Author Topic: Wider Skis for Me?  (Read 1078 times)

beastieboy

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Re: Wider Skis for Me?
« Reply #15 on: November 04, 2011, 02:56:26 pm »
Hi Jim,

I got a little bit of a chuckle regarding Liam's ski preference.  I don't think that any of us buy skis specifically for patrolling, although it is always in the back of your head.  The reason?  It's embarrasing to skewer a bump while going backwards down the liftline with a toboggan behind you.  The guy on the tail rope will stop the sled, so no paying customers or volunteers for sled training will be harmed.  However, when that happens the beer fines can drive you to bankrupcy, and your face is redder than your coat.  But even with all that in the balance, I think that most of us chose skis that we think we will like to ski.  Most seasons the average volunteer patroller might run a dozen sleds.  If we're doing it right, we'll get in hundreds of regular runs. 

Liam is an excellent all around skier, and is a student of the sport.  In general, I trust his judgement.  However, there are always intantangibles in ski choice.  I tried a pair of Rossi Avenger Ti 82's last winter.  They did everything great, they just weren't fun or lively.  But those are attributes I value - and not everyone else does.  There is no substitute for demo'ing skis - especially if you are paying full retail. 

Green Trails - I saw the pics from Berkshire East that you posted.  What a hoot!  If I could have gotten out of our street on Sunday, it would have been a great choice.  It wasn't a great day for travelling.

John

jim-ratliff

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Re: Wider Skis for Me?
« Reply #16 on: November 04, 2011, 03:43:06 pm »

I have a friend that is certified or accredited or something with National Ski Patrol. Whatever the title, there have been less than 1000 of them since the beginning, and he is deservedly proud of the accomplishment.  He now spends the vast majority of his "patrol days" teaching clinics or testing candidates.
Anyway, he tells the story of some ski patrol candidate taking the toboggan down the bump run and the Head Patrol guy acting as the subject.  It was a very rough ride, and the individual was removed from ski patrol at the bottom of the run.

Anyway, one of my concerns about ski advice is how well the reader's skiing relates to the writer's. On some other forums, new people have no idea whether or not the person giving ski advice has any credentials or experience, and often (not in this case) all the advice is about the writer's favorite ski and not what the OP was asking about.  I was trying to be humorous, but at the same time provide some information to bridge that gap.
"If you're gonna play the game boy, ya gotta learn to play it right."

beastieboy

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Re: Wider Skis for Me?
« Reply #17 on: November 04, 2011, 07:31:06 pm »
Hi Jim,

Sorry - wasn't trying to take your post too seriously.  Just wanted to give perspective, and didn't want Liam's ski reviews to be viewed as coming from someone with really unusual ski demands.  We pretty much use skis the same way as everyone else, although for more days than some people!

Your friend who is certified has a serious commitment to the business of patrolling.  He has put a lot of work into it to become certified.  It's a great organization and a great group of people. 

Getting tested is probably not my favorite part of the job, or most other's for that matter.  Sometime if you are bored at your local mountain and see them doing toboggan training, volunteer to be the 'patient'.  It's a fun ride.

I agree with you on ski reviews.  There are some reviewers that I follow more than others.  It is one of the difficulties of the composite reviews you get in the ski magazines.  It's easier if you know about what they like to ski, what they value in a ski, and what other skis they like.  There are some people that if they like a ski, I'm pretty likely to like it too.  Others - not so much.

Liam

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Re: Wider Skis for Me?
« Reply #18 on: November 05, 2011, 05:40:42 am »
Jim,

If your friend is Certified, he's a hell of a skier and a patroller..the Cert program is the Mac Daddy of all ski standards (and patrol/ first standards as well).  Our Director and one other 'super' patroller are the only full certs on our hill.

No, I think it's fair to try to put a 'face' on an on line ski reviewer and I took no offense. I run more toboggans than most folks on my hill ( I pro as well as volunteer and get 4 days in a week) so running sleds is in the back of my mind.  However, we ski a ton (more than most patrols) and I buy skis that work well on my local bump, in northern VT and NH and I can take out west.

So who am I as  a skier:  I'm a decent skier...not great, but I don't suck either. 

I learned to ski at Age 30 (I'm now 42).  And I ski way better than most people who learned to ski as an adult (and I mean I was NEVER on skis before the age of 30).  I spent a lot of time working on technique, taking lessons, reading books, buying gear, and I remember what it is like and what one needs at each stage of learning and skiing.  I ski all season in all terrain and in all conditions (from pouring rain, to real-bullet proof bumps, to occasional powder..and yes, I've run sleds in all conditions as well) .  So, for the OP's question, I think I have a pretty keen understanding of what he's looking for and what he struggles with even if he doesn't.

Also I work PT in a ski shop and have a good sense of selling skis to the general public.

None of this makes my ski advice, expert advice...but I think it makes my advice on ski 'worth considering' for growing intermediates.

I don't know enough nor do I have the chops to recommend a ski to a skier like Bushwacka, and I defer to the PMTS specialists who have very specific ski needs that I admit I don't completely share, but I understand. 

However, I'm pretty comfortable serving up advice in my wheel house.

jim-ratliff

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Re: Wider Skis for Me?
« Reply #19 on: November 05, 2011, 02:23:42 pm »
"Certified" is probably it, and may apply in other ways. I remember hearing from his wife (co-worker) about all the rope and belaying testing he also had to do. Another story. During one test in bumps, he lost one ski, so he skied the rest of the bump run on the other ski.  Maybe not that tough for many, but spiffy in my view. He would also ski the double black bump run at the local mountain in the dark after they closed the hill, just for the heck of it.  He's also climbed Mt. Ranier a couple of times and Mt. Aconcagua (spelling is probably wrong) in SA once, and almost didn't get his best friend down off the mountain that last time.


My hat's off to all patrollers, actually, and you certainly get to deal with a broad variety of skiers on a regular basis.  It's got to be a labor of love, even for paid patrollers.
"If you're gonna play the game boy, ya gotta learn to play it right."