Nov 19 2014

Review: G3 Carbon Synapse 101

Carbon is the rage in skis these days, and for good reason. From the rumblings I’m hearing, it won’t be going away anytime soon. One example of why is G3′s Synapse. It has the requisite muscle necessary to make up for what heavier skis do with mass. At speed they get a bit skittery, but when you need to slow down and hold fast, they do so with aplomb, no flinching.

G3 Synapse 101  130-101-118 in five lengths between 165 and 185 cm

G3 Synapse 101 130-101-118 in five lengths between 165 and 185 cm

Given just a smidgen of depth with a softer top to the snowpack you can enjoy cruising at speed with Synapse. That’s when you notice how nimble and quick they are edge-to-edge, or fluid when you want to open up and let ‘em run.
Keep earning your turns

Nov 17 2014

Review: Buried  by Ken Wylie


Buried - reality & metaphor.

Buried – reality & metaphor.

Book signings are not the sort of thing to make headlines much, but the subject of Ken Wylie’s book entitled Buried is about his contribution and assessment of what is arguably the biggest headline in avalanche news in a hundred years, the tragedy on Tumbledown Mountain, January 20th, 2003. Seven people died in one fell swoop as Ruedi Beglinger, lead guide and owner of Selkirk Mountain Experience, led 21 people in pursuit of skiing’s ultimate high and triggered the ultimate low instead.
Keep earning your turns

Nov 13 2014

Review: Salomon Quest Pro TR 110


Salomon Quest Pro TR 110

Salomon Quest Pro TR 110

Salomon is taking their sweet time developing products for the backcountry. Though the development seems slow, with consistency and time that translates into being relentless. This year’s Quest Pro TR 110 is a moderate example of that. By moderate, I’m referring to a moderate flex rating of only 110, hardly stiff by alpine standards. If you prefer, Salomon makes a 130 flex version of this same boot, but it wasn’t available for testing. In addition, it shows that little by little, Salomon is improving their AT boot offerings.
Keep earning your turns

Nov 11 2014

Eulogy to Black Diamond’s telemark boot line


Lament for a fallen hero.

Lament for a fallen hero.

Although the story announcing the demise of Black Diamond’s teleboot line was not unexpected, nor is it unlamented. It might be easy to read into that a sense of good riddance because of the reference to BD boots fitting like buckets. That was not universal, a small but clear majority of bootfitters I spoke to blamed that for of the lack of success than didn’t.

Judging BD boots to be buckets can’t be completely true since there are many folks who like the fit of BD’s tele boots, and especially like the on-demand power of the Push. It has a firm flex for driving fatties and a tall cuff for extra power transmission. Some dislike the BOA lacing, but those who like it, love it.
Keep earning your turns

Nov 10 2014

Bean & Rice: High Attitude, E2-SII


High Attitude aka Rocky Mountain High

High Attitude aka Rocky Mountain High

Sakson’s back, this time in Colorado. Never was I ever jealous of Colorado’s snow until the last three years in California. Now I’m only jealous because it seems our snowpack conditions have flipped. That’s what I love about California, how solid the snow is. It used to be reliable too, but the recent trend reveals the core of the trouble; it’s about water. It’s not how cold it is that matters, it’s how much moisture is in the air. Or not. No more big, bad, warm and wet storms that pile up Sierra Cement by the foot. Instead we’re getting light, cold fluff like they used to get in Colorado, measured by the inch. Barely enough to cover the rocks, and spooky when deeper.
Keep earning your turns

Nov 05 2014

First Look: Volkl’s Vacuum Climbing Skins


Volkl's Vacuum Climbing Skins

Volkl’s Vacuum Climbing Skins

Volkl’s new Vacuum climbing skins are the first skins to be marketed by an alpine ski company that you should really take a closer look at. In the last few years Volkl has offered skins to go with their lighter weight Nanuq and Nunataq skis. Those skins use a traditional glue that relies primarily on tackiness to stick to the bases of skis. This year Volkl goes all in for the backcountry by adding their BMT series skis to the mix along with climbing skins using a silicon-based adhesive that, barring unforeseen complications, are poised to revolutionize the reigning skin glue paradigm with a formula that is easier to manage.
Keep earning your turns

Nov 03 2014

Review: P-whore’s Some Thing Else


PowderWhore's Some Thing Else.

PowderWhore’s Some Thing Else.

Ya gotta luv the Powderwhore’s sense of value. I mean, really, besides being a ‘ho for pow, what else matters? Certainly that is the inescapable conclusion one must come to when kicking back to indulge in their 10th episode of documenting last season’s most epic days – the sort of days that never graced the slopes of my fair land here in Tahoe. On the record that wouldn’t be completely true, we did have One epic day of powder that was worth remembering, but not even two that would be worth documenting.
Keep earning your turns

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