New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Gear and learning advice

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Hello and happy New Year!

I need some advice on gear and what to focus on learning wise for my particular situation. I am a pretty decent alpine skier, I ski everything on the mountain except for some of the most hair raising terrain with pretty good technique. I live in the mid atlantic and am kind of bored with local skiing so I want to learn some cross country/backcountry skills for exploring the mountains in the area (primarily WV). I want to be able to go anywhere including XC, hiking, logging trails and be able to descend using a variety of techniques.

I have been on XC skis twice and am interested in getting into this but I am really clueless with what type of gear I need. The language/terminology really confuses me. Can someone give me some advice on gear and training/learning? I have done some searches but am having a hard time finding similar situations. Thanks!
post #2 of 11

Look up 'XCD'... cross country downhill. 

post #3 of 11

Sounds like you need to learn how to telemark.  Telemark skis and skins should take you where you want to go.

 

Good luck,

 

Rick G

post #4 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by markojp View Post

Look up 'XCD'... cross country downhill. 

Thanks- that was helpful- some good info there;

 

Still I am a little confused as to what gear I should be looking at.  It seems like a supportive boot and binding would be best for making turns- this setup (3-pin/duckbill) might be a little heavy and uncomfortable for kick & glide on trails?  Am I over-thinking this since isnt this setup kind of what all XC rigs were back in the day?  Is the system type setup (BC-NNN) really that hard to make turns on steeper terrain? 

 

Maybe I am over emphasizing turning a little (i am an alpine skiier afterall), since my primary interest is backcountry touring in the mid-atlantic.  I really just want to get out in the woods for day trips and exploring with some XC touring center on the side, but I also want to be able to  learn paralel & tele turns too.  And if this takes I would eventually like to do some multi day western mountain touring too.

 

Any other thoughts/advice would be welcome.  Thanks!

post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 

I've thought about that but I think that is more learning commitment than I am interested  in right now and I think a little overkill for the kind of touring I want to do.smile.gif

post #6 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Relix View Post

I've thought about that but I think that is more learning commitment than I am interested  in right now and I think a little overkill for the kind of touring I want to do.smile.gif

 

You can't afford not to learn the telemark turn unless you want to be permanently stuck in "stepping-the-skis-around-tomake-turns" land.    

 

The irony here is that, the more efficient your skis are at straight-line kick and glide touring, the less your alpine ski-steering skills are relevant (and the deeper the knee bends required to do a tele turn).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Relix View Post

 

Still I am a little confused as to what gear I should be looking at.  It seems like a supportive boot and binding would be best for making turns- this setup (3-pin/duckbill) might be a little heavy and uncomfortable for kick & glide on trails? 

 

 

No.    Given equally-supportive boots, the 3pin/duckbill setup can be lighter.      It will, however, have a _shorter_ glide.   

 

IMO, until your XC skiing is as fast or faster than your running, the efficiency benefit of system bindings is moot and the primary issue is comfort during the stride.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Relix View Post

 

 Is the system type setup (BC-NNN) really that hard to make turns on steeper terrain? 

 

Yes.       Especially in grabby  or dense/deep snow (like what Superstorm Sandy dumped on WVa).     Especially since system-type setups  do not readily allow for underbinding shims and binding delta-type adjusments.

post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the feedback. I definitely want to learn a tele turn, just don't want to go all out with the tele gear and the learning curve of the tele bag of skills.

So what setup would you recommend for my situation? Can you compare a BC-NNN setup v 3-pin? What width of ski (keep in mind I do want to ski 1/3 of the time on groomed).

