EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › First Year Skiier, Ski Model Question
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

First Year Skiier, Ski Model Question

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Hi All,
   First of all, thanks so much for all of the insight on this site/boards.  It's my first year skiing and I have taken some lessons and progressed nicely.  I am feeling pretty comfortable on the (easy) blacks found here in Northern Ohio/Peek n Peak.  I know that's not much to write home about (comparitively speaking to the skill levels of most of the people on these boards) but I was lucky enough to pick it up pretty easily, and am happy considering it's my first foray into this great world of skiing.

   With that said, I am getting the itch to buy some skis (and save on rentals) and I don't want to make a big mistake in buying skis that are too much for me to handle.  I want a nice all-mountain ski that I can grow (skill level) with.  These boards have had just about nothing but great things to say about the Head Monster IM 78 (Now Peak 78).  Are those too much for me to handle?  I have read that they are pretty forgiving considering their class, but just wanted to see what your thoughts are.  If that ski is too much, what do you all think about the Atomic Whiteout?  They are supposed to be a softer ski than the blackeye and have gotten good reviews from all that I've seen.

   If it helps, I am an athletic 27 y/o, 5'9, 185-190, and am looking to get 171's.

Thanks so much for all of your help, and I look forward to the days when I can help out with knowledge the way that you folks do.
post #2 of 14
I recently bought the IM78s (6'0, 160 lbs, about a level 7-7.5 skier I would say, 177cm for me) and love them, but I will say that they do need some speed before they will really do what you want them to do. The 171 is said to be a bit quicker to turn but less stable at high speeds (the 177 loves to rip it fast and will take it no problem). You'll want to demo it to see if it is a bit too much for you, and demo everything you are considering.

As you said, and I do not mean to say this in any way to trash you so please don't read it that way, you have really only been exposed to Peek n Peak and their 400 ft vertical. As such you might not be really sure of your current status and your needs when you start to hit bigger mountains. It might be best to stick with rentals for now until you start seeing some bigger terrain and can better assess your needs. I just remember when I started being able to ski the blacks easily at the small place I learned (Jack Frost in PA, about 800 ft vertical) feeling awesome and then I started going to VT/ME exclusively and realized I still had a lot to learn (still do). I would say I was not  in a position at that time to judge what skis would work for me.

Just my 2, granted most likely worthless, cents
post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks so much for the input. No offense taken.  I am definitely very new to this awesome pastime. While my skills are improving and I am happy with my progress only being on skis a handful of times,  I know I have miles and miles to go to get up to an advanced level (figuratively and literally).

Do you think it would be worthwhile to get a good pair of boots and then just use rental/demo skis until I progress? or (apologies for the noobie question) are boots something that gets dramatically upgraded as well? I have read that boots are the most important piece of gear that a skiier can own, and the rental ones aren't exactly top notch.

My fear is to buy skis and then progress past their capabilities too quickly, which is why I was thinking about the IM78, but you have a good point about hitting the slopes harder to assess my needs.

Thanks again
post #4 of 14
Hey, I just wanted to add my $.02 here.  I would definitely say you should buy a good boot and get it fit to you before you buy skis.  Owning a good boot will drastically increase your enjoyment of the sport and allow you to progress faster in your learning.  The reason for this is that a properly fit boot will allow you turn more efficiently, while keeping you comfortable.  See a reputable bootfitter, which may be tough out there (I've skied PnP multiple times since I went to school in western PA).  Next year look into renting skis for the year.  Most of the time they're brand new skis and they have an option to buy after you rent them for the year.  This way you won't have to commit to buying new skis every year.  Just my opinion, but it would seem this would all get you the best bang for your buck, and after another year skiing you'll probably have a much better idea where you are with your skills, and maybe you can buy a brand spanking new pair of skis for yourself.  Hope this all helped.  And above all, ski hard and love it.
post #5 of 14
I would absolutely recommend you invest in a good pair of boots as would almost everyone on the forum. Skis come and go, but a good pair of boots is absolutely essential. I learned this the hard way (story time!) I bought a pair of cheap boots about 3 years ago from a rental place, no fitting no nothing. About 2 years ago I lost a substantial amount of weight (~80 lbs) and my foot actually shrunk by a good size and a half, but as this happened over the course of a good 9 months I just went with thicker and more socks and for the last 2 years I was skiing on boots that turned out to be way to big for me. This year I put myself together a good kit to grow with (IM78), including a new pair of boots from a bootfitter that spent a good hr and a half with me that was a whole 3.5 sizes smaller (31 to 27.5). The difference was amazing! I could actually control things! I had grown so accustomed to having a pair so large for me that everything just worked better in boots that actually fit.

