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Ski Recommendations - East coast carving skis


Diva in Training
Looking to buy my first pair of skis. I’m an intermediate skier, comfortable on blue and on not-too-steep black. I ski mostly east coast (NY/VT) groomed trails. I also ski in Colorado / Utah for 4-5 days per season, where I go on piste + trees. I like speed. For the next season I’m planning to work on carving and moguls.

After some research I seem should choose either:
  1. One pair of all mountain skis that handles both icy east coast and bigger mountains in the Rockies
  2. One pair of carving skis with narrower waist (<80cm or even closer to 70cm) to learn carving, and another pair of wider skis (>85cm) to cover true all mountains in Rockies
So far I’ve been inclining towards 2) since I’ve been reading that narrower waist is important for learning carving – agree / disagree?

Here is a list of carving skis with length I’ve been considering (I’m in my 20s, 5’6 and 125 lbs).
Atomic Cloud C11 – 157
Atomic Cloud C12 – 154
Volkl Flair SC Carbon – 155/158
Rossignol Nova 8 Ca – 156
Rossignol Nova 10 Ti – 160 (is it too long?)

I’ve heard good things about Liberty 76 which seems to be discontinued, and Stockli which unfortunately are out of my price range.

Open to other recommendations. Thank you!


Diva in Training
Correction: when I quoted ski waist in cm, it should really be mm.

Also considering Head Super Joy at 158 length. Seems to be less demanding which I’m not sure if that’s good/bad?


Staff member
I have your suggested quiver, to some extent. So I have a pair of Rossi tuned down race skis for our lovely east coast ice. I also have a pair of 88mm wide skis for out west.

The Ski Diva mantra is to demo, demo and demo some more. Then buy the pair that makes you smile, happy and don't want to take off.

I don't know anything about the Volkl Flair. I have tried the Atomic's and the Rossi's. (I'm a Rossi girl) The Atomic 12 might be a little stiff, that's why I say demo.

The Nova's either one. Not sure about the length of the Ti and again the stiffness for you.


Angel Diva
I have your quiver
I'm older (63), 5'5" 140, advanced but not fast or aggressive. I love moguls and trees. Ski East and West
2021 BP88s 159 very very versatile ski. It is best seller for a reason.
2023 Stockli SC 149 bought as used demo from Powder 7. Maybe too short but I was afraid of a "too stiff ski" so went shorter. Getting them ground and tuned. Verdict still out. Or, I should say . . . I'm still not really carving.

I happened to borrow a friends Liberty v76w 159 at Taos and they were excellent for groomers, bumps and a little skied up soft snow. I think that ski would cover it all and guess what, a used demo is available. 151 is shortish for you . . . but it would force you to focus on skills rather than speed. And at that price, for a hard to find ski . . . . used demos are something to think about. The bindings are easily adjusted to your BSL whereas another used ski might have to be drilled. They have more Stocklis too but even used they are pricey.

That said, demoing will teach you a lot about what you like and don't like.


Ski Diva Extraordinaire
Atomic Cloud 12's are stiff and like a race ski.. not much of a sweet spot, if you're not 'on' them they get squirrelly- the 11's are a step down but still racy, stiff and like to be on edge.
the Flair is a nice carving ski.. I'm just not a volkl fan not enough rebound for me.

I LOVE my liberty 76w's . I even have a back up pair---
I've skied them in 6" of powder, frozen corduroy, and 8" of spring corn.. a very versatile ski IMO..

I vote for 2 skis.. LOL we are enablers on this site..... OR just rent skis if you get a powder day out west- my favorite powder ski is blizzard-- I have old 88 Black Pearls save for my old knees in spring corn. Last winter I bought Sheeva 10's after skiing them in over a foot of snow at Alta! Blizzard makes some great skis-- carving and for powder.. I hope you can demo. what one person loves others hate.

ski diva

Staff member
I'm an east coast skier, too, and I had a devil of a time trying to replace a pair of carving skis this past season. It's hard to find anything with a waist under 80cm! Nonetheless, I tried, and LOVED, the Nordica Santa Ana 84, so that's what I ended up getting. And boy, am I glad I did! They're amazing in everything. For the record, I'm a 5'1", 112 lb, advanced skier, and I got the 158 length.


