Have your say & ask the experts!

Any skiers out there?

115 replies [Last post]
CnoEvil's picture
Offline
Joined: 21 Aug 2009
Posts: 11425

I thought it might be an idea, to see who else is eagerly anticipating the coming of winter and decent snowfalls!

Skiers are a funny breed; while the rest of the population are battening down the hatches and waiting for Summer to return, we have been waiting for Summer to end, so the plotting can begin.

If anyone wants to share their future plans or past adventures, I would love to hear them.
How long have you been skiing, where have you been, what equipment do you use and which are your favorite resorts?

I have been doing this wonderful sport since 1972, and last season was the first one that I have missed since 1978 (due to back problems).
Over that time, I've seen technique radically change and skis go from a foot above your head, to nearly a foot below it.

With a bit of luck (and medical intervention), I hope to be "fit for purpose" for the coming season.

Cheers

Cno

__________________

"Everything has been said before, but since nobody listens we have to keep going back and beginning all over again."  André Gide

chudleighpaul's picture
Offline
Joined: 7 Jan 2010
Posts: 1375
RE: Any skiers out there?

Winter sports have never appealed to me, give me sun, sand and warm sea any day.

CnoEvil's picture
Offline
Joined: 21 Aug 2009
Posts: 11425
RE: Any skiers out there?

chudleighpaul wrote:

Winter sports have never appealed to me, give me sun, sand and warm sea any day.

That would put you firmly in the "battening down the hatches" category. You probably can't get your head round wanting to head off for a "holiday" in the cold and snow. Smile

__________________

"Everything has been said before, but since nobody listens we have to keep going back and beginning all over again."  André Gide

Joined: 20 Sep 2011
Posts: 454
RE: Any skiers out there?

Snowboarder(although I can ski, but snowboarding is a bit more fun imo). I love the snow, which is just as well as we had 5 months of it last year (Sweden).

I am in my 40's and still try to get out a few times over winter. I'd love to go back to the Alps soon though. 4 valleys, Chamonix...unbeatable imo. The view from the top lift at Chamonix after climbing the steps, is breathtaking.

 

__________________

"In the practice of tolerance, one's enemy is the best teacher." - Dalai Lama

chudleighpaul's picture
Offline
Joined: 7 Jan 2010
Posts: 1375
RE: Any skiers out there?

 

That would put you firmly in the "battening down the hatches" category. You probably can't get your head round wanting to head off for a "holiday" in the cold and snow. :)[/quote]

I'm off on Saturday for a relaxing week in Malta.

No snow and ice there (I hope)Smile

Joined: 20 Sep 2011
Posts: 454
RE: Any skiers out there?

I'm a winter person. I love the cold and dark, weirdly enough. Unlike most actual Swedes. I find it calming, and so long as you dress right, comfortable. I absolutely hate summer when it's hot. I sweat like a pig and once you're down to shorts, what else can you do???

 

It's also a great excuse to come inside and chill to a bit of music (and maybe a bit of glögg (mulled wine) )

 

Give me a -15 degrees, sunny afternoon, with the sun glistening off the snow anyday.

The school run is a pain though.

__________________

"In the practice of tolerance, one's enemy is the best teacher." - Dalai Lama

CnoEvil's picture
Offline
Joined: 21 Aug 2009
Posts: 11425
RE: Any skiers out there?

snivilisationism wrote:

Snowboarder(although I can ski, but snowboarding is a bit more fun imo). I love the snow, which is just as well as we had 5 months of it last year (Sweden).

I am in my 40's and still try to get out a few times over winter. I'd love to go back to the Alps soon though. 4 valleys, Chamonix...unbeatable imo. The view from the top lift at Chamonix after climbing the steps, is breathtaking.

 

Snowboarders are of course welcome. I've never tried it, as the thought of going back to a complete beginner is more than I could stand.

I remember when boarding was in its infancy; you would hear a scraping noise from behind shortly before being wiped out. I even witnessed an entire drag lift of people, being bowled over like a line of skittles....but those days are long gone, and I now think the average snowboarding level is probably higher than that of skiing.

Over the years, I'm not sure the standard of skiing has improved. The improvements in modern equipment mean people go faster than they should, and venture off the beaten track before they are ready, triggering avalanches. Its a bit like golf...the equipment is better but the average handicap remains the same.

I've never been to Sweden, but France, Italy, Switzerland, Austria and USA. Most of the old f@rt$ I know all prefer skiing, but anyone (a lot younger) who tried both, preferred boarding.

__________________

"Everything has been said before, but since nobody listens we have to keep going back and beginning all over again."  André Gide

chrishare's picture
Offline
Joined: 1 May 2009
Posts: 6
RE: Any skiers out there?

Looking forward to 2 weeks in the 4 Valleys in Switzerland over Xmas/New Year - webcams & forecasts don't look too promising at present.  Having kids, we are also booked in for half term & first week Easter!

