school me on skis and boots

Incider

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May 20, 2011
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Hi all.

Need help on picking some skis.

Why? Well with a timid beginner wife and 4 year old daughter and 6 week Canada trip coming up, I figured on those less than perfect days I'd leave the board behind and jump on some skis with the family.

I learnt to ski on trips at 13 and 14 but changed to the board at 15 and haven't really skied since.

I'll be at my fighting weight of 94kg and 174 cm come Christmas.

I guess I want something to bash pistes really. Not interested in terrain parks and if it's a deep day I'll be on my board.

Any suggestions on size , brand, model? From my research 160 cm long with an 80 mm waist looks about right? Agree?

Whilst initially thinking I would buy them in Calgary, we have limited time there (1 day) that is best spent sight seeing, so thought I'd buy online (my local bricks and mortar stores in Brissie have bugger all range). Any recommendations for online retailer?

I'll buy boots locally.

I figure, buy the skis first, take them in for the boot purchase and get everything set up correctly then???
 

teleroo

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Trend is towards wider skis these days. 90-99 mm wide all mountain skis make good general purpose skis imo. But if twin tips go a little longer as effective edge is a little less. I've got some 98mm Armada ARVs I like, have served me well.
 
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chriscross

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I would agree, try on some boots here, if possible. Find the right ones to take. After some research and suggestions, like that of the knowledgeable teleroo, above, aim to buy skis over there.
 
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BoofHead

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I’m in Bris and have a few pair of skis that would get you buy that you can borrow if you like.
some twinnies or some all mountain carvers.

160 is too short for 94kegs IMO. I was 95 on my last trip and I’m on 184-191 skis. Something around 175 -180 would be my thinking. Depends on the type of ski though For-example,I have some NordicaHotRods at 170 which would suit for caning around on piste but twinnies are more forgiving if youre cruising around with a beginner or youngster ie easier to ski backwards and slow. PM me if you want to have a look at my ski stash. Cheers
 
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Sbooker

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I’m in Bris and have a few pair of skis that would get you buy that you can borrow if you like.
some twinnies or some all mountain carvers.

160 is too short for 94kegs IMO. I was 95 on my last trip and I’m on 184-191 skis. Something around 175 -180 would be my thinking. Depends on the type of ski though For-example,I have some NordicaHotRods at 170 which would suit for caning around on piste but twinnies are more forgiving if youre cruising around with a beginner or youngster ie easier to ski backwards and slow. PM me if you want to have a look at my ski stash. Cheers
Nice @BoofHead
Great idea for a thread actually.
“Skis to borrow”.
 

Any

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I'd recommend you get boots, and rent skis.

Its always boots first. Even when buying skis you do boots first. This is because when you get bindings mounted you want to know the boot size, sometimes you need to take into account the boots even for rental bindings.

Boot sole length (BSL) is also the first thing a rental shop will ask you.
Get boots first.

Skis are very personal, you either click or you don't, so I'm always very hesitant to recommend a specific ski to someone.
There's nothing like having your own new springy responsive skis with lightweight non rental bindings that flex properly. No need to worry about the rental shop having what you want. You get to spend time together and get to know her every nuance and reaction to your inputs and eventually ski as one without needing to think. No rental ski will ever come close.
But it would really suck to drop $1500 on a pair of skis that you hate and regret purchasing, and probably mean that you'll never ski again. Not to mention the extra baggage weight.
Until you know what you want, the latter is far more likely.

If you rent skis, and don't like them, you blame the rental guy for hooking you up with bad skis (regardless if its their fault or not), and swap them for another model (many (most?) rental shops allow you to swap between models whenever you like). As a bonus you get to sleep around and ride several pair and get an idea of what you do and don't like.

I feel wider skis are generally easier to ride (to a point), and if you're overseas with soft snow you can get away with a bit of waist on them. I agree with the suggestions for 90-100mm range.

