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Old school skier needs recommendation - Page 2

post #31 of 52
You and I have a close profile, though you got four years on me. I ditched my 203 Volkls (P7's ?) straights for a wonderful pair of Elan 666. These are not your father's Elans, so to speak. When I was a lad, this company had little if any profile. When I started my foray into the wonderland of shaped skis I tried a pair of Fisher RX9's and some Heads as well. Bought the Elans somewhat on a lark -killer deal on line. They are a wonderful ski for guys like you and me - in transition, if you will. Very forgiving of the old habits, but very ready to carve. Probably not the pure carver the RX9 or Allstar are, but not as needy either. You can run these babies flat or on slight edge. I found the RX9's wanted to be turned all the time, or at least be on edge. The 666's are a mid fat ski, by definition, a compromise between an all out carver and powder machine. One thing you will find in a great modern ski, like the Elan, is the ability to transition from one surface condition to another without balking. The 666 is brilliant in this regard. I live in Maine. When we get real snow, it is often heavy. There can be patches of windblown hardpacked and windpacked powder. You want a ski that can navigate this kind of variety without throwing you. The Elan, again, is wonderful. You also want a ski you can stand to be on all day. I actually had a pair of 175cm Volkl 6*. Killed me. Terribly stiff for my weight (165) and quite unforgiving. Had quad cramps up the chair. Dumped them for the Elans. I do think that this would be a great choise for you since you are skiing east and west. I plan to take mine out to Banff this April. I have to say that I was so smitten with the Elans, I just got a pair of Elan carving machines - Ripstick. I will be on them in about twelve hours for the first time. I can't believe I am saying this, but there may be too much snow for them (just got 24-36" dump). If it is packed, I will run the Ripsticks, and if not, the midfat 666's. May I suggest that you read up on both these skis. If you want a great deal check out Dawgcatching, a ski shop guy from Oregon who writes terriffic reviews and offers equally great deals. I got my Rips for him. Good luck. Hope this helps. Keep an open mind about these new fangled boards. You might just end up burning those old timers.
post #32 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoontasan View Post
Here's the deal. If you were an advanced/expert skier with the "old gear" it won't take much time before you're even better with the new gear. The new gear is almost like cheating. It's like hitting a tennis ball with an oversized racket. It makes hackers on the "old gear" look like they know how to ski. All this talk about the "new way" of skiing is way overblown. If you are at all athletic with good balance and feel, then you will quickly figure out, on your own, how to get the best performance out of the new gear. You will find skiing to be a lot more exciting.
ccbc,

You sound a lot like me (no offense!!)... in terms of age and size, how and what and where you like to ski, resistance to the switch, etc. Many have already told you most of what's running through my mind, but the one who comes closest is Hoontasan.

I clung to my straight skis until this year. The only concession I made was dropping from 200cm (age 15-45) to 195cm (age 45 to now). But this season I picked up a used pair of Salomon Crossmax, and everything Hoon says came true. I never skipped a beat or felt out of whack... and my skiing immediately felt both easier and better, from the first trip down. The skis I bought were 178cm, which seemed enough shorter for this first transition, with this particular ski (plus, that's just what they happened to be). But I think next pair may get even shorter.

The combination of shorter length and shape really do make a world of difference.... and I didn't learn or apply any new techniques (at least consciously) to start feeling it. To be sure, I think there is much I can/should learn to take FULL advantage of the shape. I'm absorbing lots from the technique forum here, and these guys have me thinking I'm not too old for first lessons ever. But... at least in my experience... you don't have to wait for that, or turn your style upside down to start appreciating the advances they made while you and I were hanging on to our youth.
post #33 of 52
I am 50 and turned on to the "new ski's" 3 years ago. Go for it! Strap on a helmet and let her rip, it won't take long to find the groove. I find the "new ski" comparison to driving a Mercedes vs. a Taurus. My 75 year old dad did it and loves them.
post #34 of 52
Mostly groomer ski = Fischer RX-9 (175 ish)
Mid Fat = Dynastar Legend 8K or Rossi B2 (178 ish)

These will work very well with a minimum of style adapting.

SJ
post #35 of 52
All I can say is pay the $40 to demo some skis and try a bunch of different ones. Let the guy at the shop suggest the first pair (including the length), then a few runs later, bring them back and exchange them for something, longer, shorter, different waist width, etc. You should be able to find something that feels comfortable to you. Some skis do fine with old style, some don't. Waist widths between 70-85 can handle varring snow conditions without a lot of kickback and extra effort on your part.

