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Ski touring for wallies

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Ok so I’m not a great ski tourer. I mean, environmental concerns notwithstanding, ski lifts are in my top few inventions. But there’s definitely something to be said for earning your turns. Dragging a load of heavy gear up a hill to ski back down it isn’t the worst way to spend a day. I draw the line at Lycra, and curse those unimaginative souls skinning up pistes, but setting out on an adventure with only your imagination (and fitness) as limits can be strangely stimulating. And hey, what better way to keep fit than hanging with the Bouquetins in the high alpine...

So with a cold, snowy forecast sending the family into hibernation, today seemed like a good day to dust off the skins and touring boots for a Sunday afternoon sortie.
The plan was to take the lifts up to Attelas, at 2700m, ski down the virgin slopes to La Chaux at 2100m and then skin up the circa 800m vertical ascent to the Col de Gentianes at 2900m for a good dose of altitude! The added bonus would be getting in some early training mileage over some mates that are also signed up for the PdG(https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patrouille_des_Glaciers) in May.

Alas with the snowfall intensifying, the visibility was nonexistent, and without piste markers for company on the way down to La Chaux it quickly became apparent that this plan was not going to end well! Skating back down the sculpture path to Les Ruinettes with tail between legs, I was forced to swallow my pride and accept the only sensible option for some exercise was to follow the Lycra clad weight weenies up the side of the piste back up to Attelas. Oh well, gentle starter for the season I guess...

After a quick YouTube reminder of how to get my Salomon Shifts into hike mode, on went the skins and the realization that they were too long and I’d forgotten to get them recut... fortunately was able to pilfer some Duct tape from the liftie for a DIY fix and it was all systems go. I blasted out of the gates up the first pitch, keen to work off last nights excessive refueling! It was steeper than I remembered so I set back into a rhythm trying to maintain a steady pace. It was all going well until a sprightly young lady appeared and went past me just a bit too easily, pointing out that my skins were falling off for good measure.



By the time I could reply she was disappearing off into the distance, leaving just a fleeting moment to admire her marvelous « technique ».



With the snow falling thick and fast it was actually quite nice to have some tracks to follow. And having left my departure until late in the day I was spared the ignominy of too many more people flying by. A Coke and Twix break added fuel to the engine and I settled into a rhythm as the altitude started to kick in. The wind picked up at the top and it was a relief to reach the shelter of the Olympique restaurant for a well earned coffee break and hair defrosting session!



Must say the Shift bindings work perfectly on both up and down, but the boots and skis are pretty heavy so looks like some expensive shopping is in order...



And 78 mins for 500m of ascent is a measly 380m per hour so best fit in a few more training laps and some Mince Pie restraint over the next few weeks!



Unfortunately my newest bright idea of attaching the GoPro to a ski didn’t end well, with the GoPro falling off somewhere on the descent. Hopefully someone picked it up, otherwise it will probably be hibernating until June!

Can’t complain about the cold temps and early season snow but here’s hoping for a return of the sunshine for next weekend!
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Looks like you ended up giving your kit a good work out too!
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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?
Laughing Laughing Laughing

Top preparation work. Sounds like one of my walks. I like that you took the airbag to make it an even better workout too. wink

snowHead
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Mosha Marc wrote:
Laughing Laughing Laughing

Top preparation work. Sounds like one of my walks. I like that you took the airbag to make it an even better workout too. wink

snowHead


Essential to have an Airbag when walking up the piste! The twisted buckle gets extra style points wink
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
380m/hr is good given the mid-heavy kit! Always carry some duct tape on your poles and some zip-ties in your pack for such contingencies.........
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@BobinCH, and you know if you had made it to Col de Gentianes the snow could have been too deep to ski, which was a scenario we had a few days ago trying to earn some turns rolling eyes

And don't forget the key ski touring adage Proper Planning and Preparation Prevents Pisse Poor Performance Laughing

On with the compeed this morning for a stroll as not a cloud in the sky.

