EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Demo advice needed... lots of it!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Demo advice needed... lots of it!

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
My wife is going to demo skis this weekend, in an attempt to figure out the following:

1. Ideal ski length for her (5'4" 140-ish lbs)
2. Ideal ski skill level (beginner/intermediate or intermediate/advanced)
3. Best brand for her needs

We're looking for advice on how to get the most out of the demo process, as there are some complications:

First - she's using snowblades, currently, so we have no frame of reference for what length/skill level ski she prefers! 

Second, we're not even sure of her skill level. She used to be "intermediate," but after years of not skiing, she is afraid of anything more than blues at this point. So, we're not sure if she needs a beginner/intermediate ski that matches her current "fear" and will help her learn again, or an intermediate/advanced ski that will allow her to grow once her confidence comes back. Same with length.

Three, we will be buying used skis, not the "new" models she will be demoing. Will demoing these new skis help us select an older (IE 2007) model? Not sure if the "feel" of a brand stays somewhat consistent, even across different models?

Four, we're not sure what style of ski is right. Right now she sticks to groomers, obviously, but as her skills improve, she's sure she'll want to explore the powder, which we have in the NW (especially Baker!) So, should she get some slightly-wider "all-mountain" ski? Or, will a ski like this slow her improvement on the groomers in the short term? 

Five, she's not in love with her boots. (We can't get both new boots and new skis though,  so we figured skis would come first, considering she has snow blades!) Is it even worth demoing new skis with old boots that aren't ideal? Should she just demo boots at the same time? Or, should she get re-"fit" for her current boots? (IE add a custom foot bed, etc?) Does this even make sense with older (2001-ish) boots? 

Argh - as you can see, lots of questions. I'm SURE the demo shop will have tons of advice, but I thought we should go in with at least SOME ideas of what might work for her. (And I'm a snowboarder, so I'm clueless about skis!)

Thanks in advance for ANY help! 
post #2 of 7
Thread Starter 
By the way - I realize this question is INSANELY long, so feel free to pick some little piece of it that you might be able to help with! 

Thanks
post #3 of 7
 If she's serious....  Get good boots that fit and use a good boot fitter from a reputable ski shop.  Buy a custom footbed as part of the boot fit.  It's worth it.  Your almost wasting your time skiing with out it.  Demo skis and buy old stock in the spring either at a shop or on E-bay.  Your feet is the best place to put your money.  Skis are easy to find and cheap in off season, either new, used, or demos.  You should have a good idea of what you want after demoing for a season.    
post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hmmm... that makes sense. We'll have to go check out some shops and see if we can't find a deal on boots... Thanks
post #5 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by tetonpwdrjunkie View Post

 If she's serious....  Get good boots that fit and use a good boot fitter from a reputable ski shop.  Buy a custom footbed as part of the boot fit.  It's worth it.  Your almost wasting your time skiing with out it.  Demo skis and buy old stock in the spring either at a shop or on E-bay.  Your feet is the best place to put your money.  Skis are easy to find and cheap in off season, either new, used, or demos.  You should have a good idea of what you want after demoing for a season.    




Quote:
Originally Posted by mofo83 View Post

Hmmm... that makes sense. We'll have to go check out some shops and see if we can't find a deal on boots... Thanks
 

Agree, if she's serious get her some good boots with a good fit.   You can rent/borrow/demo ski's any where and anytime until she has an idea what she likes and wants.  Unless you go into a ski shop just before Christmas and pay full retail (UGH) you can get beginner/intermediate skis for a good price almost anywhere.  BOOTS first !
post #6 of 7
While I agree with the boot advice I will attempt to answer some other questions anyway re the skis.  However if her feet hurt she will not have fun.  More importantly no rental boot ever fits like a boot that is selected by a competent boot fitter as most skiers generally pick the wrong size ....

1. Ideal ski length for her (5'4" 140-ish lbs)

I am guessing 150 cm would be a good starting point.  Dont buy anything over 5 years old (not a hard date) as the technology in older skis is different

2. Ideal ski skill level (beginner/intermediate or intermediate/advanced)

From your description an intermediate ski.  In the Head line in women's skis would be Cool One, Every One, etc...  I only quote Head because I know the brand.  If she is adequate on snowblades then she has decent balance and should pick technique up rather quickly compared to a beginner.  So not a complete entry level ski

3. Best brand for her needs

Any brand.  They all make good skis for this level of skier.  May seem odd as I am affiliated with Head but anything that makes her comfortable on the slopes and with skiing is good.


USED Skis

This time of year a lot of demos are for sale.  If she finds a pair that eases her fears and she likes odds are they are for sale or will be shortly.  You might even be able to reserve them with the shop for end of demo season.

Remember one duifefrence with used skis not from a shop - you may have to pay for a binding remount so expect to pay additional $40 or so on top of ski price.  With the demos may be included.

should she get some slightly-wider "all-mountain" ski?

I don't think so.  go for a carving ski as her described fear of the mountain is likely going to be worse on ungroomed conditions.  Again in head lineup (I apologise for that) the Every One is a bit more modern shaped and slightly wider than say the Cool One but would not really be considered wide.  The Wild Ones and some of the skis with over 75mm waist would be.

Hope this helps in some way.  Good fit in boots is extremely important.  Firstly it makes her feet more comfortable and therefore the day more enjoyable and secondly a poorly fitting boot does not contril the ski as well and makes the skiingless in control and therefore less enjoyable.

When my kids started skiing at age 2 the most important thing was to say "WHEE!" as they skied because all that mattered was that they enjoyed skiing.  They still do.

Mike
CSIA III
Head demo rep
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the advice! 

So, it looks like buying new boots is definitely step #1...

After that, it sounds like finding a proper ski for her skill level and height/weight should be the easy part! 

Thanks again...
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Ski Gear Discussion
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Demo advice needed... lots of it!