Author Topic: Wider skis for my wife?  (Read 1516 times)

Svend

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Wider skis for my wife?
« on: November 02, 2011, 04:30:00 pm »
Here's another "Wider skis?" thread.....

Lately I've been contemplating getting some new wider skis for my wife.  As we spend more and more time out west every winter, the appeal of a wider ski is certainly getting stronger.  Her present "wide" ski is the Dynastar Exclusive Legend Powder, which is 121/85/104 at 165 length, 19 m radius, no rocker.

Before we get into ski choices, the most fundamental question is:  "Does she really need a wider ski?"

So, to help answer that, some background on where she skis now (location and terrain) and where she would like to ski in the coming years (focused on the soft snow part of her seasons; for hard snow, she is quite well-equipped)....

Past locations: Canadian Rockies (Banff, BC interior), Utah, Jackson Hole, Switzerland, Eastern Canada and US (Ontario, New York, where we occasionally get a good dump of powder)

Future locations: all of the above, but more days in the western Canada and US

Past terrain: inbounds off-piste and on-piste...about 50/50 mix...easier back bowls, open steeps, bumps, crud, open trees

Future terrain: as above, but more biased to off-piste....probably 70/30 is a good estimate....more adventurous excursions into steep back bowls and open off-piste slopes...think Alta, Snowbasin, Jackson Hole....

The skier: 130 lbs; 5'7"; strong, powerful technique, but......she is missing the ACL on her left knee, which definitely influences the ski choice and width (see older thread re. ski width and knee pain).

Basically, the way I see it, she needs a ski that is both very capable off-piste, but can still hold an edge and not flap at high speeds on hard snow.  Versatility is paramount.  In other words, a soft-snow-only ski won't do it.

Her present skis have been serving this need rather well -- they are light, agile, responsive, excellent in both soft and hard snow, stable, damp, powerful but not overly stiff.  Outstanding all-rounders.  Their sidecut and flex pattern give them pretty decent float in most conditions she has encountered to date.  But.....I'm just not sure they have enough width for float if she wants to get into the deeper stuff. 

So.....knowing all that, given her weight and height, does she need a ski wider and/or longer than 85mm / 165 cm?

I've been chatting with a couple of pals about this, and getting some good opinions on both sides of the argument, both pro- and contra-.  But, I thought it would be fun to toss the question to the gang here, and see what comes back.

Cheers,
Svend
« Last Edit: November 02, 2011, 04:34:20 pm by Svend »


jim-ratliff

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2011, 04:37:35 pm »

Svend:  How would you describe her skiing style. I know she plays hockey and skates and skis well and I remember you've joked about her "need for speed".  What skis does she like and use in addition to the Dynastars?


Also, wide skis don't bother the knees much when they are on soft surface (groomed or powder) and you are blanced on them; but I agree with Bushwacka's comment about the difference between 90 and 100 when you are on a hard surface and they are levered up on edge?  Will you be schlepping a second pair of skis for her for those conditions, or is this more of a do-much western ski?
« Last Edit: November 02, 2011, 04:49:08 pm by jim-ratliff »
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Svend

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #2 on: November 02, 2011, 04:58:51 pm »
Good question.  On groomers she skis quite fast, prefers medium to long radius turns, is weight-forward in stance in keeping with her skating technique (she was an accomplished figure skater as a child, and now plays hockey, so her instinctive stance is as such), and similarly uses a lot of strong and active leg contraction and extension in her ski turns to generate power and speed.  With more and more trips west, she is becoming much more comfortable in deeper snow and off-piste terrain, so speed is increasing as comfort level and confidence rises.  On soft snow, I would say her skiing style is somewhat more upright and neutral in stance to keep the tips from diving, and much more finesse than power (at least for the time being  ;D )

For comparison, her hard snow skis are '07 Head Supershape Speed (163) as her groomer thoroughbreds, and '09 Fischer Progressor 8 (160) as her lighter more agile choice for easygoing days (skiing with our nephew, slower friends).

As for carrying two pairs out west....hmmm....I guess is depends on where we are going.  Lake Louise can get pretty icy at times, so with no fresh snow there, a good narrow ski with aggressive edge grip would definitely be in the luggage.  But for places like Utah, Jackson Hole, BC interior, I would say that she would carry only the one pair.  Therefore, as mentioned, versatility is going to be pretty important -- the skis must have good hard snow performance.

Does that help?

« Last Edit: November 02, 2011, 05:04:25 pm by Svend »

bushwacka

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #3 on: November 02, 2011, 05:04:39 pm »
does she need wider skis - simple answer is no.

Jim IMO the jump is from about 105mm on hard surfaces, IE alot of skis over 105mm hurt my knees on harder snow. some people limits are lower I am sure, and some are higher. It also has to do with foot width and how much people can generate angle.

nomad SFTs for instance never hurt my knees, but the Cochise had my knees screaming, and I bet that had alot to do with the fact the Cochise were a much better carver and I could get higher edge angles on it.

None of the 100mm and below skis have never hurt my knees, since most peoples foot are around 98mm wide it makes sense alot of people rave about how versatile the 98mm/100mm skis out are.

demo some skis and find out.

are all more playful side of things has flex very much like the dynstar she is on.

