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AT gear links

Postby JDgreen » Fri Jan 23, 2009 10:36 pm

I remember some very good threads discussing AT gear last winter but was unable to locate with the search features. Any links to those threads or comments on equip appreciated.
I skied at the resorts quite a bit years ago in college days on my own straight skis then went up last year with CMS on an intro course and had a good time. Looking for equip I could ski some at resorts but with more emphasis on touring, just a decent compromise in performance on courduroy, powder, crud. Low angle stuff, no cliff hucking or steep coulairs.
Any comments on BD kilowatt skis and Method boots?
TIA
Last edited by JDgreen on Sat Jan 24, 2009 4:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: AT gear links

Postby Bean » Sat Jan 24, 2009 12:03 am

I haven't skied the Kilowatts but have heard lots of good things. I have Factors for boots. I wanted Methods, but when I tried them on they were so soft it felt like my feet were in a bag of mashed potatoes. The weight is similar and the cost isn't THAT much more, so Factors it was. If you want to ski them inbounds and out, get Dukes or Barons. I used to have Naxos and they're garbage. Freerides aren't much better either. Dynafits are by far the only way to go for a touring-only setup.

On the subject of AT gear, does anyone know of a place in town to rent a beacon? I've got a buddy in from out of town who doesn't have one with him but wanted to head out this weekend.
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Re: AT gear links

Postby BaronVonBergschrund » Sat Jan 24, 2009 12:31 am

Bean wrote:If you want to ski them inbounds and out, get Dukes or Barons.

I've heard that Barons are the best.
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Re: AT gear links

Postby RoanMtnMan » Sat Jan 24, 2009 1:14 am

Bean wrote:I haven't skied the Kilowatts but have heard lots of good things. I have Factors for boots. I wanted Methods, but when I tried them on they were so soft it felt like my feet were in a bag of mashed potatoes. The weight is similar and the cost isn't THAT much more, so Factors it was. If you want to ski them inbounds and out, get Dukes or Barons. I used to have Naxos and they're garbage. Freerides aren't much better either. Dynafits are by far the only way to go for a touring-only setup.

On the subject of AT gear, does anyone know of a place in town to rent a beacon? I've got a buddy in from out of town who doesn't have one with him but wanted to head out this weekend.



Bean gives you good advice in my opinion. Kilowatts ski well but I would lean toward the Verdicts for a one ski quiver. I think Wilderness Exchange has a decent deal on blems if you are not too big or crazy aggressive (I think they have 180cm only). A friend had problems with his Factors this week. Apparently the metal tension cord would not release properly and he couldn't get his foot out of the liner. He called customer service and they are sending him a kit to replace the whole system. Not optimal. He loves the boots though, saying they ski, boot pack, and tour well.

Naxos are the least durable of the bunch (my wife and I agree on this point). Dukes are the heaviest, but are also durable and ski like an alpine binding. I have skied my Freerides 300+ days on 4 different pairs of skis. Zero issues and zero injuries (knock on wood). The Dynafits are by far the best touring binding you can buy. Superlight and ski very well. I have theorized with friends that if your BC days outnumber your resort days, buy the Dynafit Vertical TLTs. If your resort days outnumber your BC days, buy the Freerides or Dukes.

Disclaimer: I ski solely Dynafits and Freerides. Love them both. I ski 5-6 days a week. I try to split time between BC and resort, contigient on conditions. At the least buy a dynafit compaible boot as I think the Dynafit technology will advance fast over the next few years due to the competition from G3 in the category,
Last edited by RoanMtnMan on Sat Jan 24, 2009 1:22 am, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: AT gear links

Postby RoanMtnMan » Sat Jan 24, 2009 1:17 am

By the way Bean, I have an extra Pieps DSP beacon you can borrow. PM me if you need it.
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Re: AT gear links

Postby JDgreen » Sat Jan 24, 2009 11:18 am

Thanks for the input. I have been looking at the Freerides, maybe give the Dynafits another look, my guide had them and really liked them they just looked so minimal for lack of a better term. I am 5'11" 175 and am looking at 175's , I skied 182's in the no sidecut narrower ski days.
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Re: AT gear links

Postby RenoBob » Sat Jan 24, 2009 12:45 pm

I bought a pair of Methods at REI this year. With the boa inner boot it's the best fitting boot I've ever had. Skis are K2 Shuksan with Freeride Plus and they've been great in all conditions I've been in so far.
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Re: AT gear links

Postby JDgreen » Mon Jan 26, 2009 10:45 pm

I did some more searching and found some of those good threads and read the online reviews including Dawson. Getting pretty close to pulling the trigger. My leanings are below.
boots- BD method only thing I tried on without a pressure point, they just felt good and I wore them awhile.

skis - Kilowatts, I think I'd like em, they feel about the same stiffness as the old rossi sts's I skied in college (man that dude is old :shock: )

Bindings leaning to the freerides maybe just a smidgeon more margin of safety, with my work I can't be laid up in the spring. MTA Haven't ruled out the Dynafits.

