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Thoughts and recommendations on AT bindings.

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

I want to get some AT bindings. I am very excited to join some of my friends that already have them and explore the area around my local resorts. I just picked up barley used, a 2nd pair of Line Opus', 185s. (got them w/bindings for $250 :)  )  My first pair (178s) are going to be used more in resort and will become "rock skis" to an extent. The newer pair will be for skinning and 12"+ powder days.

 

I am looking for a low profile, Dukes look to me like they make you 2 inches taller (I maybe be wrong about that, but it looks that way). I assume any AT binding will function as well as regular bindings when not skinning, I hope to use these as my main powder skis when we start getting 12"+ dumps regularly again (keeping my fingers crossed).

 

I am 48 yrs old, advanced skier, 5'10" and about 170 lbs, (I would like to be 160lbs, but that probably isn't going to happen). My din settings are about 8-9.

 

Just looking for a recommendation on a good model to fit my needs. 

 

Thanks

post #2 of 14

I'm totally happy with using a set of Back Country Access (BCA) Alpine Trekkers (universal skinning binding adapters) for going uphill, and then popping them out and skiing downhill in the regular Alpine bindings they had been snapped into. If I were doing AT more than 10% of my season I might reconsider, but right now for me they're just fine.

post #3 of 14
How often/far do you plan to skin? The more often and farther you skin the more you'll want tech bindings (Dynafit, G3, Black Diamond Vipec, etc.) because they're much, much lighter and have a much more efficient skinning mode (pivot point, no heel encumbrance). They require boots with tech fittings, though those are pretty common.

How much do you plan to use them inbounds? The more you plan on using them inbounds, the more you'll want frame bindings (Fritschi, Salomon, Marker, etc) which are heavier, less efficient, and tend to have a higher stack height. Frame bindings tend to have more elasticity though (there are some tech bindings that address elasticity issues) and are more intuitive to use and comfortable when skiing inbounds on hardpack.

No matter which way you go, keep in mind that lighter is generally better.

So, what qualities are important to you?

Most people that have used Alpine Trekkers seem to agree that they are not well suited to serious touring.
post #4 of 14
I'm keeping an eye out for a good price on a pair of 2015 Salomon Guardians (Atomic Trackers). Very good reviews and only 26mm stack height. The 2015 model is Multi Norm Compatible which means they can be used with AT boots as well as alpine boots. I don't have AT boots but I want to leave my options open.
post #5 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by craigr View Post

I'm keeping an eye out for a good price on a pair of 2015 Salomon Guardians (Atomic Trackers). Very good reviews and only 26mm stack height. The 2015 model is Multi Norm Compatible which means they can be used with AT boots as well as alpine boots. I don't have AT boots but I want to leave my options open.

 

Level Nine Sports sells the non-MNC version of the Trackers and Guardians for pretty cheap, as long as 13 DIN is high enough. I think they are less than $250. Not a bad choice for the OP if he wants to use them in and out of resort.

post #6 of 14
Great priced at L9 for older version and a good price for the 2015 as well.

OP, checkout www.climbingskinsdirect.com for budget priced skins
post #7 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Lee View Post

How often/far do you plan to skin? The more often and farther you skin the more you'll want tech bindings (Dynafit, G3, Black Diamond Vipec, etc.) because they're much, much lighter and have a much more efficient skinning mode (pivot point, no heel encumbrance). They require boots with tech fittings, though those are pretty common.

How much do you plan to use them inbounds? The more you plan on using them inbounds, the more you'll want frame bindings (Fritschi, Salomon, Marker, etc) which are heavier, less efficient, and tend to have a higher stack height. Frame bindings tend to have more elasticity though (there are some tech bindings that address elasticity issues) and are more intuitive to use and comfortable when skiing inbounds on hardpack.

No matter which way you go, keep in mind that lighter is generally better.

So, what qualities are important to you?

Most people that have used Alpine Trekkers seem to agree that they are not well suited to serious touring.

Thanks, probably won't be all that often, 3-6 times a season, not sure. I won't be real far either, I don't see going more than a mile. I will probably ski them more often as "normal" skis. I venture OOB a lot now without needing to skin. I search for pow everywhere I can find it. I wouldn't be skiing them much on groomers (if I can help it).

 

I have a pair of Volkl Bridges for days with under ~4" and the Opus's for days with over ~4". The 185s are the size I originally wanted, but I went with 178s to save $300. So ideally the 185s will be my main powder skis, and in that case, they will only be used to skin 10-20%(?) of the time.

 

I have heard the same thing about Alpine Trekkers.


Edited by FB User (Private) - 4/13/15 at 10:12pm
post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by segbrown View Post
 

 

Level Nine Sports sells the non-MNC version of the Trackers and Guardians for pretty cheap, as long as 13 DIN is high enough. I think they are less than $250. Not a bad choice for the OP if he wants to use them in and out of resort.

I found the Atomic trackers deal there and you are right, good price. The Opus' are 118 under foot, would you go with the 115 brakes and have them bent or the 130? Also, sorry, what does non-MNC mean?

post #9 of 14
Thread Starter 

One other question, I have (inexpensive) Marker Squire bindings on my "old" Opus', and they are fine for me. Will the AT bindings be just as "solid" for when I am skiing the bumps (or whatever), or do they flex/twist a bit?


Edited by FB User (Private) - 4/13/15 at 10:13pm
post #10 of 14
My Boomerangs are 120 underfoot and I will most likely get 115 brakes and tweak them a bit.
MNC = Multi Norm Compatible. They have adjustable toe height and sliding AFD which allows the use of alpine and AT boots.
post #11 of 14
I have bought some Atomic Tracker 13's recently with much the same intent. I got the original WTR version as I have no intention to buy AT boots and go on long tours. By all reports they are as burly as a standard Alpine binding, but they also your. They also have a lower stack height than the Markers. From what you are saying these or the Salomon Guardians (identical but with different branding) would be ideal.
post #12 of 14

Sounds like you are looking for a "side country" setup.  That is what I have.  I have a pair of Marker Dukes and Maker FT12's.  Totally beefy and don't know the difference between them and regular bindings.  I have them setup on a pair of Rossi Super S7's and K2 Pontoons.  Yup, huge skis, I probably only go side country and tour with 10% of the time as I ski with my kids most of the time.  But wanted the option to go touring.

 

If you go with a no kidding AT binding - Dynafit and whatnot, you are going to have to get an AT boot.  Or if you already have a rubber soled boot, you need to get an AT compatible type of binding that will release with the rubber sole on the toe.  I have Scarpa Maestrale RS, rubber sole, but will release correctly on the Marker Dukes and FT12's but not on traditional DH bindings.  

post #13 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by bmck3780 View Post

I have bought some Atomic Tracker 13's recently with much the same intent. I got the original WTR version as I have no intention to buy AT boots and go on long tours. By all reports they are as burly as a standard Alpine binding, but they also your. They also have a lower stack height than the Markers. From what you are saying these or the Salomon Guardians (identical but with different branding) would be ideal.

Yeah, seems like that Atomic/Salomon would be a good one for the OP.
post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 

Thanks all, 1 pr of Atomic Tracker 13's on their way from Level 9 Sports :D. I appreciate the thoughts and input, these really seam like just what I needed and at a decent price.

 

:beercheer:

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