"the Crush"/"the one"
Icelandtic Oracle
Amarda TSTw
Dynstar Slicer/Exclusive powder

all will be fine on groomers really. In fact I think some are actually better on groomers than the exclusive powder.

Svend

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #4 on: November 02, 2011, 05:16:42 pm »
does she need wider skis - simple answer is no.

Hey Josh -- could you expand a bit on that answer? Do you mean "No" because they have enough float in deep snow at 85mm / 165 cm for a 5'7" 130 lb skier?

You're probably right about other skis being better on hardpack than her Dynastar Powder.  She demoed the Dynastar Paradise/Slicer last year at Jackson and really liked it.  The full sidewall gave pretty darn good edge grip.  Having said that, her present Dynastars are quite good too, as I keep them sharp and with grippy edge bevels.

FWIW, she has not demoed any other skis in the 95 - 100 range.

« Last Edit: November 02, 2011, 05:33:54 pm by Svend »

bushwacka

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2011, 05:35:06 pm »
need is a strong word, noone needs wider skis, heck noone needs to ski.....

the deal is in most cases more float is a good thing. At her weight she has the advantage of getting 130mm of float out of a 98mm skis which means that her powder skis can be alot more versatile than a guys powder skis.  the only reasons to run a narrow waist is to have better edge grip, to be quick edge to edge, and to not hurt people's knees. I do not know a single person who has ever been on fatter ski  in 3d snow and was thinking man I need less float.




Svend

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2011, 06:50:15 pm »
At her weight she has the advantage of getting 130mm of float out of a 98mm skis which means that her powder skis can be a lot more versatile than a guy's powder skis. 

Interesting point, which made me remember the online ski surface area calculator (http://freshiez.net/skiarea.html).  According to that, comparing kg/cm2 for myself and my wife, I get a surprising result:  even if I chose a 120 mm ski at 192 cm long, at my body weight (220lbs) I still would create more kilograms per square centimeter than my wife does on her 85 mm ski at 165 cm.  Now, I'm not sure that such theory translates into equivalent performance on snow, but it sure is illuminating.

And this not a question of need, but rather how much is enough? If the current skis will work even in deep snow, even according to the consensus opinion here on the forum, from those who've skied way more deep snow than we have, then I'd rather use the money to update her groomer skis, or buy her a plane ticket west.  If, on the other hand, the 85 mm width will limit her terrain choices and restrict where she can go, then I'd happily buy her a wider pair.

« Last Edit: November 02, 2011, 06:53:57 pm by Svend »

bushwacka

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #7 on: November 02, 2011, 07:29:52 pm »
go back to my simple answer

She doenst "NEED" them, and the only argument I am going to make against math is that math doesnt tell the whole story and like I said enough is never enough.

My favorite powder skis have 2615 sq/c and I weigh 165lb, and could easily see how a 3000 sq/c ski would ski powder better. More Platform = more dynamic turns.

Svend

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #8 on: November 02, 2011, 09:33:31 pm »
go back to my simple answer

She doenst "NEED" them, and the only argument I am going to make against math is that math doesnt tell the whole story and like I said enough is never enough.

I don't agree that it's that simple.  If it were true that wider always equals better, then we would all be on 140 mm skis, 2 meters long....water skis, basically.  You're neglecting to mention the trade-offs for going wider -- heavier skis (wider/longer = more material = more weight), slower edge-to-edge, less agility, more knee strain, poorer hard snow performance, etc.. 

But I do agree that math may not tell the whole story, and that's the reason for posting my thread, is to get some insightful and well-reasoned opinions on this. 

Basically, we're trying to find a balance between soft snow float (ie. how much width/length is needed) and hard snow performance (lateral and torsional stiffness; sidecut).  We're not talking heli skiing in BC or Alaska here.  We're talking inbounds bowls, trees, chutes, and groomed runs in western resorts. 

Furthermore, we haven't even touched on some of the other variables that affect how a ski performs in soft snow, such as sidecut (how much? where should it start relative to the tip?), stiffness and tendency to trench vs. float, rocker (how much? tip and tail?), flex pattern, etc..

Like I said, this all about balance of ability and versatility, so I'm asking for input from others who may know more than I.  Josh, you're clearly in a different situation than the rest of us when it comes to ski choice.  You mentioned in another thread that you were sponsored by Blizzard (I think I'm correct on this), so I imagine that you are in the enviable position of having armloads of skis thrust upon you and can therefore pick and choose whatever your whim desires.  But that's not our reality -- with 8 pairs of skis in our family, we have enough already.  We have to be choosy and selective and make well-informed decisions, so our family quiver stays within sensible numbers.   ;)

« Last Edit: November 02, 2011, 09:37:17 pm by Svend »

jim-ratliff

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #9 on: November 02, 2011, 09:57:08 pm »
Svend: I think you missed Bushwacka's main point.  Your initial post asked "does my wife NEED (my capitals) new skis? He was just keying on the word "need" and saying that none of us "need" new skis -- in fact we don't really NEED to ski. Just like my new road bike, I didn't NEED it in any rational sense, but I chose to get it anyway. 

