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2nd year skier, need some advice [in Michigan]

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

Hey guys,

So I am somewhat of a noob. I skied 12 days last year and took a hand full of private lessons to jump start my skiing. I bought a starter kit last year but I am completely hooked and want some skis/boots that I can grow and advance with. 

 

I ski in Michigan, but would like to go out west to Jackson Hole or Colorado and would like a one quiver ski. 

 

Been skiing groomers, but would like to expand out into all types of skiing

 

I plan to ski 20+ days this year, more if I can 

 

I would say I am an intermediate skier at this point, one of my instructors was extremely impressed that it was my first year skiing last year.

 

I am 5'10 225lbs


I have a wider foot and plan to by the Tecnica 10.2 100 HVL or 120 HVL based on your suggestion of which would be better for me

 

as far as skis go, I have been researching and researching and i am not sure which to buy yet. The Volkl Kinks are at the top of my list so far. 

 

What do you guys think? I need some advice from some one that is more much more knowledgeable then myself.

 

Thank you in advance!

post #2 of 17

Stop shopping for boots, and start shopping for a boot fitter.  Even if you end up paying MAP for boots if you get the fitted and aligned by a competent fitter it will be well worth the price.

 

As far as skis go, it really is horses for courses.  Get a ski you can grow into, where and how will you ski most often, what conditions will you see most often.

post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 

Just happen to be a really great boot fitter about half hour from me. I had them adjust my beat up ex rental boots that I bought for my first season. After measuring my foot at all angles, the wider last boot with high arch support is what I need to start with. So I think the Tecnica 10.2 HVL is perfect boot to start with, i am just curious if the 100 flex is going to be stiff enough for my fat *** or if i should go with the 120? haha

 

Also remember I am a noob...not sure what MAP means

 

Basically mostly see hard pack groomers, I hit a little bit of powder last year, and I mean a little bit like 5'' lol If I need to buy another set of skis when I travel to somewhere with some real powder I am willing to spend the money when the time comes.

 

I guess what I really need advice on is does my weight need 100 or a 120 flex boot and do I need a stiffer flex on the ski or is a medium flex what I want? 

post #4 of 17

You need at least 120 flex imho.  I weighed  162 lbs last time I got on a scale and find my 100 flex boots too soft, my other boots are too old to have a flex rating but are a lot stiffer than the 100 flex boots and I ski better in them.  With a 225 lbs to work with you should easily be able to flex a 120 boot.   Also probably more economical to rent skis for 12 times per year, but it is a hassle.  You have the weight to flex a one-step down from race ski, even if it is a little above your ability level.  You need a stout ski to get your mass turned if you are going at a reasonable speed, and let's face it, it's more fun to ski faster.

post #5 of 17
I Agree with Ghost that you should be somewhere in a 120. Depending on the brand and style that number could go up a bit (130) or down a bit (110) as stiffness does vary even with in the same brand.

MAP = manufacturers asking price

A good boot fitter is worth it.

Ask in the boot guys section for a recommendation of who you should go see.

Buy a ski that you can grow into, something that leans little more to the advanced side with forgiveness. Means you'll have to learn and work the ski but as skill is achieved it will continue to reward. Too low of a ski will hinder progress as you will quickly over ski the ski. As to conditions pick the ski to suit the conditions you ski most, rent (demo) for the rest if needed as higher end areas have access to this. Don't worry you'll add that second ski sooner than you think.
post #6 of 17

I think Ghost is right on about the boot flex.  Talk with a fitter you trust about the shape of your foot and which shell will work best for you with the least amount of work.  I ski over 100 days a season in Jackson and spend most of my days on skis that aren't super fat.  Last year I used the Fischer Motive 95.  For two seasons before that I was mostly using the Rossi E-88.  This season I got a pair of Fischer Progressor F-19s at 76 under foot.  I don't think the Progressors will be quite the one ski quiver that some of the others were, but I have a lot of skis:D.  Something like the Progressor will work best for you at home.  You could also get by with something in the 88 ish range for home and most travel.  I like the Rossi E-88, Fischer Motive 86, and Blizzard Brahma in this class.

 

Edit:  I think MAP is minimum advertised price.  Retail is a bit higher and you can find skis on sale below MAP, but the shop can't advertise those prices.

post #7 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost View Post
 

Stop shopping for boots, and start shopping for a boot fitter.  Even if you end up paying MAP for boots if you get the fitted and aligned by a competent fitter it will be well worth the price.

 

As far as skis go, it really is horses for courses.  Get a ski you can grow into, where and how will you ski most often, what conditions will you see most often.

@casper980 where are you in Michigan? 

