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Touring, where to start?

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

My goal next season is to have a pair of skis I can use to skin up the resort when the lifts are closed.  I'm really not ready for touring bc.  It seems like a fairly involved and expensive process to put together a good Dynafit touring setup with boots so is there a place a beginner like me can start?  I've heard there are some devices to convert regular bindings to touring which just basically lets you free the heel and use regular boots?  Is this a good place to start?  I have some Amp Rictor 90 XTIs with skin grommets I'd be looking to use for the touring skis.  Any advice is appreciated.

post #2 of 19

I cobbled together a Dynafit Comfort, Shuksan, Megarides, and skins for under $500 from CL and TGR and TAY and EVO. One piece at a time over the summer. Funny, I asked Martin Volken to sell me a ski for this past season. After he asked where I mainly skied, and how I liked to ski, he picked out the Amp Rictor 90 XTIs for me that was on sale in his shop. I liked it the two times I got to ski this year. One time being 2 runs on 500 vert of melting corn and some ice. :(

 

BTW - I have some Megarides are for sale cheap if that boot in a 320 is what fits you.

post #3 of 19
Thread Starter 

I guess spending the money on the binding and ski work isn't my main issue, it is courting and marrying a new pair of boots. I do love the Rictors, I think they will be perfect for what I am looking to do.

post #4 of 19

So you want to shred the side country after the lifts close and need the performance of your current boot?

 

Or are you skinning up for exercise and want to carve warp speed back to the car?

 

Anyway, you want to use with your alpine boot. Trekkers.

 

http://www.backcountry.com/backcountry-access-alpine-trekker-adaptors?ti=UExQIENhdDpBbHBpbmUgVG91cmluZyBCaW5kaW5nczoxOjE6YmNzQ2F0NTExMDAwNDA&skid=BCA2942-ONECOL-ONESIZ

 

 

My son has Marker Dukes on his Pontoons for going to the powder up high. The Frischie family. I'd go new as opposed to used if you can.

post #5 of 19
Trekkers or more Alpine oriented AT bindings like the Marker Baron or Salomon Guardian must be the answer. That way you can have just the one set up for resort and sort of resort (skinning up) skiing.

I'd suggest just continue to use your current boots.
post #6 of 19
Thread Starter 

Trekkers seem like they can be hit or miss from what I'm reading about them.  I really like the alpine oriented AT bindings.  What are the negatives with these bindings?  Do you lose some control on the downhill compared to normal alpine bindings?

post #7 of 19
You probably lose only a very small amount of control with frame-type AT bindings, compared to regular Alpine bindings, maybe unnoticeable unless you charge very hard. And it depends on which frame bindings you get - Fritschi Freerides have a lot more flex than Dukes or the Atomic/Salomons, which have very little.

Negatives include weight which varies greatly by brand model, but tech bindings are far and away lighter. Another weight issue is that you are lifting the entire frame on your foot with each stride. And the stride for frame bindings is generally less natural, since the pivot point is placed farther forward than with tech bindings.

Some nice prices on a variety of AT bindings now. For instance:
http://www.backcountry.com/alpine-touring-bindings
post #8 of 19
Thread Starter 

The Rictors have some crappy Rossignol demo bindings on them right now.  Can I pick up a pair of Guardians or Barons and have the shop remove the demo bindings and mount the new ones?  Would it be better to start out with a fresh set of skis?  Thanks for entertaining my newb questions.

post #9 of 19
Overlooking for the moment that conventional wisdom dictates that getting new skis is almost always a good thing, yeah, there's no reason a decent shop couldn't put Barons or Guardians on the Rictors. Any binding hole overlap from the old bindings can be handled easily (again, by a decent shop) with inserts or helicoils. Go for it.

It's nothing that I wouldn't take on in my workshop, but I got tools and skillz.
post #10 of 19

The dynafit entry level tlt is $350 new and would save you from having to upgrade if you like the sport, plus gives you a good excuse to get new boots that fit your foot right. 