DEMO, DEMO, DEMO!!!!
post #36 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by ccbc View Post
but people are saying we might be going back to longer straighter skis - is this like woman's fashion and my old ones will be back in style?
In Style: as in the 70s leisure suit.
post #37 of 52
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by JPH View Post
"new ski" comparison to driving a Mercedes vs. a Taurus.

I certainly need to be skiing better than a tauru$$.:
Last taurus cost 10K in repairs in 2 years.

Just got back from browsing all the ski shops. yes they do have ski shops in atlanta.
I concentrated on the skis discussed here and the locals seemed to agree with your suggestions.
i'm headed to NH next weekend and will let you know.
thanks again.
post #38 of 52
Don't even bother demoing until you take a lesson. Get a high performance rental and go take a lesson. This will at least give you a basis of what you are about to ski on.
post #39 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post
Don't even bother demoing until you take a lesson. Get a high performance rental and go take a lesson. This will at least give you a basis of what you are about to ski on.
Phil. have you ever taken (walked up to ski school desk and paid for) a ski lesson?
post #40 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by telerod15 View Post
Phil. have you ever taken (walked up to ski school desk and paid for) a ski lesson?
Yes.
post #41 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post
Don't even bother demoing until you take a lesson. Get a high performance rental and go take a lesson. This will at least give you a basis of what you are about to ski on.
Phil took lessons, so should you.
post #42 of 52
While I can see what phil is getting at by suggesting that cc take a lesson, I think it is a bit odd and convoluted. Go demo to your hearts content, try some from the list you generated here and talk with the folks at the demo shop.

If you feel so inclined take a lesson before or after you buy your skis, just do it. This isn't life or death, it's about the thrill and the quiver! If further down the road you find a better ski for whatever reason, buy it.

It's good to see you are ready to get your feet wet, cc.

I just got on some dynastar 8800's and fell in love. My other skis are Rossi B2's.
post #43 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by nova2 View Post
While I can see what phil is getting at by suggesting that cc take a lesson, I think it is a bit odd and convoluted. Go demo to your hearts content, try some from the list you generated here and talk with the folks at the demo shop.
Nova, not to be smart, but how long have you been skiing? Did you start on straight skis and evolve to the current skis or did you start skiing in the past 10 years? Not that I am being critical of your comment, but if it IS the latter, your comment is with out bases of knowledge because all you have skied was a shape. If is the former, you would understand that the technique is completely different.

I remember the first shape ski I skied, the Elan SCX. I just took them out and tried to ski them like a straight ski. If I could have thrown them into the woods half way down the trail, I would have. Not till i was shown how to ski the, did the light bulb go off.

If he demos with out knowing what will work or not work for him, it will be a waste of time. IF he starts demoing and by the third or fourth pair he starts to get a feel for how the newer skis want to react..he will have waisted his money and time on thsoe first one to three pair, becuase he had no clue how they were supposed to be skied and he might have missed out on a better ski.
post #44 of 52
Look at some mid-fats like the Rossi B3, Elan 777 or Dynastar 8800, Head IM88. If you are happy with your skiing style, why go through the trouble of taking a bunch of lessons to learn the new style? New does not always mean better. Unlike the stubby deep-sidecut skis, the only change you'll have to make with mid-fats is to maybe widen your stance a little. Plus, you'll be much happier in bumps/powder/crud/anything but groomers. Personally, if I had to choose between a stubby deep sidecut ski or an old 205cm "straight" ski I'd take the antiques every time. FYI - you can find barely used classics on Ebay super cheap.
post #45 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by ccbc View Post
I certainly need to be skiing better than a tauru$$.:
Last taurus cost 10K in repairs in 2 years.

Just got back from browsing all the ski shops. yes they do have ski shops in atlanta.
I concentrated on the skis discussed here and the locals seemed to agree with your suggestions.
i'm headed to NH next weekend and will let you know.
thanks again.
I feel your pain. I purchased a 1999 Taurus brand new. I put 96,000 miles on the car in 3 years 10 months, when the transmission went. I did not even drive it hard. This was unacceptable. I have yet to buy another Ford.

Back to skis - Some folks have a harder time with new shaped skis then others. The more radical the shape the more you have to keep the skis on edge. When skiing shaped skis flat, the skis will shake a little. Basically you put the skis on edge and the skis turn for you. People that that have feet that pronate or other foot issues that lead to putting the ski on the wrong edge, may make make it more difficult to get use to the new shaped skis. That said, most people transition to shaped skis without any issues.

