Where to buy skis/boots

Obie1

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I'd like to get my wife some new skis and boots for the upcoming season. Our local ski shop in Hadley is gone. Any advice for places to look (I'm in the Pioneer Valley of WMass). I know there was a guy here a while ago (ivarr?) who worked at a ski shop, but I haven't heard from him for a while.
 

Mountain

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Good fitting boots are arguably the most important equipment issue for skiing. Strands in Worcester is one of the best in the local area- I've had my last two pair of race boots fitted by them. I've heard good things about Boot Pro in Ludlow, VT.
 

R_Wilson

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check out Wachusetts, they will match most online prices, in fact they beat on-line when I
upgraded two years ago.

I would buy boots 1st and then rent a few skis to see what she likes, Again Wachusetts will (or did)
apply rental fees against purchase price.

Mike Vlass is (was) the manager of the Wachusetts store and did provide pricing via emails

Rich
 

citoriguy

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Good fitting boots are arguably the most important equipment issue for skiing. Strands in Worcester is one of the best in the local area- I've had my last two pair of race boots fitted by them. I've heard good things about Boot Pro in Ludlow, VT.
Absolutely - without well fitting boots, you will be miserable. I used to have a set of Atomic Hawx in which you could heat up the pad, and it would conform to your foot. It was pure heaven. I am still pissed that I got rid of them.

EDIT - if you and your wife are experienced skiers, then you already know this. Check out the Boston Ski Expo. My wife got a good deal on skis there a couple/few years back.
 
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mtnbiker26

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Go to a good shop and spend some time with a knowledgeable bootfitter. Plan to spend some money. Bring or buy the socks you plan to wear with the boots. Ski specific socks are worth the money. Thin toes and padded shins really do make a difference. Be sure to get the correct size boots. Most folks buy them too large and then have to smash down the buckles to keep their feet from moving. This results in pressure points, pain and cold feet. Be leery of the soft, comfy, entry level boots that appeal to beginners. They have a nice soft, comfy liner so they feel great when she's standing in the shop but they won't hold her feet down and then she's back to poor edge control and smashing down the buckles. Good boots should have a firm-ish liner that takes a while to break in. Understand, that boots take time and effort to put on. Don't be lazy and get the ones that her feet just slip into. If her feet just slip in, then they'll just slip out. Also be aware that different brands have different fits so she might have a Dalbello foot or a Technica foot, etc. An experienced salesperson should have her stand on a Brannock Device to figure out her size and width and also eyeball her instep height and general foot shape and then recommend some models to try on. Even high end boots usually have junk footbeds so also look into some Superfeet or similar. I'm a lifetime snowboarder who started skiing a few years ago and my first boots were Dalbello Pantera with Red Superfeet and Hotronics. They weren't cheap but I can ski all day and I don't even loosen the buckles at lunch.
 

Mountain

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Go to a good shop and spend some time with a knowledgeable bootfitter. Plan to spend some money. Bring or buy the socks you plan to wear with the boots. Ski specific socks are worth the money. Thin toes and padded shins really do make a difference. Be sure to get the correct size boots. Most folks buy them too large and then have to smash down the buckles to keep their feet from moving. This results in pressure points, pain and cold feet. Be leery of the soft, comfy, entry level boots that appeal to beginners. They have a nice soft, comfy liner so they feel great when she's standing in the shop but they won't hold her feet down and then she's back to poor edge control and smashing down the buckles. Good boots should have a firm-ish liner that takes a while to break in. Understand, that boots take time and effort to put on. Don't be lazy and get the ones that her feet just slip into. If her feet just slip in, then they'll just slip out. Also be aware that different brands have different fits so she might have a Dalbello foot or a Technica foot, etc. An experienced salesperson should have her stand on a Brannock Device to figure out her size and width and also eyeball her instep height and general foot shape and then recommend some models to try on. Even high end boots usually have junk footbeds so also look into some Superfeet or similar. I'm a lifetime snowboarder who started skiing a few years ago and my first boots were Dalbello Pantera with Red Superfeet and Hotronics. They weren't cheap but I can ski all day and I don't even loosen the buckles at lunch.
+1 for the correct socks. The universally thick socks are not the way to go. Thin, ski specific material with padded shins is definitely the way to go. When properly skiing, especially east coast hardpack and ice, a skier will be keeping substantial forward pressure on the front of the boot.

Also good comment regarding trying different brands. Nordica fits me best. Others fit my foot as well or better, but I have muscular calves (I'm sure there's a joke there...) and Nordica doesn't dig into my calves. Additionally, even for expensive race boots the footbed did suck. I have custom fit red Superfeet that were heated, vacuum molded to my foot, then some excess material was removed by sanding/grinding.
 
