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Where to start with XC skis?

Discussion in 'Backcountry' started by CarveMan, Jul 4, 2018.

  1. CarveMan

    CarveMan Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Just thumbing through the Fischer catalogue that's on my desk and am pondering getting an XC setup just to pootle around on the Buller tracks, is the first question I need to ask whether I go for Classic or Skate?

    I've done very little XC before, just Classic, but plenty of AT touring and I think I'd use an AT rig for any adventuring so this would just be used on the groomed trails.

    What should I be looking for? Aim is for fitness and something to do on poor weather / crowded days.
     
  2. skifree

    skifree grey Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Start with classic.
     
  3. Untele-whippet

    Untele-whippet beard stroker Ski Pass: Gold

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    Splitboard bro.
    Efficient for classic or skate.
    What other answers do you seek?
    .............. or for Buller poor weather days, canadian vs kayak.
     
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  4. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Xc with baby.....
     
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  5. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    ‘Having a baby won’t change us’

    Nekt minute he’s on Cross country skis.
     
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  6. absentskier

    absentskier Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    LOLLOL
     
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  7. teckel

    teckel Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Come up to LM, stop by, hire some skates and see if it's for you. Easiest to try at somewhere like LM before you commit to anything. Gotta be super fit for skating.
     
  8. Boodwah

    Boodwah One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    I’d go straight to skate. Steeper learning curve, but you’ll only end up there anyway. Better for fitness.
    If you’re getting some cheap then get in touch with me, I’d like some new ones after my dog ate my regular skating skis.
    Also want to get kids up skating.
     
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  9. Seth

    Seth Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yeah. I have a classic set up and while I don’t use it much these days would recommend going straight to skating.
     
  10. Untele-whippet

    Untele-whippet beard stroker Ski Pass: Gold

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    NNN, SNS, wax, waxless, lycra, phoque
     
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  11. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend Ski Pass: Gold

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    LOL
     
  12. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend Ski Pass: Gold

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  13. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Or you could play more golf
     
  14. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    LOL LOL LOL LOL
    @CarveMan

    Maybe you should buy a place in Marysville?
     
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  15. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Pass the butter Ski Pass: Gold

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    Classic is a shed tonne easier to do than skate. Skate requires a certain level of balance, technique, fitness and momentum. If you don't have the first three your never going to maintain enough momentum to avoid being in a world of pain (unless your looking for a world of pain, then go for it). Skating effeciently on nordic skis is nothing like skating on alpine gear, you won't be at any advantage.

    With classic you need just as much skill to be effecient, but you don't need the momentum, so it is possible to just pootle around.

    I'm not sure you've figured out what you want yet so I'll offer the answer to some common wants from Nordic skiing.

    Do you want to do the dad thing with your kid = Classic
    Do you want to something fun and active when the resort is poor = classic
    Do you want to do the ski instructor thing and get technically good = classic (I've met very few people who are good skaters who didn't start with classic)
    Do you want a crushing aerobic workout without much return in distance travelled until you develop the minimum balance and technique = Skate

    I'd recommend having a chat with Danny Monohan.
     
  16. teckel

    teckel Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Errrr. You've swung by my shop, as has Carveman. :p
     
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  17. TOFF

    TOFF Im kind of a big deal Ski Pass: Gold

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    I have and recommend to everyone, you have a great shop and provide incredible service.
    Was stirring carveman. ;)
     
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  18. CarveMan

    CarveMan Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    I know Danny well so I will do that - and yes it's looking like Classic to start with.
     
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  19. Seth

    Seth Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    What size boots do you wear?
     
  20. Whatever really

    Whatever really Addicted

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    Start with bum bag and go from there. ;)
     
  21. Moondog55

    Moondog55 One of Us

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    Whatever happens to be cheapest the day you walk into a shop with money in your hand?
     
  22. skifree

    skifree grey Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Except you very likely will get what you pay for.
     
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  23. RTL

    RTL Hard Yards

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    My 2c worth is get some light touring skis with a pattern base. If you are use to an alpine set up, it will make the transition to XC a lot easier. For example https://www.fischersports.com/au_en/adventure-56-5799 . Versatile enough for a trip out to Stirling and back. Light and narrow enough to fit in set tracks should you go on nordic trails with groomed set tracks. Nordic camber for good kick and glide.
     
  24. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Pass the butter Ski Pass: Gold

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    Light touring gear isn't an unreasonable choice, especially if you'd like to do some venturing away from the groomed trails.

    If you don't plan on asking away from the groomed trails metal is desperately slow and will significantly reduce your effeciency.

    I have both options in my quiver and appreciate both. But using metal edges skis on groomed trails is like driving a Patrol in the inner city.
     
  25. CarveMan

    CarveMan Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    I’m the guy who did a lap of lake mtn on Gotamas.
     
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  26. chriscross

    chriscross One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Do they groom the Buller xc trails for skating? Hard work on skate skis if ungroomed. Maybe best to hire some classic skis, then try skates at LM and work on technique.
     
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  27. Richard

    Richard Maintenance Dept Administrator

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    So... this make realise I don't actually know the difference between 'classic & 'skate' I've been on weird thin skis with no fixed heel out back of Falls & Perisher maybe a dozen times (mostly in the mid 90's) I presume I was using 'classic' ??

    For us numpties, what is the one or two things with the equipment that defines the difference?
     
  28. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Pass the butter Ski Pass: Gold

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    No reason to be that dumb twice.
     
  29. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    I'll pay money to see @CarveMan in XC lycra , sunnies outside his headband.......

    actually , no I take that back
     
  30. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Pass the butter Ski Pass: Gold

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    The technique defines the difference. Classic is like walking and skating is like, well, skating. The equipment is generally very specialised however. You can classic on skate skis without grip wax up gentle inclines with good enough classic technique. You can skate on classic gear with grip wax or scales but it is painfully slow and sucky.

