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Grip waxes versus patterned bases

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
With easy back door access to unlimited touring over the years it's been very easy to simply through on pattern base XC, touring or tele skis with liquid/sprayglide wax and go....especially when small windows of opportunities show up at odd times. I've been very hesitant spending time even bothering trying to be much of a grip waxer. With potentially highly variable snow conditions and large temperature swings throughout a day and/or a week, sometimes it gets down to, if I have to spend 5 more minutes to get out the door (ie messing with grip waxes), I won't, for no real rational reason. Thus, pattern bases somewhat the enabler.

What would be the clear advantages of using grip waxes versus pattern bases (or kicker skins) for self made track or first track touring?

With tons of snow, it's time to get after it more frequently......
post #2 of 6
Not much for stomping first tracks. Waxed skis are much faster if you get to descend a bit though. If you tour up a logging road, you can just scrape the wax for the return downhill and really fly.

Cold snow, with descents, I'll go with wax, usually the Swix extra blue that is already on them.

Warmer snow, and flat tours, waxless skis

Spring snow I like wax because it doesn't buzz like those fishscales.
post #3 of 6
Originally Posted by newfydog View Post

Spring snow I like wax because it doesn't buzz like those fishscales.
Zzzutt zzzutt zzutt
post #4 of 6

Is there really a duality here?

Ever fix a backsliding waxless ski with a bit of Viola?
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
Jah, the whistling and 'fingernails on the chalk board' sound and feel can grate for sure, but the convenience factor is way up there.

I just got back from several laps around where a nicely set up snowmobile track made for some decent glide (except where the elk post holed through: ). I would have liked some better grip, but is was a decent work out all the same. I'll try the waxable classics next time on the track and see how that works. It's rare to have a consistent surface to ski on and we have plans to set up a 'neighborhood network'....we'll see.

Maybe throwing on a little grip wax to help with some climbs in untracked areas is worth a try. Especially with the deep, dense snow we have now. I just don't want to deal with glogged patterned areas or scales. It seems like kicker skins are worth considering for low angle climbs and descents or will grip wax be more efficient for the climbs? Then of course I can always throw on the regular skins.....

post #6 of 6
For (light) touring through untracked/ungroomed, go with the kicker skins, until your snow gets very wet/warm. Take 'em off to descend better, and you'll climb better than with kick wax.

If the ascent/approach gets steeper, then it's time for full-length skins with tele/AT set-up.
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