While it is true that shorter skis are easier to turn, you will regret having purchased a pair and will quickly improve beyond them. I did this in my 20's, and while they falsely improved my skiing in the short term I regretted buying them in the long term and had to un-learn some bad habits.
I'd suggest you start at around 169cm (-5cm ) and work up to something around your height eventually. Or just stay at -5cm, penis length is no longer linked to ski length, so no need to go longer for the sake of a number.
Twin tips and early rise / rockered skis make the effective edge shorter, and perhaps you can go a little longer, but you also need to take into account the increased swing weight and extra stiffness for the length combined with your unpracticed technique that could mean you struggle getting them around or just hurt yourself trying.

The rental shops in the area should have a wide range of ski lengths, with waists suitable for the snow that they experience.
Do some research of what's around. They shouldn't be more than a couple of seasons old, otherwise they're probably janky old crap, and should have a variety of brands and models and options for all mountain, pow, park, race, etc. "Demo" means that they should be almost brand new, this year's model. But be prepared for any rentals to be scratched, it just happens. Sometimes my brand new skis are scratched in my ski bag before they've seen snow for the first time. I still have to remind myself of this when I'm repulsed by rentals with only a couple of scratches on them.
 

Legs Akimbo

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For some reason the idea is unfashionable here, but I am a big fan of buying where you ski. With boots you can have the fit adjusted after a day or 2 or 3 skiing. For skis you can actually experience what the skis feel like on snow. If your main fun is boarding this might not be practical as taking up too much time.
 

linked recoveries

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You can imagine what any ski will be like, but you can't really know if you like them 'til you try them.

Work with a good boot fitter once you're over there and buy good boots. Read up on that process beforehand. Go for something reasonably closely-fitted as the liners will pack out a little in the first few days of skiing. The fitter will no doubt promise to tweak them for you thereafter, if need be, and there's a lot of value in that.

Take the opportunity to demo skis in the first few days once you have your ski legs working. You'll start to identify the type of skis you're liking in terms of length, waist width, construction, rocker profile, suitability for the local conditions, etc. and then you'll find a pair that you click with straight away. That's usually where you find yourself at the bottom of the run and you haven't given the skis a second thought on the way down.

Sounds like one heck of a trip.
 
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Annabuzzy

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If you’re there for 6 weeks spending 3 days demoing and just accepting the extra expense of buying on mountain os probably worth it.

And yes get boots with a footbed first.

As for skis I’m torn between steering you to the ubiquitous circa 88mm underfoot ski, or a circa 100mm underfoot ski. The reason I am torn is that the 88cm or so ski is perfect for a piste skiing preference but with the flexibility to take off piste, so meets the stated brief. But over 6 weeks your skiing is likely to improve enormously. There’s every chance you’ll be wanting to explore more off piste options later in your trip. If that involves fresh snow the extra width will be handy. The 100mm will be fine on piste later in the trip when you’ve improved, but the width will be a hindrance early, when that will be an impediment to learning to carve.

On balance I’d go the 88. If you can afford it maybe in week 4 you’ll pick up a second wider pair!!! :)

As for specific brands I just can’t say, because your preferences are personal. A “middle” ski may be a K2 Mindbender 89ti, a Nordica Enforcer 88, or a Salomon Stance 90. Best to demo though of you can. Maybe even rent a ski week one, demo in week two, and then buy. Your skiing will go in leaps and bounds that first little while and what you like day 1 you may not like as much day 21.
 

Incider

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Some fantastic advice here. Thanks.

I think given everything said above, we have 8 days in Banff to start, so will buy boots there, rent skis over the course of that week, perhaps increasing length and waist over the week. Depending on how that goes I can then purchase at our next stop in Golden, or the one after that, Revy, or when we get to SP.

Either way no rush, albeit, buying in Banff after renting for a week could be the most economical if I find the right rental shop that will deduct rental off the purchase price.

Just gotta be patient now and hope I don't get carried away on an online store sale!
 
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Incider

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May 20, 2011
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I’m in Bris and have a few pair of skis that would get you buy that you can borrow if you like.
some twinnies or some all mountain carvers.

