LilCliffy's Nordic Backcountry Touring Waxing

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bgregoire
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Location: Rimouski, Québec
Ski style: Nordic backcountry touring with lots of turns
Favorite Skis: Fisher E99, Åsnes Ingstad & Cecilie, K2 Wayback 88
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Re: LilCliffy's Nordic Backcountry Touring Waxing

Post by bgregoire » Tue Jan 29, 2019 6:24 pm

Thanks for yout thoughtful answers, as always!
lilcliffy wrote:When the snow is cold enough that Polar works as a kick wax, I iron and then SCRAPE and polish. I am also VERY conservative with any extra kick wax underfoot. This approach seems to be working very well.
I did not get that bit: iron, then scrape, then polish? Why scrape? Not cork? What do you polish if you scrape (plastic, metal?) the wax off?
lilcliffy wrote: Certainly- I think that the snow can be so cold that Polar on the entire base is too much grip for pure XC skiing...
What are people using for wax on Polar ski expeditions?
What do you mean by a polar expedition? Strictly North and South Pole?

If we are talking about poles, by far, most expeditions are done using pulks. I don't think its really feasible to ski without skins hauling heavy pulks, so no wax in those scenarios.

If you are curious about what is going on in northern scandinavia,

From my experience, by far most skiers are sleeping indoors at night (hut to hut), so waxers carry a choice selection of waxes and skins as back up (or half skins full-time). They would not have to worry about cleaning their skis up and starting from scratch in the morning. By the way, white gas (Naphta) is a great wax solvent when you are on the go.

Keep in mind its not usually that cold up in northern scandinavia when most skiers are doing there thing.

However, I'm curious as to what waxing technique (and waxes) light no-skin winter ski campers use.
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

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bgregoire
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Joined: Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:31 am
Location: Rimouski, Québec
Ski style: Nordic backcountry touring with lots of turns
Favorite Skis: Fisher E99, Åsnes Ingstad & Cecilie, K2 Wayback 88
Favorite boots: Crispi Sydpolen, Alico Teletour, Arkos Greenland & Alfa Polar
Website: http://living-laponia.tumblr.com

Re: LilCliffy's Nordic Backcountry Touring Waxing

Post by bgregoire » Tue Jan 29, 2019 7:13 pm

lilcliffy wrote: When the snow is so cold that the Polar does work as a kick wax- I iron, scrape and brush/polish like I would a glide wax. This seems to make a significant difference in terms of glide on very cold snow. Does it glide as well as a very hard cold glide wax? No- but it grips and glides better than just Polar in the kick zone....
Wo. So for cold conditions, you are ironing in the polar wax (ok) but then letting it cool and scraping it off with the standard plexiglass scaper? And then you finish the job with a brush, what brush? With hard glide wax, I use the bronze/nylon combi brush and rarely finish off with the hard nylon brush. Is that what you are using??? Wouldn't they get all gummy? And what if I want to prep a track ski using hard wax using those same expensive brushes? :shock:
lilcliffy wrote: What I was wondering about "Polar expeditions" is whether there is experience in other places, with grip waxing for backcountry touring on VERY cold snow...
Brrrr!
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

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lilcliffy
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Location: Stanley, New Brunswick, Canada
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Favorite Skis: Asnes Ingstad BC; Asnes Gamme 54 BC; Asnes Storetind Carbon
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Occupation: Forestry Professional
Instructor at Maritime College of Forest Technology
Husband, father, farmer and logger

Re: LilCliffy's Nordic Backcountry Touring Waxing

Post by lilcliffy » Wed Jan 30, 2019 1:31 pm

Yes- for very cold snow I am prepping like I would with a glide wax- scraping and brushing. I have a separate brush for glide wax. I am doing this in order to avoid glide wax on my touring skis.

When the snow is not as cold I am simply melting and corking.
So- when the snow temp drops to a temp that Polar works effectively as a kick wax- I re-melt, scrape and brush/polish base. This- at least in my context- seems to be resolving the undesirable glide resistance of the Polar-base on VERY cold snow.
Cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry.
Unashamed to be a "cross-country type" and love skiing down-hill.

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HBS
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Re: LilCliffy's Nordic Backcountry Touring Waxing

Post by HBS » Mon Feb 11, 2019 3:11 pm

Awesome thread! Only thing you haven't covered is sticky fresh snow. We get a lot of it in the spring where it snows and the next day is right around freezing.

So here is HBS's super secret kick wax tip for fresh sticky snow: Carry a little piece of high-flouro glidewax in your waxing kit. When you get that day where fresh snow sticks to EVERYTHING (blue wax, red wax and skins) - crayon it onto your kick wax. Can also be crayoned onto skins if you've already put them on.

Sounds crazy, but adding a little flouro to your kick wax works wonders. I have salvaged horrible days with this trick. I imagine buying the $$$ swix "race" kick wax is similar but one little bar of high flouro has been in my kit three seasons now.

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lilcliffy
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Location: Stanley, New Brunswick, Canada
Ski style: Nordic backcountry touring
Favorite Skis: Asnes Ingstad BC; Asnes Gamme 54 BC; Asnes Storetind Carbon
Favorite boots: Alpina Alaska; Scarpa T4
Occupation: Forestry Professional
Instructor at Maritime College of Forest Technology
Husband, father, farmer and logger

Re: LilCliffy's Nordic Backcountry Touring Waxing

Post by lilcliffy » Wed Feb 13, 2019 7:00 am

Very cool HBS. Thank you for the tip!
Cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry.
Unashamed to be a "cross-country type" and love skiing down-hill.

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Nitram Tocrut
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Re: LilCliffy's Nordic Backcountry Touring Waxing

Post by Nitram Tocrut » Tue Feb 19, 2019 9:15 am

Wow!

I used your waxing tips for my new Ingstad and they were literally flying. Although I can't really compare because it was my first outing with them but they were gliding so well. It was about -15 so I used green wax for grip and it worked perfectly.

I had never ironed wax before and so I don't have an iron dedicated to this task. Maybe you know the trick but my wife suggested me to use tin foil to transfer the heat from the iron without actually touching it. Worked great!

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lilcliffy
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Posts: 2190
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2015 7:20 pm
Location: Stanley, New Brunswick, Canada
Ski style: Nordic backcountry touring
Favorite Skis: Asnes Ingstad BC; Asnes Gamme 54 BC; Asnes Storetind Carbon
Favorite boots: Alpina Alaska; Scarpa T4
Occupation: Forestry Professional
Instructor at Maritime College of Forest Technology
Husband, father, farmer and logger

Re: LilCliffy's Nordic Backcountry Touring Waxing

Post by lilcliffy » Tue Feb 19, 2019 10:11 am

Wonderful Nitram!
Great to hear you enjoying your Ingstad with Nordic wax! Wicked.
Cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry.
Unashamed to be a "cross-country type" and love skiing down-hill.

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