I'll try to do a better job of explaining what I think is happening to me during mashed potato conditions. In all my posts, it seems I do a pretty poor job of articulating my thoughts. Usually, I'm worried about getting too technical or typing up some long winded posts.
I'll start with what I ski on and what I'm trying to accomplish. Usually, I ski on a pair of Volkl RTM 84's, 2014/2015 model. I'm about 5'7, the skis are 171's and are about the same height as me. They are fully rockered. When I put the bases of the skis together, there is no camber or space separating the bases of the skis. I have another pair of Volkl RTM 75's that are 173's. Tip and tail rocker, camber in the middle. For whatever reason, I tend to favor my 84's. Maybe it's the color, who knows. I ski equally as poorly or well on either pair.
So, what's happening to me during mashed potatoes? I mentioned in an earlier post that I like to go fast and try to carve my turns. That usually means lower edge angles and 15 to 30 degree turns. I do spend time practicing turn shapes of 45,60,90 and 110 degree turns. I understand that in order to carve a smaller radius turn I need to have good fore/aft and lateral balance skills, and in order to achieve higher edge angles to produce shorter radius turns, the key is progressive tipping of my inside ski and shortening or flexing that leg more heavily in contrast to my outside leg. The problem I experience with mashed potatoes, is that the snow is constantly displacing out from underneath me. It is an uncomfortable feeling when trying to ski at higher speeds, and part of my tracks look like low edge angle wide track steering, instead of the nice pencil thin tracks I'd like to be leaving behind. With the uncomfortable feeling of higher speeds due to the displacement of snow, I try to tighten up my turn radius, (high edge angles) and control my speed more. Here's where it all goes off the rails. The displacement of the snow becomes more pronounced and I find it difficult to remain available or as flexible at the ankle, knee and hip. A bad recipe to be sure. I'm not as well balanced once I start stiffening up the joints that are key to remaining balanced. I also think I start to push more against my outside ski in order to find a stable platform that just isn't there. Ultimately, I realize I suck and go back to steering my turns. I remain more square to my skis, which is intentional, and use gentle leg and foot rotation to make rounder turns to control my speed. I guess what I miss most is the more dynamic style that comes with carving, but narrow and wide track steering are fun too, but just not as much fun. That's just a personal preference.
I also realized that I made an expensive ignorant mistake when I purchased my boots, which are Fischer Hybrid vacuum fit with a 120 flex. The boot fitter I used really knew his stuff, but being the idiot I am, I told him the boots fit great. In my mind, I was recalling the cold feet I used to get back in the 80's and 90's,(and yes, I was a horrible skier who thought I was a good skier) before I took up skiing again a couple years ago. I thought I'd be doing myself a favor by leaving a little extra room for an additional pair of socks. I didn't realize how much better ski boots and ski socks had become. My feet may get a little bit cold when I've stayed out on the slopes for more than 3-4 hours on a low single digit or below zero day. Comfort wise, they are like a pair of bedroom slippers. Now, during certain variable snow conditions, I find my feet are getting slopped around on the inside of my boots. I have to stop frequently in variable snow in order to get my heel back where it belongs in the heel cup. I also find I have to crank down my buckles to lessen the effect of the sloppy foot syndrome. During normal snow conditions, this is rarely an issue.
Anyhow, if anyone has any thoughts on correcting my mashed potatoes carving dilemma, or if you think I've diagnosed my own issue with the pushing I think I may be doing, I welcome any comments or criticisms.