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Ski Set-up

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Ski Set-up

Postby skyward22 » Fri Apr 12, 2013 9:22 pm

I am looking for a ski set-up that will allow me more freedom in the hills. Basically, I want something that I can use as a tool to approach climbs, especially on glaciers (re: Denali, etc). I'm not as interested in actually skiing on the mountain. Just want something that is compatible with my climbing boots (Kayland M11+ soon to be Spantiks) where I can stash the skis at base camp when the climb begins. The ability to ski down snowfields would be nice, but I'm not looking to do any crazy turns or anything, just get down the mountain a little faster.

I've been climbing for 10 years but am a complete noob when it comes to skiing. I've heard the terms AT, alpine, telemark, inline, cross country, but have no idea what they mean. Educate me!
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Re: Ski Set-up

Postby swbackcountry » Fri Apr 12, 2013 10:44 pm

Tobe, opinions are like @$$holes, we all have one. Here's mine.
A question to ask is, "Are they worth the weight, expense, and training?" Tons of options exist for what you're talking about. Your boots would be attached via what's called a 'mountain binding.' This is a binding for crampon compatible boots to fit to ski bindings, with a popular brand being Silvretta. Sounds like you just want something that will help you float a bit on the way up and down to not get bogged down in snow. Sounds like what you may want would be referred to as a cross country touring set-up. These are skis that are made to be light, yet they have either a 3/4 metal edge or a full edge for some turning, and you can buy skins for them. For better turning you would want an alpine set-up, with a locked down heel. These would be heavier, but are what many mountaineers choose, so they get some sense of control on the downhill turns. Either way, you'll want to practice skiing prior to your outings. buy a lift pass for a day or two to practice going down (the up is easy). Free-heel or alpine technique videos or lessons will help a ton. Without some practice, they can actually slow you down, or cause you injury in terrain you can't ski...which goes back to the original question of "are they worth it?"

Eventually I'd advise getting good at skiing and just using an AT set-up for most mountaineering adventures. Meantime this can get you started:

Binding Options:
Silvrettas: http://www.wildsnow.com/backcountry-ski ... untry.html
Some contraption: http://www.wildsnow.com/929/want-to-ski ... be-ticket/

One of the ski options (you could find used?):
http://www.orscrosscountryskisdirect.co ... -skis.html
Last edited by swbackcountry on Sat Apr 13, 2013 4:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ski Set-up

Postby splattski » Sat Apr 13, 2013 3:42 am

If you are simply looking to ski instead of snowshoe, you can put together a setup for cheap. I found a pair of AT/tele skis WITH skins for just a bit over $100. Then I found some used Silvretta 404s. This would allow you to clip your Spantiks in and scoot. If all you want to do is ski-hike, don't spend more than that.

If you want to make beautiful turns, you will be disappointed. But for pulling a sled on Denali, it will work fine. To make great turns, you will want boots for skiing, whether that ends up being AT or tele. And better bindings. And then you might get fussy about the skis.

If you really get in to skiing, you'll end up with multiple sets.But the cheapo approach skis will still be in your quiver.
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Re: Ski Set-up

Postby swbackcountry » Sat Apr 13, 2013 4:35 am

splattski wrote:If you are simply looking to ski instead of snowshoe, you can put together a setup for cheap. I found a pair of AT/tele skis WITH skins for just a bit over $100. Then I found some used Silvretta 404s. This would allow you to clip your Spantiks in and scoot. If all you want to do is ski-hike, don't spend more than that.

If you want to make beautiful turns, you will be disappointed. But for pulling a sled on Denali, it will work fine. To make great turns, you will want boots for skiing, whether that ends up being AT or tele. And better bindings. And then you might get fussy about the skis.

If you really get in to skiing, you'll end up with multiple sets.But the cheapo approach skis will still be in your quiver.


excellent advice. Thats what I should've said.
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Re: Ski Set-up

Postby Nikolas_A » Sat Apr 13, 2013 9:23 pm

I don't want to rain on your parade but it takes a very good skier to turn in climbing boots...
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Re: Ski Set-up

Postby Kai » Mon Apr 15, 2013 4:58 am

This is the ski you want:

(Hagan Tour Extreme)

http://www.alpineexposures.com/pages/ha ... ski-review
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