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yet another AT setup Q's

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I have been reading about the different setups people have and think I have narrowed my choices down. I am some what an advanced skier. This winter I plan on doing Leuthold, maybe reed headwall (if not too crazy and the 50 deg bulge), sandy headwall and Wyeast (yes all on hood). For the skiis I am looking at K2 shuksan, Volkl Norber Jones, and Atomic tm:ex. Why have I not heard that much abou the K2's? What about twin tips for the BC? How well to skins attach to the twin tips? Now for the bindings. The Dynafit are the lightest, but will they stand up to what I have planned? Also would one type of ski work better than the other? Has anybody tried out the silveretta pure bindings? As for boots I am going to wait and try on to see what fit best. I am trying to find the lightest setup for aggressive skiing.

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I ski on Shuksans and Dynafits and have had great luck with both. Shuksans are pretty light but still perfom well. My only complaint is a that after a couple of seasons they seem to be getting a little beat. I did however get a lot out of them with even a handful of days of inbound skiing. I'd be interested in hearing about the Volkls though, always thought they make the best DH skis. Never had a problem with the Dynafits durability and have used them on some pretty hard (icy) and steep stuff.

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I am trying to find the lightest setup for aggressive skiing.

If your looking for steep ski mountaineering most any AT setup will be burly enough. If by agressive you mean hucking, high speed, fat skis, AT gear won't cut it.

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I also have the Shuksan with the Dynafits and really like the light weight. I use the set-up for inbounds, as well. I am a volunteer patroller in Oregon and have used the setup for my regular gear. It has held up very well and although I don't do any big drops, I do ski lots of moguls/steeps/trees and have been pleased with the robustness of the Dynafits. The Shuksans are responsive without being squirrely and have done well in pow, mank, and on the hardpack. I also have Dynafit boots (TLT700 w/thermofit) and they ski well, are comforatble, and have been good climbing on the volcano slogs. My only issue with the Dynafits is the ease of getting into them could be better, but I am still faster than my tele friends. grin.gif

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For the skiis I am looking at K2 shuksan, Volkl Norber Jones, and Atomic tm:ex. Why have I not heard that much abou the K2's? What about twin tips for the BC? How well to skins attach to the twin tips?

you may not hear much about k2's but they are out there in full force in the bc - mostly shuksans and launchers, but you'll definitely see some pistols, amongst others. i ski the public enemies in my tele setup. those are twins. i also ski not quite as full-on twins in my AT setup. no problems with my g3 skins on the latter. i do have issues with my bd skins on the public enemies though. the pe's are park skis and the edges of those skis are the same thickness as the rest of the ski (unlike most skis). the fat edges are just a tad too fat for the bd skin clips so they don't fit correctly and sometimes the tail clips slip off. not a big deal, though, and if i had adjustable length skins i think it would be even less of an issue. i know people with pocket rockets that do something with duct tape, but i've never seen that in action. i've skied the joos in pow and on soft groomed (and was duly impressed) but i have never skied them in hard crud or ice. i would think the shuksan and the tm:ex would handle those conditions better, but that's just a guess based on what i think i know about those skis.

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I ski on the TM:X's and have skied the Shuksan before. The wood core of the K2 skis make it a more "lively" ski; theres more spring as the ski releases out of the turn. The Atomics have a densolite core which allows them to make them hella stiff torsionally, and gives them a damper ride. They're both great skis...it's just a matter of what kind of ride you prefer.

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Atomic tm:ex

The TM:EXs completey rock for aggressive skiing, especially in high density snow like we get here. Get a pair, you'll not regret it.

 

Now for the bindings. The Dynafit are the lightest, but will they stand up to what I have planned?

Yes they will stand up fine. Many do very technical descents on Dynafits. When you're in you-fall-you-die terrain some pull up the toe lock which significantly increases the DIN.

 

See Lou Dawson's excellent FAQ:

http://www.wildsnow.com/articles/dynafit_faq/comfort_faq.html

 

Also would one type of ski work better than the other?

Yes the TM:EX (aka M:EX, R:EX, 10:EX).