    You would have been on metal edged light touring equipment. The boots, bindings and skis would have been heavier than gear designed to be used on groomed trails, but the technique would have been fundamentally similar.
     
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  31. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Pass the butter Ski Pass: Gold

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    I'd buy that for a dollar.
     
  32. CarveMan

    CarveMan Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Hey it was May and I needed a fix!
     
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  33. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    We were talking about it in this household last night.
    Perisher could be ideal for XC.(and snow shoes and ice skating)
    Yet the resort doesn't promote it at all
     
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  34. CarveMan

    CarveMan Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Actually now that I think about it we said hi to @teckel on the way up and she offered to lend us the right gear and we declined!
     
  35. skifree

    skifree grey Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    It’s in the brochure but that’s all they do. To them it’s black hole for money with no measurable return. But their happy to piggyback off the Perisher XC trails existance and community.
     
  36. Donzah

    Donzah Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Not everyone can afford to alpine ski, nor do they want to.
    Yet many want to get out and enjoy the enviroment.
    Its such a waste of opportunity.
     
  37. Snowy Joey

    Snowy Joey One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    NNBC binding on a classic was my preference with kids.
     
  38. Mister Tee on XC Skis

    Mister Tee on XC Skis A Local Ski Pass: Silver

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    Here is my 5 cents worth as a learner XC / BC XC skier who has little or no interest in ski lifts and /or down hill resort skiing.
    I am learning Classic XC ski technique/s but my goal/dream is BC XC skiing and ski touring the BHP from hut to hut. Skiing on groomed Nordic skiing surfaces is easier with skinny classic XC skis. However once you leave the groomed surfaces they are not much use at all.
    Even Lake Mtn. Has a couple of Ungroomed trails where Skinny classic skis would be an ordeal to ski on.
    So while my BC XC skis don't fit into the track groomed for classic XC skiers and the metal edges are sometimes not required one does encounter very icy groomed terrain where the metal edges are useful.

    I may wind up getting a skinny ski set up for the groomed ski trails but for now I am using NNN BC Magnum manual bindings, matching free heel Nordic boots and Madshus Epoch skis with a pattern base and metal edges. I would imagine putting skins on and off all day would be a P.I. T. A. so the pattern base skis are so useful for short hopping up slopes and so on. I have not tried it but ,You would have trouble , I would guess ,carrying an overnight pack on skinny skis. They are like toothpicks.
     
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  39. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum Ski Pass: Gold

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    This is lack of technique, IMO.
     
  40. Zimbooo

    Zimbooo One of Us

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    Gave you the info long ago................don't need snow.
    https://www.fischersports.com/au_en/nordic_/highlights/rollerski
     
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  41. teckel

    teckel Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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  42. currawong

    currawong Old but not so Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Really proficient skaters love to go touring when there is a freeze and they can just glide all over the BHP.

    I'm a total numpty at XC. I find out extremely difficult to hold a snowplough or traverse on hardback without metal edges. Even if it's groomed, if it's really solid it is a struggle to herringbone or plough.

    Serious XC skiers almost all skate. A side effect of that is that groomers may not bother to set classic tracks in some places, and skaters sometimes obliterate them anyway.

    If you want to pull a pulk then some metal edges wouldn't go astray either. There are some pretty fancy pulks out there that convert from prams and bike carriages

    [​IMG]
    IMHO it's pretty good to start on part metal edge classic skis that are still skinny enough to fit a track. Then decide which directions you want to go in: classic track, tour, skate.
     
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  43. Seth

    Seth Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    I wonder if they have these with a fat bike connector. Hmmmmm. n+1.
     
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  44. currawong

    currawong Old but not so Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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  45. Ziggy

    Ziggy A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Skating is full on, you're either doing it or stopped. It can be superb gliding for metres on one push. But you're pretty much confined to manicured snow.
    Proper Classic requires fitness and technique too - diagonal stride when in the tracks - but as TP posted the skis allow you to walk if you feel like it.
    Doesn't take long though to tire of the scenery around your local trails and feel the yen to go offtrail. Then light tourers come into their own. After AT gear you'd probably find them sinfully light.
     
  46. Majikthise

    Majikthise Sage Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    @Kieran had something along these lines IIRC
     
  47. Snowy Joey

    Snowy Joey One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    We made a ski pulk out of a bike trailer for ours when they were little, and too big for the pack. worked a treat.
     

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  48. Mister Tee on XC Skis

    Mister Tee on XC Skis A Local Ski Pass: Silver

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    Some forum members have reported seeing people on classic skinny skis out past Mt McKay . That is impressive . They must be VERY good at skiing because that is steep BC terrain. So perhaps there is something in what you say. However mere mortals can make life easier for themselves if they pick the right kit.
     
  49. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum Ski Pass: Gold

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    Lots of people are all over the place on classic XC skis. You don't have to be "very" good. You need a solid basic technique on flats, uphill and downhill. Metal edge skis and cable bindings are useful. With those things you can cover a lot of ground off groomed trails.

    This is the problem with an enthusiastic beginner spraying "advice" all over the place without qualifying it by revealing their inexperience. If the "advice" is not revealed as what it is people may follow it.
     
  50. sbm_

    sbm_ One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    I vote skating, but I guess when I go XC skiing, I want to do something different. Classic just feels like skinning on alpine touring skis but with a bit less drag. Skating makes groomed cat tracks actually fun and challenging (ok, terrifying).

    (Side effect through, I went ice skating for a friends birthday a few months ago, and I had V1 and V2 skating so ingrained, I was zooming all over the ice with big long strides moving both arms at the same time, looking like a complete kook!)