Equipment upgrade from skinny skis

This is the World Famous TelemarkTalk / TelemarkTips Forum, by far the most dynamic telemark and backcountry skiing discussion board on the world wide web. We have fun here, come on in and be a part of it.
User avatar
Mtlsam
Posts: 22
Joined: Sat Jan 30, 2021 8:38 pm
Location: Montréal
Ski style: Trail touring
Favorite Skis: Fischer E99

Equipment upgrade from skinny skis

Post by Mtlsam » Mon Feb 22, 2021 11:54 am

Hi folks,
Another first time poster here seeking some equipment recommendations. I have been xc skiing on and off for the last decade with a pair of wax-able Rossignol "touring 1.0" skis with sns Profile bindings and some rather soft low ankle height fisher lace up boots. The ski's measurements are Tip 53, Mid 45, Tail 50 & 200cm length.

I am 6'3" and my current fighting weight is 193lbs. I've always had good grip with these skis (probably because I am too heavy for them) but have a history of terror and falls on anything but the most gradual downhill. My snow plow is virtually ineffective on any but the softest snow days. Despite this I have a lot of fun both in groomed tracks and "breaking trail" in parks and on mellow wooded trails.

I have recently discovered a rather extensive un-groomed trail network and want to further explore it. I have had mostly successful ascents but coming back down the relatively narrow and twisting trails isn't going so well. I have also found that on the steep climbs when I herringbone, my skis are sometimes too long for the width of the trail (is this a common thing?).

All this leads to my question, what would be a good trail ski & boot combo for a guy who cares most about downhill control while still being able to enjoy the kick and glide of the ascent and flats. I'm looking at this as a one time investment (have abused my skis for a long time and plan to do the same), so budget isn't a prime factor. Finally because I crash so often I really enjoy the convenience of the "automatic" aspect of my current bindings to either be able to walk down or get out of my tangled skis after having face planted 😅. Are NNN-BC automatic bindings that much less stable than the manual variety?

Many thanks!
Sam from Montreal
CC6DCD6C-5D95-4337-BCE6-9A24FA2C85A7.jpeg
083508D7-A82D-428A-9CC1-38320B74D1EB.jpeg
9520B3DD-8822-4739-8200-4C90A2EF25F6.jpeg

User avatar
lowangle al
Posts: 1691
Joined: Sat Jan 11, 2014 4:36 pm

Re: Equipment upgrade from skinny skis

Post by lowangle al » Mon Feb 22, 2021 1:55 pm

For safety sake go with a T4 or excursion plastic boot and a wider ski. You should be able to safely snowplow down just about anything. And like you mentioned sometimes you still might have to walk down, especially on those thin trails you described.





User avatar
bgregoire
Posts: 1467
Joined: Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:31 am
Ski style: Nordic backcountry touring with lots of turns
Favorite Skis: Fisher E99 & Boundless (98), Åsnes Ingstad, K2 Wayback 88
Favorite boots: Crispi Sydpolen, Alico Teletour & Alfa Polar

Re: Equipment upgrade from skinny skis

Post by bgregoire » Mon Feb 22, 2021 2:12 pm

Please give us more details as to where these trails are. I am from Québec so know the terrain quite well.

Unlike Al, I would argue that if your main objective is to have greater control on the down BUT your outings are mostly of the cross-country sort, in hilly trails, I think you might be better off with a softer shoe, not plastic, and a more traditional nordic backcountry ski.

Skiing the BC with your actual kit is a no-go so even a more BC oriented XC like like a Fischer Traverse 78 or Madhsus M62, Asnes Nansen or Ingstad would make a world of difference and still remain a cross country setup (enjoyable on the flats). I would recommend a Rottefella Super Telemark binding and Alpina Alaska boot to pair with any of those.

Brace yourself for varied opinions here!
I live for the Telemark arc....The feeeeeeel.....I ski miles to get to a place where there is guaranteed snow to do the deal....TM





User avatar
Mtlsam
Posts: 22
Joined: Sat Jan 30, 2021 8:38 pm
Location: Montréal
Ski style: Trail touring
Favorite Skis: Fischer E99

Re: Equipment upgrade from skinny skis

Post by Mtlsam » Mon Feb 22, 2021 2:30 pm

Thanks to both of you for weighing in! Everything is sold out these days anyway, so I've got time to really digest all this info.

The trails are in St-Donat, I've been exploring the area around
Le Grand R.

http://www.saint-donat.ca/files/Carte_H ... nat(1).pdf





User avatar
lowangle al
Posts: 1691
Joined: Sat Jan 11, 2014 4:36 pm

Re: Equipment upgrade from skinny skis

Post by lowangle al » Mon Feb 22, 2021 2:49 pm

No problem Mtisan, The T4s are at the other end of the spectrum compared to your boots, but IME they are the safest option with a shorter wider ski.





