From piste rockers to equipment extraordinaire
For nigh-on 20 years, Markus Buchberger has not only been selling skis at Intersport Bründl in Mayrhofen, but providing a trustworthy and competent service. The 58-year-old is well aware of what ski trends we can expect in the coming winter season. So what can we look forward to? “Great things have been going on at Atomic – they have completely revised their sports series and changed the double-deck system, a stabilising technique”. This year, Atomic offers what you could almost call power steering. Thanks to its new Servotec technology that guarantees precise performance in wide turns, the ski is positively made for wide turns and high speed on piste. "All in all, however, not much has happened on the market, the sporty models have stayed more or less the same. The women’s models change colour more often”.
What should they roughly cost?
How much do you need to invest in a decent set of skis with bindings? Markus laughs. “With us you don’t just get a decent set of skis for 400 euros, you get equipment extraordinaire. Prices start at around 200 euros and go up to around 1,000, but the top end of the market is very small. Nowadays, you don’t buy a model, but a type of ski. The current trend is towards an all mountain ski”. “Rocker skis” have a different geometry and, unlike carver skis, a reverse camber which makes turning, for example, easier. The all mountain ski has a waist and is wider at the tip and tail, creating an hourglass-like shape that makes it flexible and incredibly easy to manoeuvre. They are multipurpose and can be used on pretty much any skiing terrain, in bad snow conditions or fresh powder, as well as moguls or in deep snow. In other words “all mountain”.
“Until your legs give up”.
When it comes to skiing, Markus knows what he is talking about. “I used to be a ski instructor. I have skied all my life and will carry on until my legs give up”, says Markus. I love skiing off piste, am out and about in any weather and enjoy ski touring. It’s a great sport!” The 58-year-old prefers to ski on Mount Penken in the morning, before moving on to Mount Ahorn in the afternoon. “There is a huge choice of runs on Penken, ranging from easy to challenging. If you know where to go, you can enjoy some wonderful powder terrain or go ski touring. But it’s like looking for wild mushrooms: once you know where to find them, you keep the secret spots to yourself”, he laughs. When the masses arrive at around lunchtime, he switches over to Mount Ahorn. “I have my peace and quiet on the “Leisure Mountain”, as well as on the Ahorn valley run. It is an incredible downhill”.
Trends and lifestyle on Penken
Ski touring is still trending in 2017/2018. Although it is sometimes accompanied by somewhat reckless tendencies: “Many people walk up the piste side by side because they want to chat. That can be incredibly dangerous for a skier coming down the hill”. Performing jumps at the Funpark is also very popular. “We have one of the largest Funparks in Europe on Mount Penken”. You often see people riding with trendy twin-tips there. “These are skis with a curved-up tip and tail that facilitate reversing, landing and off-piste riding. “Twin-tips are pretty cool, and spectacular to watch. It is not only a sport, but a philosophy, a lifestyle. It incorporates everything, from the style of underpants to what kind of hats you wear”.