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I am going to buy skis that I have no idea how to use

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

I am 50 years old, am 6’ tall and weigh 225 pounds. I am in pretty good shape and an ex-athlete.

 

I have been skiing a long time, with long periods of skiing inactivity due to family and work, but almost exclusively on front side groomers.

 

I would say I am reasonable, I carve my turns and ski reasonably fast, but in control.

 

I have always skied on what are affectionately known as skinny skis.

 

I have never mastered powder or ungroomed fresh snow, or come anywhere near mastering it. My very brief, and mostly unintentional, forays into soft snow have usually resulted in lots of sinking, digging in, edge catching and weight being thrown backwards for some moments more likely to be on Americas Funniest Home Video than ESPN.

 

I realize that is mostly due to my lack of technique but is certainly not helped by the wrong tools in old technology, skinny, slalom or GS skis.

 

At the end of last year I got a pair of Head Rev 90 in a 175 length because they were dead cheap.

 

OMG – Night and Day. Should maybe have got the longer length but they were not on sale.

 

I now have the chance to ski a day or two on my own in Utah (Brian Head) without kids, without anyone wanting to ski slower, or faster, or go to lunch, or need the bathroom, or need to change their boots.

 

I am going to do what everyone always recommends when someone wants to improve. Don’t buy new equipment, get some lessons.

 

I appreciate that powder skis will not a powder skier make, but learning on the right equipment can only help.

 

I can hear the collective roar from the forum, demo, demo, demo until you find something you like, but I do not have the time or the inclination to go by the ski shop on my precious little time to find that they do not have my length or the ski that I want. So I am going to buy a pair of skis, put some bindings on them and they are going to be my powder skis as of my first lesson, which will be 9.00 am on my day off.

 

Houses, Women and Cars – I do a limited amount of research, I make a choice based on what I like the look of and I stick with it.

 

With Skis, rather like the aforementioned Houses, Women and Cars, I believe that within a certain class, they all behave the same.

 

If I get a 115-125mm wide ski with rocker from a reputable brand in the right length for me, there may be some minor differences, but which ever one I pick, will be the best pair of powder skis I have ever owned, bar none.

 

So with that said, I am looking at a pair of Atomic Bent Chetler 2016 skis in the 192 length for $750  and I also see the same ski but the 2014 version for $500.  I get 10% credit back from REI and they do not have the 2014s.

 

Evo have the 2013 Rossi Super 7 skis in 195 for $340 and the reviews are glowing.

 

The current Rossignol S7s (Soul, Sin, Smash etc) seem to be either loved or considered over rated. They are said to be user friendly though…

 

There are also great deals on Volkl One and Two skis with the 2013/4 models going for $250-300

 

There is also a great deal on the Dynastar Cham 127 189 powder freeride, but everyone says this is a handful for anything but an expert, and I am not sure what hard charging means exactly, but I believe them, so they are out. I believe the Volkl Two’s could also be a handful, especially for me.

 

I am not limited by price per se, but I do not need to spend an extra $400 for the latest graphics if the ski is essentially the same as last years model.

 

So I think I am down to the Bent Chetlers or Rossis, or the Volkl One if there was overwhelming support.

 

However, also open to suggestions.

 

Thanks in advance.

post #2 of 9

Rent.  The old rule of thumb might still be valid (haven't seen the numbers in a while), rent if you'll be on the skis less than 10 days a year.

 

Powder tips:

--Feet close together

--Pull or push your feet back or forward under you on a straight section to find what balance point makes your skis happy.  You'll feel it when you find it.

--Stand tall.  Don't sit back unless the snow is so wet & sticky that you won't reach the bottom unless you sit back.  You do not need to see your ski tips.  Some skis, some snow, you'll never see your tips.  Other skis, other snow, they're up.  OK.

--Visualize an airplane in the sky banking in its turn.  Visualize your skis, as a unit, banking to make a turn inside the snow.  Pushing your heels sideways to turn doesn't work.

--Tip your feet up on edge, counter, angulate to put your skis into that bank.

--End the turn by just relaxing your legs, or maybe pull your knees up toward your chest, then let them extend and bank the skis the other direction.

post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 

Are you of the opinion that any of those skis will do the job or do you have a preference?

post #4 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4 Fox Ache View Post
 

Are you of the opinion that any of those skis will do the job or do you have a preference?

