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Thread: Why go skinny?

  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by BFD View Post
    he skied Mount Jefferson south face a couple of weeks ago. over 4000ft of what he described as icy wind blasted. the boots perform also.
    Similar ski conditions on the south side of Adams in January prompted me to go home and immediately buy a new set of skis. My God that is still the worse snow conditions I've ever skied. Never again.

  2. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by tgapp View Post
    i would agree with that. those boots are killer. soft, sure, but light as a slipper with a bionic walk mode.
    I had the Alien RS, I didn't find them "soft" but could never get rid of the slop between fore/aft support in ski mode which made them ski soft. I recently upgraded to the F1LT and it's far more confidence inspiring, no slop and no worry about snapping the cord or pulling a knot through itself. Plenty stiff, just did 10k' with them yesterday and really got comfortable with them by the end. Great boot.
    "High risers are for people with fused ankles, jongs and dudes who are too fat to see their dick or touch their toes.
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  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by AKbruin View Post
    I've never been in a steep, firm couloir and regretted being on 105mm-110mm skis. I have been in steep couloirs with variable, textured snow and occasionally (and only slightly) regretted being on my 95mm skis (Zero G 95, which I generally like). YMMV.

    But, IMO, where skinnier skis really shine is skinning up steep, icy terrain, particularly with ski crampons. It's noticeably easier on skinnier skis with fewer white-knuckle kickturns.
    This. Skinny skis are great for going uphill. The advantages going down (quickness, grip) are both minimal and rarely important.

  4. #29
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    Sep 2005
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    Skinny is for ski mountaineering. You know multi day long slogs to technical terrain. Need something light to carry in pack up difficult assents, and something with camber and square tails. Fairly narrow, light, a bit short with long effective edge. If you are climbing up and skiing narrow couloirs all day, do you really want a 105mm ski?
    ďA society that puts equality before freedom will get neither. A society that puts freedom before equality will get a high degree of both.Ē
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  5. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by AKbruin View Post
    I do notice the lighter weight when the skis are on my back and I'm booting.
    I shaved about 5 minutes from my best time on a 3400' booter when I went from a 1600g ski to a 1300g one. Shorter lighter sticks are nice when on the pack, they don't swing around much and get caught into trees when schwacking or hit rocks when scrambling (that shit is terrifying).
    Counterpoint: on that same day it took me about 15 minutes longer to ski back down on the skinny skis cause my legs were smoking the whole time and I had to stop every 500'. Good thing Strava only has an uphill segment for that one

    Quote Originally Posted by I've seen black diamonds! View Post
    This. Skinny skis are great for going uphill. The advantages going down (quickness, grip) are both minimal and rarely important.
    A few springs ago I dragged Ms Boissal on an overnighter to ski a peak I stared at from my bedroom window for 18 years. The 2nd day involves an absolutely endless W-facing traverse above low angle cliffs with the glacier below. The slope isn't that steep, the angle is constant and you don't change direction for about 5 miles. it's soul-crushing, even more so when it bakes in the sun all afternoon the refreezes solid overnight.
    I'm fairly comfortable traverse-skinning on hard snow and got worked with 102 underfoot: my ankles got hot spots, my feet were cramping, even my back got super stiff from having to maintain a locked core with one foot higher than the other and controlling the not infrequent slide backward.
    Ms Boissal HATES skinning on hard snow, she's way too spoiled with the Wasatch. She had her 99mm setup and threw on the ski crampons 5 minutes into the traverse. It was one of the most painful things I've ever seen. She later told me that if we hadn't been in glaciated terrain in a place she doesn't know she'd have bailed and thrown the skis away in the first dumpster she came across and replace them with something 65 mm underfoot.

    We were PSYCHED to have the bigger skis for the exit though, lots of highly carvable windboard to thousands of feet of isothermic mank on jello legs could have been hell.
    "Your wife being mad is temporary, but pow turns do not get unmade" - mallwalker the wise

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by schindlerpiste View Post
    If you are climbing up and skiing narrow couloirs all day, do you really want a 105mm ski?
    Yes. 180 Zero G 105's weigh 1500g and ski pretty damn well. That's my sweet spot for Colorado. Sold my Zero G 85's because I rarely used them and often regretted it when I did. But if I lived somewhere where I was frequently skiing up steep firm slopes, and the corn doesn't turn to slop so fast, I'd still have them in the quiver.

