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Ladies All Mountain Ski's - Page 3

post #61 of 82
Boots are covered. She got a new pair 3 years ago with a custom fit and is in love with those boots, even more than with me.

As for renting the thought has crossed my mind. However we have a friend with a house in PC and we are planning to spend more time there since we will not be able to ski at home anymore. So I was going to get her new skis and leave them in PC. Demo'ing is in the plan. I'm just trying to narrow the field somewhat before she starts.
post #62 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by sherwood3031 View Post
I was also considering the Attiva AC3 but thought it might be a bit too stiff for her.
I have the Attiva AC3s and they are fantastic, but they are too stiff for me (an intermediate skiier who likes speed) in softer Western conditions, somewhat difficult to turn in soft powder and crud, and very challenging to ski bumps with. Instead, I bought a pair of Attiva AC2s at the end of last season and plan to take them West with me with a set of Solomon Scarlet pow/park skis that I also picked up at the end of the season and I'll use my Attiva AC3s for Eastern hardpack and variable conditions. You might consider the Attiva AC2s in a 156 for her. I've only been skiing for 3 seasons and am finding that I like a slightly wider ski than the classic groomer ski for stability, especially because whatever habits I learned as a kid and young adult the few times I skied and tried to learn to "parallel" in the 60s and 70s and 80s didn't stick so I have a wider stance than most skiers my age.
post #63 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by sherwood3031 View Post
SJ,
Thanks. I've read quite a few of your gear posts and was hoping you might answer.
The Rossis do look like a good option also. Especially if they are lighter and more manuverable. I was thinking a low-mid 150cm's (she is on a 160cm ski now)?
The last couple of years she was starting to break out and be a little more aggressive and ski her skis instead of being a passenger. However last year we did not get to ski due to moving from PA to TX (at least we are closer to Utah). So I'm crossing my fingers for this year. She is being more agressive on her waterski so I'm hoping it will transfer to the snow.
She's a good skier she just needs some self confidence.
If there is any chance at all for demoing, do it. I tend to demo a lot of skis for the interest of reviews here on epic and over at ski divas. Though I agree with most of what Sierra Jim says, on most any day, one thing none of us can get across is that every ski/ski mfgr has different properties and can make you grin or leave you feeling uninspired. As SJ said the lottas may be a bit much but they are also a ski with some energy and personality IMO. The AC3 is a good ski but a bit demanding. When I demoed the Rossi B3W, I felt totally uninspired. On the other hand there are women who ski the rossis and love them. Just my 2 cents. If you get a chance to demo, demo! If not, read the reviews thoroughly before you put your money down.
post #64 of 82
Ski now,
I considered the AC2 but wanted to get more ski under her foot for softer snow and she is trying to ski more off pistle. Thanks it's great to get input from people who have skiied a lot on a potential ski I would purchase. Your input helps confirm my thoughts on the the AC3.

Trekchick,
You were another I was hoping would respond. (I've been trolling for a while). Thanks for the input. I was talking to her about demoing over dinner tonight. Her concern with demoing is that she is so affraid of damaging the ski that she changes the way she skis and skis timidly thus not getting a true representation of the ski. I told her to just go out and ski but as I said before she lacks self confidence so it is what it is. She has had some knee troubles and I think that is at the center of her confidence issues.
post #65 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraJim View Post
Actually for this level skier, I'd say the Rossi B2-W or maybe even the somewhat wider B3-W might be even better than the Lotta. Both of the Rossis are lighter and more nimble than the Lotta. The B2-W is the same width as the Lotta, the B3-W is 5mm wider in the waist.
If I may ask a naive question, Jim, what makes a ski more "nimble" than another?
post #66 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by sherwood3031 View Post
She has had some knee troubles and I think that is at the center of her confidence issues.
In addition to whatever medical attention she needs for her knee issues, women's ski clinics are a great place for women to gain confidence on snow. That's how I wound up in a baby terrain park for the first time. Okemo (in VT) does a nice job with their WAA program (Women's Alpine Adventures) and I'm sure there are similar programs at other resorts.
post #67 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by at_nyc View Post
If I may ask a naive question, Jim, what makes a ski more "nimble" than another?
"Nimble" is a term that I apply to a ski that feels like a pair of light running shoes on your feet as opposed to a double thick plastic mountaineering boot. "Feel" is subjective but I tend to think that most skiers overstate and or overthink their needs when it comes to making gear choices.

