends are groomer skiers but I like to push my limits. I'm also taking a few lessons on this two week trip to vail and breck.

 

Thanks everyone for all your input!

post #12 of 18

So you only ski on ski trips West? How many days a year? 

post #13 of 18

Since your name is 'BNAPILOT', I'm assuming you are in/near Nashville.  I agree with you.  You can fly out of Nashville non-stop to Denver a whole lot cheaper and faster than driving/flying somewhere East Coast.  I'm in Athens (Huntsville), AL and do it all the time.  Check out Frontier Airlines too (you probably already have).

 

My ability level is probably pretty close to yours.

 

As others have said, get the RIGHT boot that fits you.  If you don't, you will have wasted money and will be miserable on the slopes.  I picked about 7 skis that I wanted to demo before I went to CO this past January.  But the Dynastar's weren't even on that list.  I tried the E88.  Didn't like at all (even though I thought I would).  K2 Rictor's were just okay.  Head's were great to edge on groomers, though I didn't get to try them off-piste or in powder.  Christy Sports rep suggested I try the Dynastar. So I did, and now I own.  :).  Of course, those skis I mentioned and didn't like doesn't mean they aren't excellent skis.  Just aren't for me.

 

Good luck.

post #14 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by anachronism View Post
 

So you only ski on ski trips West? How many days a year? 

2015/2016 goal is 30 days. This year it's only 14, starting next week.

 

Quote:
 Originally Posted by bamaman
 
But the Dynastar's weren't even on that list

 

Yep, right downtown nashville :)  Which Dynastar's did you get? I'm hoping to try out the Cham 97 HM

post #15 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by bnapilot View Post
 

2015/2016 goal is 30 days. This year it's only 14, starting next week.

 

 

Yep, right downtown nashville :)  Which Dynastar's did you try?


Ok then.

 

To reinforce, lessons at your stage are a very good thing. I have to fight hard against flaws in my technique established 20+ years ago- this stuff gets ingrained.

 

I am 6'1" and 220 lbs.  For us bigger guys, there are some considerations-

 

1. You need much more ski (both width and length) to actually consistently float in powder. A powder ski is probably not a good purchase for you at this stage, but don't expect float from even a 100 waist ski- on a powder day, just rent a fat ski.  This also kinda means I would look at the skinnier side of things (80-90 waist range) because a fatter all mountain ski isn't going to do that much in getting you floating.

 

2. Many shop folks who are smaller than you are going to suggest ski lengths that are too short. My preferences for a full-camber carving ski are around 185cm in length. For a powder ski, I buy the longest I can get, which is anywhere from 190 to 205. When I go into a ski shop, I STILL have salespersons pulling 175 cm powder skis off the wall for me, and suggesting hard snow skis even shorter.

 

Almost all manufacturers disclose recommended ski lengths based on skier size, weight, and ability. I would be very hesitant to listen to advice that deviates substantially from those recommendations unless you have demo'd both the official recommended size and the size you are considering to purchase.

 

For a developing skier of your size that wants to get off the groom, I would suggest all-mountain skis of at least 175, and if you have the opportunity to demo longer (most skis are not available for demo in longer length) TAKE IT.

 

3.  I don't have much experience with much stuff on that list. One ski in that width range that I have been very, very impressed with is the Volkl Kendo. Is that an option? 

post #16 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by bnapilot View Post
Which Dynastar's did you get? I'm hoping to try out the Cham 97 HM

Powertrack 84

post #17 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by anachronism View Post

 

 

3.  I don't have much experience with much stuff on that list. One ski in that width range that I have been very, very impressed with is the Volkl Kendo. Is that an option? 

 

This was all perfect advice I was looking for.. Thanks so much! I can't get the Kendo in Vail first week but I can the second in Breck so I'll try it then. Thanks again!!!!

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bamaman View Post
 

Powertrack 84

 

Perfect I'll put this on my list as it's available. Thanks bamaman!

post #18 of 18

Once you find a ski that you like, consider taking out a different length if that's an option.  Sometimes I learn just as much from a ski that is too long or too short as one that is just right.  Definitely was a useful exercise when I was an advancing intermediate starting to think about buying my first pair of new skis.  To start with, I went to a free demo weekend at Sugar in NC that's held in mid-Dec where there are tents for a variety of brands.

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