Beacon dts, simple intuitive

Probe, struggling with length but maybe BD 260 cm

skins; cluless here

And the biggy is ski length, again probably more backcountry than resort, no coulairs,no cliffs, some crud, some powder and trees, much touring, not alot of ski days/yr since college, recreational runner, semi athletic, 5'11" 175 (10 lbs more than in the day). Leaning to 175's?
I know this topic has been hashed over many times but I appreciate all the replies and learn something each time the topic is brought up.
Last edited by JDgreen on Mon Jan 26, 2009 11:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: AT gear links

Postby Bean » Mon Jan 26, 2009 11:10 pm

JD, I'd skip the freerides. Either Dukes (or Barons) or Dynafits, anything else is too much of a compromise. Go with a 300cm probe. There's no reason to go shorter. G3 and BD make quality skins. I've heard bad things about climbingskinsdirect. I'm a few pounds heavier than you and would go up a size from the 175s. There won't be much added weight and since you aren't planning on anything too tight or technical, the extra length will only do good things for stability. I've already stated my feelings on the Methods but they very well may be sufficient for you.
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Re: AT gear links

Postby ajkagy » Mon Jan 26, 2009 11:33 pm

i ski the 175 kilowatts with dynafit bindings...I've been using them at the resorts a lot lately whenever there is any kind of decent new snow...Mostly because I like to hit some sidecountry as well and bring the skins in case I need them. You definitely won't be disapointed if you get the kilowatts, the skis rip. Medicore in hardpack/groomers if you use them at the resort, but who in their right mind skis hardpack all day :D

I've used them on quite a few spring ski descents and several 14ers and they've never let me down :)
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Re: AT gear links

Postby RoanMtnMan » Tue Jan 27, 2009 12:13 am

JDgreen wrote:I did some more searching and found some of those good threads and read the online reviews including Dawson. Getting pretty close to pulling the trigger. My leanings are below.
boots- BD method only thing I tried on without a pressure point, they just felt good and I wore them awhile.

skis - Kilowatts, I think I'd like em, they feel about the same stiffness as the old rossi sts's I skied in college (man that dude is old :shock: )

Bindings leaning to the freerides maybe just a smidgeon more margin of safety, with my work I can't be laid up in the spring.
Beacon dts, simple intuitive

Probe, struggling with length but maybe BD 260 cm

skins; cluless here

And the biggy is ski length, again probably more backcountry than resort, no coulairs, cliffs, some crud, some powder and trees, touring, not alot of ski days/yr since college, recreational runner, semi athletic, 5'11" 175 (10 lbs more than in the day). Leaning to 175's?
I know this topic has been hashed over many times but I appreciate all the replies and learn something each time the topic is brought up.


I like the setup. If the Methods felt good after wearing them for a while, they will likely be your new best friend once broken in.

The 300cm probe length is a must, if you are looking for my anyway.

The binding is a preference thing. I skied my Freerides the past few days and will be skiing them tomorrow morning in a secret pow stash (it's still winter so no epic tours). However, if you can get comfortable with the lightweight Dynafits you will never go back. But since you have skied alpine bindings only, it may take a little adjustment to the minimalism of the Dynafit, though I have found no performance drawback, and I take my far share of falls. My only complaint about the Dukes is the weight, and I have heard others say the same. If you are skinning up Berthoud or similar slackcountry areas then no big deal, but on longer trips like 14ers it will make a difference. Speaking of skinning, people (including myself, my wife, and many friends) use the BD Ascension STS skins and have no complaints except it would be nice if they took themselves off when it's blowing more than 30mph.

Kilowatts, I am waiting until they fall out of favor so I can pick some up on the cheap and throw Dynafit Verticals on them. Good luck. We will need a pic of you skiing your new setup on this thread as payment for the advice.
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Re: AT gear links

Postby Carl » Tue Jan 27, 2009 11:45 am

Some good advice here so I'll just weigh in on two things:

BD Method: If it fits, go for it. I've skied/toured a few days in this boot. For me (and many others) there was a pressure point above the foot that hindered circulation. Otherwise it's got a great walk mode, skied very well in my opinion and has a pretty good liner and AT sole.

Beacon: The Tracker is a fine beacon if your budget is tight. If you can afford something better (e.g. something with three antennas and a better range) your ski partners will appreciate you for it. I like the Pieps DSP.

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