Look at it this way....the most successful skis in the last 25 years have all been easy, manageable, and relatively nimble skis. Best sellers get that way for a reason....they work for wide variety and probably the vast majority of skiers.

So what does it take to be nimble??........Not easy to answer but generally a fairly light ski with a soft to moderate flex (especially torsionally). It's funny, but torsional rigidity is often thought of as a free lunch ie: all good and no bad. The fact is though, that most skiers make skidded turns much of the time, This is especially evident in off trail and less than ideal snow conditions. A ski that is very torsionally stiff actually grips too agressively in those situations and thus, they feel unruly, hard to transition from one turn to the next and generally they feel less "nimble" than skis with more moderate torsional stiffness.

For a very few skiers, skis with agressive sidecuts, stiff flexes and heavier weights often can work just fine. Those skis will feel "nimble" to those skiers....but are often not for everybody. Hence the need for and overwhelming popularity of more moderate choices.

SJ
post #68 of 82
Wow, SJ, that is a great answer to the question about what "nimble" means and I think very accurately describes some of the struggles that I had last season moving to a ski that was too stiff and long for what I needed. You are a great resource and thank you for your contributions to this forum!
post #69 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by ski now work later View Post
.........accurately describes some of the struggles that I had last season moving to a ski that was too stiff and long for what I needed.............
Don't think that you are the Lone Snow Ranger here. Many folks will buy their gear based upon "cool factor" or some other recommendation or ego driven motivation rather than based upon what they really need or can effectively use. Few will admit it because they want to like their "ski du Jour" so of course they do (or think they do)((or swear that they do)). I freely admit that in most cases I don't much care for the stiffest, most agressive skis that are available from most brands.

I test about 60-80 skis per year and despite my size 5-10, 190# level 8 skier, I find that many mid range skis are really fun. I have to smile sometimes when I hear level 5,6, or even level 7 skiers being admonished to buy top of the line skis because they will "rapidly grow out of a mid level ski". Many of the folks thay say things like that have not skied on good mid level stuff and are just utterly clueless as to how good much of it is.

SJ
post #70 of 82
SJ,
You hit the nail on the head. I am trying to buy my wife a ski that she can ski. I am not trying to get a ski that she will "grow into". She is trying to get better and to ski more difficult lines, however the reason we are all out there is to have fun and fighting your equipment is not fun.

With the B2W how does it perform off pistle and in soft snow? It's 78 underfoot, her current skis are 64, so that will be a nice step up. I'm a little worried about the B3W being 88 and loosing something on the groomers.
post #71 of 82
Sherwood:

My wife is at about the same skill level as yours and about the same height and weight. I think I've said this already in this thread, but on SJ's recommendation, she demoed the B2W and Exclusive Legend for a weekend, both in a 158. She found the B2W inoffensive but uninspired. I practically had to tear the Exclusive Legends out of her hands at the end of the weekend. Her confidence on hardpack was exponentially better than I'd ever seen. And although she was looking at these to complement her 95mm wide Phat Luvs, so she didn't need them to be a snow day ski, she had no problem keeping up in the soft stuff. And despite the fact that the Dynastars were 3mm narrower than the Rossis, she liked the Dynastars better everywhere she tested them. Of course, this was in the Sierra, not in Utah, and the snow is pretty different between the two places.

Jim has them for $347, but only in a 152 or a 165, and at 5'4", 140#, for Western skiing, I'd think that your wife would probably be best suited with a 158. (Jim, do you agree?) Last I checked, both REI.com and StartHaus.com had 158s in stock, and others probably do too -- Dynastar doesn't seem to have the name recognition that Rossi and Salomon do, so there's relatively good end-of-season stock. If you start looking, I'd call StartHaus to see whether the prices on their website are current, because I know that this spring, their in-store prices have been up to 20% lower than what they show online.
post #72 of 82
Sherwood, Good luck in your search.

3 things:

Demo for size and be sure to demo at least one size up form what she thinks she wants. A longer ski helps to make skiing off piste easier. My wife just bought a new pair of skis for her use once we move to UT. She started demoing 152cm Attiva AC3 and ended up trying all the way to 170+ before deciding on a 164cm ski (she loved both the m11 B5 and im88 in that size).

