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All Mountain Ski 60/40 (170 or 177)

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

Looking for some expert advice.


Intermediate/Advanced looking for an all mountain ski.  Age 44, 190 lbs, 6 foot, weekend warrior type that is still looking for some excitement and adventure off piste, but usually finds my way back to groomers as my legs can't take too terrible a beating.  Grew up skiing 195 cm, then shifted to 188 with the K2 4.  Last couple years been skiing on 162 cm Ross Zenith Z5 (great ski on piste, but a bit too short and limiting off piste)


I will be skiing mostly Colorado and Lake Tahoe this year.  I am thinking of a few skis. 



1.  K2 Apache Xplorer 177 cm (should I go for the 170?)

2.  Atomic Smoke TI

3.  Sjolomon Xwing Fury

4.  Nordica Explorer


Something else to consider?  I want to stick around $600 (most likely last year's model new or used)


Based upon my age and not being in the best of shape, would I be better off with the 170 cm or 177 cm for most skiis?.  I still like to bust it up and haul ass.




post #2 of 18

First of all, I'm guessing you mean the Nordica Enforcer.  Second, the Atomic smoke ti is nothing like the others.  Its much narrower, among other things.  Some other skis to consider would be the Nordica helldiver CA, which can be found at a great price at starthaus.com, which is run by some guys on this site (SierraJim, Philpug), or the Fischer Watea 84/94, both well loved.

post #3 of 18

At 6', I would say something in the 177 range. We have a pair or two of the Watea 78's in the upper 170's left, but thats about it. 

post #4 of 18
Originally Posted by cdarling12 View Post

1.  K2 Apache Xplorer 177 cm (should I go for the 170?)



Not familiar with the other skis on your list. But this one I demoed in a 177 and 184 last season. Its a very easy going ski. 177 would not be too much I think. Its an all mountain cruiser type ski. Its a pretty versatile, and like most K2 its got a Cadillac ride. If you ski fast all the time or want something that's lively and playful look elsewhere.






post #5 of 18
Thread Starter 

I just saw the 177 and was surprised just how long they were.  I'm thinking 171 might be better for my legs and quick turns.  Do you think I'll be losing too much for going this size?

post #6 of 18

Don't read too much into the visual length. On-snow feel can't be predicted just by looking at the size of the ski in a shop. The Watea series--at least the 77 and 84 I have tried-- are not demanding skis and are a bit on the softer side. They are not noodles but they ski realtively light and have really light swing weight. I would worry more about going too small than too large. At your size, a 170 length Watea 77 probably is going to easily wash-out on hard stuff.

post #7 of 18

I'm looking for similar but I'm much larger sized 6"5 and 240. What length should I shoot for?

post #8 of 18
Originally Posted by lsfeagle View Post

I'm looking for similar but I'm much larger sized 6"5 and 240. What length should I shoot for?

Depending on how stiff the ski is......184 (or so)



post #9 of 18



Do you have anything at the store that might interest me?

post #10 of 18
Originally Posted by lsfeagle View Post



Do you have anything at the store that might interest me?

Funny you should axe....................................


Sure....we carry 13 brands and about 80 models between Unisex and Women's. We should be able to somethin' for ya. Why don't you check out the reviews in these two threads to get an idea of the lay of the land and to see if anything sounds like you. Obviously these were written with the western skier in mind but many of the skis (especially in the "crazy 88's") are great choices for an Eastie as well.







post #11 of 18

Thanks Jim. I have skiied the AC 30 for a few years (rented). Really liked the ski. I'm a fairly big guy at 6"5 240. I tend to do the groomers and the soft stuff, but stay away from the moguls. Very rarely off piste. I'm an intermediate skiier but learning to challenge myself and try new things. I have family members that really like the Scott Crusade and also the Fischer Cold Heat.

post #12 of 18

So which of the skis in the crazy 88's reviews sounds the best so far?



post #13 of 18

I think the Sultan, the AC 50 and the Fischer Motive look like what I'm looking for. Also the Rossi's S86.

post #14 of 18

Hi guys, I'm in much the same boat as the OP except that I'm 26 and 5'10 165#. I've been out of skiing for a while but learned from an early age on the icy slopes of Minnesota so it shouldn't be too hard to shake off the rust. I was pretty aggressive back when I was young and thought I was invinceable (funny that my skiing days ended when after breaking my collarbone going off a jump...). It will take me a few days to get back into the swing of things, but I'd classify myself as an advanced intermediate with rapid growth potential. I'll probably start out on groomers but definitely want to explore off-piste.