And at least you remembered your skins and or had the right ones, which can be the occasional oversight when going touring.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
might be too late now, but ideas to find a lost GoPro!

https://www.dcrainmaker.com/2019/03/three-quick-ways-to-find-your-lost-gopro.html
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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!
@BobinCH, I have to wait until January for my first earned-turns, but since I’ll be in new boots, on new skis, bindings and skins, my first tour will look pretty much like yours. I’ll either be slope side or going up piste basher first tracks, to commission everything, and have easy options to exit if something isn’t working Very Happy
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
@BobinCH, How are the Rustlers? (other than you should have Zero-G analogues for touring!). And why did you think a cam attached to your skis would deliver any footage that wasn't jut white Puzzled
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kitenski wrote:
might be too late now, but ideas to find a lost GoPro!

https://www.dcrainmaker.com/2019/03/three-quick-ways-to-find-your-lost-gopro.html


Alas 24 hours too late but noted for next time! Thanks
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snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
PowderAdict wrote:
@BobinCH, I have to wait until January for my first earned-turns, but since I’ll be in new boots, on new skis, bindings and skins, my first tour will look pretty much like yours. I’ll either be slope side or going up piste basher first tracks, to commission everything, and have easy options to exit if something isn’t working Very Happy


What did you get???
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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.
under a new name wrote:
@BobinCH, How are the Rustlers? (other than you should have Zero-G analogues for touring!). And why did you think a cam attached to your skis would deliver any footage that wasn't jut white Puzzled


Rustlers are great. Still prefer the DPS A124 for powder days but if it’s chopped up or I have to ski on pistes the Rustlers get the vote.

Re cam, I smashed the chest mount after a double eject, Superman dive on Saturday morning, and wasn’t wearing a helmet and didn’t fancy sticking it to my spam. What’s left? No idea if the footage would have been any good but thought it worth a try! lucky Xmas on the horizon - GoPro Hero 8 looks like a nice upgrade!
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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
@BobinCH, fab trip report, thank you! Very Happy
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
KenX wrote:
380m/hr is good given the mid-heavy kit! Always carry some duct tape on your poles and some zip-ties in your pack for such contingencies.........


Yes this is sound advice! What’s a good target pace on a lighter (not skimo) setup - 500m/hour?
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Losing your GoPro when attached to your ski - been there - done that !

Luckily I was on piste and found mine.....


http://youtube.com/v/1a_2FJwr2nQ
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
@JoyZipper, Crotchcam Shocked Shocked Shocked

I had it the other way round!
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
BobinCH wrote:
@JoyZipper, Crotchcam Shocked Shocked Shocked !


Shocked Shocked Shocked Embarassed Embarassed Embarassed
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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?
BobinCH wrote:
@JoyZipper, Crotchcam Shocked Shocked Shocked


Highlighting the actual JoyZipper!
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BobinCH wrote:
What’s a good target pace on a lighter (not skimo) setup - 500m/hour?


Your current setup looks to be over 5 kg per foot. (2kg ski, 0.9 kg binding, 2,4 kg boot) I reckon if you dropped to around 3.5 kg per foot you would probably be around 500m / hour now.

1881m of altitutde between 1980m & 3160m in six hours means around 380m / hr (approx 5 hrs up 1 hr descent).
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patrouille_des_Glaciers

Hard to say how much your speed would drop off after the first hour and how much the higher altitude would affect you.
It's also very hard to compare ski touring routes esp. if one has a lot of long flats with short steep sections whereas another has a much more constant gradient.