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I’ve been working for the Ski Haus originally located in East Longmeadow, now located in Longmeadow, MA. for 30 plus years. We have always offered 100% customer satisfaction. Stop in an ask for Scott the owner. Tell him Ed recomened you to stop by. I usually only work Saturdays but put in more time during peak season!
 
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pupchow

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I'd like to get my wife some new skis and boots for the upcoming season. Our local ski shop in Hadley is gone. Any advice for places to look (I'm in the Pioneer Valley of WMass). I know there was a guy here a while ago (ivarr?) who worked at a ski shop, but I haven't heard from him for a while.
Competitive Edge, in Holyoke.
 

Obie1

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Thanks all. I haven't personally skied in years. I raced most of my young life--Eastern, Nastar, high school, and college. Then one day a high speed accident left me with a spiral fracture of the tibia and fibula and a year in a toe to crotch cast. My few attempts to get back on the horse were so painful that I was forced to give it up. My son was captain of his Alpine team in high school and raced in college as well. My wife continues to ski once or twice a week. I used to know everything about equipment (my old K2 Comps are on the wall), but now I know almost nothing. Thanks for the help
 

NH_Realtor

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Thanks all. I haven't personally skied in years. I raced most of my young life--Eastern, Nastar, high school, and college. Then one day a high speed accident left me with a spiral fracture of the tibia and fibula and a year in a toe to crotch cast. My few attempts to get back on the horse were so painful that I was forced to give it up. My son was captain of his Alpine team in high school and raced in college as well. My wife continues to ski once or twice a week. I used to know everything about equipment (my old K2 Comps are on the wall), but now I know almost nothing. Thanks for the help
Honestly if you wanna get back out there you should consider snowboarding. Hell I'll teach you, it'll take about 3 days of pain then you'll start to get it. And depending on your size I got more than enough boards/ bindings for you to use to learn on.
 

Mountain

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Thanks all. I haven't personally skied in years. I raced most of my young life--Eastern, Nastar, high school, and college. Then one day a high speed accident left me with a spiral fracture of the tibia and fibula and a year in a toe to crotch cast. My few attempts to get back on the horse were so painful that I was forced to give it up. My son was captain of his Alpine team in high school and raced in college as well. My wife continues to ski once or twice a week. I used to know everything about equipment (my old K2 Comps are on the wall), but now I know almost nothing. Thanks for the help
Well damn, I was going to go full court press to get you into the Wa adult race league until reading the part about the spiral fracture. Maybe your son, LOL? It's a lot of fun and there are plenty of old racers. In fact, if you're a solid skier/racer, you get more points for the team if you're getting 'dinosaur points'. :D A friend of mine in her mid 70's is one of the highest scoring racers in the program. Lots of folks in their 60's who can kick my ass. Maybe your wife would like it and you could hold her beer? :p I too still have my old Comp 610's from around '79.
 

Obie1

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Honestly if you wanna get back out there you should consider snowboarding. Hell I'll teach you, it'll take about 3 days of pain then you'll start to get it. And depending on your size I got more than enough boards/ bindings for you to use to learn on.
Thanks. I genuinely appreciate your offer. I did try boarding a while back--still painful and it didn't really do it for me. My two nephews are remarkable shredders--upside down as often as not. I have partial paralyzation of the tibialis anterior from the accident and it's not easy to overcome on any skiing circumstance. But I can still stack wood, which is next on the agenda.
 

Obie1

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Well damn, I was going to go full court press to get you into the Wa adult race league until reading the part about the spiral fracture. Maybe your son, LOL? It's a lot of fun and there are plenty of old racers. In fact, if you're a solid skier/racer, you get more points for the team if you're getting 'dinosaur points'. :D A friend of mine in her mid 70's is one of the highest scoring racers in the program. Lots of folks in their 60's who can kick my ass. Maybe your wife would like it and you could hold her beer? :p I too still have my old Comp 610's from around '79.
I'll ask her. I still remember trying to melt three different colors of PTex to fix the bottoms (they were red, white, and blue for those who are youngens). Still mostly ended up black.
 
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Thanks. I genuinely appreciate your offer. I did try boarding a while back--still painful and it didn't really do it for me. My two nephews are remarkable shredders--upside down as often as not. I have partial paralyzation of the tibialis anterior from the accident and it's not easy to overcome on any skiing circumstance. But I can still stack wood, which is next on the agenda.
Can you do squats? If so you might be able to do alpine snowboarding using push-pull, rotational technique.
 

Mountain

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I'll ask her. I still remember trying to melt three different colors of PTex to fix the bottoms (they were red, white, and blue for those who are youngens). Still mostly ended up black.
I just used clear, which seemed to do the trick.
 
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