I agree with several points. 
1. For people in Josh's skiing group, I can believe that they see no limit to the width or amount of float they could use.  However, I doubt that even they take out their widest board every time they go skiing, and he has identified his personal trade-offs in different ski length and width for different locations and types of skiing. Same process you are looking at, but different. Interestingly, I don't see snowboards getting wider than they were 5 years ago??  So maybe there is some limit to the amount of float that is necessary or acceptable to whatever the trade-offs might be.
2. I remember PhysicsMan on Epic having the same level of numbers as far as surface area of skis and how much less width lighter women needed than guys. But I also believe that surface area doesn't tell the whole story.  The Spatula with its really wide waist probably had a greater feel of float than a "classical" ski with the same surface area but with a narrower waist, plus all of the other ski characteristics that y'all mentioned.
3. I think BW's comments about ski width compared to boot last width is VERY interesting.  I had not thought about that.
4. There is a lot to be said for "confidence in one's equipment." (right guys?)  Your wife might very well grow more because she has confidence in her current skis than with new skis that she doesn't know as well.
5. I would say "demo some skis in the 95-100 width" in a variety of conditions, and make a decision if she finds one that she really likes.  If she doesn't, then the skis she has are pretty good, will grow with her, and won't require a narrower second ski as much? 
6. And remember that, in general, wives aren't as much gear whores as we are.  It's almost discouraging sometimes that Lynn can easily lust over shoes or jackets, but not so easily with skis!!

PS. And if you get a chance, have her ski a SkiLogik TwinTip ISIS (131-92-117 15m), Goddess (140-101-126 15m), or Icelantic Oracle (138-100-122 16m) as contrast with more powder oriented skis with less sidecut.
« Last Edit: November 02, 2011, 10:53:18 pm by jim-ratliff »
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Svend

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #10 on: November 03, 2011, 06:05:12 am »
Point taken, but let's not get overly focused on the word "need" in this discussion.  We all know that it is frequently used rather loosely, and not necessarily meant to be taken in a rigid literal sense.  Gee, and here I thought I was being too verbose, writing reams of text to make myself understood.  It seems I will have to be much more succinct in my choice of words here, lest someone misinterprets my meaning.  Funny thing, that.  Some people can barely string a coherent sentence together, and others get strung up with a single word.

So, for the sake of clarity, let me then reword my original question:  "Would she benefit significantly from a wider ski, or are the trade-offs and drawbacks not worth the extra floatation?"  Hope that works for everyone.

Jim, in response to your points:

1) That is understood.  But my wife does not ski the same terrain as Josh does, nor has the same skiing style, etc..  I thought I was fairly clear on that.  This is not a discussion of what someone else thinks is best for my wife, because that's what's best for themselves.  The request for advice was qualified with plenty of context for where she will ski, technique and style, weight, etc., and feedback would be most helpful if that were kept in mind (we've been through this issue many times on this forum).

2) Agreed -- see my previous post re. other variables. We can discuss those later; I'm first trying to determine some fundamentals, ie. ski width; then we can move on to the finer details.

3) Agreed, it is interesting, and worthy of further discussion, but not sure how relevant wrt. to this chat about float and ski width.

4) True, but she is a good skier, and shouldn't take her too long to get the hang of a pair of new skis, or even a demo pair for that matter.

5) She will do so.  I should have mentioned that.  She will be in Jackson Hole in January, Banff in March, and there are lots of great skis available for demo, which she plans to tap into for at least a day at both places.  BTW, the base lodge at Jackson has Ski Logic for demo -- sweet! Will check if they have the ones you mentioned.

6) Totally agree! The seeming disinterest in the gear is simply shocking  :o  I mean, in this sport, the gear is EVERYTHING....isn't it?  ;D

Cheers,
Svend


« Last Edit: November 03, 2011, 06:09:21 am by Svend »

bushwacka

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #11 on: November 03, 2011, 07:01:43 am »
go back to my simple answer

She doenst "NEED" them, and the only argument I am going to make against math is that math doesnt tell the whole story and like I said enough is never enough.

I don't agree that it's that simple.  If it were true that wider always equals better, then we would all be on 140 mm skis, 2 meters long....water skis, basically.  You're neglecting to mention the trade-offs for going wider -- heavier skis (wider/longer = more material = more weight), slower edge-to-edge, less agility, more knee strain, poorer hard snow performance, etc.. 

But I do agree that math may not tell the whole story, and that's the reason for posting my thread, is to get some insightful and well-reasoned opinions on this. 

Basically, we're trying to find a balance between soft snow float (ie. how much width/length is needed) and hard snow performance (lateral and torsional stiffness; sidecut).  We're not talking heli skiing in BC or Alaska here.  We're talking inbounds bowls, trees, chutes, and groomed runs in western resorts. 

Furthermore, we haven't even touched on some of the other variables that affect how a ski performs in soft snow, such as sidecut (how much? where should it start relative to the tip?), stiffness and tendency to trench vs. float, rocker (how much? tip and tail?), flex pattern, etc..

