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Best style ski for spring conditions?

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
What do you think works best in the combination of spring ice and spring slush? Should you go with a good carving SL ski to handle the early morning ice, a versatile midfat for the mid-day corn or a wider all mountain ski for the afternoon slush? Should they be stiff to handle the early crud or soft to carve the late PM slush?
post #2 of 23
If your skiing corn usually a medium width midfat (76-88mm) fairly stiff fairly long works well. You don't really need a super wide ski becuase the snowis ogign to pretty dense and a thiner profile works better with the high suction stickiness of wet snow.

If you want to ski bumps alot then a softer twin in about the same width (around 80mm)would be good unless your going to be zipperlining tight east coast bumps then a comp mogul type ski.
post #3 of 23
My favorite is Atomic Rex in a 191 with a coarse base grind and a good semi flouro yellow wax. I've been skiing Kirkwood frozen corderoy to late afternoon slop with out having to go back to my van to get my Gotomas.
The Rex really is a dinosaur type of ski. long stiff 84mm waist GS kind of beast. It's a good thing I don't like to make short turns.
post #4 of 23
I just get on my gotamas and start finding corn/slush. Course base structure and hand waxed everyday. ON mountain like snowbird these are some great all around skis.
post #5 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by steveturner View Post
What do you think works best in the combination of spring ice and spring slush? Should you go with a good carving SL ski to handle the early morning ice, a versatile midfat for the mid-day corn or a wider all mountain ski for the afternoon slush? Should they be stiff to handle the early crud or soft to carve the late PM slush?
It depends on where, and what to expect. Since I live for spring skiing, I would go with a ski for the ideal conditions and deal with the morning ice with whatever I was on. If it was untravelled backcountry or low travelled out west, I would be ready for the corn on an all mountain midfat. If it was on a high travelled east coast mtn, I would be prepared for the spring slush bumps that will develop as soon as it warms up.
post #6 of 23
I have to agree with tromano, after trying a lot of different skis, my beefy mid-fats always give the best overall experience in variable spring conditions.
post #7 of 23
Up until 3 weeks ago I agreed with the stiff, long mid fat. Last year my go to was a 186cm Head iM85...this year it was a 191 R:Ex, which is a quicker turner and more versatile then the heads but not quite enough tail pop when it's real wet - they're great in bumps and when it starts out firm though...

...then on a warm day not quite a month ago I hopped on my new/old $80 Rossignol Axioms. Hooolllyyyyyy sheet...I have never felt so unstoppable on skis. They are listed 183cm but are the same length with a longer running length than my 186 Legend Pros. Med stiff up front but quite stiff in the rear, not much shape w/ a 110mm waist. Not sure why this is so but you can do any f-ing turn you want with ease - quick bumper turns, medium and long surfy turns at mach 12 in goo, straightlining, railing medium to long high speed turns on groomers - and jumping; these puppies love to get in the air. Frozen mornings were fine and smooth in the off-piste, though very icy groomers or bump skiing is not the best on these. That crap that gets wet and then refreezes into a grabby crusty top layer late in the day was even fun on these...and to those that say a super wide ski has more suction slowing you down - well just keep them on edge. The good thing too is they're on eBay a lot super cheap
post #8 of 23
i've been rocking the 180cm King Salmon with a 94 waist. except for a day of thick-a$$ 'taters @ KW (X-Eastcoaster knows what I'm talking about) they have been ripping.

just had 'em out in Colo for 5 days of variable from freshie to ice to slush to mank to wet pow and they rocked. not as "bomb proof" and tankerish as my old Mantras, but far more nimble with a bit more pop.
post #9 of 23

Its helps to be a (Big guy)

But my go to for the spring conditions are 194 Legend Pro riders

Catch me if you can?:
post #10 of 23
Nothing personal against the starter of this thread, but I think the whole "what ski is best for xxxx conditions" thing is stupid. I think the terrain makes as much, if not more, difference than the snow conditions.

Love slushy groomers? Go with a nice carver midfat.

Slush bumps? Minimal sidecut, medium flex, short (180ish) midfats

Steep, tight spaces: Stiff fat (not superfat 100-110mm) twin tip, ants come to mind.

(And my personal favorite) Steep, wide open, high speed cruising: Long, stiff, fat (again, not superfat, between 100-110 underfoot) and minimal sidecut.
post #11 of 23
I liked my Seths and 888s more than my Titans. I think the softer ski handled the slop better.
post #12 of 23
playing off of Maggot's remark ("I think the terrain makes as much, if not more, difference than the snow conditions") if we really want to get down to the nitty gritty it doesn't matter so much about the skis or the terrain, but the skier themselves.

for example, i crashed LGC3 this past week and with my 180 King Salmons I was one of the few riding long and wide skis (there was one person on 179 Bros, but that was the widest plank in the group). yet the cats on short and narrow (between 72 - 88 at the widest) skis were ripping up everything i was hacking.

granted i was riding with a lot of professional instructors, but still they were gliding through the wet pow, mank, slush, and crud better than i was on my "fatties."

i think a wider ski makes it easier for somebody with less technique, but then that's my take on it.

post #13 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by steveturner View Post
What do you think works best in the combination of spring ice and spring slush? Should you go with a good carving SL ski to handle the early morning ice, a versatile midfat for the mid-day corn or a wider all mountain ski for the afternoon slush? Should they be stiff to handle the early crud or soft to carve the late PM slush?
The other option is to get a bigger stiff ski that will hold on hard snow.

