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Trying Cross-country...

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
JanetS and I are out in Austria for 3 months, and for a change fancy having a go at cross-country / langlauf skiing, as a track goes directly past our apartment. We are experienced skiers, including touring/skinning, so do we just rent some kit and give it a bash, or do we need instruction? Also is it different kit for the style that just stays in the tracks compared to the ones we see skating?
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Get instruction, as with all things. Experience in alpine won’t matter - if anything I feel it held me back as I expected the skis to behave in ways that they don’t....

It’s a really lovely sport! I rented the first couple of times then bought my own
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@RobinS, let me know how it is...we still haven't done it!
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Get a lesson! I tried cross country (classic) for the first time a few weeks ago, and there is a lot of technique to pole correctly (using core muscles), do proper kicks, glide etc.

There is classic (in the tracks) or scating styles.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Themasterpiece wrote:


There is classic (in the tracks) or scating styles.


how I hate those scating cross country skiers

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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
Interesting as I have been learning how to langlauf over the past couple of weekends (classic not skate). It's not as easy as it looks, but today I have been up at Rossbrand with some very helpful friends and I seem to be making progress. There are loads of langlauf loipes round here and it's a good whole body workout.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Where in Austria are you? Instruction is always a good thing, I'm near Zell am See and might be able to help.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
I love XC. Something about being out in the woods, nice and quiet, gear is light and cheap, and comfortable, dont need more than 2 light layers...definitely take a lesson, but you will be able to enjoy it within an hour or so. Coming from alpine you have the advantage of balance.

I would start with classic unless you're extremely fit. Skating is brutal at first. I can do 15-20 km easily in classic style but 5-10 k of vigorous skating and I'm done. Also note that the equipment is different -- boots, skis, pole length, wax or bottom pattern, edges...
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
We are in Flachau at present, but off to Westendorf next week before returning to Flachau. Looks like some of the local ski schools do 1hr private lessons so will try to sort it for later this week. Were thinking of the classic style, as we are not young, and not as fit as we were. The hire shops seem to list classic or skating kit at the same price as well.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
I've even bought some langlauf equipment now! Determined to get a bit fitter and it's a lot gentler on my creaking joints than touring. The equipment is a bit of a minefield, as well as two types of skis (classic and skate for which you require different lengths), there are three types of bindings! Apparently SNS and NNN are a bit of an Amer vs Fischer thing and not compatible. So I've played safe and gone for Prolink which should be compatible. The underside of the classic skis can vary too from ones that need wax, ones that have 'skin inserts' and ones that just have a central serrated section. Good grief. Alpine skiers don't realise how easy they have it!
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
@RobinS, get yourself to Alternmarkt beginners track behind the school in town and there is someone there to give help. She is there two mornings a week - the ad popped up on my fb - I will have a look for the link. Ange. Very Happy
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
@RobinS, Look on facebook page Altenmarkt-Zauchensee, posted on 11th Jan, a lady called Martina is there every Tues and Thurs morning. hth. Ange.

And once you get the hang of it - get up to Filzmoos Papageno lift, there is a track up there with the most amazing views! Ange
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
XC snowboarding has been slow to catch on.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
queen bodecia wrote:
I've even bought some langlauf equipment now! Determined to get a bit fitter and it's a lot gentler on my creaking joints than touring. The equipment is a bit of a minefield, as well as two types of skis (classic and skate for which you require different lengths), there are three types of bindings! Apparently SNS and NNN are a bit of an Amer vs Fischer thing and not compatible. So I've played safe and gone for Prolink which should be compatible.


Prolink is Salomon's name for their NNN bindings. The NNN patent has expired and they will probably drop their (some say superior) SNS system. NNN and NIS is a system developed by Rottefella which Fischer later adopted.

But essentially NNN is the only game in town now if you are buying new cross country boots + bindings. All Atomic boots are now NNN compatible and the majority of Salomon boots are.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@davidof, my understanding was that Prolink was compatible with both. But anyway, the skis and boots I have bought are both Atomic and both Prolink, so I shouldn't have an issue.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
queen bodecia wrote:
@davidof, my understanding was that Prolink was compatible with both. But anyway, the skis and boots I have bought are both Atomic and both Prolink, so I shouldn't have an issue.


Some of the press releases seem to have confused things claiming that Prolink is a "bridge between SNS and NNN worlds" but if you look at the NNN boot sole it has a raised section where SNS would have a ridge on the binding and the toe bar is a different design.

I don't think it is an issue for you as the gear you have bought is compatible with all current cross country ski gear except the legacy SNS stuff. Only Salomon current produces SNS gear and they won't continue doing that forever and before that the choice of SNS gear will dwindle in the coming years. However I would suggest that unless someone gets a great deal on SNS gear they should go NNN/Prolink and for classic skis get skins. The SNS Pilot binding is a good binding, especially for roller skiing, as it gives better control but it is expensive to make.

Here are SNS, SNS Pilot and Prolink boots so you can see the difference.



The salomon move being driven by the US market, which is the biggest for cross country sales and where they are firmly in the NNN camp.

Of course there is the new Turnamic mounting plate to get in the way of this cross-compatibility but that's another story.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Update - we had our first day on classic cross country skis today. Rented skis, poles and shoes from Kastner Sport near the apartment - only 10euros each for the day. Went out in the morning to get a feel for it and didn't seem to be doing too badly. In the afternoon we had a private lesson with Christoph from ACF Adventure - and discovered we had been doing it largely wrong! Lots of exercises without poles, running, gliding, and stopping drills, and by the end we were going much better - so everyone who said get a lesson - you were right! I did have issues with my disability - following back surgery I have no feeling or control over my right lower leg and foot, and in flimsy classic shoes this was difficult. JanetS is already talking about getting her own kit so more questions will be coming later.
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