Certified Ski Diva
Not to complicate matters by introducing something new to consider, but also take a look at Head Absolute Joy. I love mine - mostly for East Coast skiing - very responsive, but found them more than adequate for on piste week in Colorado this year. Good prices on last years models and the price includes bindings. I’m adding Total Joy to my quiver next year for more challenging skiing.


Ski Diva Extraordinaire
Two is the way to go, I think (I'm in the enabler crowd).

I've owned a bunch of skis over the years. This is completely anecdotal, but I've found that, in the all-mountain category, the Head Total Joy, the Blizzard Black Pearl 88 (earlier iteration w/o the metal), K2 Mindbender 85, the Volkl Yumi 84, and Volkl Blaze 86 ski similarly. NOT identical, but similar.

I've come to love Stockli but you've already ruled them out, so I won't go into detail. That said, there are good deals to be found on used/demo Stocklis. Damp, stable, smooth, but can be demanding depending on the model. And, of course, $$$$. 'Nuff said.

I'm not a fan of Rossi's, but that's me. I also did not like the Santa Ana line when I demoed them. I have ski buddies who LOVE them, though.

This is a long way of saying that personal preference will largely dictate your ski choice. I'll echo what I'm sure everyone is thinking --- demo as many skis as you can in as many conditions as you can.

Just to complicate matters more, I've heard great things about the Liberty 76's, Volkl Flair 72, and Line Pandora 84 (owned by K2). (I won't even mention the Stockli Nela 80 - oops!).
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Ski Diva Extraordinaire
Step 1: Do you own your own boots and have they been properly fitted? Once that is done, then demo, demo, and demo again if you can to get an idea of what you like! That may mean high-performance/demo rentals and paying a little more to start with but that is usually cheaper than buying new skis you hate and taking the loss reselling them.

Regarding Volkl - I have the Flair SC E and they are great, I think you may want to go longer if the new model is similar as they are fairly friendly and I am both lighter and shorter on the 155cm. I also enjoyed Salomon's S/Max series - would suggest adding the 8 and 10 to your demo list. I am in the Santa Ana camp and love the 93. Not a fan of the Line Pandora series at all. So it is VERY individual.


Ski Diva Extraordinaire
narrower waist is important for learning carving – agree :-)


Angel Diva
I would purchase an east coast ski that works for east coast conditions and your preferences skiing those conditions — and then just bring your boots out west and demo.

Reasons? It’s easier for travel, plus you can demo for the exact conditions you have while you’re there. Can take boots as a carry on (risk of misplaced luggage is always sad with skis) … also, If there is bottomless pow you’re going to want 108-112 underfoot and not the all mountain that works for both east coast and west coast iykwim…

I have often just brought skis or not based on conditions.

best of luck in your search regardless of what you choose to do. Please update us as to what you end up doing and how it worked out


Certified Ski Diva
Please keep us posted, curious to hear what you decide. I am an advanced, east coast skier and have a pair of Atomic Cloud 12’s. They are very stiff (metal inside) and they are very fun and function best at speed.

That noted, I’m actually getting rid of them bc a couple of years ago I caught an edge, got a concussion, and don’t see any reason for myself to need to ski as fast as I was anymore at 45 y/o … I don’t like them if not going super fast.


Ski Diva Extraordinaire
Please keep us posted, curious to hear what you decide. I am an advanced, east coast skier and have a pair of Atomic Cloud 12’s. They are very stiff (metal inside) and they are very fun and function best at speed.

That noted, I’m actually getting rid of them bc a couple of years ago I caught an edge, got a concussion, and don’t see any reason for myself to need to ski as fast as I was anymore at 45 y/o … I don’t like them if not going super fast.
Sorry you got hurt! I sold mine to a racer.

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