Shoot me a PM and I can give you some bootfitter advice. 

post #8 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by casper980 View Post
 

Just happen to be a really great boot fitter about half hour from me. I had them adjust my beat up ex rental boots that I bought for my first season. After measuring my foot at all angles, the wider last boot with high arch support is what I need to start with. So I think the Tecnica 10.2 HVL is perfect boot to start with, i am just curious if the 100 flex is going to be stiff enough for my fat *** or if i should go with the 120? haha

 

Also remember I am a noob...not sure what MAP means

 

Basically mostly see hard pack groomers, I hit a little bit of powder last year, and I mean a little bit like 5'' lol If I need to buy another set of skis when I travel to somewhere with some real powder I am willing to spend the money when the time comes.

 

I guess what I really need advice on is does my weight need 100 or a 120 flex boot and do I need a stiffer flex on the ski or is a medium flex what I want? 


What I meant by MAP is "minimum advertised price".    In order to avoid the dealers going out of business their suppliers will not let them advertise a price lower than MAP.  Apparently it gets buy the competition laws because the dealers are still allowed to sell below this price.   In my experience, there are four price points, the MSRP or manufactures suggested retail price, the MAP, the price sticker you typically find on a ski in a ski shop (discounted 10 to 20% from MSRP), and the screaming good deal. 

 

Like I said before 120 Flex for now, imho 130 would be a better choice for you now than 110 now, because when you get good at this you will be on 130 or 150 flex boots.

Be aware that you have to be able to flex a boot to ski well, and the harder flexing boot can be an impairment to learning.  A light skier with good technique and speed can flex a stiff boot.  You don't have good technique yet, but at least you are not a light skier, so 120-130 won't be so bad for you,  150 flex now for you would be a brutal task master.

 

Boots first, but it is important that you buy skis that are strong enough to turn or stop you at reasonable speeds.  Such skis do not come with a beginner designation.  Sorry, but you are going to have to learn to handle significant forces.  If groomed runs and hard snow is where you spend 90% of your time should be looking at the narrow end of the product offerings.  Also you should avoid rockered skis.  A little tip rocker or slight early rise isn't so bad; it will ease the learning curve, but definitely avoid full rocker.  If you really want to learn fast and don't mind tough love, go for a traditional full cambered ski.  I feel pretty much alone offering this advice; whenever the topic comes up on epic I am told tip rocker and early rise doesn't do anything to detract from the ski, but alas I have skied these skis on hardpack and am not a fan of them on hard snow or corduroy.

 

Don't be afraid to get a ski designed for an advanced skier, your weight will be able to bend it, and although it will be less forgiving, it will reward proper behaviour and will be much safer than getting a noodle; you need to control your 225 lbs going down a hill at 30 mph and that takes a lot of force, force transmitted from the snow by the ski. 

post #9 of 17

Free Advice & probably worth what you paid for it...

 

After you get boots I wouldn't sink serious money into skis until you take a trip out west.  I lived in MI for a while and skied there and found that the runs were so short I could just point them downhill and go screaming to the bottom with no real skill or technique, because by the time I got going too fast the run was over.  That is not the case out west (or in the northeast, either, though I've never been there).  So if you go out west with good boots and try out a bunch of skis (see the demo thread) you'll have a vastly better idea of how a ski feels and turns than if you try them out on the hills of MI.... 

 

http://www.epicski.com/t/142999/what-is-a-demo-day-for-skis-a-beginner-zone-thread

post #10 of 17

Some more free advice:

If the hills where you do most of your skiing has 250' feet of vertical, go for a short radius ski, 13 m or less; if your hill has 350' to 750' of vertical go for about 15 m radius (I would say 18 to 35, as that's more fun at speed, but not the best for learning how to ski).

 

You can often find used skis with plenty of edge and life left in them at consignment sale section of a lot of ski stores.  You can also find a lot of out of style skis that didn't sell for a couple of years on deep discount.  Twenty bucks spent on a membership to realskiers.com will pay for itself if you buy a ski from a few seasons ago.

post #11 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost View Post
 


What I meant by MAP is "minimum advertised price".    In order to avoid the dealers going out of business their suppliers will not let them advertise a price lower than MAP.  Apparently it gets buy the competition laws because the dealers are still allowed to sell below this price.   In my experience, there are four price points, the MSRP or manufactures suggested retail price, the MAP, the price sticker you typically find on a ski in a ski shop (discounted 10 to 20% from MSRP), and the screaming good deal.

 

Like I said before 120 Flex for now, imho 130 would be a better choice for you now than 110 now, because when you get good at this you will be on 130 or 150 flex boots.

Be aware that you have to be able to flex a boot to ski well, and the harder flexing boot can be an impairment to learning.  A light skier with good technique and speed can flex a stiff boot.  You don't have good technique yet, but at least you are not a light skier, so 120-130 won't be so bad for you,  150 flex now for you would be a brutal task master.

