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Which Skis for Canada

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
Hello everyone,

I'm from Sydney, Australia and wanting to live and work for the season in Banff. I was wondering if if you guys could give me some help with the type/size of skis that would be best suited to the conditions over there.

I have only ever rented skis before, so i will be buying my first pair and using them the whole season. I know people are fond of fat skis in powder (which i hope i'll be seeing plenty of) but I imagine most of the interior skiing in Canada throughout the season is still on groomed runs. Am i right?

Will a mid-fat be a reasonable compromise between fun in the pow and carving on the groomers? How wide should I go? I was considering the Head iM 75's. Opinions?

I would say i am an upper intermediate skier (but i imagine i would improve greatly during a whole season so i want a ski that can go with me). I'm not hung up about skiing mostly off-piste or groomed, becasue i havn't had that much experience with pow in Aus. I just want to sample all of Canada's delights.

I'm 150 pounds

Thanks Guys [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
post #2 of 12
You will get a million opinions. Go to Banff and demo different stuff. Louise and Sunshine are not known for huge dumps of snow. Norquay stays fairly groomed.

I'd buy a ski with a 66-70mm waist. You will have folks tell you to go wider.
post #3 of 12
Would be looking at thje Rossignol B2 as a brilliant all round ski in Canada. Head monsters aren't a bad choice either, but will be a big learning curve if you've never done fat+pow before. You'll love Banff! I recommend XMas dinner in the restaurant of the Banff Springs Hotel (make sure you get some honeys in the spa as well ) and do a few dinners at the Spaghetti Factory.

Louise is my favourite interior mountain and will be going back ASAP. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
post #4 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks Rusty, Oz.

Yeah, I've been told the spaghetti factory is a good place for a value feed after a day on the slopes.
post #5 of 12
Despite contrary indications Sunshine does get some sizeable dumps and quite a few of them. Louise gets a couple goods ones a season usually and many smaller piles. Norquay gets more good ones than many think but mostly in the spring. Fernie's close and gets plenty of large dumps. That being said very versatile skis would be 70-75mm under foot. Give you the float and stability for off piste but still be functional and fun on groomers or bumps not to mention off piste on the firm steeps that I do a lot of skiing on. 70 under foot is my mainstay ski. I can get a hold of fatter when I need. If I was in Fernie I'd have a set that were 85 or more. Weather man is calling for 15-20cms in town tonight. Last night's snow came down well below treeline and stayed through the day. Atomic R11 will be my weapon of choice this year, R9 would be a less demanding easier ski with a little more float and tons 'o' versatility.
post #6 of 12
Might as well start a quiver. [img]tongue.gif[/img]

The Banff region's conditions vary from groomed old hard snow to light deep powder and everything in between. You should have a ski for ripping, one for carving, one for high speed carving, one for small amounts of new snow, one for moderate amounts of new snow and one for the big dump.

From the Atomic line-up;

Sugar Daddy

With this quiver, you will be absolutely certain that you will have the correct ski for the day's conditions. If you absolutely can only afford one ski, I'd suggest something in the 80+mm waist range, like the R:ex.
post #7 of 12
On my Banff trip 2 years ago I liked my Volkl Vertigo G30s best. Thus, I'd recommend a similar ski like the Volkl 7 24 AX3 or 7 24 Pro. I think the Dynastar Intuitivs would also do well there - something like the In71 or In74. The Rossignol Bandit B2 or Elan Mantis M12 would also be good choices IMHO. I'm picking slightly wide all-mountain skis with lots of edge grip and energy. The mid fat will work well in the soft snow common to the Banff area. The edge grip and energy will work well on the groomers that are frequent between dumps.

In my experience ski prices in Canada are better than those in the US. I don't know how that compares to Australia.

post #8 of 12
Actually Sunshine gets more or the same snow than most places in CO. Get did a rough check of snow listed on web sites , SSV 33' avg Steamboat 28'. A midfat is the way to go for Banff. If you were spending the season in Fernie I'd go fatter.
post #9 of 12
I'll bite on the "people will tell you to go fatter", 66-70mm waist would likely leave you wishing for more (don't know your objectives, but it sounds like you're after more than groomed blues). Banff has a massive amount of terrain (likely less than 50% of it groomed) and I would not want to be limited by a ski that skinny. I've got two pairs in the 80-85mm waist and find them fairly flexible for most of LL & SSV - good hold and edging on when its icy, but wide enough for the bowls and trees, as well as the odd trip to Fernie or Castle. There's alot of skis available in this width range and most of them will handle the wide range of conditions you'll run into around Banff, I'd agree with waiting until you arrive and demoing a few pairs.

[ September 16, 2003, 02:47 PM: Message edited by: PlayHarder ]
post #10 of 12
Has anybody tried the new Elan Mantis 662?
dimensions are: 116/76/102
The write ups have been great so far.
post #11 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the help guys. I will wait untill I get to Banff and demo some 75mm waisters on the early season groomers to see if the edge hold is up to scratch and go from there.

The Mantis 662 is another ski I was looking at. Its supposed to be very versatile.
post #12 of 12
You couldn't gowrong with a massively fat ski, twin tips will make for some fun in the LL pipe (AWEOSOME PARK AND PIPE!) like the K2 AK Enemy, Seth Pistols etc. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img] 75-90mm waist is what to look for - the ski you choose will probably be based on a preference for rigidity. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
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