Background: I'm a 38 year old male, 5'8", 150 pounds. Used to be extremely athletic. I had years in college where I skied 90 days per season. I live in the Northeast, a stone's throw from Southern Vermont. I broke both legs in a car wreck early 20's, spent time in a wheelchair, learned how to walk again, and am active again (Race BMX bikes intermittently, etc), but my legs will never again be remotely strong. I'm about 50% of where I used to be pre-accident, and old age ain't helping. Pre-accident, I'd classify myself as an extremely advanced intermediate/ borderline expert.
Back in the day, I skied on 200cm Rossi 4G's and 185cm Dynastar Courses (the old chickenheart skis; gold with red tips). I was probably pushing my luck with the Rossi GS skis in the handling department, but as long as I didn't head for the bumps with them, I managed most terrain with nary an issue. The Dynastars were the best thing I'd ever skied- fast side to side, stable at speed, and they'd throw you into the next turn.
Fast forward to now:
I haven't been on skis for the last 6 years. I grabbed a pair of late 90's 185 Dynastar Vertical V8's (freshly waxed and sharpened) and went up to Mount Snow last Thursday. The Dynastars ended up in the back of the truck after two runs. I just couldn't turn the things (really couldn't flex them at all), and my legs were absolutely on fire. I went inside and rented a pair of their stocker rental shapes: 160cm Head Aliens and headed back for the lift. To say that it was a revelation would be the understatement of the year. You could tell that they needed wax in the worst way ever, their edge grip on ice was non-existent, and they chattered around at speed, but it was a hell of an upgrade over the OG skis that I fired into the back of my truck. I got a total of 5 runs in on the shapes, and I was toast. My legs were totally shot.
So, here's my dilemma:
I don't really trust my local shops to pick a good ski for me. The last time they did, I said that I wanted something that was like the Dynastar Courses above, and they put me on the Vertical V8's, which I thought were much too stiff (this was pre-leg breakage). I didn't like them then, and I sure as hell don't like them now. Demo'ing skis is not out of the question, but it's also not something that I think will happen enough for me to decide on something. At least not without having a short list of skis to walk in there with.
I'm hoping you guys can throw me some ideas. After this past Thursday, I think I'm pretty smack dab in the middle of the intermediate charts. I can say that unless I go down one accidentally, bump runs are a thing of the past. I might build up to single diamond steeps, but I honestly just want to go out there, have fun, and not get my ass kicked. I'm looking for a ski that is easy to turn, has good grip on the ice we see here in the Northeast, and something that I can go fast on every now and then without feeling like I'm in an old mining cart that's about to go off the rails.
Such a ski must exist- I'm hoping you guys can help me out. For what it's worth, I was screwing around on the Fischer website, and it pointed me towards 2011 Motive 74 or 2011 Motive 74SW in either 160 or 165. So I guess I'll start by asking about those.
Thanks in advance,