One other thing -- I'm probably not so skilled on downhill portions and would therefore prefer, all things being equal, something with slightly more control (i.e. mid-length as opposed to normal length?). On the other hand, since I'll be switching to a newer binding system with a groove the entire length of the boot, I am likely to feel more control whichever length I go with.
On boots, I've found Salomon 811 that fit fine, but since this is considered a combi boot, I'm wondering if I'm kind of getting the disadvantages of each. Is there a training or entry-level racing boot geared specifically to diagonal stride?
Finally, how do I size poles correctly? Someone told me to turn the pole upside down and choose the one whose basket fits right under the armpit.
Thanks for any help.