Why are americans fat?

This is the World Famous TelemarkTalk / TelemarkTips Forum, by far the most dynamic telemark and backcountry skiing discussion board on the world wide web. We have fun here, come on in and be a part of it.
User avatar
bgregoire
XCD Guide
XCD Guide
Posts: 1237
Joined: Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:31 am
Ski style: Nordic backcountry touring with lots of turns
Favorite Skis: Fisher E99, Åsnes Ingstad & Cecilie, K2 Wayback 88
Favorite boots: Crispi Sydpolen, Alico Teletour & Alfa Polar

Why are americans fat?

Post by bgregoire » Fri Mar 13, 2015 3:07 pm

Flipping through backcountry skis currently sold in Norway, I came across these:

Fischer Steel Lite
http://www.fischersports.com/no/Nordic/ ... Steel-Lite

Full metal edges, 47-44-46. Intended to be used about 5cm short of full XC length.

I bet these would be fun paired with NNN BC manuals and a reinforced BC boot for skating across frozen lakes, large expanses and snowmobile trails. Fischer doesn't think North Americans might want these? C'mon, let's go skinny and fast!

Interestingly enough, seems like the S-bounds and the Offtrack lines are not sold in Norway!
Last edited by bgregoire on Fri Mar 13, 2015 5:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
I live for the Telemark arc....The feeeeeeel.....I ski miles to get to a place where there is guaranteed snow to do the deal....TM

MikeK

Re: Why are americans fat?

Post by MikeK » Fri Mar 13, 2015 4:03 pm

We're too fat for those skinny skis! We'd sink right to the core of the earth!

Despite Americans being a bit obese, I have a feeling some it has to do with intended market and terrain.

Those OTX skis are EMS specials. They are surely intended for people who ski twice a year or people who rent skis. They aren't for serious enthusiast although some may be perfectly fine for skiing around your house or in groomed tracks.

The S Bounds are intended for mountain goers. We actually have lots of mountains in North America, but those skis seem better suited to Alpine meadows of the west or hardwood forests of the east. And plus if you haven't notice, Americans are obsessed with turning! I'm sorry Johnny, but I have to say it: turning in the BC should be first and foremost to control your speed and avoid obstacles... beyond that it's just horseplay.

My height of Alpine skiing in HS I though making turns was stupid and boring - I'd much rather pop off 6-7' jumps (pitiful compared to today's terrain parks), ski through the trees or get in a tuck and rail on my edges in one big long turn going way faster than I should have like a dh racer. I couldn't figure out why all these geezers were having so much fun swishing back and forth. I made turns when I wanted to go slow or turn away from the swishing geezers. All they did was make a lot of moguls, which were fun at times, but usually just got in the way of going fast or hitting big jumps. I've changed a lot since then... but still... we are obsessed with that turn!

Another thing I think happens because I personally have had this prejudice is that skinny gives the connotation of skiing at a track in spandex. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but for someone like me - that's 180° from what I want to do with skis... I'm not a skinny health nut, and I don't really like resorts.

The last thing I wonder about is the type of snow they have in Norway. The videos that were posted here before from Asnes made it seem like their conditions are of hard packed snow. Maybe that was just a coincidence, but maybe they don't need those fat skis as many days out of the year as someone in Quebec does?

User avatar
bgregoire
XCD Guide
XCD Guide
Posts: 1237
Joined: Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:31 am
Ski style: Nordic backcountry touring with lots of turns
Favorite Skis: Fisher E99, Åsnes Ingstad & Cecilie, K2 Wayback 88
Favorite boots: Crispi Sydpolen, Alico Teletour & Alfa Polar

Re: Why are americans fat?

Post by bgregoire » Fri Mar 13, 2015 4:25 pm

Of course Mikek, you are right on most all fronts.

Now, while Québec gets a lot of pow, it also has an extensive snowmobile trail network that covers most of the province. I wish we could take advantage of those trails for some long-distance high speed ski travel. Skijoring them would also be a lot of fun but that would require skis without metal edges. Don't want to hurt the puppies now.

Let's not forget our brothers and sister in Northern North America now either: Norwest Territories, Yukon, Alaska...they have a lot more windpacked snow conditions up there, that would by a skinny light ski paradise IMO.

Ah, once again, I realize I missed my teleturn. Geez. It's hard keeping in line, the "S" line that is. :?
I live for the Telemark arc....The feeeeeeel.....I ski miles to get to a place where there is guaranteed snow to do the deal....TM

User avatar
LooseHeel
XCD Enthusiast
XCD Enthusiast
Posts: 37
Joined: Mon Mar 09, 2015 7:49 am

Re: Why are americans fat?

Post by LooseHeel » Fri Mar 13, 2015 4:50 pm

Those would be fun for backcountry skating. There aren't enough skinny metal edge skis available. I used to have a pair of Atomic Mtn BC, 3/4 metal edge, 190cm, 60-50-55 or something, skate bindings and boots. Spring conditions, good times.