BTW - the first run on my Volkl AC4s, I wasn't sure I liked them. The second run I had this big smile on my face. Nobody was going to take these skis off my feet. My point here is it takes a few runs before you may figure out what you like or don't like.

I would NOT buy a stiff ski. For example, the guy above that purchased the a stiffer Volkl 6 stars that were too long for his weight probably did not like them. The softer Volkl 5 stars (this years 5S) in a shorter length would have been a better choice for him.

Good luck.
post #46 of 52
Phil you might have a right to be "smart" I am not sure since I don't know you. But I think it is a bit strange that in the big scheme of things that a person comes to Epic looking for suggestions for skis to demo and you tell him not to waste his time until he takes a lesson. Especially when he states in his first post that he has no interest in learning the new way.

But for the sake of not being insensitive to this whole thread I do see your point and it is well taken, in that there is a difference in how shaped skis handle as opposed to straight skis not to mention the techniques used for each of them.

My point is we've made some suggestions for skis to demo, CC is even considering learning how to ski the new shaped skis, which is movement from his first post. Taking lessons first which I understand is the best advice you have for CC may lose him altogether. Perhaps CC could enlighten us to this.

I am glad that on Epic ski both sagely experts like yourself and lowly neophytes like me can voice our outlook and opinions.
post #47 of 52
Thread Starter 
Thanks all,
and Phil and Nova, you're making me think... : ... what do I really want.
I know I basically parallel the grooms, cut sharp side to side and go kind of fast. I want to do the bumps again but my control isn't as good and legs get tired. I'm hoping the shapes will be less strenuous and easier to control in bumps. As far as powder, probably won't see much. I used to ski every weekend in New England and never saw alot of powder, but when I did it was unbelievable great.
I said I didn't want to change b/c i liked my style and the feel. I this hoping this new style will look just as good and not be as strenuous. That's why I didn't want lessons then and have to change. Unless you learn the new technique though, I would probably ski the shapes like my straights, the old way, and that probably would be a waste. (All weight on downhill ski, sliding side to side.)
I remember the way I learned was too watch the styles I liked from the lift ride and each run was practice. It wasn't until I took a lesson however in Aspen years later that I turned the corner and could handle the bumps well. (the bumps today don't seem as big.)
Oh, how easy is it to rent demos, don't remember there was alot of choice at the mountains. I know I will be going to Loon, NH 2 days and a week to Denver somewhere TBD.
thanks.
post #48 of 52
You will be able to ski more efficiently with the proper technique. More efficient will be with less energy. Bumps are a lot easier now too.
post #49 of 52
As an ex instructor ... and .. as an aging person .... and as skier who has gone this same route, the best thing is to rent or demo a pair of good stuff and go and take a lesson.

Take a lesson from a guy with white hair .... we have been there, done that, went through the same denial ... then bought the key chain and tee shirt.

I have "transitioned" a few people just like you .... as an ex "Natur Technique" type, I know exactly what you want to do and why and how you break out of the old and into the new.

It is not complicated, you have a good background. You will learn to use two edges to turn the skis, a bit less rotary, pole touch (not plant), and the initation is with the ankles. Quite upper body is fine and hang on to that.

At the end of a transitional lesson, you will have the basics and occasionally, you will "hop like a bunny" ..... so what? ... I still do when I have to and I still skid/scarve too.

You can blend these new skills in and they will magically take over the old stuff.
post #50 of 52
There's a new technique? That explains a lot ! (still transitioning 7 years after buying my first shaped skis - Guess it's time for a lesson).
post #51 of 52
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kgtrips View Post
(still transitioning 7 years after buying my first shaped skis - .
i guess that would be my case too
post #52 of 52
dunno if you're really going to be able to get that "old school" knees together stylee with any of the new skis.

agreed it takes a little getting used to (I am coming off 198 7S's), but once you do, it's quite fun and you can "force" the knees together if you really must.

while i agree that the "old school" style is much more graceful, if you watch any of the ski movies starting in the late '80s, folks like Plake, Schmidt, Coombs, were skiing what I call pretty rough. They may have lacked some of the grace, but they still had the chops to get down anything.

that said, my pops is 75 and has been demoing skis all season. he's found that he rather enjoys the Rossi B2.

i would suggest:

1. DEMO
2. DEMO
3. DEMO
4. DEMO

look into the B2, for a starter, as it's a good, solid, all mountain ski that isn't too "thick" or fat.

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