I would deff. recommend you invest in a good pair of boots now (it won't be cheap. I paid around $450 for my boots with inserts and fitting) and let the skis come once you are more skilled and know what type of skiing you want to focus on.

One last note, I too wanted to buy a bit above my current level to grow into the skis. I would say the IM78 is perhaps a half a level above me but will support skiing another level above that. I really can't say what it would feel like to a beginner, but just note that I bought it under the premise (after literally dozens of hours of research) that it was a bit above myself. So thinking about it, it might be a bit above you at this point, but take that with the largest grain of salt possible.

Hope I helped! If you have any questions feel free to contact me, but I am hardly an experienced/learned person by epicski standards.

Also, good luck and have fun!
post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks again guys.  You have been more than helpful for me as a learning skiier.  Luckily I have a pretty good shop within 15 minutes from my house with a master bootfitter and couple of certified "America's Best Bootfitters."  I think getting fitted for a good pair of boots is up on top of my to-do list.  My girlfriend and I are both learning how to ski, so your information is great to pass along to her as well, and we both appreciate it.

Although we are "stuck" here in Ohio (at least from skiing standards), there are 2 small "resorts" within 5 minutes of my house (only 240ft vert drop), so that's certainly better than nothing and should be a great place to master some techniques before venturing to the big stuff.

I will have to check around and see if there is a place to lease/rent skis for a year around here. I think that would be the perfect thing to do and a very cost effective way to learn and be able to have a ski commensurate with my abilities and then getting the higher level skis after next season.

Thanks again for the help!
post #7 of 14
 as other have said good boots first.

mud,sweat and gears in Ellicottville, Ny is probably the only good bet on this.


skiing mostly hardpack in the area the IM78 is not a bad choice but I feel you would be better served by the SS in a 165cm. Quicker edge to edge and better edge grip than the IM78.

when you start building a quiver you can go much wider than 78mm for your second ski then.
post #8 of 14
The Head Monsters are a good choice for a ski.  I've a pair of older IM-75's which I've rode on for a few years now and these are forgiving, stable and controllable, especially for most East Coast conditions.

If you can, you ought to rent and ride on a pair before you buy.
Edited by Dorm57 - 2/15/10 at 10:06am
post #9 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks so much guys.

I took the advice and got a good pair of boots.  Well at least I think they are good, and the bootfitter said that they were...and they felt 11,000 times better than the rental boots.  I got a great price on them, so I pulled the trigger.  They are Head 2009 Edge +11.

Now onto skis. There is a end of season package going on where you can get a pass for this year and next year combined for a very low price (a lot lower than just a pass for next year).  In order to add a rental on, it's an additional $160.  I figure I might as well get a pair of skis considering that I would be able to have something tangible and also travel to NY and PA for skiing without spening another 30 on rentals.

I assess myself at between a level 4-5 skiier at this point. I feel comfortable on most blues (the ones around here and PnP at least) and can control speed.  With the new boots I found it way easier than the rentals (which I now realized were a full size too big).

The guy at the shop said to never buy a beginner ski, but buy an intermediate or intermediate to advanced ski and have it for a few years until progressing to a better ski.

He also said to get something no wider than 75 as fatter skis are tougher for a beginner to get and keep on edge. Also to not stay between 160-165 in length. Thoughts?

With all that being said, do you guys have any recommendations for a good ski at a good price. Something that I won't ski out of, but won't crush me in the beginning?

Thanks again.
post #10 of 14
What part of Ohio are you in?
post #11 of 14
Thread Starter 
Cleveland/Akron Area
post #12 of 14
I am in Chagrin Falls. Check-out Geigers Ski and Sport Haus by the Falls
post #13 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks.  That is actually who gave me the recommendations and whatnot.  Great shop and even great people, but they have a fairly limited supply on hand and not exactly the best prices in the world, but that's the world of brick and mortar I suppose.
post #14 of 14

Good people indeed. I usaully deal with Gordon the owner or Jason for boots. Ask them about their demo's. I assume you get to BMBW most frequently. What ski do they want to give you on as a seasonal rental? Hopefully not something from the rental fleet. BMBW does do demo's as well. If you are headed to Holiday Valley check out Mud Sweat and Gears or Dekdebruns in Ellicottville. I suggest you demo  alot. Most shops will credit you the cost of demo's if you purchase from them. A seasomal rental might be a good short term deal but only if you are on a ski you like.

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 › First Year Skiier, Ski Model Question