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Ski width for sping skiing

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Snowheads, if you could take one pair of skis on holiday to ski in April - what underfoot width would you choose for a typical mix of conditions to include early morning frozen pistes, afternoon slush and off piste spring snow. Are you in the narrow world up to 80mm, 80-90mm, 90-100mm or 100mm+
Thanks - thoughts appreciated.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
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Due to sharing a ski bag between three people thus limiting us to 1pp, we have precisely this dilemma next week. For me, 84 vs 107, and for him 76 vs 108.

After some deliberation, the fat skis are waxed and ready to go Toofy Grin
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Sorry, there didn't look like there was much though in that. There is, honest! The way I see it, the hard pack only lasts an hour so sharp edges will see you through that. Then fat skis are better off piste and make light work of afternoon slush.
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@Charliee, Almost invariably ski on my 98ish mm Bonafides for everything. All season.
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Quote:

@Charliee, Almost invariably ski on my 98ish mm Bonafides for everything. All season.


Not that helpful when they have a choice though.

personally, if I am going to be out first thing on the frozen pistes then I tend to go a bit narrower - I can make nicer turns in slush on a narrower ski than I can on ice with a fat ski. I actually find it very satisfying linking short carves on icy blue and red runs - technically demanding. If I'm going to get up a bit later Embarassed or know I'll be trying to maximise the the spring snow offpiste then I'll go fatter. As far as slush is concerned, it may not be ideal but a skinnier, stiff ski will chop through it nicely.
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@jedster, hadn't seen that.

Despite my general opinion that >105mm is unnecessarily wide for most people / things I would conceded that it's maybe less of a compromise.

That said, I have a pair of absolutely knackered 180cm FIS GS skis which are just a delight in slush and just about have enough left in them to work on ice as well.
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Not actually skied slush on it yet but mine are 92. Pretty good on hardpack (a narrow little SL ski would obviously perform better) and even with my lack of technique they did okay in soft snow earlier in the season.

Skied some that were 89 at the EoSB last season and they were ideal for the varied conditions, so I'm expecting much the same from my own skis.
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Having not long since come back from Flaine where we were skiing slush most of the week I would go for the narrower width.

I had two sets of skis with me - one 72mm underfoot (Rossi Pursuits) and one 89mm underfoot (Scott The Ski). I have to say I preferred the Rossignols, they were great fun.
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115mm + - keep on ticking when the other losers have gone home moaning about the slush. With a big tail kick/rocker to spray plenty of that slush around.
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My main dilemma is what will be easier on an injured leg a proper 5 point powder ski or a rocker big ass chargey type. Recent years have seen me go with the latter but the former might just be a bit easier to slide round.
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Hubby has Dyanstar Cham 97s , I have Nordica Hells Belles, 90. Both are great in slush
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
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under a new name wrote:
@jedster, hadn't seen that.

Despite my general opinion that >105mm is unnecessarily wide for most people / things I would conceded that it's maybe less of a compromise.

That said, I have a pair of absolutely knackered 180cm FIS GS skis which are just a delight in slush and just about have enough left in them to work on ice as well.


Wow you're on 98mm waists now! Who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks 😉

Only a few more cm to get you into 3 figures! Will 2017 be the year.....

Here they are!
http://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?t=131537&highlight=
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@Charliee, serious spring skiing conditions in St Anton last week. I had 88's and they were just about perfect for the hard/soft/slush daily snow progression. My friend started on 100's and changed for 80's on second morning.

