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Teleing on old gear

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Most of us probobly learned how to tele on leather boots and skinny skis.
Most of us are on modern gear now...

Have you ever tried skiing on old gear after getting used to plastic boots and shaped skis?

I would like to try, for a day or so...
To get an idea of how much easier it is now, and because I think my technique would benefit from it.
I sometimes realise how much I depend on my four-buckle boots to control the skis and wonder how I would do on the gear I started out on...

Anyone else thought about this?
post #2 of 16
I have and I instantly felt soulful
post #3 of 16

Confessions of a soulless telemark skier

I started on plastic and shapes with compression springed bindings.


....but I wipe my goggle's lenses with a leather chamios.
post #4 of 16
By the end of last season, all I had in working order was a pair of Kazama Telecomp III. I like to ski these with my Merrill Super Ultra boots. Leather, straight, skinny, but not really backcountry touring like I started on. This was a high performance set up to replace my Karhu XCD GT/Asolo Snowfield II. I would dig a modern light touring set up, fishscales and sidecut. The Asolos are cracked across the pinholes, but I could use them with a simple cable binding on a Fischer Outabounds or similar turning touring ski.
post #5 of 16
Believe it or not I started tele skiing with leather lace boots on 218 cm Kazamas, and there is no way I'm going back to those boats.
post #6 of 16

Get the right tool for the job?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mudfoot
Believe it or not I started tele skiing with leather lace boots on 218 cm Kazamas, and there is no way I'm going back to those boats.
Was that before WW II? If you were telemarking after jumps, then you had the right equipment. Which were the boats, by the way? Skis or boots? I don't know why this thread was started. However, I wouldn't touch a plastic tele boot with a ten foot pole. As to shaped skiis, since most people get sloppy in their technique when they go to shaped, they have a hard time going back to straight. It's no different than a cripple who finally goes from shoes to a wheel chair. I always start my ski season on straight skiis and end them on shaped. When it comes to tele, I just bought a pair of leather boots, three pin bindings and straight tele skiis that have never been mounted. 5 or 6 years ago I sold all my ski equipment down to one pair of straight DH. Now that I'm planning on getting back into Tele, I want a boot that's comfortable around the lodge. I used to X-C ski with race equipment (Skate and Diag), but I found the SNS system enhanced the difficulties I have had with my aging knees. Three pin X-C skiing didn't. On top of all this, I'm not getting sold the Brooklyn Bridge.
post #7 of 16
I moved to Colorado in 1980 to attend CSU. Immediately went to the Mountain Shop, when it was still on Laurel Street and purchased 215 Rossignol Rondonee skis with what were considered "high top" leather Snowpine boots. I couldn't afford downhill skiing so I learned to Tele up around Cameron Pass and Montgomery Pass, up Poudre Canyon. It was still lonely on the weekends at those locations back then - now it is a zoo.

The skis have no metal edges and the boots are definitely what you would call floppy.

Still got the skis/boots. Still use them sometimes - for old time sake - to show the kids how to do it.

No edges and floppy boots - Now that is Tele-ing!
post #8 of 16
I converted from alpine to tele in 79. I still have all the old gear in the basement and once in a great while take them out. I have a pair of Lund Nords with amish leather bindings. They are 223cm, wide, no edges and no side cuts. You have to use a deep knee bend and be very patient. Tight turns are jump turns. I only use those in soft ungroomed snow.

I have various assortments of three pin Chouinard bindings on Tua, Rossi and Kazama skis. I have Merrils and Asolo boots as well.

I do not think skiing on the old equipment helps technique in the slightest. I think it may in fact re-introduce old bad habits.
post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 
ATSkier: What do you mean when you say people get sloppy skiing shaped skis and therefore have difficulties skiing straight skis? I would have thought they get in trouble because the technique is different?
And why not "touch a plastic tele boot with a ten foot pole"? From your handle I would guess it's because you don't tele??