Like I said, this all about balance of ability and versatility, so I'm asking for input from others who may know more than I.  Josh, you're clearly in a different situation than the rest of us when it comes to ski choice.  You mentioned in another thread that you were sponsored by Blizzard (I think I'm correct on this), so I imagine that you are in the enviable position of having armloads of skis thrust upon you and can therefore pick and choose whatever your whim desires.  But that's not our reality -- with 8 pairs of skis in our family, we have enough already.  We have to be choosy and selective and make well-informed decisions, so our family quiver stays within sensible numbers.   ;)

armloads of skis  to test maybe. A pair a year for nothing. I am not Arne Backstrom. Last year I really only skied on 3 skis all winter. Mag 8.7 for hard snow, "the one" for everyday, Katanas for powder. The Bushwackers I got last year effectively replaced the 8.7 for all but the hardest snow, and my Bonafide's this year will replace "the one" that are now a rock skis. For my powder skis I will most likely go to another company because Blizzard doesnt make a great east coast powder ski yet.

I generally have a 3 ski quiver and the middle ski can pretty much handle it all.

Jim

1. your right most have some really big skis, even at stowe some people I ski with have 130-150mm underfoot monsters that would make no sense unless you were us. With that said I would say our 100mm skis our the ones that come out to play most often. For me I feel I can ski better than 95 percent of people on piste on them, and puts me in the 1 percent category off trail.  The 100 mm waist width many of which our actually 98mm is by far the most versatile skis you can buy.  With sharp edges on 98mm skis I never have an issue getting an edge on any surface

2. I do not like the calculators and how people use them. Like I said there is no such thing as too much float for anyone. Go as wide as your legs can take/still edge grip on the hardest snow you will see. For most people this 100mm wide.

3. it relevant only that most people can get on a 98mm skis and just go, there is no real learning curve.




jim-ratliff

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #12 on: November 03, 2011, 07:12:02 am »
You are correct, you pretty fully explained what you were looking for.

In the skis that I suggested, obviously I like my Ullr's Chariots (equivalent dimensions to the Goddess).  Lynn demoed the Isis/Rave and it took her about 200 yards to decide she REALLY liked them (and she wasn't/isn't looking for new wide skis). Most of the rest of the demo time was just her convincing herself that her first impression really was accurate.
I also think that even in soft snow there are some advantages to skis with more sidecut.  Example. Comparing her Dynastar with the Isis. Waist = 85 vs 92. Tip = 121 vs 131. Tail 104 vs 117. Not that much extra waist width, but a lot more surface area tip and tail. And, I think, the wider tip really helps float keep the tip of the ski up. I know nothing about the Icelantic except it is female specific and in between the Nomad and the Pilgrim (two pretty good skis).

(And, if you have a Ski Logik demo location, then you need to give me your thoughts on an Ullr's Chariot as well -- in both TwinTip and Rocker Logik if you please).  ;D
« Last Edit: November 03, 2011, 07:25:52 am by jim-ratliff »
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jim-ratliff

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #13 on: November 03, 2011, 07:19:35 am »
Jim
1. your right most have some really big skis, even at stowe some people I ski with have 130-150mm underfoot monsters that would make no sense unless you were us. With that said I would say our 100mm skis our the ones that come out to play most often. For me I feel I can ski better than 95 percent of people on piste on them, and puts me in the 1 percent category off trail.  The 100 mm waist width many of which our actually 98mm is by far the most versatile skis you can buy.  With sharp edges on 98mm skis I never have an issue getting an edge on any surface.

Good, and what I expected.
But you can then apply the "calculator" information to determine that his wife could get more float out of 85-95 waist widths than you and your friends get from 100mm waists.   (all other factors being equal).
And I use that to support my contention that she's fine with the skis she has, unless she demos something in the 95-100 range that she falls in love with.
And I agree with what you said, I don't think she should go above 100.


Gary, what does Alice use for her powder ski?
Lynn's are 84mm Fischer Muanga's.
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Svend

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #14 on: November 03, 2011, 07:54:08 am »
And I agree with what you said, I don't think she should go above 100.

Gary, what does Alice use for her powder ski?
Lynn's are 84mm Fischer Muanga's.

That's what I'm looking for! Something tangible to sink my teeth into. 

I think Alice's skis are 99mm, but what I don't know is whether they are working for her.  I'm sure that at 120 lbs, they are plenty wide to get her up on the snow.  But what about hard snow performance? Knee strain? Maneuverability and quickness? Lightness? Edge changes?

And Lynn's Muanga's? My daughter skis those, so I'm quite familiar with them (great skis).  But how does Lynn find they work in powder? What kind of conditions has she skied them in? I seem to recall she is only about 10 to 12 lbs lighter than my wife, but then the skis are about the same width but 6 cm shorter, similar sidecut.  So it would be great to get her feedback too.  First hand experience, and all that.....

Cheers,

Svend

bushwacka

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #15 on: November 03, 2011, 08:31:09 am »
Jim
1. your right most have some really big skis, even at stowe some people I ski with have 130-150mm underfoot monsters that would make no sense unless you were us. With that said I would say our 100mm skis our the ones that come out to play most often. For me I feel I can ski better than 95 percent of people on piste on them, and puts me in the 1 percent category off trail.  The 100 mm waist width many of which our actually 98mm is by far the most versatile skis you can buy.  With sharp edges on 98mm skis I never have an issue getting an edge on any surface.

