James, I find it amusing that you have been at this forum only a few months, skied for only a few years, and now have the ability to criticize and critique accomplished skiers - all the way up to the best racers on the WC - admittedly some of the best, if not the best, skiers in the world. This is something that you are really not qualified to do, and based on what your observations were, proves your lack of qualification. Since your arrival in July you have asked a few questions and made a few statements like the following solidifying such assumptions:
Originally Posted by jamesgig
What is the ideal weight distribution during a turn? What percentage of your weight should be on the outside ski and on the inside? I have heard 50-50, 60-40, and 80-20. Which is correct?
during my lessons,my instructors usually say to shoot for 50-50 so if you loose your grip on the outside ski you wont go down. I have a lot of trouble getting 50-50 so I am ususally between 60-40 and 70-30. I have been told that 100-0 is a bad thing since the inside ski will not be cutting through the snow properly and leaves you totally dependent on the outside ski's ability to keep you off the snow.
You also posted the following in this very thread:
Originally Posted by jamesgig
After reading several descriptions of levels (provided by people on this site) I would describe myself as a high 8-low 9. These levels are mostly described as being able to make dynamic parallel turns on almost anything, which I do. I do not know what would happen if I were put in powder since I have never seen more than 3 inches so I disreagarded that part. I have been skiing for three years and have taken about 80-90 lessons so this will be my second pair of skis, hence the Verse 5.
Now, you stated that you can perform excellent dynamic parallel turns, and have a better parallel turn than most people. That is great. Now, realize that a dynamic parallel turn is not high level skiing. The turns being done in the level 7 video I posted were, you guessed it, dynamic parallel turns. Those turns were being demoed by a level 3 PSIA instructor, who I believe is a former D-Team member (might be wrong on that though). Since you are regurgitating the term dynamic parallel I assume that you have been fed that phrase by your instructors. These same instuctors who you claim are very good would certainly not mis-label the turns you were making - so I have no doubt that your turns are dynamic parallel turns.
That unfortunately is not a broad base of skills. Expert skiing is about a broad skill base and the ability to adapt those skills to any kind of terrain on any mountain in any kind of conditions. You are demonstrating one, albeit, low level skill. It is a useful and important skill, but not expert skiing. Interestingly, in a dynamic parallel turn, your weight distribution has a quite less extreme variance than in a high performance turn. Since I have already addressed that particular issue I will leave it alone for now - but your questions speak volumes about your ability and the kinds of turns that you are capable of making.
These revelations put you at about a level 7 at the highest possible point - assuming you could make those turns on any in-bounds terrain you got plopped down on - which based on your experince is moderately doubtful. You should however, stop thinking in terms of skill level, or how difficult of terrain you ski on. Instead if someone asks you how well you can ski you should be able to list off your skills, how proficient you are at them, how often you are doing them... etc. When looking for a pair of skis you should know what you want it to be able to do in order to best compliment your skill set. The skis I originally mentioned to you in a 160 to 170 length are the skis that more than fit your skill set. Those skis will perform at your haralded level 9 - there is no doubt in my mind - they just do it a lot easier than the skis you WANT to be skiing on.
A true expert should be able to do pretty much everything (I will compile a short abbreviated list consisting of things that are required for expert skiing):
High angle carving
Low angle carving
Zipper line bumps
Navigate a GS course (well)
Navigate a SL course (fairly well)
One footed skiing (either foot)
Carving on varied terrain
Scarve on nearly any terrain
Traditional Powder skiing
Jump (table tops and cliffs if they happen to be in the way)
etc... This does not represent a complete list, but just a snippet of what a 'level 9' skier should be capable of...
Now the catch? Alot of level 8 skiers can doo all of what I listed above, but they aren't level 9 skiers yet. Why? Well that catch is that you also have to be nearly technically flawless at everything you do. The other catch is that you are probably constantly learning and evolving your skiing, so there will always be people who will be able to give you advice that will positively affect your skiing. Some of the best skiers you will ever meet will also be the ones who are the most eager to learn something new or conquer the next task. They will rarely be the guy that stands up and says "I'm an expert, I'm better than most people out there..." The reason for this is because that truly good skiers also know their limitations, and that a skill that they are working on - someone else has already mastered.
Finding the right gear is just a method of getting you to where you want to be. Race car drivers do not make the jump from driving go-carts to racing a Formula 1 car. There are steps a long the way that provide the opportunity to learn. Something that is easier to drive will offer an easier time learning high level skills. You do not want to spend your time trying to figure out how to make the skis work while you are also trying to master new skills. That is just fighting two battles when in reality you should only be focused on one. Stepping up your skill set will only be made easier by complimenting your learning with the correct equipment. Purchase skis that will help you in your journey to be a level 9 skier, not skis that will only help you when you reach the destination.