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Another crossover gear question

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
My 17 year old son, who has limited funds, is looking for a setup to serve both inbounds and out. He’s a solid alpine skier although new to BC; but will have opportunities to participate in backcountry trips at school.

He’s 6’-3”, about 170, and a level 7+ skier. Has been on K2 PEs in a 169 (but has outgrown them size wise), and has my old hand-me down boots, Rossi Courses.

I’m suggesting he check out the 184 Mantra’s with Dukes, as he can use his alpine boots now, and then buy some AT boots later when he has the $$. For now, he’ll mostly be skiing inbounds, with some hike-to-terrain. It remains to be seen how much back country skiing he’ll actually do. It seems like the Duke might be the right binding for his situation.

I’d appreciate any input on this setup, or other suggestions , since this will have to work for him as his primary skis for at least the next 3-4 years and he wants to get it right. BTW, he should be able to demo, too.
post #2 of 7
You don't mention what part of the world you ski, but I'll assume in the west generally. The Mantra has plenty of versatility. I would also consider the Snoop Daddy as a 88 mm waisted ski is lighter and well suited to a wide variety of conditions. The Duke is a good resort binding and fine for limited touring. It would be pretty tiring, especially with standard alpine boots for any length of tour. The gear you are talking about isn't cheap, and I would bet the Marker Dukes will be sold out before the snow flies. Touring bindings of any kind are useless without climbing skins.

The idea of a one ski for all uses is good, but it might not be much more expensive to buy a used set of AT skis and bindings, for touring, and something on sale for the resort.

Bigger concern, your son needs safety gear and training for backcountry. Beacon, shovel, probe, pack, etc. Equipment can open the door, but you really need the training and experience to go through it.
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
He's in Colorado, where he'd be going on school sponsored trips in which they provide safety equipment and instruction, so he should receive a good introduction to the backcountry. After thinking about this more, I'm going to suggest that he get a standard alpine binding, and save his money. I agree that two different setups are better, and the Duke adds a lot to the overall costs, and may not be worth for him. I like the suggestion of the snoop daddy, I'll pass it on to him.
post #4 of 7
I was gonna say, and I ski and love the Mantra that you go with something little lighter if you could. It is a bit heavy for BC but will handle anything.
post #5 of 7
If he is going to be doing more touring than inbounds skiing, or at least a 50/50 margin I would say that one setup would suffice. Lots of people rock touring boots and AT binders daily at the resort.

On the other hand, if most of his time is going to be spent inbounds with a few BC outings mixed in here an there, I would suggest to put alpine binders on the ski and just buy a pair of Trekkers. This is a compromise on the uphill, but it will without a doubt be cheaper than buying two different setups.
post #6 of 7
freeheel gear is another option for crossover from area to backcountry touring

otherwise i agree with ticos ...rock the AT on area and for touring and never look back

but... alpine gear for touring is heavy and the boots are very uncomfortable - especially in colorado where the access is usually many hours long

ask the school what they suggest
post #7 of 7
I would go with the dukes. I would not want to ever skis an AT bindings in bounds, just way too sloppy, and I'd be worried that they'd fall apart on me.

However, like someone already said, Dukes are going to be really pricy, and you may not be able to find any. For not too much more that dukes and nice skis, you might be able to get some cheap light skis, with naxos or freerides, AND a decent resort setup.
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