Pretty uneventful drive down to the Outdoor Retailer All Mountain Demo this morning. It was blowing sideways when I left Jackson, but seemed to taper off once I got further away from the Tetons. They could definitely use some more of the white stuff here in SLCâ€¦to cover up all the city shit, never mind to help out the skiing situation.
Anyway, I covered some of the new Black Diamond and Dynafit products for Fall 2012 in previous posts, but I wanted to make a few comments on the new Dynafit Vulcan and One boots, now that I have gotten a chanvce to ski on them, as well as few other tidbits I think you might find interesting from the demo.
To start with, I learned a little bit more about the new Dynafit boots for next year and one of the things that really separates the Hoji-inspired Vulcan/Mercury boots from the lighter, One boots. They both have the same last and similar shell shapes, but the One boots donâ€™t have a removable tongueâ€¦or any tongue for that matter. This makes the One boots a little more geared for those that want to move faster in the mountains and speed up their transitions, as opposed to the Vulcan/Mercury boots, that use the removable tongue to gain stiffness and power.
I skied both the Vulcan and the One PX boot (the One PX being the top boot in that line-up) and they both skied really nice. The Vulcan was quite powerful and the walk mode of both was like butter, with an amazing range of motion like you would expect. I think it will be hard for a lot of folks to decide between these boots next season, as they are both, very nice.
I was a fan of the La Sportiva High 5 ski last year and their new Hang 5 ski with a waist of 117mm, pin-tail and early rise tip, follows suite as being a very stable, easy turning and fun ski. Even though the snow was pretty icy at the demo, the fat waist of the Hang 5 held an edge well and carved nicely. In fact, I enjoyed skiing the Hang 5 more than another new ski from La Sportiva, the Low 5, which was narrower, but felt sort of dead.
Iâ€™m not sure I get his whole fish-scale, waxless base thing on backcountry skis. Maybe itâ€™s the type of terrain we have in the Tetons, but I know I typically want as much glide as I can get out of my skis and if I want to climb up something, Iâ€™ll just put my skins on. However, Voile claims that the waxless base category is quite popular for them and will introduce the Charger BC for next season. A 110-115mm waisted powder ski with fish-scales on the base? Manâ€¦Iâ€™m really confused now.
G3 had a few new skis and new a new telemark binding they were showing off. One ski was a uber fat 127mm(?) waisted ski called the Empire. It had pretty flat camber underfoot, with a rockered tip and tail. Definitely a power hog. The District looked a bit more versatile though at 112mm underfoot and has a lightweight core with two layers of metal in it. One would think this ski skis pretty well, but I didnâ€™t get a chance to ski it.
Lastly, and for all you telemarkers out there (heyâ€¦donâ€™t say I never gave you anything) the days of the crappy Targa binding are over and the new Enzo and Enzo R bindings will replace it as G3â€™s flagship free-heel binding. Both have cables routed underfoot to provide an active feel and the Enzo has a free-pivot feature for touring, while the Enzo-R (R=resort) has a fixed toe-piece for skiing in-area. They looked coolâ€¦if youâ€™re into that sort of thing.
Anyway, off to day one at the show for me and Iâ€™m jonesing the shred the copious amounts of snow piling up back in Jackson.