Good, and what I expected.
But you can then apply the "calculator" information to determine that his wife could get more float out of 85-95 waist widths than you and your friends get from 100mm waists.   (all other factors being equal).
And I use that to support my contention that she's fine with the skis she has, unless she demos something in the 95-100 range that she falls in love with.
And I agree with what you said, I don't think she should go above 100.


Gary, what does Alice use for her powder ski?
Lynn's are 84mm Fischer Muanga's.

this is why I HATE the calculator and it not because the math isnt solid because it is.

The reason why we use 100 mm ski most of the time is the largest ski any of can use and still have great(in our opinions) edge grip. Doesnt matter what size or sex we all use that same waist width. It has more to do with compromise for edge grip than how much float we needed. Like I said you can never have enough float. If I was 100 lb there is no way I would be on anything less than 100 mm for an everyday ski. Because my edge quickness would still be the same as a 170lb person but I could float that much better.

An example from last year. One of my new best friend in stowe was a D1 racer, that was and still is damn good at skiing. she had never been on skier wider than 65mm till last year. After countless demos from everything from 75mm to 110mm she settled on 98 "the Crushes" , the deal on blizzards end up winning over the Bridges she also liked alot. she is barely 120lb and 5'2 she loved the float of the bigger skis she tried but did not like what they did to her knees on groomers or the tradeoff.

she freeskis those crushes 100 percent of the time now.  Any day, any time. she is glad to have the extra float(proportionately)  when skiing with us.

I come from the Tim Allen school of engineering. get the most float you can no matter what.


midwif

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #16 on: November 03, 2011, 08:37:06 am »
I will be demo'ing some wider skis this year with an eye to upgrading my "powder ski" for next season.
My range would be 88-96mm at the widest.
No need for more than that given my height/weight.

Svend, keeps us updated on "the search".
As you know, I have a vested interest in Teryls' ski choices!
Her pans would probably help keep my demo list narrower.

* ADDENDUM*
Just saw posts made while typing mine.

Svend, I have found the Maungas very decent in powder > 12 inches.
I found it floaty enough. Now, I don't have that much powder experience, but they have served me well when lucky enough to experience a fresh dump.
They are quite soft too, which helps make bumps more manageable as well. (well, maybe not the rock hard trenches)
Jim skied behind me on a powder day at Alta in Catherines Area.
He said I was just slightly under the surface which led him on the chase for a better floater for himself!

L.
« Last Edit: November 03, 2011, 10:37:23 am by midwif »
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jim-ratliff

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #17 on: November 03, 2011, 08:53:19 am »
I come from the Tim Allen school of engineering. get the most float you can no matter what.


Josh:  No you don't.  Not really.   8)  You just spent the whole post describing the constraints which kept her from getting the "most float no matter what". 
And it was a very well-reasoned and logical approach.


We should also all remember that 20-30 year old knees may not be the same as 40+ year old knees, especially if one is missing cartilage from ice hockey injury and surgery.  100mm may be pretty accepted in Bushwacka's circle of friends -- but that may vary for some of the rest of us.
« Last Edit: November 03, 2011, 09:57:05 am by jim-ratliff »
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Svend

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #18 on: November 03, 2011, 09:02:47 am »
Josh -- thanks for the feedback in your last post.  That was quite helpful.  Some solid advice and insight there wrt. 100mm skis.  Good one.

Lynn -- will do! Anything we can do to ease your stress around ski demoing, we're always glad to be of service!   ;D   She is not looking for an overly stiff ski, but one that is well-balanced between power, edge grip, agility, lightness and floatation.  She has her eye on demoing some Fischers (Watea 94, Koa 98), Kastle (LX92), Scott (Venture, Crusader), DPS (Wailer 105), Liberty (Helix), and I will make her aware of the Ski Logic line.  Those are not on her radar yet. 

So, Lynn.....tell me, how have your Fischer Muanga's worked for you in soft snow? Any words of wisdom for the inquisitive mind? Since you're considering an upgrade, it tells me that perhaps the Muangas aren't optimal and have some shortcomings that are making you look elsewhere (?).

« Last Edit: November 03, 2011, 09:14:57 am by Svend »

jim-ratliff

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« Last Edit: November 03, 2011, 09:19:08 am by jim-ratliff »
"If you're gonna play the game boy, ya gotta learn to play it right."

Gary

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #20 on: November 03, 2011, 12:17:15 pm »
Alice at 5'3 and 107lbs is on Atomic Heaven and Hells, 99 underfoot....heck man...she could float on water with those bad girls. AND yet, she wants to demo some rocker tips this season. She was not always that easy...hmmm...let me re-state....she was rather stubborn about trying any new skis.....until that 12" of wet snow at Jackson. Her Kastle MX78 just didn't give her what SHE needed in those conditions.

BUT....simply stated...her confidence level in 3d boot high and above quadtripled, she uses less energy making soft butter turns or steamroller crushing crud turns, it's a tool that elevates the FUN factor and reduces the Fatigue and Fear factor.

Recapping Gary's rule of 3 F's"
Fun (increases)
Faitigue (is reduced)
Fear (no where to be seen)

You will not find any of that in a calculator or formula....Now whatever that tool is, whatever she demo's and loves, "Gary's rule of 3" just might apply!  ;)

They do for me!

