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New skis: what and where to buy in Austria

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I will be exchanging my elderly Atomic Crimson (86 waist, 176 lenghts, 2006 model, wide carver, no rocker). Thinking of something a little bit wider. BC (before corona) used to take 2 trips. Jan - always Austria, end of March Austria or France. Looking at Enforcer 88, Atomic Maverick 88 ti, MIndbender 90ti, Salomon Stance 90, Blizzard Rustler 9.
Enforcer - best looking, best reviews, but described as heavy, new model has really stiff tails - not very playful?
Maverick - should be the natural evolution of my current skis, feel right at home (and maybe I want a change) less "side piste" oriented than the others?
Rustler - everywhere is called playful, which is what I want, but is 94 underfoot and I have a narrower stance (learned to ski a long time ago, took plenty of instruction but I somehow feel more natural in a narrower stance) also needs more centered stance?
Salomon - ugly (I could like , seem to be as good as the others, a little cheaper. The Salomon carvers with wood core that I rented were nice, not the noodles Salomon is know for
MIndbender - liked the K2 feel in an Ikonik, seems versatile, but seems really similar to the Stance and that one can be had for 150 Euros less (and are just as ugly)

Will be skiing a lot on piste, but I enjoy bumps, sidepiste, unpisted routes. I can go fast linking GS turns, but don't feel comfortable going that fast anymore, at least if the slope is not empty (had enough idiots almost crashing into my kids). Prefer medium turns and sometimes short slaloms. Will be driving the tips
In the last few years I've hired a few times:
Salomon xdr 80 - toooo soft.
Volkl RTM 84 177 compliant but bland
K2 Ikonik 84 177 compliant and very smooth liked it better than the RTM,
Blizzard Brahma (original in a 187). Damp, smooth, powerfull. Needed to either go faster than I wanted or be much more centered on the ski. Tiring. Definitely would have liked it 20 years ago (I'm 48 now), and even then would have considered the 180.
Head Magnum and a Salomon carver at about 72 waist when it was a skating rink (will hire again it it'll be that bad again, no problem hiring "race carvers")

Also, thinking of buying from Sport Conrad and delivering to the hotel. Any other options in Austria?
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I've used BRÜNDL SPORTS FLAGSHIPSTORE in Kaprun. They have other locations as well. Big range, might be worth a look.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
If you are reasonably light and they are available in Austria, I would recommend Scott, as they do everything well, including Bumps and are playful and fun.

I have "The Ski" in a 180.....but I think this has been mostly replaced by the "Slight 93".
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 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
@joffy69, how are their prices? Sport Conrad pricing is usually pretty keen
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
To the OP, the explorers seem to have a small radius, I'd be wary of them being "grabby"
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
I've bought stuff from conrad online, so I assume they would be cheaper. Brundl would perhaps give you the advantage of seeing/trying (although I don't remember that as an option). They did have a whole load of last seasons kit on sale while I was there (November training). They had a (locked in a cabinet) diamond encrusted ski, retailing at 10000 euros (from memory), so maybe not the cheapest.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Brundl is good if you can get there early enough (before the Snowsports Austria instructor training gets going) to have the best selection of discounts on last years gear. IIRC they do a free card that gives you a discount of 20% on your birthday, which might be useful it the timing is right.

You also can't go wrong with Sport Conrad; next years skis I'm looking to buy have just come in and are already 43% off - I'll order to be sent to where we are staying.

