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AT Gear: Skis, Bindings and Boots

Info, conditions and gear related to skiing or riding Colorado Peaks, including the 14ers! Ski/Ride Trip Reports
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Re: AT Gear: Skis, Bindings and Boots

Postby nkan02 » Fri Oct 05, 2012 1:33 pm

Bean wrote: Skiing with a heavy pack on its own isn't too bad, doing it with soft boots and small skis makes it a heck of a lot more challenging.

I wonder if there is a law of diminishing returns with lighter & lighter gear?

Because the statement above applies to me pretty well. I could have gone with even lighter skis than my K2 Waybacks (i.e. Dynafit Manaslus or BD Starlets), but combined with my height and weight and light boots (Scarpa Maestrale/Gea), I have a feeling I would be tipped over by my pack :)

Re: AT Gear: Skis, Bindings and Boots

Postby Bean » Fri Oct 05, 2012 1:41 pm

nkan02 wrote:I wonder if there is a law of diminishing returns with lighter & lighter gear?

Just like with bikes, not all weight savings is good weight savings. The La Sportiva rep I talked to says their 534g race boots are the stiffest boots they make, which would be awesome. But going to a Scarpa F1 because of the weight when you still have to ski back down something...bad idea. I have no doubt I'll be miserable in sastrugi, but I'm always miserable in sastrugi and not willing to drag heavy metal skis and beef boots up mountains just for the sake of blasting through that a bit easier.
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Re: AT Gear: Skis, Bindings and Boots

Postby ajkagy » Sat Oct 06, 2012 10:39 am

Bean wrote:I'm rapidly becoming a La Sportiva fanboy.


i love my sportiva climbing shoes, but haven't heard much about their ski stuff. It looks pretty nice though.

correct me if i'm wrong, but aren't G3 and sportiva the only companies making similar alternatives to dynafits right now?
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Re: AT Gear: Skis, Bindings and Boots

Postby Bean » Sat Oct 06, 2012 11:00 am

ajkagy wrote:
Bean wrote:I'm rapidly becoming a La Sportiva fanboy.


i love my sportiva climbing shoes, but haven't heard much about their ski stuff. It looks pretty nice though.

correct me if i'm wrong, but aren't G3 and sportiva the only companies making similar alternatives to dynafits right now?

I kicked around the house for a couple hours last week in my new Spitfires after molding, something unheard of in any other boots ever. Cooking dinner was even pleasant with them on.

Plum bindings, now being distributed by Look (I think) are out there and people seem mostly happy with them aside from a few early-life failures. Then there are G3s as mentioned, and the ATK bindings that La Sportiva is distributing in the US. That's it, at least in the US.
gdthomas wrote:Bean, you're an idiot.

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Re: AT Gear: Skis, Bindings and Boots

Postby benners » Sat Oct 06, 2012 11:41 am

nkan02 wrote:I wonder if there is a law of diminishing returns with lighter & lighter gear?

I'd say so. Once you get to the point where you're blowing an extra hundred dollars to shave an ounce of weight off a piece of gear I'd say you've become a victim of good marketing. If a single ounce is going to make the difference between you reaching the summit/skiing it safely and not then I stand corrected, but for most of us I highly doubt that's the case. But that's just my opinion of course. What I've always found funny is that people spend tons of extra cash to save a pound as opposed to just losing a few pounds themselves and achieving the same effect for free 8).

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Re: AT Gear: Skis, Bindings and Boots

Postby ajkagy » Sat Oct 06, 2012 2:25 pm

benners wrote:
nkan02 wrote:I wonder if there is a law of diminishing returns with lighter & lighter gear?

What I've always found funny is that people spend tons of extra cash to save a pound as opposed to just losing a few pounds themselves and achieving the same effect for free 8).


but beer is sooo good :-D
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Re: AT Gear: Skis, Bindings and Boots

Postby pills2619 » Mon Oct 15, 2012 12:25 pm

I'm thinking about buying the tecnica conchise pro light boot. Seems a little heavier than the dynafit boots but is incredibly comfortable in walk mode and has the ability to be used as an in-bounds boot as well given that its pretty damn stiff and has interchangeable soles so they are DIN compatible as well as tech compatible. Cost is an issue tho at $800.
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Re: AT Gear: Skis, Bindings and Boots

Postby climbingaggie03 » Mon Oct 15, 2012 6:54 pm

I started doing more back country skiing last winter, my first couple of winters I used an inbounds set up and just snowshoed in, which is far from the most efficient way, but it's cheap and since I wasn't sure I wanted to do alot of backcountry skiing, the amount invested was right. When I finally did buy a backcountry setup, I bought pretty much the heaviest setup there is. K2 obseths with Marker Duke bindings and some Technica agent at boots. My main main focus is side country trips with only a few days of real touring and I really like to enjoy the way down so that's why I went with the setup I did.

