Basecamp at Snowbasin, Utah a few days ago: Valentines Day came early this year. Lou motioned me over to the Dynafit booth and Tim placed a new pair of ZZero women’s in my arms. Beautifully crafted with a metallic gleam, these are better than any golden charm.
|Myself and Tim Kelley of Dynafit discuss the merits of ZZero. I was more interested in the color than anything, but Tim kept talking about polyurethane and lean locks. Guys.|
Cut lower in the cuff to accommodate a women’s larger calf and a roomy toe area make these boots feel like they are custom made for me. The step-in toe feature really works and allows me to glide and easily click into the Dynafit binding toe piece, eliminating the fiddling I usually do to get snapped in. Finer than any Manolo, I was anxious to wear these beauties. I slipped them on for the apres ski party but just couldn’t wait to try them out on the slopes. After dinner, the moon was rising and I started bugging Lou and Louie about taking a quick night skin up Snowbasin.
It’s been a cold winter and I’ve been struggling to stay warm this season. I got really cold on a 10 degree day skiing the back bowls of Vail while friends never complained of a chill. Since I didn’t have to test all those European pastries, I’m a bit underweight and that makes it harder to stay warm. I’ve cut back on caffeine and experimented with layers and somehow still haven’t found the key for warm feet and hands. I’ve been skinning a lot and then skiing so sweat combined with our colder temps may be the problem. My goal at this OR show, in addition to snagging as many stylish items as possible, is to investigate the science and take advantage of the high tech items available.
Enter the power sock. I know it’s bad to test two new items at once but after having cold feet all day again in my old boots and thin wool socks, I was interested to see what they offer. The Injinji performance toe sock is a base layer, anatomic right and left interface with individual toe sleeves and seamless construction designed to be ultra dry and breathable, knit with X-Static Silver and CoolMax. They claim to wick moisture away from between your toes to keep your feet dry and warm. At the party, I warmed my feet under Lou’s arms while he enjoyed a beer, then I put the socks on. I wore them under my wool socks and stayed warm during the party in the ZZeros. The real test would be to skin, ski and then ride home in my snowboots that had been sitting in the cold car all day. Another reason to coax Lou and Louie out into the moonlight.
|Boot testing. WildSnow.com goes the distance — and Lou had to work off the free brats and second beer he snuck while I wasn’t looking.|
It was around 18 degrees F when we started. During our 45 minute uphill, my hands got very cold, despite wearing my warmest lobster gloves, but my feet didn’t complain. The Zzero’s demo non-thermoform liner was very comfortable (the boot will be retailed with thermo liner, in my opinion even better) and I definitely noticed the stiffer boot which Tim mentioned is made of plastic that stiffens up in the cold. My toes stayed toasty and I didn’t notice the extra bulk of the individual toe mitts. More testing is necessary but this combo passed the initial trial with high marks. (Note, the fit of the demo boot just happened to be large enough for my sock combo, thermo liner molding would be the key to getting this right every time.)
|WildSnow.com, AKA the Dawsons. Night run on the Snowbasin.|