MikeK

Re: Why are americans fat?

Post by MikeK » Fri Mar 13, 2015 5:15 pm

Get a pair of Madshus Voss - sounds like the same deal as you describe above. They are skatable.

I'm thinking the Voss is going to be my ski of choice this weekend. Of course even a slight grade on tracked out stuff is going run like black diamond and off trail is a nasty breakable crust, so I'll probably stay on flatter stuff...
A sampling of the post-thaw conditions on Thursday indicates that unbroken areas have a very breakable crust that makes both turning on skis or breaking trail with skis or snowshoes very difficult. Smooth trails with 2" of snow are good skiing, but otherwise the best skiing is at the groomed centers. Saturday's forecast hasn't changed, so we will se a mix of sleet, rain, and then some snow by Saturday night. In two words, "spring conditions".

User avatar
LooseHeel
XCD Enthusiast
XCD Enthusiast
Posts: 37
Joined: Mon Mar 09, 2015 7:49 am

Re: Why are americans fat?

Post by LooseHeel » Fri Mar 13, 2015 5:31 pm

Voss, ya... that width did feel a bit wide skating on harder snow, but great for most snow not quite boilerplate. I borrowed a pair of Voss to try bc skating, worked well enough. Heavy and slow as expected, but fun. (195cm, nnnbc, soft boots).

The Fischer Steel Lite at 47-44-46 would be fun to try.

MikeK

Re: Why are americans fat?

Post by MikeK » Fri Mar 13, 2015 5:33 pm

I'm obviously not a skater because the Voss feels super light to me!

User avatar
connyro
XCD Guide
XCD Guide
Posts: 818
Joined: Mon Jan 26, 2015 12:46 pm

Re: Why are americans fat?

Post by connyro » Fri Mar 13, 2015 5:41 pm

MikeK wrote:turning in the BC should be first and foremost to control your speed and avoid obstacles... beyond that it's just horseplay.
I'll go along with a lot of what you say on this site, but that's just ridiculous. For some XCD/BC skiers, doing turns and riding the terrain IS THE POINT of XCD/BC skiing. Making turns down steep hardwood slopes is where it's at for some of us, and the climb up and tour out and back can be almost as fun! Exploring and touring is also part of the fun, but it's often done with an eye towards turns.

Regarding the OP, at least where I live/ski we have deep, soft, cold snow throughout the season generally speaking, and fat skis are a necessity for bushwhacking/breaking trail unless you spend your time touring on packed and/or groomed trails. In our thick woods, wider and shorter works well for maneuverability. I love the idea of those Karhu Forest series Hunt skis 250cm, but holy cow, those would not work out well in the dense forests and undulating terrain around here.

User avatar
LooseHeel
XCD Enthusiast
XCD Enthusiast
Posts: 37
Joined: Mon Mar 09, 2015 7:49 am

Re: Why are americans fat?

Post by LooseHeel » Fri Mar 13, 2015 5:56 pm

MikeK wrote:I'm obviously not a skater because the Voss feels super light to me!
ha! ya, they only feel heavy compared to proper skate gear.

MikeK

Re: Why are americans fat?

Post by MikeK » Fri Mar 13, 2015 6:03 pm

connyro wrote:
MikeK wrote:turning in the BC should be first and foremost to control your speed and avoid obstacles... beyond that it's just horseplay.
I'll go along with a lot of what you say on this site, but that's just ridiculous. For some XCD/BC skiers, doing turns and riding the terrain IS THE POINT of XCD/BC skiing. Making turns down steep hardwood slopes is where it's at for some of us, and the climb up and tour out and back can be almost as fun! Exploring and touring is also part of the fun, but it's often done with an eye towards turns.
I was being a bit cheeky, but seriously - what is the REAL point of making turns? It's to control your speed or dodge obstacles. If it wasn't why not just bomb it down everything?

Turning on hardpack when there are gates involved is a real sport. It's not just some jerking around weaving back and forth. Yeah a lot people have fun with it but it mostly to accomplish the two things I said... and even in racing it's to do at least one of those.

I'm sorry but I think sometimes people put way too much emphasis on this turning crap. They use it to bully people around and make them feel like lesser of a skier - like your buddy Ron. So just for minute, step back and think about what the real goal is. Maybe it's so far removed for some it becomes something else, but it really started with a true purpose. And for those looking to become better skiers in the BC, it's really the two things I stated.

Also don't misunderstood what I said about how I skied when I was young but I never once said I'm going to make some turns - I said I was going skiing. Turns just happened to be part of the process. I scoffed at those who were swishing back in forth in a perfect line down a groomed run not because I was jealous, but because I thought what they were doing was incredibly boring. Why didn't they go one way or another? Why go in a straight line swooshing back and forth? It's like jerking off. It isn't skiing. It's going through the motions. Ever see a professional race course that was in straight line making the same radius arcs back and forth like a pendulum?

Post Reply