Sport Bittl has some generous offers atm.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Brundl is the sole supplier of Marcel Hirche's new line of skis too... you might get to whizz about on them... I have no idea if they are any good though!
Intersport and Sport 2000 are franchised, so the level of service/discounts etc. is very much dependent on the individual store. Hervis is a national chain and Brundl was an Intersport franchise until he went indie a couple of years ago. I don't know if that info will help at all but it does explain the massive difference in pricing.
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Regarding the different skis, I demoed a bunch last season and ended up buying the Enforcer 88s. It struck a great balance of holding fast GS turns, maneuverability in bumps and trees, good enough edge hold on ice, and being able to handle anything up to 15-20cm powder.
The ski that was a surprising close 2nd was the Elan Ripstick 88. It was lighter/livelier and more fun in trees and bumps and less tiring than the enforcer but a little less stable at high speeds. Given what you said about not needing a super high speed ski the Ripstick could be good fit. It usually comes in cheaper than the other brands as well.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
@marcs44, interesting. The reviews certainly agree with you. The Elan wasn't on my list. Where did you try them? have you tried the Mindbender, perhaps?
This year looks like we're going to Saalbach in Jan, so Brundl in Kaprun might be an option.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
I demoed in Vermont in the US in February. I'm American and we were there when lockdown came in so decided to stay until schools opened up again here.
I tried the Mindbender 90 TI, the Ripsticks, Enforcers and the Armada Declivity 92. There was 5-10cm fresh snow so everything off piste was soft. I found the Mindbenders and Armadas to be a bit dull. Totally fine, but almost a bit plank like. The Elans had a lot more pop to them and were way more fun. The Enforcers were a bit heavier feeling and more work than the Elans in short turns, but that equated to better performance at speed, so that swayed me to the Enforcers.
Also the 20/21 and 21/22 enforcers are unchanged except for the top sheet, so you might be able to find a deal on last years if that's what you go for.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
@marcs44, thanks. Cannot seem to find the Ripstick 88 at relevant shops. The Explorer 88 tips seem a bit narrow (122 vs 127-128 for most of the others) so less likely to pull into a turn with less pressure? How compliant are they when trying to carve but a bit more "laizily" (applying less force and staying at lower speeds)?
The Declivity seems to have some "pop" according to reviews? It's so hard to know, each tester has his/her own style of skiing and of expressing. I liked the smoothness of K2 Ikonic 84 ti before, they were smooth but not lifeless. Started looking also at the Rustler 9. Blister said about them that they are focused on short-medium turns, and I think that I like that.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
As you said everyone is different so you won't know for sure until you demo a bunch of skis. Unfortunately it's rare to find one shop on the slopes that has all the skis you want to demo but hopefully you'll be able to get on enough skis to figure out what you like best. Looks like Armada has come out with a Declivity 88C which could be of interest too.
These guys have some of the better reviews I've found anywhere. They dive pretty deep. You can also ask them questions in the comments if you want:

https://www.skiessentials.com/Chairlift-Chat/2022-ski-comparisons-mens-90mm-all-mountain-ski-guide/
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
After reading that, I think I'm leaning towards the Salomon Stance 90. Salomon can make some boring noodles but I've skied wood and metal Salomons that I really enjoyed
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
I can't recommend trying before you buy enough - especially in the All Mountain category.

I'm trying to think of something nice to write about AM skis and I'm struggling. They sound a good idea on paper - something that will cope with a variety of conditions... Sounds good! In reality, they tend to be universally poor. Too wide and too flappy for carving; too narrow and the wrong profile for powder. Just bad for learning new skills as well. A dedicated piste ski would allow you to develope your technique properly and have some fun on piste without being a total disaster in soft snow or bumps.

Of the list above, I have a mate who swears by the Ripsticks but he is properly expert and has a technique all of his own.....

Edit: Head Magnum are a great ski. How tall and heavy are you?
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
@Klamm Franzer, I'm 48 years old. Currently weight 85 kg (but I'm too short for my weight). I've been skiing since I was 5. Started skiing in Eastern Europe in leather boots and bear trap bindings. Progressed to real boots after 2 years but the skis still had bases like chewing gum and screw in edges. They used to rip out regularly and we just went to the shop and screwed new edges in. Used to get a week of skiing with my father and a weekin a school trip. The first skis that I bought from my own money were 2 m race slalom Fischer. Have taken quite a bit of instruction, including off piste weeks courses. IMHO at this point any limitations to my skiing are fitness, strength and mindset i.e. I'm far from technically perfect but unlikely to get significantly better.
I've skied the Head Magnum and frankly while stable it didn't do much for me. If I'm taking a piste ski I'd rather have a sub 68 mm race slalom or gs ski, but I can't hop on slaloms all week long at my current fitness level and really don't feel psychologically comfortable bombing down everywhere. Having said that, if I was forced to get a Head ski, I'd choose the Monster 88 and just bulldoze through everything, but I'd have to finish skiing before 2 pm
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