A 95mm wide ski is now considered a mid-fat (at least in some circles). All things being equal pick the wider ski. Have her demo a wider ski than she thinks she needs. Wider skis are easier to ski in soft snow than narrower skis are. Most skis up to 95mm have good manners on hard snow.

Feel is very important when you are not comfortable. You want to have a ski that give and appropriate level of feedback so that you can learn what different things are supposed to feel like. You want a ski that lets you know when you are in trouble and when you are good.
post #73 of 82
I hate to be the one who always seems to end up on the other side of the debate w/ SJ. However, there is quite a good case to be made that the dramatic lack of torsional (as well as longitudinal) rigidity in many "women's" skis is one of the things that holds so many women back in their skiing. Too many of these skis are just plain dumbed down boards. While this is less the case now than it was a few years ago, it is still worth being aware of. Especially at the lower and mid-ranges of women's ski lines.

There are legitimate reasons for trade offs in various flavors of stiffness, but they should be made for good design/mission reasons (eg the longitudinal softness of the Elizabeth/SFB; or the slightly decreased stiffness of the Aura relative to the Mantra) - not because you figure someone is only gonna bang out a few runs on greens or easy blues and then do cocktails. Unless of course, you acknowledge that as the mission .

IMO it'd be worth your time to search for a variety of reviews on the Rossi women's skis. Here, theskidiva, TGR, etc., before jumping on them.

Also, if someone is looking for a confidence booster for tree/glade skiing in the PC area, why would you go lower than 88 or 90 (or even a bit more)? There is some hugely approachable tree/glade skiing at DV, PCMR, and the Canyons. And yeah, you can do it on skinnier skis. And yeah, some really fine skiers prefer them. But why make someone looking for a confidence boost work extra hard when you can make life easier for them - and on such nice and relatively uncrowded terrain to boot? And just to be clear - I'm not pitching a super-stiff crud buster...just don't fall into the "too little" ski trap either.
post #74 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by sherwood3031 View Post
SJ,
With the B2W how does it perform off pistle and in soft snow? It's 78 underfoot, her current skis are 64, so that will be a nice step up. I'm a little worried about the B3W being 88 and loosing something on the groomers.
The B2-W is one of those that has been a best seller for a good reason, it's easy, smooth, and fun. It is capable on firm snow and very nice for it's width in softer stuff. As a/d stated, the Exclusive Legend is a little more energetic and packages a little more excitement into it's slightly narrower frame. It's another great choice. The B3-W is 83mm not 88 and it has the same "feel" as the B2-W. My ski buddy Katherine loves the Exclusive powder which is 84mm and she plucks that ski out of the demo rack at the store more than anything else. (except possibly the Solly Fury which she also really likes)

As far as wider skis loosing something on the groomers....sure they do....there's no free lunch. But if you keep the moderate approach in mind, I think she could handle something in the low 80's pretty well.

SJ
post #75 of 82
Bumping an old thread here since it is right up the alley of what I am looking for right now for my girlfriend. She is 5'5", 140 lbs and a rapidly improving intermediate who thankfully for me is really getting a taste for off piste trees and powder. She is currently on a 156 Volkl Attiva AC2, but in tahoe spring conditions last year really would have liked something bigger. I am having the same dillemma as the prior posters, whether to go with a big midfat like the Queen Attiva, or to move up to the Aura range (doesn't have to be a Volkl, just giving examples) I currently use the Mantra as my primary ski, so I agree with the wisdom of going bigger. I just think the Aura may be difficult for her to ski at this point in her learning curve. The Queen seems much more user friendly. If I was to go this direction, do you all think a 163 would be the ideal size?