Svend...I believe for Terryl, her powder tool (I said Powder) should be soft at the shovel for climbing over things, wide enough to float, quick enough to turn, narrower tail than shovel for easy release,  approx 16meters turn radius, generally forgiving and absorbing.  Oh yeah...this works for me too!  :D

Best, G
« Last Edit: November 03, 2011, 12:27:37 pm by Gary »

Svend

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #21 on: November 03, 2011, 07:45:43 pm »
Yeah, I could see how the MX78's would be a bit of work in heavy wet snow.  Yikes.  No wonder you dragged her into the demo shop for a wide pair.  Good move, and enlightenment seems to have followed  8)

You know, when Whiteface got 36 inches of that heavy wet stuff a couple of years ago, Terryl skied her Dynastars in that for 6 hours per day for three days, and still had gas in the tank.....er, that is....she still had energy to burn.  Those skis were gold in those conditions.

But deep western powder is another matter entirely, and we're just not that experienced in that, hence the reason for my posts here.  Judging by the responses, it seems like the best thing for her to do is just dive in to a big bowl full of the fluffy stuff and try 'em (will carry a snorkel just in case  :D ), and then go to the demo shop and grab a wider pair and see how they feel too.  Cross fingers for another dump in Jackson or Louise so she can really do a proper test.

Cheers,

Svend
« Last Edit: November 03, 2011, 07:47:28 pm by Svend »

midwif

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #22 on: November 03, 2011, 09:06:20 pm »
Not wanting to burst that fat ski/snorkel dream, but I have found it really hard to get a hold of the skis I want to demo on a powder day!
They're out the door too quick.

Too many folks have the same idea. :(
L.
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Gary

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #23 on: November 04, 2011, 08:53:31 am »
Lynn...I think a lot of that depends where you're at..

I know at Jackson and Park City....they have plenty of great skis for pow days...and numerous shops.

Where I've seen some limitations are at the actual demo shops up on the mountain....but in town, call ahead and reserve a pair. At least you've got insurance they'll be there when you arrive.

Svend...the MX78's wern't the right ski for her that day but my MX78's performed well for me...so it really depends on what the rider has to offer. Terryl is a powerful skier due to her hockey time on ice. She could muscle any ski around in the snow in most any conditions and even if it were the most difficult day for her life on the snow...she'd still be smilin' and never ever ever complain...I know I have that correct. It will be really interesting to hear her thoughts if she gets a chance to ski steep and deep this season and what her take is on something 100 plus, maybe even rockered might be. She may hate it or just maybe, her quivver just might expand.. 8) oh boy!

Best, g

LivingProof

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #24 on: November 05, 2011, 07:47:30 am »
Svend,
Do you go to Jackson with G and Alice? If so, they can hook you up with our guru boot fitter, Stephen, who works in Jackson Hole Sports right at the base of the mountain. Stephen can get a reservation for a specific pair of skis, and, I think staff members can arrange a discount. In any case, you have to meet him and take a couple of runs with him and his family. He posts on Epic as "Skiing-in-Jackson" and is just fun to ski with.

With respect to demo days during a dump, my single experience was less than great. Jackson got uber crowded, the tram and gondi did not open for a few hours for avalanche control, AV was open but with 30 minute lift lines. The light was very flat, not the lightest snow and it was hard to get the velocity needed to make skis float. That's also a statement about my ability to ski 3D. It was also weeks end, and, I was tired. I did not do any research and the skis recommended were Solly Shoguns and not a very good powder ski, offering minor advantage over my 88's. Shame on me, but, I felt I wasted the better part of $50.

A personal belief is that skis in the 85-88 mm waist will work well enough in powder for most, but, the experience and skills of the individual rule in pow. JB's post on the need for velocity in powder makes a lot of sense to me. I'd love to be able to experience the magic of pow on a more frequent basis, that's just not going to happen enough to warrant a true powder ski.

The only way to know is to give your wife the opportunity to experience it herself. And good power hunting luck to all. It's an elusive animal.

Svend

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #25 on: November 05, 2011, 07:50:37 am »
Expand the quiver? No way! She has 3 pairs already.  If one comes in, another goes out.  We're running out of space in our basement for all this gear  :o

Gary, that is true about her skiing style, but her technique in soft snow if much more finesse and less energy intensive than on groomers.  That's how it should be, right? So she was able to ski 3 long days at Whiteface in 36 inches of heavy stuff, and still go skating on the oval at night.  Me too, for that matter, and I was on my Mythics.  To be clear, the snow was so heavy and dense, that float was just not an issue for a mid-80 mm ski.  Others on narrow skis were struggling, however.

Svend

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #26 on: November 05, 2011, 08:06:29 am »
Svend,
Do you go to Jackson with G and Alice? If so, they can hook you up with our guru boot fitter, Stephen, who works in Jackson Hole Sports right at the base of the mountain. Stephen can get a reservation for a specific pair of skis, and, I think staff members can arrange a discount. In any case, you have to meet him and take a couple of runs with him and his family. He posts on Epic as "Skiing-in-Jackson" and is just fun to ski with.

Mike...no, I don't go to Jackson with G & A, but my wife does  8)  Me, I have to stay home with our daughters. 

