Other than my race skis, My go to ski last two seasons was the Stockli Scot Schmidt. It has an 89mm waist and it is definitely more hard snow oriented. I love skiing Hunter mountain with it. I also ski weekdays only so I have the place to myself and can go fast without problems. I couldn't imagine skiing them on weekends. I can't see anything over 90mm being a realistic east coast ski. But we do have the heavy stuff and a good ski in that range is gold in those conditions.
The problems with skis like that is they don't like to go slow and will tire you out if you ski them slow or try and make tighter turns than they are designed for. I skied these on steep icy runs at whiteface and it was not the best use. But, they do bust crud like no other. (There are more user friendly skis hard snow oriented skis in the 85-90mm range that can be skied easier)
With all that said, I guess it comes down to the quote on one members signature (Can't remember who). It said some like "All Mountain - a ski that does everything equally poorly."
The problem with todays skis is that if you don't want an all mountain you will have to resort to several pairs of skis for different purposes or skis that serve your main purpose and sacrifice performance in other areas.
Even with several pairs of skis you can encounter different terrain on one run. Especially when you ski the larger mountains. I was at Whiteface last year and it was icy at the top and turned to heavy crud/chop about half way down. Reminds me of the cartoon with the guys carry a literal quiver on their backs. If I skied my GS skis I would would about bending them in the choppier (and bumpier) stuff and the schmidts aren't meant for the steep ice.
I think that is one reason why these 75-85mm midfats are so popular. The do kind of do it all.
I think the optimal scenario for a serious east coast skier that doesn't want several pairs of skis and doesn't want 1 pair of all mountain is to just go with 1 good carver and 1 good midfat (but more on the fatter side). Maybe a 70mm ish carver and a 85-90mm crud/chop/mashed potatoes snow......and rent out west for powder skiing!
The big fatties on the east coast is just a cool thing with the kids. There are a few days when they will work, but I still laugh when I see a 14 year old skiing a 130mm ski on a groomer......Get a snowboard!
Edited by johnnysdg - 7/17/10 at 8:04am