Do you have a heart monitor? if so do the tour again but this time twice in a row while keeping your heart rate in the aerobic zone (max 155 in the example below)
https://www.active.com/fitness/articles/how-to-calculate-your-training-heart-rate-zones

Then do it 3 times in a row …… etc

This will give you a better idea of what pace you can achieve.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@BobinCH, great going and makes me envious reading this from work while refreshing various webcams. I am also about to join the heavy footed wallies although I am at the very no-idea stage but have ordered all the gear! SpyderJon is supplying my faction skis and shift bindings and will be around 4.7kg per foot and have booked an intro lesson for later in December.
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Ozboy wrote:
@BobinCH, great going and makes me envious reading this from work while refreshing various webcams. I am also about to join the heavy footed wallies although I am at the very no-idea stage but have ordered all the gear! SpyderJon is supplying my faction skis and shift bindings and will be around 4.7kg per foot and have booked an intro lesson for later in December.


Enjoy! I’m sure you’ll get the hang of it in no time. YouTube is good for tips on equipment and technique eg kick turns, how to use your poles on steep slopes
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
You really can't predict pace there are just too many variables as@DB, mentions.

Saturday I was around the 500m / hr but I was on my own, and I was not having to break trail, but there were a couple of flat sections, and wearing a HRM does let you know how hard you're working (1.150m), which was for me with an elapsed time of 3hr 15m was avg 145bpm and max 162bpm and Strava gives that a 220 massive relative effort.

Then just back in from a tour today, and the pace was around 340m with some awkward terrain and snow-pack for the first 350m, then the snow-pack gave way to deep powder and I was breaking trail, and once over 2,200m I was finding it hard going and was having to frequently stop but I was not working as hard as the Saturday avg hr 138bpm max 156bpm so maybe was still tired from Saturday and over-imbibing on the red wine last night with friends, and with a hangover I don't need a HRM as my head throbbing tells me when I'm going too hard Laughing

But dogs found it really hard when they went away from the skin track.



Once they were in the track they were flying Laughing



That's seven sorties now, what a SnowVember !
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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!
Don't HRMs interfere with Transceivers? or is that only when using a chest strap?
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
BobinCH wrote:
PowderAdict wrote:
@BobinCH, I have to wait until January for my first earned-turns, but since I’ll be in new boots, on new skis, bindings and skins, my first tour will look pretty much like yours. I’ll either be slope side or going up piste basher first tracks, to commission everything, and have easy options to exit if something isn’t working Very Happy


What did you get???

Boots - Tecnica Zero G Pro
Skis - DPS Powderworks RP100 184cm 1500g each
Bindings - ATK Crest 300g each with 102mm brakes

Not excessively light, but still around 600g per foot lighter than my previously lightest, Atomic Waymaker, Wailer RP112, Plum Guide. Probably closer to 1kg per foot lighter than the Lotus 124 with Radical ST’s.
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SBP wrote:
Don't HRMs interfere with Transceivers? or is that only when using a chest strap?


I have not heard that and a quick Google does not throw up anything too untoward, and I do wear my transceiver in my trousers, well away from the strap.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Weathercam wrote:
SBP wrote:
Don't HRMs interfere with Transceivers? or is that only when using a chest strap?


I have not heard that and a quick Google does not throw up anything too untoward, and I do wear my transceiver in my trousers, well away from the strap.


Should be fine, a rule of thumb is keep electronics away from the transceiver; 20cm in send & 50cm in search

For Barryvox, they recommend a secure trouser pocket for skiers with pace makers, though it means no "vital data" detection

Interestingly, gopros, headlamps and MP3s all come in for a slating
https://beaconreviews.com/interference.php
https://www.mountainskillsacademy.com/preventing-avalanche-transceiver-interference/
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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.
PowderAdict wrote:
BobinCH wrote:
PowderAdict wrote:
@BobinCH, I have to wait until January for my first earned-turns, but since I’ll be in new boots, on new skis, bindings and skins, my first tour will look pretty much like yours. I’ll either be slope side or going up piste basher first tracks, to commission everything, and have easy options to exit if something isn’t working Very Happy


What did you get???

Boots - Tecnica Zero G Pro
Skis - DPS Powderworks RP100 184cm 1500g each
Bindings - ATK Crest 300g each with 102mm brakes

Not excessively light, but still around 600g per foot lighter than my previously lightest, Atomic Waymaker, Wailer RP112, Plum Guide. Probably closer to 1kg per foot lighter than the Lotus 124 with Radical ST’s.