My favorite thing about this setup is it's as good in bounds as it is out of bounds and I had a couple of days of 12-15 miles of skiing and it was fine. The two things I found out about last winter that I really liked was http://www.climbingskinsdirect.com/ I bought a pair of skins from these folks and they're great and much cheaper than any other brand of skins. Also I discovered grip wax. For longer flatter tours, I found skins super annoying cause they barely glide, wax on the other hand allows alot more glide and has enough grip for alot of conditions. Check out allen and mike's really cool backcountry skiing book, its got alot of great tips, including tips on waxing.

My biggest advice is ski your touring setup in bounds, the more familiar you are with it the better.

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Re: AT Gear: Skis, Bindings and Boots

Postby SchralpTheGnar » Mon Oct 15, 2012 8:33 pm

I started with fritschi and salomon x-mountains, then when to a lightweight dynafit setup with voile carbons, both setups were skied with dynafit boots. Those soft skis were downright scary on icy steeps and I could not stand the finicky nature of the dynafit bindings, so I sold that setup and bought a pair of fritschi freerides and pocket rockets and have really enjoyed that setup, easy to use, good in a lot of conditions, although I would still like a little more tortional rigidity, so probably going to get a pair of havocs or kilowatts. I also recently switched to black diamond boots, the quadrants, but that's all about the fit.

I don't mind the extra weight at all, for me the most important thing is that when I'm standing on top of a steep descent that I have confidence in the downhill capability of my setup. I still have the fritschi tII's and x-mountains with the skins that I lend out to friends who want to do a little AT and that setup is still going strong. Finding boots that fit is crucial for enjoyment, the fit of all the manufacturers is so radically different, that you never know what will like, but the second that you try on the boot that fits you, you will know it.

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Re: AT Gear: Skis, Bindings and Boots

Postby nkan02 » Mon Oct 15, 2012 8:41 pm

climbingaggie03 wrote:My biggest advice is ski your touring setup in bounds, the more familiar you are with it the better.

This is the fastest way to trash your gear. I skied about 10 days in-bounds last year on my new AT setup and the boots needed to be sent back to the factory for repairs (thankfully, still on the warranty). BC boots are not designed for resort skiing - at least not for moguls, but that's what you mostly find on black runs.

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Re: AT Gear: Skis, Bindings and Boots

Postby ajkagy » Mon Oct 15, 2012 8:49 pm

nkan02 wrote:
climbingaggie03 wrote:My biggest advice is ski your touring setup in bounds, the more familiar you are with it the better.

This is the fastest way to trash your gear. I skied about 10 days in-bounds last year on my new AT setup and the boots needed to be sent back to the factory for repairs (thankfully, still on the warranty). BC boots are not designed for resort skiing - at least not for moguls, but that's what you mostly find on black runs.


I think it depends on the gear...I've skied well over 150 days in-bounds on my scarpa boots and they are fine where as a friend I know had some defective plastic that was ripping from his garmont boots (he got a full replacement no questions asked). AT gear is going to get much more abuse out in the backcountry/touring or ski mountaineering than resort skiing usually.
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Re: AT Gear: Skis, Bindings and Boots

Postby nkan02 » Mon Oct 15, 2012 9:08 pm

ajkagy wrote:I think it depends on the gear...I've skied well over 150 days in-bounds on my scarpa boots and they are fine where as a friend I know had some defective plastic that was ripping from his garmont boots (he got a full replacement no questions asked). AT gear is going to get much more abuse out in the backcountry/touring or ski mountaineering than resort skiing usually.

Possibly. My light Scarpa boots look pretty flimsy compared to my sturdy & stiff resort pair. I am actually looking to upgrade my resort skis so I won't have the temptation to take my AT setup inbounds.

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