That's great tip about Stephen -- thanks for that.  We'll check out their lineup of demos and see if there is anything that would suit.  The rental shop in the base lodge has Fischer and Dynastar -- the latter she tried last year; the former is on the hit list for this year.  But she has a few others that she is keen to try as well. 

And thanks for the insight re. the mid-80 width.  Interesting feedback, and you're the first here to actually say so outright. 

Bottom line, if she isn't totally wowed by the wider skis, or finds the trade-offs for going to 98mm just aren't worth it just for the extra float, then she will stick with what she has.  To be clear, she really likes her present Dynastars, and it will take an exceptional ski to get her off of those.  Heck, I've even heard of men skiing them, they are so good.  In fact, Sierra Jim from Epic once said (back when they first came out) that if they made them in a men's version, he would own a pair, they're that good.




LivingProof

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #27 on: November 05, 2011, 11:00:09 am »


Mike...no, I don't go to Jackson with G & A, but my wife does  8)  Me, I have to stay home with our daughters. 

And thanks for the insight re. the mid-80 width.  Interesting feedback, and you're the first here to actually say so outright. 

Svend,

It does not compute in my brain that my wife would be in Jackson while I look after daughters. You are a far better husband than I. And, again, note to self - Return to Jackson and ski with G & A.

Let me put some more words around my thinking. In the 5 years since returning to skiing, I've been west for 30 days. Once, I skied in an above knee dump. Maybe 6 to 8 days days, I've skied more than boot high, and, that's the range that I would argue is well within the capability of a high 80's ski, especially if it's designed for soft snow. I do not suggest an 85 would be as capable as a 100 in these conditions, but, how much easier the fatter ski performs is a question involving the competence of the  individual skier. The phrase "good, better and best" comes to mind - pick the level you can live with.  Also, as pow gets tracked out, the crossover advantages of a narrower ski begin to surface. There are pro's and con's and we all get to apply our own values. There is so much buzz this season about certain 100's, and, the hype will be present in future years for other skis.

So, I'm in agreement that the "wow" factor would have to be present to make a change.

Svend

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #28 on: November 05, 2011, 01:09:53 pm »
Mike, it's always a pleasure to hear from you.  The voice of calm reason and objectivity.  Great insight -- thanks for that.

I hear you re. the "buzz" around wider skis.  I am quite cognizant of, and have healthy skepticism regarding the industry's push for ever-wider boards.  Back when I first started skiing -- just 5 years ago -- an "all-mountain" ski was 70 to 74 mm.  Now, if you believe Ski Magazine reviews, it's 88 to 98 mm.  Seriously? OK, if you lived near someplace like Alta, I could see that.  But for the rest of us?

Hence my thought that a lot of people are on skis that are too wide for them -- they are being told that wide is the way to go.  Then the 160 lb eastern intermediate skier ends up with a 90mm+ ski that can't hold an edge on our icy slopes.  Or if it can, then it's way too stiff and heavy for them and they struggle to control it.  I see a lot of these guys on our home hill.  Not a pretty sight. 

As for not going to Jackson -- hey, my wife needs to fly the coop for a week every now and then.  Mental health break  ;D  Everyone here benefits  ;)  And staying behind with our daughters is no purgatory.  They are just the best.  Super pals.  We have a great time together when Mom isn't home  8)   I know I'll be missing some great skiing at Jackson, and get really antsy when I get the daily reports from there.   But I get my treats when I head west for business and take weekends to ski -- this winter I'll be in Vancouver (Whistler), Kamloops (Sun Peaks), Edmonton (Jasper National Park / Marmot Basin) and Calgary (Banff National Park / Lake Louise, Sunshine).  My boots are mandatory carry-on luggage on those trips.  So, who am I to complain?

Cheers,
Svend
« Last Edit: November 05, 2011, 03:59:52 pm by Svend »

Liam

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #29 on: November 05, 2011, 06:08:43 pm »
85mm skis will 'work' in powder, especially under a good skier...but is 'working' in powder all your wife is after?? 

I'll say it---she NEEDS (note my capitalization! ;)) a fatter ski.  You guys seem to be committed, long-season skiers who travel and seek out quality, deeper snow conditions.    A fatter ski, possibly (probably) one with some sort of rocker, increases the Gary 3 F factor...which spells out NEED to me. 

I wouldn't sell the dynastar right away no matter what she buys, a good 85mm mid fat is handy to have.





Svend

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #30 on: November 05, 2011, 07:28:08 pm »
85mm skis will 'work' in powder, especially under a good skier...but is 'working' in powder all your wife is after?? 

I'll say it---she NEEDS (note my capitalization! ;)) a fatter ski.  You guys seem to be committed, long-season skiers who travel and seek out quality, deeper snow conditions.    A fatter ski, possibly (probably) one with some sort of rocker, increases the Gary 3 F factor...which spells out NEED to me. 

I wouldn't sell the dynastar right away no matter what she buys, a good 85mm mid fat is handy to have.


Jeez, Liam.....I hope my wife doesn't read any of that   ;)  She still has a log-in ID for this forum, you know....

