New skis for my wife - strong intermediate

KingGrump

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I agree with @HardDaysNight a SL would be the key to technical competence. At 5'/7" and #135, she can go into the stiffer 157/159 FIS SL with no issue. Most skiers tended to favor a slightly rear bias in their stance. A SL will get the fore and aft balance dialed quick.
Staying on the groomer initially will help ease the transition.
 
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charlier

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I agree with @HardDaysNight a SL would be the key to technical competence. At 5'/7" and #135, she can go into the stiffer 157/159 FIS SL with no issue. Most skiers tended to favor a slightly rear bias in their stance. A SL will get the fore and aft balance dialed quick.
Staying on the groomer initially will help ease the transition.
I worry that a 157/159 FIS SL ski is a bit to aggressive and stiff and it might hinder her skiing enjoyment after a few hours. Could a decent front-side carving ski work, a ski that she can bend and have fun. I doubt that she will be doing drills all day - it’s recreation.
 

James

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is a strong athletic intermediate skier.
The slaloms would be fine. Just make sure the bases are flat enough to slide sideways, i.e., sideslip, and don’t put a real aggressive tune on. Base at 0.75 -1 degree.
Look at the woman in Deb’s video. Went from a very soft and light fat ski to Deb’s slaloms. Her “head exploded”. I didn’t hear a ball and chain/working in the salt mines, story.
 

Jilly

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I worry that a 157/159 FIS SL ski is a bit to aggressive and stiff and it might hinder her skiing enjoyment after a few hours. Could a decent front-side carving ski work, a ski that she can bend and have fun. I doubt that she will be doing drills all day - it’s recreation.
FIS SL well yeah. You won't even get me on that. Tuned down race skis. Rossi Hero's MT, The Nova's I mentioned, the Phoenix...all are NOT FIS skis. Same pedigree, but not as stiff.
 

James

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^Well, most of that is a myth. They’re actually easier to ski than many of the so called non race high end carvers. Probably easier than your Rossi MT’s.

Kind of reminds me of “I don’t want to wax, because I’ll go too fast.”

It’s freakish that the same ski made for racing makes such a good free ski. (Ok, not real race room, but still FIS) But it’s been this way since the mid 2000’s. Shhh…I shouldn’t mention it or they’ll do something stupid to them.
 

KingGrump

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I worry that a 157/159 FIS SL ski is a bit to aggressive and stiff and it might hinder her skiing enjoyment after a few hours. Could a decent front-side carving ski work, a ski that she can bend and have fun. I doubt that she will be doing drills all day - it’s recreation.

The stiffness of a SL are usually not felt on the groomer if the skier can modulate their turns and speed. It can get stiff and rebound strongly when driven hard. One of the issues I have with many skiers out there is they have one speed. Full on. The SL is a good teaching tool for modulation. Both speed and turn shape. Great for low speed skiing. Good technical skiing is developed at low speed first. It's all in the balance.

IMO, the 157/159 SL size is the most versatile size for everyday skiing. Mamie is 5'/1", #125, 68 years old, she gets on hers early season in VT. She even spent an afternoon on KT at Pali couple seasons back. Not suggesting your wife to take the SL into the bumps, but just to show with proper technique, the SL can be a very versatile ski.
 
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charlier

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Just for discussion. What brands would you recommend for a SL ski. Blizzard, Fisher, Atomic, etc. I am still tempted to stay safe on Fisher RC ONE o rElan Wildcat. Are these skis too stiff for her.

Be kind, I usually ski on wide powder skis or an Elan Wingman 86. After my wife gets front-side skis, I might have to keep up with her and get a SL ski or better front-side ski, and sell my Wingman 86Ti.
 
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David Chaus

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Since the two of you are skiing at Red, and she’s a strong intermediate, can I assume she’s spending most of her time at Paradise and Topping Creek? IIRC some of the blues at Paradise tend to get groomed but not all, not sure about Topping since that’s a new chair. What I do recall is that Red doesn’t groom everything and that it helps to have a ski that can handle off-piste conditions a bit.

I kind of went through this same process with my SO, she loves the Renoun Earhart’s (88) that I got her a couple years back. But frontside carving skis they are not. Narrower than that, there are a lot of great skis. The Blossom AM 77 Phil mentioned is a great option, though they have the No. 1 SC or Lady, and they also sell a lot of the non-FIS SL’s to women in area (I’ve seen a few around).

That said, if you’re looking for brands you can pick up in Rossland, I’m thinking all the brand mentioned make skis that’ll work well for her.

Blizzard Phoenix R13 maybe? I think there is a C version and Ti version.
 

Mendieta

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Just for discussion. What brands would you recommend for a SL ski. Blizzard, Fisher, Atomic, etc. I am still tempted to stay safe on Fisher RC ONE orElan Wildcat. Are these skis too stiff for her.

I still love my Head Rallies. Great carvers but forgiving and decently versatile. Head is definitely a strong brand in race and civilian carving skis.
 
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charlier

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Since the two of you are skiing at Red, and she’s a strong intermediate, can I assume she’s spending most of her time at Paradise and Topping Creek? IIRC some of the blues at Paradise tend to get groomed but not all, not sure about Topping since that’s a new chair. What I do recall is that Red doesn’t groom everything and that it helps to have a ski that can handle off-piste conditions a bit.

