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Ski recommendation for mid-beginner?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Hello all,

Long time reader, first time poster. Thanks for such a great forum!

I've decided after 5 years of two-time-a-year renting, I should get some gear, take some lessons, and try to improve. I am 5'5", 140lbs and can ski greens and calm blues easily; I don't venture into blacks or rugged blues. I usually ski the mountain passes near Seattle, but once in a while we head to Whistler, BC.

I've been looking at Volkl Unlimited AC2s and am wondering if that's too advanced for me? Also, I'm wondering about length. 149 seems really short, but that's chin length for me; would 156 be too long? I don't have the ease of control to enjoy speed, so something that performs well at slow speeds and turns easy is what I (think I) want.

Any advice would be appreciated.

Thanks,
BoB
post #2 of 14
Bob,

I think you're on the right track with AC2s. Don't get 149s. If you take lessons and improve as is your plan they will definatly be to small.
post #3 of 14
Consider the Rossi Zeniths as well (Z5 is worth starting with) - they are a very versatile ski and have a huge sweet spot. Very easy ski to learn on.
post #4 of 14
If you're younger and wanna learn to ski switch and throw down in the park eventually go for Salomon 1080 Foils. My friend got those and he's in about the same boat as you, he's 17 and has snowboarded for like 7 years. If you don't wanna ski switch and ride park try Fischer RX6's in like a 160. Or maybe even RX4's but you'll outgrow those fast probably.
post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SnowBlower View Post
If you're younger and wanna learn to ski switch and throw down in the park eventually go for Salomon 1080 Foils. My friend got those and he's in about the same boat as you, he's 17 and has snowboarded for like 7 years. If you don't wanna ski switch and ride park try Fischer RX6's in like a 160. Or maybe even RX4's but you'll outgrow those fast probably.

Thanks for all the tips. I usually just stay on groomed greens and easy blues. I'm well over 30, so I'm not hip enough to be in the park.

BoB
post #6 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alberto View Post
Consider the Rossi Zeniths as well (Z5 is worth starting with) - they are a very versatile ski and have a huge sweet spot. Very easy ski to learn on.

Don't take this personally, but I'll have to disagree with you here...I have the Z5's and although it's a relaxed expert ski w/a decent sweet spot I don't see this as a good beginner slow ski (basically what he needs). They are still demanding ski's that require at least strong intermediate skills to feather when the edges are engaged to keep them in check.
Not a big deal, but can get him in trouble if locked on edge, especially in the backseat...He will develope some bad habits attempting to control speed throughout the arc w/out first learning the correct technique.

Not an ideal ski for someone of his skill level and I don't think he will "grow" into them w/out some frustration and a long learning curve. Remember, by his description he's only skied about 10 days total, and at only two times per season his retention rate isn't going to be great. This isn't the type of skier who's ready for an expert ski, even an easy expert ski, at this point.

The Z3 however may be an option. I don't have any experience w/that ski though, so I couldn't tell you for sure.

The AC2 should be a good candidate.

Welcome aboard, Bob and congratulations on your decision to take it to the next level. It's a very addictive sport.
post #7 of 14
The big shapes of something like the Z-5 or even the Z-3 are not great choices. Among the Rossi models, the Actys 300 is a nice fit and much more affordable than the others mentioned so far.

However, here is an idea for you (blatant commecial plug follows...... ) The Fischer RX-4 is a great value and skis at 95% or so of the highly respected RX-6 but for less money. The RX4 has plenty of grip and is quite stable with a fairly moderate shape. Here is a link to a nice buy on the '05-06 model.

http://shop.sierrasnowboard.com/browse.cfm/4,2502.htm

SJ
post #8 of 14
I respectfully disagree - I have a relative who has taken one lesson and who demo'd a variety of skis and decided on the Z5. He went from being an extremely cautious (but in control) skier on beginner runs and moved within the season to being a cautious skier on groomed blacks. He has had no problem handling the ski. I know of numerous other intermediate (and early beginner skiers) who have used the Z5 and have loved it. I always advocate that someone demos before purchasing. I personally ski the Z9 and attribute its forgiveness to very rapid development as a skier. In both cases, the Z5 and Z9 are extremely easy to initiate turns and the forgiving tail means that they are easy to release from turns. Personally, I know of no one who has tried the ski (Z5) who has not found them suitable for a confident beginner (and I would deem a person who wants to ski at Whistler's "calm blues" as being at this level).

As for SJ's comments regarding the Fischers, I cannot comment, although his advice has always seemed bang on and I would defer to his judgement. I just find the Zeniths to be far more adaptable to being in the expert category.
post #9 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraJim View Post
The big shapes of something like the Z-5 or even the Z-3 are not great choices. Among the Rossi models, the Actys 300 is a nice fit and much more affordable than the others mentioned so far.

However, here is an idea for you (blatant commecial plug follows...... ) The Fischer RX-4 is a great value and skis at 95% or so of the highly respected RX-6 but for less money. The RX4 has plenty of grip and is quite stable with a fairly moderate shape. Here is a link to a nice buy on the '05-06 model.

http://shop.sierrasnowboard.com/browse.cfm/4,2502.htm

SJ
Are 160s too long for 5'5" 145lbs male at a beginner ski level?

BoB
post #10 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by BoB-O View Post
Are 160s too long for 5'5" 145lbs male at a beginner ski level?

BoB
As far as the first few times on snow, a slightly shorter ski might be better during your first few lessons. OTH once you have learned solid turning skills on green runs, I think it would be fine.

SJ
post #11 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraJim View Post
As far as the first few times on snow, a slightly shorter ski might be better during your first few lessons. OTH once you have learned solid turning skills on green runs, I think it would be fine.

SJ
If I don't have a need for speed and just want to have fun, would I be disappointed with 156s for the long-run?

BoB
post #12 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by BoB-O View Post
If I don't have a need for speed and just want to have fun, would I be disappointed with 156s for the long-run?

BoB
You might but that's a hard one to call. If you are already turning comfortably on easy blue runs, I would normally suggest a 160 but the 4cm difference is not enough to worry about either way.

SJ
post #13 of 14

........

Bob,
...FWIW...I'm another one here in agreement about going with a 150+ ski....you can handle it. If you feel you Must stick with a 140-something ski, Rent or Demo. You'll soon grow out of it;-)...
post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 
Hey all!

Reviving this thread with a question. I had a chance to demo the Salomon X-Wing 8's this weekend. I liked them quite a bit. They didn't have the AC2's to try. Would you recommend that I hold out to try those? What do people think of the X-Wing 8's?

Thanks,
BoB
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