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Ask a gaper: All-mountain skis

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
What is an all-mountain ski? I can understand the notion of an everyday ski. Its a ski that is good for every day use at a certain ski area. So you could have an every day ski for snowbird or a good ski for every day at 7Springs. But these two would certainly be different. Is the term all mountain similarly elastic or is an all-mountain ski one that is equally good on all mountains? If so isn't the term all mountain really a abused / misused term. If its not so, then iwhat does all-mountain mean and why is it so commonly used if the definition is its self unclear.

Let 'er rip. :
post #2 of 18
HeluvaSkier has a pretty good definition in his signature:

Quote:
All-Mountain: A common descriptive term for boots or skis that are designed to perform equally poorly under a variety of conditions and over many different types of terrain.
post #3 of 18
I have found my K2 Crossfires work quite well in powder and took them over some boiler plate in upstate NY awhile back (they are 68 under foot). They seemed to work well under both conditions. Did they work as well as a fattie or a race stock GS ski, probably not, but I felt comfortable on them in both instances and they were up the task.

I'd call it an all-mountain.
post #4 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by tromano View Post
What is an all-mountain ski? I can understand the notion of an everyday ski. Its a ski that is good for every day use at a certain ski area. So you could have an every day ski for snowbird or a good ski for every day at 7Springs. But these two would certainly be different. Is the term all mountain similarly elastic or is an all-mountain ski one that is equally good on all mountains? If so isn't the term all mountain really a abused / misused term. If its not so, then iwhat does all-mountain mean and why is it so commonly used if the definition is its self unclear.

Let 'er rip. :
It's technospeak for something we had 40+ years ago. Then it was called a "ski". You took your skis and you went skiing where ever whimsy took you. No excuses - if you couldn't float powder or edge ice, it was the pilot's fault.

Don't get me wrong, I love the specialized tools ... but, I'm just sayin' ...
post #5 of 18
A ski you can ski on piste and also take out in the backcountry and do well with. It is a versatile ski that would be wider than a groomer type ski. It can handle powder as well as a hard surface when necessary.

To some it could be any ski but it is meant to be a mid fat type of ski you could ski off piste with.
post #6 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by medmarkco View Post
It's technospeak for something we had 40+ years ago. Then it was called a "ski". You took your skis and you went skiing where ever whimsy took you. No excuses - if you couldn't float powder or edge ice, it was the pilot's fault.

Don't get me wrong, I love the specialized tools ... but, I'm just sayin' ...
ha! Not so long ago skis came two ways. S and GS. Some all mountains work better than others, though to do everything you have to give up excellence at the ends of the spectrum. Every now and then someone hits a home run and makes a great ski. I like today's Volkl Mantra, originally designed for pow, but I find it a great hard snow ski as well, and ski it on everything from Deer Valley marble to deep Alta pow . Others have their favorites. What I don't get is the proliferation of super fat pow skis that are useless on anything else. I wonder how many people have occasion to bag 3'+ freshies on a regular basis and even then a Gotama should do the trick.
post #7 of 18
All mountain skis are made for those of us who enjoy skiing the whole mountain, and then some. They are usually midfats with big sweet spots, wide enough for powder, flexible enough for bump performance, and still maintain a quick turn performance on groomed slopes.

A good all mountain ski should allow you to maintain a comfort zone within your abilities on any terrain without having to struggle to make them do what you are capable of doing, skiing anywhere, in all conditions, with ease and flare.

There are many out there and usually every major manufactured brand has one. My favorite over the past several years has been the Rossignol B2 in 176 length.
post #8 of 18
Marketing term. Snowbird vs. Seven Springs? A ski that is good for all of Seven Springs would not be good for all mountains. An All-mountain ski should be a reasonable choice for any type of terrain or conditions one would expect to encounter in the mountains. If Seven Springs was located on a mountain, an all-mountain ski would be a reasonable choice for skiing there.
post #9 of 18
Do you play golf with one club?
post #10 of 18
Hey Phil! how big is your golf bag?
If they made a perfect all mountain ski nobody would have a quiver (well, some people would...)
post #11 of 18
For me, an all mountain ski is the one I take for everything except the deep new freshie.
post #12 of 18
Most recreational skis are all mountain capable, but with a bias. The exception to this includes race skis or many (but not all) of the 95mm or wider skis. These skis are meant for specialized conditions and use.

Generally the better 66 to 80mm wide ski can be used as an all-mountain ski. These will often do better on groomed trails than if used in natural snow.

81mm and wider skis are often better in natural snow than on groomed slopes.

There are exceptions; several good skis, that are wider than 81mm, can absolutely hold an edge on ice; including the Head iM 82 or 88, the Volkl AC4 & Gotama, Dynastar Legend Pro and others.

These skis will require a good skier to accomplish this versatility and will feel slower edge-to-edge than a more narrow ski. They also will be reluctant to produce a tight turn.

Michael
post #13 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Crab View Post
ha! Not so long ago skis came two ways. S and GS.
In the recent past they were also available in SG, my former all-mountain ski (now replaced with '02 Volant McGs, an all-mountain ski for older slowed-down folks like me). Every ski is a compromise between high-speed stability and slow speed ability, hard-snow performance and soft snow performance. The All-mountain ski is in the middle of the range, equally good or bad at any of the extremes. Turn radius, flexibility, and width are the three main considerations that must be considered in your choice of all-mountain weapon of choice.
post #14 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost View Post
In the recent past they were also available in SG, my former all-mountain ski (now replaced with '02 Volant McGs, an all-mountain ski for older slowed-down folks like me). Every ski is a compromise between high-speed stability and slow speed ability, hard-snow performance and soft snow performance. The All-mountain ski is in the middle of the range, equally good or bad at any of the extremes. Turn radius, flexibility, and width are the three main considerations that must be considered in your choice of all-mountain weapon of choice.
Here is a great "weapon of choice"...
post #15 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post
Here is a great "weapon of choice"...

You know, that video is even better with a couple of vicodin under your belt ... (as I just discovered).
post #16 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post
Do you play golf with one club?
Seve Ballesteros used to play with only a 5 iron.

I have 2 all-mountain skis

East Coast: Dynamic VR 17 Slalom, 173cm

Every place but the east coast: Nordica Afterburner, 178 cm (I don't have this one yet, but after a demo from SierraJim, this is my next purchase)
post #17 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by tromano View Post
What is an all-mountain ski?
A marketing term in the ski industry.
post #18 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trotski View Post
A marketing term in the ski industry.
again labels are the only way to sell something new. This is the best answer in the thread.

well except for the weapon of the choice video, I see him and just think "I got a fever and the only cure is more cow bell"
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