160 is too short for 94kegs IMO. I was 95 on my last trip and I’m on 184-191 skis. Something around 175 -180 would be my thinking. Depends on the type of ski though For-example,I have some NordicaHotRods at 170 which would suit for caning around on piste but twinnies are more forgiving if youre cruising around with a beginner or youngster ie easier to ski backwards and slow. PM me if you want to have a look at my ski stash. Cheers
That is an amazingly generous offer! Very kind of you. Thanks!

I could never take up such as offer as I hate it when people break my stuff - and gear can get knocked around in transit, trees, apres, etc.... it would ruin my holiday knowing I was returning gear in worse condition in which it was borrowed.

And again, thanks for the offer.
 
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Incider

One of Us
May 20, 2011
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438
263
I'd recommend you get boots, and rent skis.

Its always boots first. Even when buying skis you do boots first. This is because when you get bindings mounted you want to know the boot size, sometimes you need to take into account the boots even for rental bindings.

Boot sole length (BSL) is also the first thing a rental shop will ask you.
Get boots first.

Skis are very personal, you either click or you don't, so I'm always very hesitant to recommend a specific ski to someone.
There's nothing like having your own new springy responsive skis with lightweight non rental bindings that flex properly. No need to worry about the rental shop having what you want. You get to spend time together and get to know her every nuance and reaction to your inputs and eventually ski as one without needing to think. No rental ski will ever come close.
But it would really suck to drop $1500 on a pair of skis that you hate and regret purchasing, and probably mean that you'll never ski again. Not to mention the extra baggage weight.
Until you know what you want, the latter is far more likely.

If you rent skis, and don't like them, you blame the rental guy for hooking you up with bad skis (regardless if its their fault or not), and swap them for another model (many (most?) rental shops allow you to swap between models whenever you like). As a bonus you get to sleep around and ride several pair and get an idea of what you do and don't like.

I feel wider skis are generally easier to ride (to a point), and if you're overseas with soft snow you can get away with a bit of waist on them. I agree with the suggestions for 90-100mm range.

While it is true that shorter skis are easier to turn, you will regret having purchased a pair and will quickly improve beyond them. I did this in my 20's, and while they falsely improved my skiing in the short term I regretted buying them in the long term and had to un-learn some bad habits.
I'd suggest you start at around 169cm (-5cm ) and work up to something around your height eventually. Or just stay at -5cm, penis length is no longer linked to ski length, so no need to go longer for the sake of a number.
Twin tips and early rise / rockered skis make the effective edge shorter, and perhaps you can go a little longer, but you also need to take into account the increased swing weight and extra stiffness for the length combined with your unpracticed technique that could mean you struggle getting them around or just hurt yourself trying.

The rental shops in the area should have a wide range of ski lengths, with waists suitable for the snow that they experience.
Do some research of what's around. They shouldn't be more than a couple of seasons old, otherwise they're probably janky old crap, and should have a variety of brands and models and options for all mountain, pow, park, race, etc. "Demo" means that they should be almost brand new, this year's model. But be prepared for any rentals to be scratched, it just happens. Sometimes my brand new skis are scratched in my ski bag before they've seen snow for the first time. I still have to remind myself of this when I'm repulsed by rentals with only a couple of scratches on them.
Given I'll be renting about 22nd Dec any current season demo's are hopefully still in pretty good nick
 
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BoofHead

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That is an amazingly generous offer! Very kind of you. Thanks!

I could never take up such as offer as I hate it when people break my stuff - and gear can get knocked around in transit, trees, apres, etc.... it would ruin my holiday knowing I was returning gear in worse condition in which it was borrowed.

And again, thanks for the offer.
No worries . However, if the skis never came back it wouldn’t worry me, I have lots. A carton of beer for a non return or if you decided to keep them would cover it. Most have rental bindings so easy to adjust. Offer is open if you change your mind.
as mentioned By others, boots are the key piece of kit. Skis are easy to adjust to but not so for crook boots.

also, checkout the Mantras my mate has for sale in Equipment sale thread. Great skis with touring bindings. Genuinely surprised nobody has grabbed them yet.
 
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