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Ski recommendation for the Alps

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Hi all,

I'm a 6'0 185lb level 7-8 skiier. I ski fast and aggressively. I'd say i'm more an athletic than a finesse skiier. I am looking for a ski that is very versatile, which is good at carving, has good edge grip for icy patches and steeps plus a little width for powder floatation. I'm looking to venture off piste more. As I mostly ski in the Alps, the conditions can vary quite a bit. Its often a mix between East Coast and West Coast conditions, though tending towards icier East Coast conditions. Any powder gets tracked out quite quickly, so it tends to be a little cruddy.

Often, due to insufficient snow, I spend 60% of my time on the marked black and double black trails and 40% venturing off piste. I spend a little time on moguls as well.

I've just returned from a 6 day trip skiing on the 170cm B2s and found them to be generally quite a good ski, which was very forgiving, if a little unexciting. What I felt it lacked was edge grip in the steeps and ice.

The skis i've had in mind are the Stockli Stormrider XL and Head Monster 75. My only hesitation with the skis are their forgiveness. With the Stockli being a race-bred ski, how refined would your technique have to be in order to fully appreciate it?

It would be greatful for any ski recommendations you may have for me.

Many thanks!
post #2 of 13
I'd go along with the Stockli Stormrider XL idea. I have a pair that I got last year. They're pretty easy skiing in all conditions. More energy than the B2. One of the better compromise (mid-fat) skis. Good edge hold on hard snow, easy turning, stable at speed. Good in not too deep off piste conditions. Good in crud, but I find that skis with a lot of sidecut tend to get knocked around in the crud more easily than straighter skis. A little too much sidecut and not enough width to excel in powder. I spent a week skiing on and off piste in the Tarentaise last year on them. No complaints. If you only own one ski, this is a good choice. The only caveat, is that for all their handmade hoopla, I did have to spend some time on the edges when I got them. For me, they needed a little more base bevel. Side filing by hand and polishing got rid of the grippy-feeling, factory edge harshness too. I'm 6' and 172# and I'm skiing on the 174. I wouldn't want anything shorter.
post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks Choucas for the advice. Have you skiied the Head Monster 75s before? I can get them here in London for a very good price.....
post #4 of 13

Demo some different skis

If you can--and I know this is a cliche--demo several skis before buying. Next time out try a few different pair. Ask the local shop you rent from what they recommend. These rental shops in Europe are usually quite excellent.

Here is western NYS, a lot of folks are raving about the Volkl Supersport series, which many use on eastern hardpack and then take out to Whistler for the deep stuff.
post #5 of 13

you will find some strong divergence of opinion on the Monster 75 here. It seems to be a ski that you either like or hate and there arn't many sitting on the fence. Serach the threads and you will get a lot of reviews and opinions
post #6 of 13
I ski exclusively (so far!) in the Alps, and I went for some 7.24 Pros in 177. Fast and stable as anything on the hardpack, great in chopped up crud (and slush at Easter), fat enough for all the powder days I've had since getting them (bar two days, when I was trying Gotamas and Seth Pistols...). Got them for £350 at Ellis Brigham Covent Garden last year (with the Marker integrated M12 bindings) and haven't had anything but a large grin on my face every time I ski on them.

Skiied the B2 (in 170 and 176) for a fortnight before I went with the Volkls - the 7.24s are stiffer, hold a better edge but more demanding to ski. I haven't tried the Stocklis but I imagine they are fairly similar?

Hope this helps a little,
post #7 of 13
THe 724 Pro is a great choice for resorts in the alps. So is the 5*****, 6****** and superspeed. There is a lot of wind blown snow above the tree line.
post #8 of 13
Try the Atomic SL:9 160 or 170 cm. I skied it in Chamonix at the 160cm length and it was great (I'm 5' 5" 140lbs). In the Pacific Northwest (Seattle), I use it as my all mountain ski. At 121/65/106 it has a wider tip and tail than the B2 but with a narrower waist. Super hold on ice, but with the wide tips and tails, it floats.

If your not going to race it try it at 170cm.

From Peter Kelty's Web site http://www.techsupportforskiers.com/...ews_atomic.htm

Still one of the most versatile skis made, 2002/03 overall Ski of the Year does it all well, even moderate bumps and powder. Among the best choice for skiers honing carving skills in short to medium radius turns.

post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 

Monster deal

Thanks guys for the replies so far.....

I think the suggestions so far are very good. It would be ideal to demo skis, as people seem to have such divergent opinions on every single ski on offer...but as I live in the UK its not so easy to do so....so i'm relying on your opinions to form a good idea

So, it looks like its narrowed down to Volkl 724 Pro and Head im75.

I can get the Head im75s (non chip and SR2 version) for GBP259 inluding bindings....which is a great deal for the UK

Rob, you got a great deal on the Volkls though!

I'm leaning very much towards the Heads due to the price and their generally good reviews. My concern with the Head skis are that they don't do short turns well....when things get steep and you need to slow it down....

How do you all feel the two skis stack up?
post #10 of 13
also check out the AX4 Volkl, its a perrenial EC fave (now called the AC4). A little wider than the 7.24 pro .
post #11 of 13
AX4s are the new G4s, wider and a bit stiffer than my Pros. Hard to get hold of in the UK as far as I know. I think you'll be pleased with the Heads - I haven't skied on them but from looking at their dimensions and reviews seem to be good skis, and an absolute bargain at 260 quid! Was very pleased with the price of mine - was umm-ing and ahh-ing over Xmas whether to get them, so spent £120 on rentals (The Bandits) then bought hem in time for Easter skiing in the spring sale at EB.

They might have some to demo (well, as much as you can 'demo' in the UK) at Milton Keynes. Free to try as many pairs of skis as you want at Xscape, and might give you a little idea at the least?
post #12 of 13
I managed to demo the Head iXRC 1100SW at MK in September (thanks to snowHeads)
I then bought them from dawgcatching on here for £350, when Slush & Rubble are selling them for £550!
post #13 of 13
Dynastar's 8000 and 8800 are worth a demo if you want to venture more and more off-piste and need ice grip on top of it.
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