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Long break, Ski Recommendations??

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
First, this is my first post and I’ve been lurking here for quite awhile and finally registered. This site has already been a hugely valuable resource so thanks to everyone in advance.

I’ve exhausted the search function trying to find a post which will answer my questions. I found one post from an East coast member but it didn’t help much given he’s got me by 30 lbs and typical snow conditions differ. I’ll slip into my flame suit just in case I missed something in my searches…

About me:
-Age: 39
-Height: 6’1”
-Weight: 170lbs
-Current Ability: ~ level 7
-Where: West coast, mainly Tahoe and Mammoth
-Fitness: Excellent
-Current equipment: old school Volkl P10 SLCs, equally old San Marco race boots going to trash.
-70/30 on/off piste, maybe 60/40

My kids were born 8 years ago and I haven’t skied since. Over the last 8-10 years ski technology has passed me by. I now understand what my 75 year old father must feel like when it comes to computers!

Anyway, back in the day I was what I would consider a level 8+ skier. I could handle just about any run at any Tahoe resort with confidence. I never became really good at moguls and never really skied backcountry much. Given the GS race skis I think I did ok in moguls and powder but certainly did not approach the ceiling. My strength was high speed carving.

Fast forward to today. As good as the P10 SLCs were at their intended purpose today I have no interest in a ski that demands so much from the skier. The P10 was a high energy ski and rewarded aggressive skiing and punished sloppy technique.

Now I’m looking for a single quiver all mountain ski and I plan to demo as many skis as I can during my next few trips to mammoth. The problem is that with so damn many possibilities my head is spinning on where to start. I can’t possibly demo all these skis. So far my manageable list to demo consists of the following: Volkl AC50 and Mantra (maybe AC30), K2 Xplorer, Dynastar L8000/fluid and 4800, Head iM78, Rossi z9/10/11 and Fischer Watea 78 and 84. I want a ski that won’t kill me as I get back to form but will also still be appropriate once I’m back to form.

Hopefully I’ve listed all the necessary info the experts on here need to help out. Appreciate any feedback.
post #2 of 5
I'm a huge fan of Head skis -- they turn easily, have nice round, medium flexes but don't buckle when you're skiing hard. Great "technical development" skis for developing modern carving skills to a high level.

The im78 gets great reviews but, unless you seek out truly bottomless powder, also try the iSupershape and the iSupershape. Although they are narrow-waisted the big tips let you float up in moderate amounts of powder, and narrower skis are so great for moving edge to edge quickly.

Here's what ExpertSkier ([url=www.expertskier.com[/URL]) had to say about them:


"If you have well developed modern technical skills and spend most of the time on groomed, with some off-piste travel, this just might be the best ski ever made for you. Most shop testers found it challenging; our professional skiers absolutely love the Supershape. Be sure to test this one first if in any doubt. Great SR turns, holds well in 20m turns, wide tip even floats in the deep."

Note: I own some iSupershapes and they're the best I've ever skied.

iSupershape Magnum

"Almost as solid as the Supershape Chip, more nimble. Skis "lighter" than the Chip. Ice hold not quite as good (still good by any standard), quickness and rebound are almost in the same class as the original Supershape."

post #3 of 5
If you are skiing at Mammoth or Tahoe, you can easily go wider then the Supershape or supershape magnum which are really not "All-Mountain ski. They are much more hard pack oriented.

The supershape is a slalom sidecut ski, probalby too turny as an all mountain board and the magnum, although a good ski, I prefer the i.Supershape speed which has much better edgehold and is slightly narrower.

Both these skis and the SS speed are really groomer hardpack skis!

You should really consider 2 additional Head skis for the terrain and locations you ski!

#1. Head Monster i.M88.

One seemingly impossible-to-solve paradox of ski design has been an ultra-wide all mountain and big mountain ski that behaves like a GS or cross ski on the groomed. The 88 is a giant step toward the solution. This is a truly amazingly versatile ski and, along with Atomic's B5—a completely different kind of ski—contender for most versatile yet designed. It has superior float and yet could be used (by a good skier) to run GS.

#2 Head Monster i.m82

A home run for Head! Definite contender for Ski of the Year. Smooth, powerful, great stability and float, the 82 skis like a more narrow ski on the groomed and like a true plank in loose or deep snow. One of the most versatile skis we encountered. Does require strength, skills and energy. Likely to give the Monster 88 competition.

I am also a big fan of head ski after spending many years on volkl and Atomic.

One word of caution. to get the most out of head skis I would recommend skiing on a new pair should you purchase them and see how they perform. I have retuned all of my Head skis to a 1 degree base edge bevel and 3 degree side edge bevel. this has trnasformed these skis into absolutly top performing skis. The factory tune has too much base bevel and not enough side edge bevel IMHO and for my tastes. but you may love them as is, hence my recommendation to ski them and see what you think!

The above reviews are by same source as above poster used!

I own the Monster 88, the Head Mojo 94, The i.Supershape Speed (cheater Gs ski) and the i.SL Rd, (Race Stock slalom ski) Plus a slew of Atomics!

Any questions, Ask away!!!
post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 
Thanks guys I really appreciate the recs. Maybe I should try the iM82 first then... A lot of praise for the Head skis here on the boards. I'll see if I can demo the SS on the mountain or see if Footloose has them. Thanks and keep it coming. Much appreciated.
post #5 of 5
Within the width range of the im 82/88 here are a few other contenders that might be little easier to find than Heads.

Dynastar Mythic Rider
Blizzard Magnum 8.1 or 8.7
Nordica Afterburner or Jet Fuel
K2 Explorer

Within this short list there are skis that run from mild to wild with carvers and crudbusters included in the mix. You can drive yourself crazy in "Demoland" so stay focused, do 2-4 skis in a weekend and get it over with.

One good way to do this is start at one end or t'other of the aggressiveness scale and work up or down as needed.

For example....Start with the K2 Explorer, give it a few runs (6-8 or...??) and then evaluate. If you love it....buy it. If you think it is lacking something, go back to the demo shop and tell 'em what you want to be better or different. They can (should) tell you what the next step should be.

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