    I've skinned up the little couloir in the pic below 5-6 times. It's about 250m up for a nice 8-900m descent down to the opposite side. I've done it on skis with 88mm, 99mm, and 112mm waists. Going up with the skinny pair was a breeze, but the bushwacky exit with sloppy snow was miserable. The mid-fats were always fine going both ways. Skinning up the steepest sections (about 35 degrees) was pretty miserable on the 112's. Midfats for the win. But if it was 800m of skinning up a 30-35 degree slope I'd take the skinny pair every time.




    Quote Originally Posted by Boissal View Post
    on that same day it took me about 15 minutes longer to ski back down on the skinny skis cause my legs were smoking the whole time and I had to stop every 500'.
    Exactly.

  7. #32
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    Dec 2006
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    Tangent: I just picked up a the F1 LTs this week and began using them for early-morning resort laps, for which they are great. I think I'd be fine skiing variable conditions in them. But here's my complaint: My 29.0 F1 LTs are about 1.5 centimeters shorter than my 29.0 Maestrale RSs, fucking up my ability to conveniently use them interchangeably on the same skis. It's pretty annoying.

  8. #33
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    In spring conditions where I ski in the Selkirks, I guess I would counter why go wide? The snow conditions are consistent enough in April/May that 80mm waist do fine, although I do sometimes take my 96mm waist skis and they are fine too.

    Excited to try out some Ski Trab Free Rando (79mm waist) skis I picked up for spring conditions. They save ~400g off my older similar size skis. They will have randonerd Trab TR Race bindings too, my lightest set up ever.

  9. #34
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    Sep 2018
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    It's a while ago that I had some Volkl Norbert Joos 177cm skis. I think they were 106 tip, 70 mid and really light. Believe they were targeted toward mountaineering endeavors. They did 6" powder days as well as a lot of wider ski's and went as fast as I wanted to go on pin bindings with no problem. Had a lot of great days on them. I became a skinnier, lighter believer once I realized the compromise was rather small opposed to the weight savings and nimbleness.

  10. #35
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    Have we defined narrow? I dig my shorter 178 0G 95s for anything in the late spring/ summer or current high pressure January’s. I don’t mind them in soft snow either.. They are also the same width as my old Seth pistols which were a game changing pow ski 15 years ago. They also have a much better edge hold then my wider skis when it’s icy as fuck and a fall will result in uncontrollable falls over 1000+ feet

    Thinking about some even shorter 171 85s or 95s for days where I need to walk through miles of steep forest to get to the mountains I want to ski in the time of year we’re daylight and conditions allow.

  11. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by XavierD View Post
    Have we defined narrow? I dig my shorter 178 0G 95s for anything in the late spring/ summer or current high pressure Januaryís. I donít mind them in soft snow either.. They are also the same width as my old Seth pistols which were a game changing pow ski 15 years ago.

    Thinking about some even shorter 171 85s or 95s for days where I need to walk through miles of lowland forest to get to the mountains I want to ski in the time of year weíre daylight and conditions allow.
    yeah i have 171 cirque84s as my walking ski for long, remote missions. last year i did king's peak in utah (34 miles RT, with a TON of walking) on a pair of skimo skis - i was about ready to burn/destroy them when i finally finished. i got the cirque84's as a bit of a compromise, since i still plan on doing huge distance days, but i want a ski that will actually ski somewhat well. i suppose it's all relative, though - coming from my skimo skis, the cirque84s are pretty much everything i could ask for in a distance-oriented ski.

    yesterday i did 10k in a pair of bmt 94's matched with scarpa aliens, skiing two-ish feet of powder the whole way, and i had an absolute blast. it sounds like >95 is the threshold for skinny, so i guess that qualifies - but i was perfectly happy with my ski choice, and honestly i don't think i could have pulled that off with a heavier setup. sure, i'm a fat ass, but skinny skis allow me to go for long days, and i'm stoked on that.

  12. #37
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    Nov 2012
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    Seems like identifying region would be helpful to the conversation. Here in the PNW, I find an 80-90mm waist ski indispensable for the tail end of the ski season (April - July; itís a long tail). We have high density snow and the spring corn never gets more than a few inches deep. If itís deep and isothermic, go home. Youíre too late. A narrow ski is lighter on the up, and has no negatives while skiing steep corn.

    In contrast, when I lived in Utah, 100mm is the narrowest Iíd go for any part of the season or type of snow. Oregon couloirs in the spring (broken top, Hood, etc) and Rockies/Tetons/wasatch/etc couloirs in the spring are totally different beasts in my opinion. Optimize your quiver accordingly.

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