A 4-ski quiver? Not exactly what I had in mind.  This is going down the same slippery slope as her shoe collection.....but let's not talk about that....  ::)

Could you delete your post, and send it to me as a private message? Stealth-like?   :D 

Just kidding.....thanks for the input.

« Last Edit: November 05, 2011, 07:41:22 pm by Svend »

bushwacka

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #31 on: November 05, 2011, 08:18:11 pm »


Mike...no, I don't go to Jackson with G & A, but my wife does  8)  Me, I have to stay home with our daughters. 

And thanks for the insight re. the mid-80 width.  Interesting feedback, and you're the first here to actually say so outright. 

Svend,

It does not compute in my brain that my wife would be in Jackson while I look after daughters. You are a far better husband than I. And, again, note to self - Return to Jackson and ski with G & A.

Let me put some more words around my thinking. In the 5 years since returning to skiing, I've been west for 30 days. Once, I skied in an above knee dump. Maybe 6 to 8 days days, I've skied more than boot high, and, that's the range that I would argue is well within the capability of a high 80's ski, especially if it's designed for soft snow. I do not suggest an 85 would be as capable as a 100 in these conditions, but, how much easier the fatter ski performs is a question involving the competence of the  individual skier. The phrase "good, better and best" comes to mind - pick the level you can live with.  Also, as pow gets tracked out, the crossover advantages of a narrower ski begin to surface. There are pro's and con's and we all get to apply our own values. There is so much buzz this season about certain 100's, and, the hype will be present in future years for other skis.

So, I'm in agreement that the "wow" factor would have to be present to make a change.

I know your older, I know you ski less but you came to stowe on day where there was legit knee deep powder skiing where I went in the afternoon.  there was no way your 88mm ski was going to cut it. I couldnt cut it in what we skied that day on your skis, there is no way that someone who is older and skis less could ski it on 88mm skis. Just saying your 88mm skis choice is a self fulfilling prophecy to not ski deep snow. You skied bumps, cruddy icey groomers while we skied powder.

I know you think its the indian and not the arrow. Indian make mistake on our shots, why not pick arrows that make its alot harder to miss our shots?  There is no REAL disadvantage to 100mm skis on hardpack compared to an 88mm skis. Its all perception, bias, and people talking about what they have never tried.

Gary

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #32 on: November 07, 2011, 09:52:34 am »
I think it's a matter of the right tool to match the skills and terrain desires the skier has.

Pretty simple....and nothing better than experiencing skiing in your favorite kind of snow with a great ski and then finding another tool that takes your skiing experience to a whole new level...truly amazing.

It's a matter of the evolving skier and when they're ready....

I've seen Svend ski and evolve over the past 4 seasons of skiing...and he and his wife both have the appetitie....time and exposure will get them to where they want to be...AND it's a great ride.

G

Svend

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #33 on: November 07, 2011, 09:58:08 am »
It's a matter of the evolving skier and when they're ready....

I've seen Svend ski and evolve over the past 4 seasons of skiing...



You mean like this...?   ;D

[Attachment removed after 60 days]
« Last Edit: November 07, 2011, 09:59:55 am by Svend »

Gary

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #34 on: November 07, 2011, 12:05:09 pm »
Why Yes....I do....I"m about 1/2 through the pack!  ;)

Svend

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #35 on: November 07, 2011, 02:53:18 pm »
I will be demo'ing some wider skis this year with an eye to upgrading my "powder ski" for next season.
My range would be 88-96mm at the widest.
No need for more than that given my height/weight.

Svend, keeps us updated on "the search".
As you know, I have a vested interest in Teryls' ski choices!
Her pans would probably help keep my demo list narrower.

* ADDENDUM*
Just saw posts made while typing mine.

Svend, I have found the Maungas very decent in powder > 12 inches.
I found it floaty enough. Now, I don't have that much powder experience, but they have served me well when lucky enough to experience a fresh dump.
They are quite soft too, which helps make bumps more manageable as well. (well, maybe not the rock hard trenches)
Jim skied behind me on a powder day at Alta in Catherines Area.
He said I was just slightly under the surface which led him on the chase for a better floater for himself!

L.

Hey Lynn, just saw your addendum way back in this thread.....sorry for the late reply.  Thanks for the input on your Fischers.  It's good to know that for a 130 lb skier, an 85mm ski will work and give decent float, even if only for the occasional powder day.  Maybe not the "ideal" width, but very serviceable, especially with a bit of velocity (should not be a problem, given the penchant for speed of the skier in question  :o ).  She is keen to demo, and has just put the Nordica Nemesis on the short list, so it will be interesting to hear the final judgement at the end of the season.  We'll keep you posted on progress, but please do the same -- if you get on a 95 or 98mm ski and go "Wow", you've got to let us know....

So....when do the new Progressor 8's get their first test run? Can't wait to hear your feedback on those.

Cheers,
Svend

midwif

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Re: Wider skis for my wife?
« Reply #36 on: November 07, 2011, 05:18:54 pm »
Svend.
The first real Progressor try outs will be December. (my "backyard bowls" outing did not give me sufficient on slope time to truly assess ;))
Jim and I are going to Colorado 2nd week of Dec.
Will be bring the Progressors and will let you and Terryl know how they work for me.

L.
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