Anyway, I just moved out to Portland and am looking for to start out with an all-mountain ski suited for the heavier snow and variety of conditions they get out here. I'm really excited to get back into the sport and need a ski that won't be unmanageable from day one but won't limit me once I get my mojo back. I may eventually add to the quiver, but for now I'm looking for a daily driver that will never fail to give me at least adequate performance in most conditions (I can demo if there's 3 feet of snow..). Budget is also a consideration as I expenses are tight after moving across country and getting a season pass! I've mostly been looking to find something gently used or a new model from a past year on ebay. Skis I've seen that seem like potential fits that I've seen available on the market are:


Fischer Cold Heat

Elan Magfire 14

Dynaster Legend 8000

K2 Apache Recon


and possibly the Line P90 or Flite, if I can find a good deal on them. I'm guessing I'd need a length of about 170cm would fit me, give or take a few. I'm not going to be as agressive a skier as I was in my younger days but I'm still a strong, athletic person who will, once I shake the rust, like to enjoy some speed and eventually sample some off-piste terrain. I dug my old skis out of storage and they were actually a few inches taller than I am now (and I skiied them at 13-14) so I'm guessing they're 175ish. I don't recall having any issues handling them. Does 170cm sound about right for a mid-fat all-mountain?


Is there one off that list that you experts think seems particularly well-suited to my situation or any that I left off that you'd highly recommend? I'm definitely open to suggestions. Thanks in advance - you guys are great (I looked around the forums but haven't seen any posts that answer my questions for my circumstances).

Edited by Xand - 11/5/10 at 4:40pm
post #15 of 18
Originally Posted by Xand View Post

Fischer Cold Heat


I ski a 2009 Fischer Cold Heat 176 and like it a lot. However, it is a stiff and heavy ski that is probably more suited for someone taller and heavier (6' 0", 220 lbs.) This ski really needs to be 'pushed' to get the most out of it and while it does great on packed snow, ice and crud (it never seems to run out of grip and blows right through chewed-up snow), it doesn't really have enough float for powder or the quickness to ski bumps.


Some other skis to consider, based on frequent recommendations here - Dynastar Sultan 85, Fischer Watea 84, Volkl AC50 (also a stiff, heavy ski).

post #16 of 18
Originally Posted by lsfeagle View Post

I think the Sultan, the AC 50 and the Fischer Motive look like what I'm looking for. Also the Rossi's S86.



Of the four you listed, three are in the "middle ground" that is to say that they offer a broad spectrum of capabilities without specialization. One of the four (AC-50) is rather significantly hard snow oriented. At least when compared to the other three, the Volkl is the best on very hard hard snow. OTH, the Rossi, Dynastar and Fischer are better at other (mixed) conditions and they are easier to ski.


I'd say that if your skiing is mostly groomer oriented and you like stiff powerhouse skis, the Volkl is the better call of those four. If you want to ski more varied terrain and snow conditions, or want a somewhat easier skiing ski, then one of the other three is a better bet.



post #17 of 18

If you're considering a mid 80s wasted midfat ski you are doing yourself a major disservice by not trying a Magnum 8.1

or Magnum 8.7 from Blizzard.  They're in my opinion the most versatile mid-fat on the market today.  They are relatively

soft, similar to a K2 or Dynastar but have more edge grip then even a Volkl.  With the combination of vertical sidewalls and

the wider Jester style bindings you don't get a better mid-fat, period.  K2s are great. They're easy to ski but they have

a serious speed limit and provide no feedback whatsoever.  The Dynastar/Rossi midfat skis are decent but the bindings make

them ski almost wider than their width.  Don't even bother with a Salomon.  They have made advances in the recent years

by actually building their skis out of wood and maybe even throwing some metal in. However, the skis often come so messed

up from the factory that they rarely ski well out of the wrapper and require some major grinding to get flat.  Volkls have been

the benchmark over the last few years but personally I find them very stiff.  They ski great on groomers for their widths but the

stiffness leads to a really unforgiving ride off piste.  They're very planky.  Fischer and Atomic make great skis, good luck

finding a Fischer.  Your best bet would be the Atomic Crimson or Blackeye or Blizzard Magnum 8.1 or 8.7.  The Blizzards

will have better performance on groomers while the Atomics will be better off piste.  Both skis are relatively soft but have all

the stability and edge grip you could ask for on hard snow.

post #18 of 18

Thanks for the info guys, it's really good stuff.


I'll keep an eye out for the Blizzards. Not sure if they'll be in my price range, although if the 8.1s are cheaper than the 8.7s there might be some good deals out there.


Also, TD has a sweet deal today on a pair of last year's Rossi S6 Caballero's in 174 CM. I've never skied anything that fat (110 mm) but I'm sure I'd get the hang of it quickly. People absolutely rave about it in reviews and make it sound like it skis groomers surprisingly well for something so fat so it can really tackle a variety of conditions Do you guys know much about that ski? Would something that fat be good for the wetter conditions we get in the PNW? I like that I would be able to take it to Tahoe to ski with my cousins when it dumps down there as well.

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