 

Boots first, but it is important that you buy skis that are strong enough to turn or stop you at reasonable speeds.  Such skis do not come with a beginner designation.  Sorry, but you are going to have to learn to handle significant forces.  If groomed runs and hard snow is where you spend 90% of your time should be looking at the narrow end of the product offerings.  Also you should avoid rockered skis.  A little tip rocker or slight early rise isn't so bad; it will ease the learning curve, but definitely avoid full rocker.  If you really want to learn fast and don't mind tough love, go for a traditional full cambered ski.  I feel pretty much alone offering this advice; whenever the topic comes up on epic I am told tip rocker and early rise doesn't do anything to detract from the ski, but alas I have skied these skis on hardpack and am not a fan of them on hard snow or corduroy.

 

Don't be afraid to get a ski designed for an advanced skier, your weight will be able to bend it, and although it will be less forgiving, it will reward proper behaviour and will be much safer than getting a noodle; you need to control your 225 lbs going down a hill at 30 mph and that takes a lot of force, force transmitted from the snow by the ski.

@Ghost, you are not alone. A traditional camber while developing skills makes perfect sense to me too. Especially since @casper980 is in the mid west. You tend to "ride" rockered skis and not necessarily "ski" them. I love having them in the quiver, but I figure a good 70% of my time is on a full cambered ski even here in the west.

post #12 of 17
Thread Starter 
Very good advice everyone. Thank you! I was thinking because of my weight I needed something stiffer but I was afraid to go to stiff and then have to fight the skis/boots and have a miserable time. So I will go with the 120 flex boot.

As far as renting skis, I rented my first time last year and went online and bought myself some lovely Solomon scrambler 400's and a set of used rental boots to go with them. Basically the same night I came home. Lol if I could I would ski 200 days a year. I am completely addicted. I can afford to buy my own gear that's a non issue. If you knew me you would probably know that I will be one of those guys that has too many pairs of skis at some point.

As far as skis go I can demo some various skis before I pull the trigger on them but knowing that I should be on a ski that is for an advanced skier normally will help me with a starting point. I have strong legs, and I do mountain bike in the summer, look at the word mountain used loosely compared to where some of you live. I guess you would probably call what I do as trail riding. I am pretty active for a fat guy. However my occupation works agaiinst me...I'm a Chef lol

So what do you guys think about the Head Monster 88 Ti Skis 2016? Is that the type of ski I should be looking at? Those or something similar?

I really appreciate all the insight. Thank you so much for the advice. I want to try and get something that will take me to the next level and be good for at least this season.
post #13 of 17

From Head I would suggest something from the Supershape line-up, the Magnum (if you spend most time on harder snow) or the Ralley (for softer but still mostly groomed runs in the east).

post #14 of 17
Thread Starter 
I was really just looking for a ski real quick that had what I thought was the direction you though I should go. I plan to try and find a Volkl or a Line that meets the criteria
post #15 of 17

@casper980  First: welcome to Epicski.  You mentioned the Volkl Kinks in your OP, and I wouldn't strike them from your list too quickly. Particularly if you can get them for a screamin' deal. My nephew was about where you are a couple of years ago and we found them ex demo at the end of Winter Park's season for a really nice price. Because they had demo bindings, I was able to take them for a spin, and they should be just fine for you. They are not too demanding, but still respond to nuanced input so will definitely grow with you. As to the Monster 88s: I can't speak to the new version, but I had a pair of their predecessors. It was definitely a demanding ski that would spank your butt if you weren't paying attention. The newer version may be aimed at a wider audience; I just don't know. So, as to the two specific skis you have mentioned, the Kinks have a lot going for them, particularly if you can find a pair with the older graphics. The new Monster 88s, especially because there have been rave reviews on them, will likely not be discounted. 

 

Sounds like you have been bitten by the bug particularly badly. Welcome to the club!

post #16 of 17
Thread Starter 

@cosmoliu I did not come across the Kinks by accident. First off I do not half a** anything I do. Its all or nothing for me. Also I research and research and read and really try to learn everything there is to know about something that I like. I am going to use the advice from everyone on here and research some more. 

 

I do have the bug something fierce, I have talked about wanting to go back out all year...I have been watching ski videos like crazy! I am really hoping to make it out for the first time this coming week and taking another lesson. Still using my cheapo setup and maybe seeing if I can demo some skis. 

 

Any advice on bindings? Griffon Markers are my current choice. Good reputation and price point is kind of in the middle

 

Thank you again everyone

post #17 of 17

I like the Marker Griffons: I just looked and 3 out of my 8 pairs are Griffons, and over the last 30 years the majority of my skis have sported Markers. I have seen a few disparaging comments about Marker in these forums over the years, but I don't know if they were based on actual facts or represent an extension of the old Chevy vs. Ford arguments of our teen years. It seems to me that bindings are fairly interchangeable. With the proper DIN, I've always had skis stay on when they should stay on, and release when they should release.

 

BTW, I bought my first pair of boots the evening after my first day on skis, so I know the disease far too well! I also took lots of lessons in my early days as I saw that as the best way to improve as quickly as possible. In retrospect, it also helped me pick up fewer bad habits needing to be broken later. Odd that I didn't apply the same logic to golf... 

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