@Dave of the Marmottes, you're having a laugh, right? Freezing hard pistes in the morning and you're recommending massive off-pisters?
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
No I'm recommending being tactical about the day - having a leisurely breakfast and then hitting terrain as it softens. Perhaps regarding the skiing day as 6 hours within the time the lifts are open rather than 8.30am til lunch.
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Properly re-frozen 8am spring snow isn't much fun whatever skis you're on (or at least, even Blizzard Brahmas at 88mm, narrowest thing I've been on in a long time, couldn't make the really hard shaded parts fun) unless you have some bad fillings you want to shake out, sooo I would say 100mm+ preferably in a playful shape (tail rocker, taper, etc). Then enjoy a nice leisurely start to the day with good coffee, hit the slopes around 10am to make the most of the lovely soft snow, and make your time up after 3pm when everyone one skinny skis have given up and are moaning about chopped up and bumpy everything is.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I'm having this exact dilemma myself for a 2 day trip to Sierra Nevada, which is likely to be massively slushed out down low. The 108mms are winning at the moment but my little piste skis are keeping the contest very tight. Decision to be made by this time next week.
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Thanks All, lots of options, nothing conclusive - I'm lucky, I have plenty of options and can easily change at lunch time. My initial thought was to take my Cham 97 2.0's out in the morning and then swap for preachers or Redeemers for some "poor mans powder" in the afternoons - that said the bar may call!
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@Charliee, I'm off next week, taking 76mm underfoot, you don't sink that much in decent corn and you can carve through slush on an edge so no need for the width IMHO. No need for the extra width IMHO, zero benefits.
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kitenski wrote:
@Charliee, I'm off next week, taking 76mm underfoot, you don't sink that much in decent corn and you can carve through slush on an edge so no need for the width IMHO. No need for the extra width IMHO, zero benefits.


You don't get hung up in slushy moguls and dragged on the piled up home run at 5pm with those? I know we have different philosophies here but I hate that inability to punch through/over you get on a skinnier ski.

I will acknowledge that I was answering the question from an allmountain perspective but I've happily done a (latish) Easter week in St Anton with the Redeemer as my only ski- once the snow can be penetrated then the fat ski disadvantage is equally less of an issue.
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@Dave of the Marmottes, once a ski is on edge it's going to punch through most stuff, slushy moguls are even more fun on a narrower ski Smile

I've skied slush that sank to over boot high and it's fine !

Granted a "skidded" turn on a narrow ski isn't going to be fun in deep slush!
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Quote:

Wow you're on 98mm waists now!


You have clearly not been keeping up, I have spent most of my time on ~98s since ? 2010? But I still have a fine selection of proper race skis, you know, because, some days... (or racing).
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On 72mm this week and more than happy with the choice for the mostly piste skiing we're doing (with family). A wider ski may be just as good but so far I haven't appreciated the extra width in conditions like this on the few occasions I've tried them. Also have SL skis in the bag but don't expect they'll be coming out to play.
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For what it's worth, the St Anton Jennewein boys were saying anything over 90 was too wide for the conditions last week. None of them were riding anything wider and they're seriously good skiers.
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kitenski wrote:
@Charliee, I'm off next week, taking 76mm underfoot, you don't sink that much in decent corn and you can carve through slush on an edge so no need for the width IMHO. No need for the extra width IMHO, zero benefits.


Skied 88mm Brahma and 99mm Sallie QST the other week back to back in Andorran slush. The QST was way more fun and playful! In slush you can carve 130mm+ skis just as hard as skinny skis as the edge grip is endless, so why would you want to give up the option to surf your bases and all the fun of popping and slashing those bumps you decide not to slash through? Skinny skis are so limiting in terms of the styles of skiing they reward, and I can't see any benefit of reduced width at all in slush?
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kitenski wrote:


Granted a "skidded" turn on a narrow ski isn't going to be fun in deep slush!
= no fun then. I once did a lap of Mt Vallon in Meribel with the wabbit competing for who could to the biggest powerslide on the otherwise empty run. Brilliant.
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clarky999 wrote:
kitenski wrote:
@Charliee, I'm off next week, taking 76mm underfoot, you don't sink that much in decent corn and you can carve through slush on an edge so no need for the width IMHO. No need for the extra width IMHO, zero benefits.


Skied 88mm Brahma and 99mm Sallie QST the other week back to back in Andorran slush. The QST was way more fun and playful! In slush you can carve 130mm+ skis just as hard as skinny skis as the edge grip is endless, so why would you want to give up the option to surf your bases and all the fun of popping and slashing those bumps you decide not to slash through? Skinny skis are so limiting in terms of the styles of skiing they reward, and I can't see any benefit of reduced width at all in slush?

This forms my dilemma, that my wide skis will be much better in slush. That said, the mornings are bound to be fairly bullet-proof pistes with the freeze-thaw and therefore I could see that narrow piste skis would be much more enjoyable for the hard-pack until the pistes soften up.