Joined: 20 Sep 2011
Posts: 454
RE: Any skiers out there?

CnoEvil wrote:

Snowboarders are of course welcome. I've never tried it, as the thought of going back to a complete beginner is more than I could stand. I remember when boarding was in its infancy; you would hear a scraping noise from behind shortly before being wiped out. I even witnessed an entire drag lift of people, being bowled over like a line of skittles....but those days are long gone, and I now think the average snowboarding level is probably higher than that of skiing. Over the years, I'm not sure the standard of skiing has improved. The improvements in modern equipment mean people go faster than they should, and venture off the beaten track before they are ready, triggering avalanches. Its a bit like golf...the equipment is better but the average handicap remains the same. I've never been to Sweden, but France, Italy, Switzerland, Austria and USA. Most of the old f@rt$ I know all prefer skiing, but anyone (a lot younger) who tried both, preferred boarding.

 

Strangely I've only ever been wiped out by skiiers, both novices and experts(The experts that like to do 80mph down the last run of the day swerving in and out of a crowded slope). Generally the snowboarders go quite a bit slower (actually one reason I stopped skiing was because I was getting faster and faster, and feeling more and more vunerable to being involved in a nasty accident)...with boarding you can go anywhere with less experience, and get away from the crowds. Off-piste is where it's at, and no, I've never started an avalanche Smile

I've never been outside Europe, and probably wouldn't recommend Sweden to an experienced skiier. It's great for kids and learners, but it's not really high enough, or long enough otherwise. (And it's expensive (£6 a pint for beer, and you'll easily spend £10-£20 on lunch)).

It also gets dark very early, although they generally have lit slopes which you can use after dark.

 For me, France is the best overall, but I enjoyed Verbier in Switzerland. Didn't like Austria much (Kitzbuhel), as they were very snobbish toward boarders.

Italy was nice though, cheap and easy-going.

 

__________________

"In the practice of tolerance, one's enemy is the best teacher." - Dalai Lama

plastic penguin's picture
Offline
Joined: 28 Apr 2008
Posts: 15585
RE: Any skiers out there?

CnoEvil wrote:
I thought it might be an idea, to see who else is eagerly anticipating the coming of winter and decent snowfalls! Skiers are a funny breed; while the rest of the population are battening down the hatches and waiting for Summer to return, we have been waiting for Summer to end, so the plotting can begin. If anyone wants to share their future plans or past adventures, I would love to hear them. How long have you been skiing, where have you been, what equipment do you use and which are your favorite resorts? I have been doing this wonderful sport since 1972, and last season was the first one that I have missed since 1978 (due to back problems). Over that time, I've seen technique radically change and skis go from a foot above your head, to nearly a foot below it. With a bit of luck (and medical intervention), I hope to be "fit for purpose" for the coming season. Cheers Cno

Don't be silly. I love snow and the idea of being in the Alps but wild horses wouldn't get me skiing...good job

__________________

Amp: Leema Pulse; Source: Naim CD5i-2, Denon 260MKII, Pro-ject XP I; Speakers: PMC TB2i

 

Formerly known as plastic penguin

AlmaataKZ's picture
Offline
Joined: 7 Jan 2009
Posts: 2131
RE: Any skiers out there?

Another fan here!

We consider ski holiday the main one in the year. Loking forward to the new season and hope to open it on Christams day!

I've posted these before but will post again - helps to get in the mood Cool

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

and some new ones:

 

 

 

 

It is so iniviting, isn't it ?

AlmaataKZ's picture
Offline
Joined: 7 Jan 2009
Posts: 2131
RE: Any skiers out there?

Actually, I need advice -

I threw away my trusted pair of skis (Salomon X-Mountain) which must have been 15 years old and completely worn and torn and now need a new pair. 

I am thinking an advanced universal ski, maybe with a bit more off-piste in mind (I am trying to do more of it) but also very good on piste. Any recent experiences and rocommendations?

CnoEvil's picture
Offline
Joined: 21 Aug 2009
Posts: 11425
RE: Any skiers out there?

AlmaataKZ wrote:

Actually, I need advice -

I threw away my trusted pair of skis (Salomon X-Mountain) which must have been 15 years old and completely worn and torn and now need a new pair. 

I am thinking an advanced universal ski, maybe with a bit more off-piste in mind (I am trying to do more of it) but also very good on piste. Any recent experiences and rocommendations?

Your photos are excellent, and capture a lot of the magic of the Alps.

I'll get back to you on some skis, but can you you give me a "hifi" like breakdown:
What level skier are you; what % of your time do you spend off piste (how good?); do you like to ski moguls or in a half pipe; how fast do you like to go and and what turn type do you prefer?