Another thought- how about the softer, fatter skis such as the Salomon Scarlett? I guess these would lie somewhere between the Queens and the Aura for ease of use.
post #76 of 82
Get something softer than a aura(still really stiff IMO). A 168 Gotama(really actually shorter than a 163 Aura), 159 Nancy, short salomon gun or scarlet, or something else short, fat and soft.
post #77 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by NYSki View Post
Bumping an old thread here since it is right up the alley of what I am looking for right now for my girlfriend. She is 5'5", 140 lbs and a rapidly improving intermediate who thankfully for me is really getting a taste for off piste trees and powder. She is currently on a 156 Volkl Attiva AC2, but in tahoe spring conditions last year really would have liked something bigger. I am having the same dillemma as the prior posters, whether to go with a big midfat like the Queen Attiva, or to move up to the Aura range (doesn't have to be a Volkl, just giving examples) I currently use the Mantra as my primary ski, so I agree with the wisdom of going bigger. I just think the Aura may be difficult for her to ski at this point in her learning curve. The Queen seems much more user friendly. If I was to go this direction, do you all think a 163 would be the ideal size? Another thought- how about the softer, fatter skis such as the Salomon Scarlet? I guess these would lie somewhere between the Queens and the Aura for ease of use.
I am female, late 40s, just shy of 5'7" and weigh about 142 lbs., intermediate to advanced skier (have skied for 3 seasons so far) but not much powder experience to date. I ski Volkl skis here on the East Coast, but I couldn't find any good women's powder ski demos at Big Sky, so I bought the Solomon Scarlets at the end of last season to bring out West in February '08. I see that the Scarlets are available for $199 on sierrasnowboard.com. I bought them in 154 as I wanted a shorter ski for trees and the 164s would just be too burly for me. I haven't skied them yet but they got great reviews. The '08 graphic for the Scarlets is wierd -- I prefer the '07 graphic. They're also twin tips so it will allow me to play in the parks when I travel out West with them (I had them mounted 70% freeride and 30% park). And they have a blissfully short turning radius for trees and unexpected conditions.

I think of the Auras (great '08 graphic) as a ski for a very advanced, big mountain female skier. When I get to that point and want a ski with a huge turning radius to rip down long powder runs, I will get them in a longer length than my Scarlets....
post #78 of 82
yeah the funny thing about the aura is the Volkl Pro Women dont ski on that ski or the male mantra, they ski on gotamas or sumos.

the turning raduis of the aura is way to short for serious rippers.
post #79 of 82
"Serious", of course, being a relative term. Expert women typically ski on unisex models, don't they? For the rest of us aspiring rippers and park rats, the women's models offer a manageable ski, are easy to lug around since they're often lighter than unisex models, and we girlz just can't resist those pretty graphix.
post #80 of 82
Personally, I don't find the Aura overly stiff. Nonetheless, on stellar powder days last season, I skied Prior Doughboys and Pontoons. Admittedly, I haven't tried the Gotama, and I'm hardly a big mountain ripper anyway. On regular, moderate new snow and powder days, I thoroughly enjoyed the Auras.

BTW, the Aura has a bigger turning radius than the Nancy or the Scarlet. The Aura is 19m at 163cm, while the Nancy is 17m at 169cm and the Scarlet is 15.5m at 164cm.

IMO, the Nancy, the Scarlet, or the Aura are all good recommendations.
post #81 of 82
My wife has a similar profile to your girlfriend, and also skis the Sierra. She got 160 Phat Luvs in January 2006, and since then, it's been hard as hell to pry them off her feet. (At least until she tried the 158 Dynastar Exclusive Legend, at Jim's suggestion.)

Another nice option from Jim's discount list would be the Dynastar Exclusive Legend Powder.
post #82 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dorm57 View Post
I don't want to hijack this thread, but could use some help in the same vein as "Linds" questions. I'm looking for a set of skis for my daughter. The Volkl Aura may be just the ticket, but I thought it'd be nice to get some feedback. She's about 6'-1" ... 160lbs, and a very strong skier - probably a skill level of about 6-1/2 to 7. Her current setup is a pair of Nordica carving skis, which with east coast skiing she rips on, especially groomers.

We've a trip planned to Whistler in February, and just feel the need to move up into a pair of all-mountain skis. Can someone help me with the performance differences between the Aura vs the Dynastar Exclusive Legend. I understand the dimensional differences ... I'm more interested if someone has skied both pairs and has a performance opinion on both. I guess too, we're looking for more of an all around ski for both Rocky Mtn skiing, and East Coast skiing.

Me thinks, the Aura will be great for the Whistler trip, but not so great on boiler plate, East Coast ice, as compared to the Legend's narrower waist ... but what do I know. Your thoughts and opinions very much appreciated ....

I know I'm pushing it, but I wanted to get just a bit more advice on this. The consistent recommendation on the above was to grab either a pair of Volkl Auras or Queen Attivas.

My question is given the above quoted situation would Atomic Sweet Daddy's, Head Monster or possibly Rossi Scratch skis get the job done?

Thanks ....
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