I kind of went through this same process with my SO, she loves the Renoun Earhart’s (88) that I got her a couple years back. But frontside carving skis they are not. Narrower than that, there are a lot of great skis. The Blossom AM 77 Phil mentioned is a great option, though they have the No. 1 SC or Lady, and they also sell a lot of the non-FIS SL’s to women in area (I’ve seen a few around).

That said, if you’re looking for brands you can pick up in Rossland, I’m thinking all the brand mentioned make skis that’ll work well for her.

Blizzard Phoenix R13 maybe? I think there is a C version and Ti version.
She skis mostly on Paradise chair, with a few to t bottom via Topping (mostly groomed perfectly). I will purchase the skis in Washington and have access to almost all ski brands, except Blossom and similar skis. One option, pointed out by @Mendieta is the Head Supershape Rally, although this is a stiff ski. Is this too stiff?
 
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Lauren

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I am still tempted to stay safe on Fisher RC ONE o rElan Wildcat. Are these skis too stiff for her.
If you end up with the Wildcat, I’d personally spring for the Black version. Great ski that could help her progress and carve, but being an all mountain ski it won’t be overly demanding. Also, if she gets caught on a good snow day, having the all-mountain versatility might be nice. Another to look at could be the Atomic Q series…slightly more piste oriented than the Wildcat, but would still fit the bill.

Lots of suggestions for a SL ski…which is not a bad direction to go for improving on groomers. But…I think it depends on her overall goal, which you mentioned is to get on edge more and get better in bumps. I think a SL ski would fit the first goal, but hinder the second (yes, you can ski bumps on a SL ski, but anyone trying to progress in the way you describe will probably find them as hinderance).
 

François Pugh

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Stockli is the perfect ski for a lighter person to improve on groomers, but last time I checked it was about 2000 CAD.
I have never skied your mountain, but hear there is usually no shortage of nice softer snow. If that is the case you don't need all that much torsional rigidity.
If the purpose is to learn, you should get a ski with minimal to no rocker. Skis move forward and the tip leads the way. The purpose of camber is to transfer force to the tips, and when skis do that effectively you can tell what's going on at the tip. However, some rocker and/or early rise does make the skis more forgiving.

A narrower softer, shapelier ski will encourage tipping the ski on edge to turn. 135 lbs is light.

Bearing all that in mind, you should look for a beginner to intermediate ski that doesn't have much tip rocker. Don't be afraid to get a ski a few years older, maybe something like the Speedzone 12 I got for my son. It won't do for off-piste deep snow, but you have other skis for that.
 

AmyPJ

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FWIW during ski testing last winter, I was gaga over the Atomic Cloud series. I skied the 14 which I felt could have been a bit of a handful, then the 12 which I loved. In fact, I want to find a pair since the Blossoms are a bit out of my price range at this time.
 

Lauren

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FWIW during ski testing last winter, I was gaga over the Atomic Cloud series. I skied the 14 which I felt could have been a bit of a handful, then the 12 which I loved. In fact, I want to find a pair since the Blossoms are a bit out of my price range at this time.
I didn’t have a chance to get on the 12, but skied the Q14…amazing ski. I’d agree Atomic did a great job with it this year. Great ski that would definitely fit the bill for the OP’s wife.
 

AmyPJ

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I didn’t have a chance to get on the 12, but skied the Q14…amazing ski. I’d agree Atomic did a great job with it this year. Great ski that would definitely fit the bill for the OP’s wife.
I wanted to keep skiing them, which is always a good sign. Even the 14 wasn't difficult for me, I just had a feeling it could be in certain situations. I was actually really surprised at a 161 just how easy they were to turn, and felt really balanced tip to tail. The 12s were just that much easier. I'm now jonesing for a pair. :ogbiggrin:
 

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Stockli Laser (or Montero) AX is a nice in-between slalom and all mountain ski. It is a good carving ski that does well in the bumps, which you indicated she also wanted to improve. It will also be a good ski for her intermediate skill now that she wouldn't outgrow. Not cheap but really well made and will last for many years.
 

KingGrump

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Just for discussion. What brands would you recommend for a SL ski. Blizzard, Fisher, Atomic, etc. I am still tempted to stay safe on Fisher RC ONE o rElan Wildcat. Are these skis too stiff for her.

Be kind, I usually ski on wide powder skis or an Elan Wingman 86. After my wife gets front-side skis, I might have to keep up with her and get a SL ski or better front-side ski, and sell my Wingman 86Ti.

For a strong intermediate to develop fundamentals, all the FIS SL will be of similar performance level (very high). I would just look at what I can get the best price on.

Keeping in mind the goal here is to develop skiing fundamentals. The SL will have a smaller sweet spot as mentioned. But that is a good thing. It will help develop good dynamic balance.

As other have mentioned also, the SL will be a hand full in the bumps and off-piste. Agreed that it's a big leap going from groomer to bumps in a SL. But that is not the purpose of the SL as a learning tool. The fundamentals learned are transferable. Switch to a wider/softer ski will probably be wise for the bumps and off-piste days. At least initially.

The key to learning fundamentals is lessons, round turns and skiing slowly. Speed hides all manner of sins.
 

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