I'm a complete noob so please pardon the basic nature of the questions. wink.gif
post #8 of 11

I've been doing what you are talking about for 4 decades in New York and New England and I have only skied 3 pins, currently with a heavy duty Voile binding of one sort or another.  I have old Fischer Crowns ( 58-54-56)  with no metal edges that I use with mid cut Merrell leathers. Fun in the tracks and on firmer snow, but I have done many off track tours in them. I have Fischer Outtabounds (88-68-78) with Voile cables / high cut leather boot. These are better off in the woods but I use them on groomed too. I have Boundless(98-69-88) with Voile cables / Scarpa T3 plastic two buckle boot. We just moved to the Cascades and I’ve only skied these a time or two but plan to use them for meadow skipping and inbounds tele when there is some powder. You can tele anything in powder or corn with a little practice. Trying to tele with cambered, waxless skis on a hard inbound surface is an exercise in humility. Like I said, I’ve never skied anything but 3 pins but I have to think they make tele easier than a NNN BC setup. On tours I’ll use every turn in the book, Tele, parallel, stem christie, step turn, tree grab, fall and roll......

 

For what you are wanting to do in W. Va. I’d suggest starting your quiver with something like my Fischer Outtabounds with Voile cables / high cut leather boot. It will let you do it all while you develop your skills. 

 

 I have to go now and mount up some Sbound 112’s with Dynafits. A waxless AT setup. Plan to use them for steeper spring tours with a long flat approach and to play on the slopes in bounds with my 4 y.o. grand daughter. 

 

You have fun!! I plan to!!!

post #9 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Relix View Post

Thanks for the feedback. I definitely want to learn a tele turn, just don't want to go all out with the tele gear and the learning curve of the tele bag of skills.

 

I interpret this to mean "I don't want to buy gear that would force me to learn telemark without letting me go exploring".      

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Relix View Post


So what setup would you recommend for my situation?

 

Over-the-ankle boot, though not something as beefy as a Scarpa T4.      More like  Rossi BCX11 or Fischer 675  http://bedrockandparadox.com/2012/04/26/rossignol-bc-x11-v-fischer-bcx-675/  Up to 70mm width ski with full metal edges and a waxless structure.     If you're moderately athletic, that should give you the ability to descend oh, higway-ramp type grades or green alpine slopes, with some hope of control.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Relix View Post
Can you compare a BC-NNN setup v 3-pin?

 

3 pin gives you a bit more control of edging.   3pin with light cable gives you a lot more control over edging but gets annoying over significant distances (upwards of a few miles).   System  is a lot more convenient if you're going to do a lot of road crossings or snowless underpasses.

 

Most groomed tracks will fit an up-to 65-70mm ski.    Yes, that means that 3pin bindings will scrape the sides of deeper-groomed tracks.   It's a trade-off.

post #10 of 11

I've just went through the exact same decision making process...I'm probably a bit more of an experienced skier, having been classic xc skiing casually for a while and am a fairly good dh skier (Steeps, bumps, trees in NY and VT).  I was looking primarily for a BC ski for exploring in the Adirondacks and Tug Hill regions of NY so my primary concerns were floatation (the Tug gets tons of snow) as well as kick and glide. I ended up with Madshus Epochs with 3-pin cables and Fischer BCX 6, through ORS. 

 

My first time on them was last week and they seem to be perfect for my desired use.  They seemed to glide just fine on the groomed and snowmobile trails (not in the xc tracks of course due to width) and had plenty of float in 2 ft of snow from the last storm that varied from wind affected, slightly crusty, to powder.  Even managed to do a few laps at a couple different abandoned ski hills to start working on beginner tele turns and seemed to manage just fine. I'm certainly not ready for skiing tight trees, but the light leather boots and skis seem more capable for downhill turns than I was originally led to believe.  So overall I couldn't be happier.  Assuming you don't have as much snow in the Mid-Atlantic you might consider something a bit narrower like the Madshus eon, or the Fischer or Rossi equivalents.

 

Hope this helps.

 

-w

post #11 of 11

There are quite a few options for you.  And the price ranges can vary quite a bit.  A lot of us have turned the dynafit ski running setup, but my guess is that is a bit out of the price range you're looking for.  I would say the gear setup the previous posters has suggested could be what you're looking for. 

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home