I'm only doing a very short trip next week and probably prioritising the morning and early afternoon, as I need to get on the road. I can only take one set with me too. I still can't make my mind up, I'm leaning towards the wide skis but can very much see the individual benefits in either.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
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@Charliee, 108mm underfoot all day long, I don't go narrower in anything.......well apart from blue ice at New Year when I went 90mm all-mountain and they had edges on too Laughing
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Really does depend what you like doing.

Many people in Spring that I know get up early to ski the hard "Manchester" on their carving skis and love that, and will only do a couple of hours.

If you're out for a one week holiday and want to ski all day then it is difficult choice - or miss out on the Manchester and get up later as people have already advised and you can ski more of an all mountain ski.

Yesterday I had to ski on the piste having been playing around off piste on N Facing slopes in fresh snow until lower down was just too heavy, so back to the piste to get back to the chair.

Then we went off the back, fresh snow at the top and almost spring by the bottom and then skinned back up - I was on 115 K2 Coombacks and the width of those together is like a snowboard and smash through the slush, except I have a badly bruised (post infection) ankle and as it's so painful when on the piste I took the gondola down rather than ski slush bumps all the way rolling eyes

And when you know you're going to just be skiing classic corn then 85-95 is good.

And I just love my 88 SuperGuides for the up as well as the down.


Last edited by 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 on Tue 4-04-17 16:10; edited 1 time in total
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
clarky999 wrote:
kitenski wrote:
@Charliee, I'm off next week, taking 76mm underfoot, you don't sink that much in decent corn and you can carve through slush on an edge so no need for the width IMHO. No need for the extra width IMHO, zero benefits.


Skied 88mm Brahma and 99mm Sallie QST the other week back to back in Andorran slush. The QST was way more fun and playful! In slush you can carve 130mm+ skis just as hard as skinny skis as the edge grip is endless, so why would you want to give up the option to surf your bases and all the fun of popping and slashing those bumps you decide not to slash through? Skinny skis are so limiting in terms of the styles of skiing they reward, and I can't see any benefit of reduced width at all in slush?


trouble is your average once a week holiday skiers get on their fat skis "surf the bases", lean back, straight line the slush and cause considerable danger to other snow users....granted you know how to use them Wink
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Why "Manchester"? Grim and north west facing? Or just not as good as it thinks it is?

Quick google gives me the true answer. The contintentals might as well call it "my f***ing red trousers"
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
@kitenski, many a person who skis fat skis does it because they can't ski narrower skis off piste Toofy Grin

I never see any guides on anything more than 105 mostly then around 90mm

Mind you today I was on two wheels enjoying the Spring conditions Cool
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..and the prize for Godwin's law in fat ski threads goes to Weathercam. UANN nearly had it in the bag with his reference to GS skis but uncharacteristically backed away wink
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Dave of the Marmottes wrote:
Why "Manchester"? Grim and north west facing? Or just not as good as it thinks it is?

Quick google gives me the true answer. The contintentals might as well call it "my f***ing red trousers"


You must be better at Google than me, not a clue on the Manchester thing.
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Cord
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Dave of the Marmottes wrote:
Cord


Ok, I'll believe you! Best cords ( sp) from Manchester are by Johnny Marr.
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Been on 63 for the last few weeks, had 108 with me but didn't bother taking them out. If the snow softens too much just use more salt.
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Quote:


@Charliee, I'm off next week, taking 76mm underfoot, you don't sink that much in decent corn and you can carve through slush on an edge so no need for the width IMHO. No need for the extra width IMHO, zero benefits

+1 what I was getting at
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I much preferred my whitedot ones at 89mm and 173 in the spring end of day slush fest than my pair of flappy k2 superfrees that are too short for me but kept mainly for rock skis or messing about on the nursery slopes which i found a bit light and soft at 76mm bit it could be the stiffer longer ski rather than the width. Much smoother ride and easily manageable on the morning hardpack too
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Maybe I'm just old school.
80mm is enough for me, I've tried wider skis, and I just dont feel its right.
My most versitile is a pair of Salamon Enduro 800Tii
I've got an old pair of Volkl Snow Rangers in the garage, they were "the" off piste ski of the 90s ... Pre Carvers. But they are just a measly 79mm

I'm not an off pister any more, just a couple of meter the wrong side of the poles, on a really wild day.
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DrLawn wrote:
80mm is enough for me


Ahem wink
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