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telemark gear

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

Trying to buy a telemark setup for the 1st time.  I've been renting and have been an alpine skier for over 30 years.  Any help or pointers would be appreciated.  I'm interested in NTN bindings and have been told that lighter is better (skis).  I don't plan on doing a lot of cross country mostly resort and side country.  Usually I rely heavily on SKI Magazine's gear guide with my alpine purchases.  Suggestions are welcome.

thx

post #2 of 13

I've skied telemark for almost 25 years.  There are two approaches that make sense to me.  The first is for the backcountry ski tourer with light boots, 3-pin bindings or the new "tour" bindings like the Voile Switchback and the NTN, and lighter skis (I preferred alpine touring skis over telemark skis because the latter were too soft; there is no distinction now).  However, for backcountry I switched to Alpine Touring gear,  I even use my very lightweight AT gear (Dynafit TLT5, Karhu XCD Guides, TLT bindings) for nordic ski patrol.  The other use for telemark is lift-assisted downhill (front- and side-country) when the person really appreciates the dynamics and aesthetics of the telemark turn.  In the past I used a relatively light weight setup of Scarpa 3-buckle + power strap boots, 7tm releasable bindings, and Atomic R:EX skis (a full-blown, but somewhat light alpine ski).  My AT setup for lift-assisted now consists of the R:EXs with Fritschi bindings and a relatively lightweight AT boot (Zzero4) and a crossover boot (Zzeus) and, now, 191 cm Volkl Mantras with Marker Squire bindings.  If I were to going back to telemark gear for lift-assisted today,  I would go NTN (choice of 4-Buckle boot depending on fit, NTN binding) and probably something like the DPS 112RP, and if touring looked likely in the future, the 112P Pure.  YMMV.

post #3 of 13

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by wannaski View Post

...I'm interested in NTN bindings and have been told that lighter is better (skis).  I don't plan on doing a lot of cross country mostly resort and side country. ...


You're a good candidate for NTN.  Pick a ski that's like what suits you for your alpine skiing, and buy NTN boots according to fit like Andy said.  

 

I recommend that anyone buying new tele boots look hard at NTN unless they're a hard-core touring addict.  NTN isn't the best touring binding, but it's more than adequate for short-medium tours.  Its real advantage is on the downhill - it offers unsurpassed control.  It tuns like a banshee.  

 

Other advantages include releasability, EZ in - EZ out, and brakes that deploy when you step out.  

 

The binding is heavier but the boots are lighter so that part balances out.  The binding is more complex than some but once you get it dialed in to your weight and style it gets real simple.

 

NTN skis best with a tight stance.  People that spread their legs forward and back (which isn't good form) will not like NTN.  

 

And search!

http://www.epicski.com/t/102875/ntn-system-for-pinheads

http://www.epicski.com/t/93714/first-time-tele-gear

http://www.epicski.com/t/92525/i-want-to-telemark

http://www.newtelemarkguide.com/wiki/NTN

http://www.newtelemarkguide.com/wiki/NTN_Frequently_Asked_Questions

post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 

Great info from both of you thnks, any other help is appreciated.  Yes my touring will be very limited, and I especially like easy in out with breaks.........as far as technique, i don't want to try and go low with NTN?  I do find it difficult to go low and thought it was my ability holding me back.    

post #5 of 13

No need to go low as long as you can stay "tight:.

post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 

What do you mean by staying tight?  Also, any good telemark magazines out there?  I subscribe to Ski but it doesn't really cover tele.

 

post #7 of 13

By tight, think rear foot closer to front foot, rather than rear foot a long ways behind the front.  

 

Check out Backcountry and its sister 'zine Telemark Skier.  But for instruction, get this:

http://www.amazon.com/Free-Heel-Skiing-Techniques-Conditions-Mountaineers/dp/0898867754

 

And of course, for more balh, blah, blah about tele than you can shake a stick at:

http://www.telemarktips.com/

http://www.telemarktalk.com/phpBB/

 

 

post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Lee View Post

By tight, think rear foot closer to front foot, rather than rear foot a long ways behind the front.  

 

Check out Backcountry and its sister 'zine Telemark Skier.  But for instruction, get this:

http://www.amazon.com/Free-Heel-Skiing-Techniques-Conditions-Mountaineers/dp/0898867754

 

And of course, for more balh, blah, blah about tele than you can shake a stick at:

http://www.telemarktips.com/

http://www.telemarktalk.com/phpBB/

 

 


+1; also keeping knees close (trailing right behind leading, keeping skis parallel/no "wedge" telemarking, facing down the fall line, hands to the front, looking where you are going, not at your skis, but staying flexible with legs and ankles as shock absorbers, quiet upper body; and, importantly using parallel turns when appropriate, say on ice, and avoiding them when not as useful, or you'll end up doing "fake-a-marks", a parallel turn with a trailing bent knee; carving with both skis rather than sliding/slipping until your technique is solid; avoiding jump turns till your basic telemark technique is solid.  Telemarking is especially susceptible to developing bad habits in the learning stage that are really hard to correct in the proficiency stage.  Get Paul Parker's book.

 

post #9 of 13

Another big fan of NTN, here and don't have too much to add to the excellent info already given, except that the lighter ski reference seems out of focus:  of all the free heel bindings I've tried (pretty much everything except the at least temporarily discontinued Bomber Bishop), it is the best for burly alpine-design skis. I currently have them on my 8.7 Magnums, Head iM 82s, and Head WC GS racers, among others. This is not to say they are unsuitable for lighter skis (they're fine), but don't limit yourself. 

post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 

This info is great thnks.  I've looked at all of it and been thinking about it all.

post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 

Was thinking of staying same length as my alpine skis in buying new skis for tele.  Again, NTN bindings if that plays any type of role.  Any thoughts?

post #12 of 13

If you're a strong alpine skier and have the same goals for tele skiing as alpine then go with basically the same length.

post #13 of 13

If you are serious about telemark skiing, I'll sell you for $500 + shipping:  Scarpa brown t-3s (well worn liners), Scarpa black t-3s (liners in good shape), Scarpa 3-buckle t-2s (liners heated once), Intuition MP29 liners heated once, used once, Volkl Snowwolfs (184 cm in very good condition with Voile switchbacks--all around tele ski), Salomon X-Adventure skis (like Fisher Rebounds--exploring the bc skis) with Voile wedge and Voile 3-pin hardwires, and skins (ok, but may needc gluing in the relatively neaqr tuture); believe it or not, this is a heck of a deal, and would equip you for both light front country and light backcountry (or even extreme bc, except for very light/bottomless powder). If you are interested, PM soon because I'm just about to put Dynafit verticals on the snowwolfs.

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