I use the 194 Legend Pro. It will hold on the super hard refrozen snow for that first 30 minutes or hour. After that, if big enough and stiff enough to handle any corn that is starting become thick slush.

This was exactly the scenario this past Sunday (4/8/07) at Alpine Meadows. Front side (North facing) was frozen hard at opening. Backside/High T was slushy at 9:40am. We were getting small wet sloughing when traversing across a face. The LPs made the slushy snow like skiing heavier uncut new snow.


Quote:
Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post
I just get on my gotamas and start finding corn/slush. Course base structure and hand waxed everyday. ON mountain like snowbird these are some great all around skis.
Definitely, wax everyday. Carry something on the hill to refresh them at lunch if necessary. While skiing in very warm conditions in Tahoe (high ~68 F), my skis have been sliding very well until I stop skiing around 2pm without reapplying anything.

I've been using a combination of Dr's racewax.com warm wax and Zardoz's not wax applied after the ski cools from the hot waxing. Also make sure to get the skis clean before waxing. Spring corn is dirty snow.


Quote:
Originally Posted by X-EastCoaster View Post

...then on a warm day not quite a month ago I hopped on my new/old $80 Rossignol Axioms. Hooolllyyyyyy sheet...
I have had a similar experience using Sanouks on a corn/slush day.


So wax like crazy and use some big skis.
post #14 of 23
Spring conditions wear your wax off fast so I use two sets of skis on spring days switching to a freshly waxed pair at lunch. If its icy I start on my Volkl Superspeeds then switch to my Rossi B4s at lunch. If the mountain is already melted I start on my B4s and switch to my Volant V2 Chubbs for when the slush is really deep and piled up.
post #15 of 23
^my buddy turned me on to this F4 flourine wax paste by Swix (Burton makes some too).

you just goop it on in the morning and it hold pretty well through the day and alleviates some of the sticking in the muck and guck down at the bottom of the liftlines.

i was in Colo Thurs-Mon and the first day I didn't use it and i was sticking like a mofo. slopped it on the next two days and it helped some.

it's cheap (like $12).
post #16 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rio View Post
Spring conditions wear your wax off fast so I use two sets of skis on spring days switching to a freshly waxed pair at lunch. If its icy I start on my Volkl Superspeeds then switch to my Rossi B4s at lunch. If the mountain is already melted I start on my B4s and switch to my Volant V2 Chubbs for when the slush is really deep and piled up.
I've found that the afternoon is when this really becomes a problem, so I just leave a tiny bit of wax on the skis. Its kinda hard to get it right just scraping, but I've found that if you take a bit of the scraped off wax and brush it into the base afterwards it will build up just enough that it will last six or seven runs.
post #17 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by dookey67 View Post
for example, i crashed LGC3 this past week and with my 180 King Salmons I was one of the few riding long and wide skis (there was one person on 179 Bros, but that was the widest plank in the group). yet the cats on short and narrow (between 72 - 88 at the widest) skis were ripping up everything i was hacking.

granted i was riding with a lot of professional instructors, but still they were gliding through the wet pow, mank, slush, and crud better than i was on my "fatties."

i think a wider ski makes it easier for somebody with less technique, but then that's my take on it.
I used to think wider was better in the spring stuff, but my mid-fats (76mm) definitely slice through the heavy wet stuff better than my wider skis (85-87mm). Now, the mid-fats are also heavier, and this may help too. But I got the distinct impression that wider, beyond a point, is not better. I think the wider skis have more drag and resistance going through the really heavy/wet stuff.
post #18 of 23
Call me old fashion, 65mm waist w/ 12.5M TR. Light on the pressure.
post #19 of 23
Call me wierd but I go with a hard snow narrow waste type ski and changeout as soon as it starts softening to a ... monoski :
post #20 of 23
i'mma do a test this weekend.

i'mma break out my narrowest planks (No Ka Oi in a 78mm) and ride them one day and then ride my King Salmons (94mm) the next. i have a feeling the No Ka's are gonna rip the spring conditions because they are stiff as stiff (at least in my opinion). That and the fact that I've heard other No Ka owners mention that they use them as a dedicated spring ripper since they're so stiff.



full report on Monday...
post #21 of 23
where are you skiing?


I'll be at Alpine. No sure will have corn conditions this weekend. But, planning some additional research on 05/06 Mantra or 05/06 Legend Pros. Maybe some swallow tails if the storm hit just right.

I'll be in blue marmot hard shell or a red soft shell.
post #22 of 23
My new K2 Apache Strykers work pretty well in the slush. 74mm and stiffer than my old Max's.
post #23 of 23
Head im88.

dominator makes a rub on wax highly florinated called Butter. since it is rub on you can reaaply during the day to break the suction!

http://www.dominatorwax.com/noniron.html
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