User avatar
Musk Ox
Posts: 151
Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2019 8:53 am
Location: North
Ski style: Bad
Favorite Skis: I am a circumpolar mammal
Favorite boots: Hooves
Occupation: Eating lichen, walking about

Re: Equipment upgrade from skinny skis

Post by Musk Ox » Mon Feb 22, 2021 2:56 pm

Hi Sam!
Finally because I crash so often I really enjoy the convenience of the "automatic" aspect of my current bindings to either be able to walk down or get out of my tangled skis after having face planted 😅. Are NNN-BC automatic bindings that much less stable than the manual variety?
Like you, I am crash-curious. If this really is a factor in your process, I recommend the manual bindings because they’re easier to undo when there’s nothing to brace the ski against. If you’re using your hands alone to get out of automatic bindings, you need to use two.

I think NNN BC and leather boots will be fine and you might as well go for the Magnum bindings, too, theoretically a bit more stable.





User avatar
lowangle al
Posts: 1691
Joined: Sat Jan 11, 2014 4:36 pm

Re: Equipment upgrade from skinny skis

Post by lowangle al » Mon Feb 22, 2021 3:47 pm

Musk Ox wrote:
Mon Feb 22, 2021 2:56 pm
Hi Sam!
Finally because I crash so often I really enjoy the convenience of the "automatic" aspect of my current bindings to either be able to walk down or get out of my tangled skis after having face planted 😅. Are NNN-BC automatic bindings that much less stable than the manual variety?
Like you, I am crash-curious. If this really is a factor in your process, I recommend the manual bindings because they’re easier to undo when there’s nothing to brace the ski against. If you’re using your hands alone to get out of automatic bindings, you need to use two.

I think NNN BC and leather boots will be fine and you might as well go for the Magnum bindings, too, theoretically a bit more stable.
Musky is it the NNN BC with leather boots the gear you've been crash -curious on? ;) Sam, you might end up somewhere in the middle gear wise, it's a matter of goals and priorities.





User avatar
Musk Ox
Posts: 151
Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2019 8:53 am
Location: North
Ski style: Bad
Favorite Skis: I am a circumpolar mammal
Favorite boots: Hooves
Occupation: Eating lichen, walking about

Re: Equipment upgrade from skinny skis

Post by Musk Ox » Mon Feb 22, 2021 4:13 pm

Oh, Al… crashing is the only thing I feel genuinely qualified to talk about in this company, don’t take this away from me too…





User avatar
Eärendil
Posts: 52
Joined: Sat Dec 19, 2020 11:52 am
Location: Sweden
Ski style: Ski touring
Favorite Skis: Fischer E99
Favorite boots: Alpina Alaska

Re: Equipment upgrade from skinny skis

Post by Eärendil » Mon Feb 22, 2021 4:18 pm

Mtlsam wrote:
Mon Feb 22, 2021 11:54 am
Hi folks,
Another first time poster here seeking some equipment recommendations. I have been xc skiing on and off for the last decade with a pair of wax-able Rossignol "touring 1.0" skis with sns Profile bindings and some rather soft low ankle height fisher lace up boots. The ski's measurements are Tip 53, Mid 45, Tail 50 & 200cm length.

I am 6'3" and my current fighting weight is 193lbs. I've always had good grip with these skis (probably because I am too heavy for them) but have a history of terror and falls on anything but the most gradual downhill. My snow plow is virtually ineffective on any but the softest snow days. Despite this I have a lot of fun both in groomed tracks and "breaking trail" in parks and on mellow wooded trails.

I have recently discovered a rather extensive un-groomed trail network and want to further explore it. I have had mostly successful ascents but coming back down the relatively narrow and twisting trails isn't going so well. I have also found that on the steep climbs when I herringbone, my skis are sometimes too long for the width of the trail (is this a common thing?).

All this leads to my question, what would be a good trail ski & boot combo for a guy who cares most about downhill control while still being able to enjoy the kick and glide of the ascent and flats. I'm looking at this as a one time investment (have abused my skis for a long time and plan to do the same), so budget isn't a prime factor. Finally because I crash so often I really enjoy the convenience of the "automatic" aspect of my current bindings to either be able to walk down or get out of my tangled skis after having face planted 😅. Are NNN-BC automatic bindings that much less stable than the manual variety?

Many thanks!
Sam from Montreal
From what you describe, I think that getting a bit wider steel edged ski would be a great step in controlling descents. An important question is if you want to use this ski also in groomed trails?

//Rickard//





User avatar
lowangle al
Posts: 1691
Joined: Sat Jan 11, 2014 4:36 pm

Re: Equipment upgrade from skinny skis

Post by lowangle al » Mon Feb 22, 2021 4:45 pm

Musk Ox wrote:
Mon Feb 22, 2021 4:13 pm
Oh, Al… crashing is the only thing I feel genuinely qualified to talk about in this company, don’t take this away from me too…
Crashing correctly is one of the first things to learn. Wear it as a badge of honor.(hopefully not red) If you do it enough you eventually become a master of the "great save." Have you had any yet?

I haven't crashed with plastic boots in more then a few years, but every time out with leather I have a close call. But then I'm not trying not to fall, I like to challenge myself on the down.





Post Reply