Pierre: You might be right, but the reason I think I would benefit from it is, mainly, bacause you really need to be in balance to ski in low leather boots.
post #10 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tele-Swede
Pierre: You might be right, but the reason I think I would benefit from it is, mainly, bacause you really need to be in balance to ski in low leather boots.
The balance window does get substantially smaller and makes you more aware of balance but also results in the overuse of muscle groups such as the leg adductors. To reduce the fatigue, we start rotating, jumping and other things that take pressure of the adductors but very inefficiently adds bad habits in other areas to compensate.

Maybe you are built like a gazelle but I am built more like an old mule.
post #11 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by ATskier
Was that before WW II? If you were telemarking after jumps, then you had the right equipment. Which were the boats, by the way? Skis or boots? I don't know why this thread was started. However, I wouldn't touch a plastic tele boot with a ten foot pole.
No, actually it was 1979 and tele skiing was just becoming a "new thing." I was skiing 210s for alpine so 218 skinny double camber metal edged tele skis seemed to make sense. Got them at the Trailhead in Missoula, MT.

The only other guy I know who used a pair of the same skis was local ski stud Rick Neff. He used to take the gelende jump at Montana Snowbowl on those babies and land 80 ft. jumps on 2" wide 218s with flimsy leather boots. Last time I was at the Bowl he was still ripping up the mountain (including the bumps) on teles but was on super wide Atomic Fatboys. The "right" tool for the job is all up to you.

So Mr. "I wouldn't touch a plastic tele boot with a ten foot pole," what are you Amish?
post #12 of 16
I read an interesting article about the Amish...

Apparently, their "rules" don't forbid cell phones and roller blades ...really. Also, their product's association with being wholesome is really providing for some increased revenues. There was some other stuff about blogging, and better access to www. information.

Times they are a changing.

What's this about not touching a plastic tele boot? I didn't know the Amish couldn't touch plastic. Huh.
post #13 of 16
Well, now I should be able to pontificate from here. I spent some time with the Amish, riding a bus with them from Cal back east. I was reading John Muir which was frowned on. There's only one place I have ever seen a sleigh on the road and that was in Ohio. I figure that it must have been an Amish family. Just think, no gasoline, no plows, and no salt. I don't like the feel of plastic bags, either. Just think, no need to convert petroleum to plastic with leather. hmmm, no petroleum and no need for a military presence in Iraq, either. Now, as I just posted on another thread a longer ski has an advantage in jumping. I find that they hold ice better in my Alpine skiing. Now, I'm thinking about taking my mom's skiis down from the rafters, removing the varnish I applied years ago to preserve them, sharpen the edges, pinetar the bottoms and put a 3-pin binding on them. At 190, I would find that they are the shortest tele I have had. However, when I stand in the cable car, they will tower over all the clowns with funny colored boards. No need to tell them that they were my mom's is there?
post #14 of 16
Quote:
However, I wouldn't touch a plastic tele boot with a ten foot pole
I have to ask - why??
post #15 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by ATskier
Now that I'm planning on getting back into Tele, I want a boot that's comfortable around the lodge.
Obviously, ATskier has different priorities.
post #16 of 16

I started to tele because I was on a tiny hill in Maryland that was losing whatever challenge it had.  In leather boots the hill became a mountain capable of insult and injury.  I was the only one on my mountain in tele gear and there was this other "lunatic" on another mountain 30 miles away.  As I transitioned north and to the modern tele equipment, I found the stability, performance and forgiveness to be awesome, yet it has again come to the point where at my mountain at least, the challenge is fading.  So this year I found an undrilled pair of Kazamas and got the old leather out, and again found a greater challenge that lies not in bigger beefier equipment, but in lighter duty stuff.  In some way, it has once again put the onus on me as a skier to deliver to the skis what is necessary to make it down hill, with the power coming from within with no free rides anymore.  I switch back and forth between plastic and leather, but prefer the leather.  Regarding good habits and bad habits, I find each to be situational in nature and definition, with many of the modern telemark tips equally applicable to skinny skis and rockers...you just get and have to expect different outcomes from each set of equipment, and sometimes I prefer challenge to forgiveness, and sometimes forgiveness is very welcome.  And, it is fun to be the only guy on the mountain again.

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