Sweet!
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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
Round 2 in better weather and putting the hammer down. Almost 500m/h...

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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@BobinCH, kudos! Did you end up getting the light weight kit?
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Excellent work that man, pretty good rate for around 1 in 5 or 18% gradient Very Happy
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
@Ozboy, not yet. Only upgrade was yellow duct tape which seemed to make all the difference Very Happy
PdG is over subscribed so we find out if we get a place next weekend - waiting until then to order the new gear. I did manage to get my foot in a Tecnica Zero G Pro 27.5 and it felt pretty good so I think that’s the boot I’d get.

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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@BobinCH, defo the yellow tape made all the difference , good pace that !! , got to wait a week or two for my outing so nice skin stoke
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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?
@Dabber, thanks! I’ve worked out the skis I did it in last time were circa 1500g (Scott Crusair) and bindings were Dynafit FT 12 Radical at 630g. I was fine on that rig so if I get the Xenics at 300g, I reckon I can get skis up to 1800g and should be fine. To be honest I can’t get excited about super light skis. I can’t justify @PowderAdict, Dreamworks 100 RP’s, even though I’m sure I’d love them. Any other recommendations between 1500-1800g? The Kaestle FX96 180 @ 1.85kg get a lot of love here. Or the Stormrider 95 in a 175cm at 1.75KG. Any other recommendations?
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Far be it from me to put anyone of being a gear whore but why not do it with the Crusairs again and take the weight saving of the lighter bindings and boots. Assuming of course theres still life left in the skis.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@betterinblack, dead and buried long ago....
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@BobinCH, the kastle fx are a great choice with a light binding but think you can go a bit lighter and still get the performance , before getting the TX98 I also looked at whitedot ranger 98 ( some good deals on older models atm , not sure on carbonlites though ) DPS cessiar tour 95 and g3 findr 94 , discounted the g3 for reliability issues . a similar ski to the FX is the Salomon QST 99 from last year
as your in Swiss is it worth looking at the movement range of skis , the session 98 looks good , but ive no knowledge on them , on touring weeks in Norway and Iceland , one of the lads was on the vokl bmt 94 , he was a very good skier and he absoluty raved about them up and down , one last suggestion would be the dynastar mythic 97 ( based on the Cham 97 ) which is an amazingly versatile ski for its weight ,

bit like mountain bikes atm there's so much choice and all are very good so happy hunting Toofy Grin
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@Dabber, TX98 looks perfect. Always wanted a pair of Kaestles. Volkl’s, albeit 98’s come 2nd here. Checked out Movements which don’t seem to get much love. I’ve not been wowed by the ones I’ve tried. Thanks for the ideas!

https://www.outdoorgearlab.com/topics/snow-sports/best-backcountry-skis
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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!
as a fellow DPS lover, have a look at

Movement Alp Tracks 100 & 94
Volkl BMT 90
Volkl VTA 88 Lite

and the ultimate:
Moonlight Eagle Carbon Race.

Value option is Blizzard 0G 95 2020 model I think.
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@BobinCH, Have you considered Faction Agents 2.0? Probably considered mid-weight at 1570g but versatile and solid for downhill. Probably quite ubiquitous in Verbier and easy to get hold of a demo from their office.

I have these waiting for me at SpyderJon’s which will be my all mountain rig and for first dabble into touring. Same geometry and specs as Agent but 300g heavier and less flex Can’t wait to try them.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B4-YNxSlcE8/?igshid=1qf2d0p2eivyj
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@BobinCH, I'm a big fan of the Zero G's (bought from No 1 two seasons ago) - the lighter weight uphill is great but they are also stiff enough for the downhill with Shifts on Mantra M5's (from SpyderJon). I deliberately suffer more weight on the uphill for downhill performance, but wouldn't do the PDG on my kit!
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