Demo is definitely the way to go, but since you already know that, I will carry on ;). I'm a fan of the Super 7. In this case, the reviews are accurate and you can't beat that price. You might look around for a 188 though. I'm 53, 5'4" and about 145. I demoed a pair of 188's in Jackson because that is what was available and went out to ski Four Pines in the back country without having made any turns on them at all. Never having skied them before, I found them quite predictable and maneuverable, even in mixed conditions. 188 was one size too long though, so you might find the 195 skis great out in the open, but when you get in the trees, they may be a bit much, which is what I found when we got back to tree line on those 188's. My wife is on the Star 7 which is the women's version and she is in love with them. I've skied the Dynastar Cham too. Very nice ski, but I found that I had to be more aggressive to get it to perform as I expected. It might be my size and weight though. It's a touch stiffer than the Rossi and I just may not have enough ass to work them. Our room mate (6'4", 175) had a pair of Chetler's and sold them before the next season. He never was specific as to why he didn't like them though.

post #5 of 9

I have only skied the Bent Chetlers and Rossis.  Hands down for me, the Bent Chetlers.  I think the entire Rossi S7 line is overrated and boring, no snap from any of them.  That said, my powder ski is an ON3P Billy Goat, 116mm waist, incredibly durable and made in Portland, OR.

post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 

I am the original poster. I went with the Rossi Super 7s in 192. I put a Rossi Axial 3 binding on them which were discounted to $129 in white but to $89 in pink - Pink it is.

 

I took them out at Mount Snow in Vermont in what is certainly the coldest I have ever skied in (-42 Wind Chill) to try them out before skiing in Brian Head.

 

They feel heavy carrying them around and they feel and look like boats until I put them on.

 

No secret that these are long turn radius skis, but they felt great, edged great on the groomers and felt like they would charge through anything. I found myself skiing faster than I usually do and my ski buddies all said that it looked like I was having a blast, which I was.

 

There was no powder but I found some ungroomed sides and frozen chopped up crap, which would have been a disaster on my old skis. These things are amazing. I don't know how much more amazing, or less amazing they are than any other skis they are, including the Bent Chetlers (which is what I was considering) but I was in love with them.

 

Even on icy, wind swept, hard pack these things were not bad at all. I am sure it is the rocker but I felt like I was on much shorter skis and I found them very agile for what they are.

 

I got them out to Utah, where unfortunately there was no powder, and there has not been a storm in some time. Brian Head was absolutely empty and $35 for a day pass. I did not even stop getting on a lift, just skied right to the lift and straight on.

 

I got to ski some ungroomed and some very light glades where just a couple of feet of tree tops were sticking out and they were even better than i imagined. Easy to turn, ploughed through everything, but felt nimble and fun. I actually enjoyed some light bumps way more than I thought I would.

 

I can not wait to get a chance to try them in some powder, but I am already approaching that with great confidence.

 

I saw a review where someone said that these skis made some intermediate skiers look like experts. I concur, these things make you feel like a better skier than I probably am. I can not think of any conditions in which I would not ski these.

 

On the last day at Mount Snow when it was the coldest I had skied two days on the Super 7s and achieved what I wanted to, which was to try them out, I went back to the Head Rev 85s (not 90s as previously stated) and I could make tighter turns, but I spent the whole day missing the fat boys.

 

If you have not already guessed, I love these things.

 

One comment though, which is when I had the bindings mounted the guy said he loved these skis because they had metal in them, which apparently they do not in the next generation.

post #7 of 9

Glad you had a good time. Thumbs Up

post #8 of 9
Quote:
 ...loved these skis because they had metal in them...

How skis perform is what we want to find, not what ingredients are inside them.  I don't care if a ski has metal in them or not; I want the ski to put a big smile on my face.  Some of mine have a Titanal layer (very high strength aluminum, not titanium), some don't, all are great for me.

post #9 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoftSnowGuy View Post
 
Quote:
 ...loved these skis because they had metal in them...

How skis perform is what we want to find, not what ingredients are inside them.  I don't care if a ski has metal in them or not; I want the ski to put a big smile on my face.  Some of mine have a Titanal layer (very high strength aluminum, not titanium), some don't, all are great for me.

 

Metaphorically speaking, he's trying to simmer down the cauldron of information overload soup to something he can digest.    Continuing the metaphor, in the end it doesn't matter, all the food is good.   Unless he chooses to become a cook or a gourmet, in which case he's skewed his own data points.

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