 

As for boots I am going to wait and try on to see what fit best. I am trying to find the lightest setup for aggressive skiing.

Atomic TM:EXs + Dynafits + Garmont MegaRides would be my ideal one-quiver setup for steep, aggressive backcountry skiing in the Cascades.

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I ski on the TM:X's and have skied the Shuksan before. The wood core of the K2 skis make it a more "lively" ski; theres more spring as the ski releases out of the turn. The Atomics have a densolite core which allows them to make them hella stiff torsionally, and gives them a damper ride. They're both great skis...it's just a matter of what kind of ride you prefer.

from my [limited] experience i would agree. that's why i love k2's. i haven't had enough experience with atomics to form much of an opinion but here's one anyway - the ones i've been on were not as lively as k2's but they still felt more responsive to me than rossi's. i wouldn't count the volkl's entirely out, though. volkl makes some amazing skis! you might peruse some other sites to see if you can get more feedback on the joos.

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The k2s I've been on all seem to lack the torsional rigidity of Atomics, which is a bad thing for steep or crud skiing. That said I doubt you can really go wrong with either ski. Did K2 update the Shuksan at all this year?

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another twin offering for the BC this year would be the volkl karma's (G4 with twin tips and more girth)... and i'll be mounting up a pair of stiff bro models with Fritschi's this year for touring and volcano schralping

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Still plenty of pairs of Volkl Horbert Joos at GARTS at $199. Sizes 163cm and 170cm in Auburn SuperMall the other day. I had a size 177cm tansferred to SEA area after convincing someone to look up the SKU.

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The Norbert's are awesome. I ski them with dynafit bindings. They are supremely light, saving you pounds on the ascent. This weight savings gives you more energy to have fun and stay safe on the descent. I think some backcountry skiers who haul 8lb alpine skis to "handle extreme terrain" would be amazed how much different your legs feel after a long ascent on a light setup. I used to use Rosi Bandit XX skis with Fritchi's and I am amazed how much more terrain I can cover with less weight on my feet.

 

I went through the same list of skis when searching and bought the Norbert's. I find they offer an excellent weight/ski performance balance. They are less damp and more flexible than the Bandit XX setup I had before. Interestingly they have an almost identical sidecut - my skins are interchangable. The ski performance difference is noticeable, but not enough to make me feel unsafe. I have used this setup last year on some of the challenging inbounds runs at Jackson Hole with good results.

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hey clivus, have you skied the norbert joos in much hard crud or icy conditions? just curious what you thought of the performance in those arenas ...

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I skied the Volkl NJ's this last spring on several volcano trips. They handled ice and crud very well. Even though they're really light, they have enough torsional rigidity to handle tough condition.

 

Anyone who comes across NJ's at GArt for $199 should snag them and run. cool.gif

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thanks, russ! i'd only skied them on a huge pow day, and while i was impressed with their performance there, i really wanted to hear about their performance on the not-so-fluffy stuff. i'm having the auburn gart sports ship a pair closer to home ... WOOHOO!

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well, since no else has commented I'll throw out my limited experience. I demo'd the original 185cm Shuksan and wasn't impressed - they felt like average GS style boards (though I have at least one buddy who loves them). K2 must have also felt they were wanting since they changed the dimensions from 107/75/98 to 114/78/105 (both have 2 layers of titanium alloy + wood). They should be quicker turning now due to more side cut. I ended getting BD Mira's (112/79/102), which I really like for my main winter boards.

 

I see the NJ as a different niche ski than the Shuksan: NJ -lighter, quicker turning, torsional stiffness to handle ice, less float in deep snow; Shuksan - a little heavier, better float, probably more stable at speed - a nice all-round backcountry ski.

 

Obviously limited value comments since I haven't skied the newer version of the Shuksan, but since my opinion didn't cost you anything, you can safely ignore it. wink.gif

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I so wish I could snag a pair og the NJs at Gart's but they say they're down to one pair of 170 cm and I want 177 (though with a height of 181 cm myself 170 cm would probably work; it would be a big step down from my 188 cm G4s though).

 

drC

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