 

Also, go up and down hills in the summer.  Then you're gear won't matter so much. 

post #11 of 19

And we're off to the races!

post #12 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by core2 View Post
 

Trekkers seem like they can be hit or miss from what I'm reading about them.  I really like the alpine oriented AT bindings.  What are the negatives with these bindings?  Do you lose some control on the downhill compared to normal alpine bindings?


All AT bindings are hit or miss on the internet. Any user with a problem will post it. Down side of  Alpine AT bindings are they are new designs and heavy. If you could jog up and down the hill that you intend to skin up you will be fine with the weight of all that alpine weight metal and plastic. How do they ski? How good are you at skiing? I suck so I wouldn't notice any subtle high speed nuances. But then if you are really good, you can ski well on anything. Take some time and read reviews from people who have used a bindings you are interested in. Buy a color to match your skis. :)

 

If I have read your first post correctly, if what you want to do is hike up and ski the groomers/side country after hours or lift up and climb higher,  get the trekkers to start and enjoying the K2s. Then you will know what you really need when you want to take it further.

post #13 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:

Originally Posted by wooley12 View Post

 

If I have read your first post correctly, if what you want to do is hike up and ski the groomers/side country after hours or lift up and climb higher,  get the trekkers to start and enjoying the K2s. Then you will know what you really need when you want to take it further.

 

Good point.  $150 is what it will cost me to see if I even like uphill travel if I get the Trekkers.  A binding setup and getting my skis drilled is significantly more of an investment.

post #14 of 19

I have a pair of marker dukes that I've used mostly to skin up resorts. A very heavy, but quite burly binding. One thing you need to keep in mind though is that you'll lose the lateral stiffness and rigidity you'd see with a normal binding. It took me a while to notice this, but when my boot is in the dukes, there is a small amount of play left and right. If you have someone stand on your ski with a regular binding vs an AT binding, you'd see what I mean. I don't think this is because of the boot/binding interface, but rather a side effect of the design, where the heel of the binding slides into the mounting plate on the ski when transitioning from AT to alpine. This, combined with the fact I'm using Soul 7's makes it pretty hard to carve and makes bumps a little more difficult as well. AT bindings really aren't designed for performace on the hardpack, so keep that in mind if they will be mounted on skis that will be your daily driver. 

 

Maybe @Philpug can elaborate a little bit more. 

 

 

Edit: If you're just looking to tour at resorts for exercise, the weight is actually a good thing IMHO, it's the equivalent of ankle weights.

post #15 of 19

Dukes are as solid as any alpine binding I have used, heavy for touring but no performance compromise Agree that Fritschi Freerides suck.  If you can't carve on Dukes look to the hardware above the boots.  Last season I skied Dynafit exclusively but then I spent very little time on lifts or inbounds.

post #16 of 19
No way man. To test this, I clicked into the binding and had two people stand on the ski, one right in front and one behind the binding. There was lateral movement, and the AFD was at factory specs of .5 mm. Performed the same test with my jesters (normal alpine bindings) and there was significantly less movement.
post #17 of 19

This setup is definitely not for everyone, but I will post just as another option..

 

 

http://casttouring.com

 

The system uses a set of plates, a boot conversion (tech inserts), and a pair of Dynafit toe pieces. It sounds like you would also need a new pair of alpine binders that agree with their available hole patterns.

 

I've been on this setup for two seasons each around 40 days and the boots (what I was most concerned about) have held up incredibly well. The main advantage is the ability to skin up with a tech binding and ski down with a traditional alpine binding. The changeover is slightly longer but once I got the hang of it haven't held anyone up.

post #18 of 19
Thread Starter 

Picked up some skins and the Trekkers to use with the Rictors.  If all goes well I'll swap in some touring bindings of some sort next season.  Now I need to keep in shape all summer.

post #19 of 19
Now you can spend the off season looking for the right AT boot.
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