Sorry for all the questions, but skis are getting more specialist (carve, all mountain, freeride, freestyle, park and big mountain)...it's all to do with side cut and width under foot (waist).
A narrow waist makes the ski quick edge to edge, but not doing fast freeride turns in deep snow.

Once I know what you are after, I'll come up with some suggestions (what is your budget - binding are now usually part of the ski, so less transferable than they used to be).

Cno

__________________

"Everything has been said before, but since nobody listens we have to keep going back and beginning all over again."  André Gide

AlmaataKZ's picture
Offline
Joined: 7 Jan 2009
Posts: 2131
RE: Any skiers out there?

level of skier - advanced (say, 8/10), e.g. can do turns while skiing on one leg, but do not race or jump.

spend 60% time on piste but want to transition more off piste, hece looking for skis that will be good there. I try to ski in fresh snow every time I see it (but conditions are not always suitable as you know so end up on piste. GF also mostly skis on piste so this plays part as well). I like steep, fast slopes when on piste. Ski fast, long, medium and short turns. Normally ski full day from lift opening to about 4pm.

Hate moguls and ice. never tried pipes - not interested.

A bit behind on all these fancy names of ski types. Looking for no-gimmick great ski that will last 10+ years.

All these types... e.g. what is the difference, in specific terms, in ski design, between 'big mountain', 'all mountain' and 'freeride'? 

CnoEvil's picture
Offline
Joined: 21 Aug 2009
Posts: 11425
RE: Any skiers out there?

Hi AlmaataKZ,

The first thing I would ask...are you sure you want to buy. Skis will cost you £350-600, need to be serviced yearly(£35), attract ski carriage on flights (£15-30) and their technology goes out of date quickly. When you hire, you can chose the type of ski suitable for the snow conditions...and even try different types through the week.

If you prefer to buy (I always have), then I think it's better to do so in the resort, where you can try them out first. Rental fee is waived if you buy.

Now to ski types:

CARVE. These have narrower waists for quick edge changes and shorter turns. They are fun and lively, can handle a variety of conditions, but can feel a bit "twitchy" off piste and don't float as well as wider skis (waist 62-74mm).

ALL MOUNTAIN. These are probably the most versatile category. Depending on the make/model, their bias can go either way (on/off piste). Happy doing a mixture, but still a bit narrow for really deep conditions. Waist 75-90mm

FREERIDE. These have big waists for max flotation, and are happier doing fast GS turns. They can handle the piste OK (depending on model), but are happiest doing fast GS or Super G in all off piste conditions. These are for spending 70%+ of your time away from the piste. Waist 90-105mm)

BIG MOUNTAIN. These are specialist backcountry skis (eg. Heli-Skiing). They are not comfortable on piste.

The other types are unlikely to be of interest.

Your old skis were great all rounders, which were fairly forgiving. I think they had a sidecut of 100-75-89 and a fairly wide turning radius. You will find the newer breed easier to turn (deeper sidecuts), shorter in length, and much easier to handle off piste due to the extra width...but they can be harder to pivot.

I will propose a few "All Mountain skis", as these are likely to give you the best balance, if you are wishing to go more off piste.

SALOMON ENDURO XT800 (£550 inc bindings). Sidecut 125-79-107. Turning Radius 16.3 (175) Nice rounded skis that feel effortless in all turn shapes in most conditions. It has "rocker" technology that helps them float in powder. Make sure you get this years model, as its much better.

ROSSIGNOL EXPERIENCE 83 OPEN (£360). Sidecut 132-83-120. Turn Radius 15.5 (176) Again, rocker technology, and is a fun, good gripping ski. Easy to pivot, well balanced ski, that's comfortable to ski in powder.

K2 AMP RICTOR (£540 inc binding). Sidecut 127-80-109. Turn Radius 16 (174) Smooth well damped ski, that is happier in long fast turns. Lacks a little life in short turns.. Also has rocker tech.

A "rocker" is the use of reverse camber, where the ski arches upwards, so the middle of the ski, is lower than the tip and tail. This gives excellent flotation in soft snow. The rocker can be tailored to different applications and snow types.

Anything else I can help with, just yodel.

Cno

__________________

"Everything has been said before, but since nobody listens we have to keep going back and beginning all over again."  André Gide

CnoEvil's picture
Offline
Joined: 21 Aug 2009
Posts: 11425
RE: Any skiers out there?

chrishare wrote:

Looking forward to 2 weeks in the 4 Valleys in Switzerland over Xmas/New Year - webcams & forecasts don't look too promising at present.  Having kids, we are also booked in for half term & first week Easter!

Fingers and toes crossed for snow...I skied Verbier in the early 80s..good tough runs with great off piste.

Skiing with the kids (especially self catering) is fun, but very hard work (depending on their ages). Also eye-wateringly expensive during school holidays!

Cno

__________________

"Everything has been said before, but since nobody listens we have to keep going back and beginning all over again."  André Gide