author
 

Atomic Ski Boot Flex Testing Machine

By Lou Dawson | February 24, 2017  
Atomic boot flex testing machinery. We need a name for this rig.

Atomic boot flex testing machinery. We need a name for this rig. I propose “Atomic BS Detector.”

I recently enjoyed visiting Atomic headquarters in Austria, lots to write about. For now, in my opinion one of the reasons Atomic usually has ski racers on World Cup podiums is they have a highly technical corporate culture. While doing things by “feel” can be valid, one area where I’d like to to see more documented measurement is in the area of boot flex. The industry throws numbers around (130!) like a coach throwing soccer balls at a grade school field practice. My understanding is quite a bit of that is simply done by employees buckling into the boots and essentially sticking a number on what they feel, most often related to other boots in the same brand rather than an industry-wide standard.

Read more backcountry ski touring

author
 

ISPO 2017 — Zerogear Air Insulated Emergency Clothing Layer

By Lou Dawson | February 23, 2017  

When I’ve got an hour I always head to the ISPO New section of the show. I look for one thing there that deserves a blog post of its own. Found it. Zerogear. Just the name makes this core weight weenie want one!

(NOTE: We’re not certain this product is actually in retail, attempts to contact the company have been unsuccessful and their shopping cart appears to be a lash-up, so I’ll publish this post assuming you can purchase the product — though that may not be the case…)

We've seen air insulated clothing before, but I can't remember anything purposed for emergency use.

We’ve seen air insulated clothing before, but I can’t remember anything clearly purposed for emergency use. Launched at this winter’s Outdoor Retailer and ISPO, Xerogear vest weighs 57 grams. It’s designed to go where you go, no matter what.

Read more backcountry ski touring

author
 

ISPO 2017 — Scarpa, Trab and More

By Lou Dawson | February 22, 2017  
Your friendly blogger at Marker Volkle chatting with Stian Hagen.  I wasn't covering skis at ISPO so I won't go into happenings at Volkl, though all their happenings are good happenings.

Your friendly blogger at Marker Volkl chatting with Stian Hagen. He’s always got a take. I wasn’t covering skis at ISPO so I won’t go into happenings at Volkl, though all their happenings are good happenings (including the beer bar at their booth which is apparently open 12 hours a day). I found it much more interesting hearing about Stian’s impressive attempt to ski the whole Jotunheimen traverse in one push (frozen hydration system), his opinions about airbag packs (heavy and perhaps over rated in terms of how my safety they offer), and the fact that yes Marker had to remove the boot locator tabs from the toe unit of the Kingpin.

Read more backcountry ski touring

OLDER POSTS »

  Your Comments

  • See: Looks like it could be a nice, cheap, light bit of emergency gear, but (for...
  • See: The coolest aspect of this device, in my opinion, is the graph. It looks li...
  • Lee Lau: That is so incredibly cool!...
  • Lou Dawson 2: More from Matt at Atomic: "The Nm rating of 130 is actually just a coinc...
  • Jack: Lou, re: foot/leg Find someone who repairs/rebuilds prosthetics, or find...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Thanks Tom, I have fun learning about the tech stuff but definitely don't h...
  • Tom Gos: Lou, with regard to your torque math you are correct about the 50cm lever a...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Concern is that air convection within the cells will make the jacket work p...
  • Carl: I have found how the boot is buckled has a huge flex impact as well. Boots...
  • Carl: looks like a great thing to have in the pack. Site looks like it works, di...
  • Jack: hmmm. I wonder how hard it would be to instrument the boot liner to measu...
  • Omekim: Ummm.... The machine looks to be at room temperature. They should probably ...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Tom, it would be easy to do something crude using a torque wrench on an art...
  • Lou Dawson 2: From what I know, unlikely all the boot flex ratings in the industry are an...
  • Tom Gos: Lou, I seem to remember that back in the '80s Ski Magazine (the American on...
  • Bill H: Maybe SkiAlper can rent some time on the machine for next year's issue :)...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Hi Greg, I did have a graphic at one time but I don't recall it having reso...
  • Greg: I remember there being an image of the D scale at some point – with resort ...
  • Hans D.: Great advice. I hadn't thought about the "quickstep" notch, but now that y...
  • Dean Gagnon: Hello, Does anyone know where to get spare hinges for the tounge of the ...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Billy Goat, IMHO the Amer (Salomon) binding is not a done deal, it will be ...
  • Rod Georgiu: Good idea...
  • zak: Any idea on if/when Scarpa will update the F1 to include the tech from the ...
  • Lou Dawson 2: I'll say it. Many Dynafit ski models are built to be lightweight and not pa...
  • Tomas: Destruction topsheet - only 2 days during normal telemark skiing. I'm wait...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Glad you liked the photos, was a fun day with you guys. Main thing, just gi...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Agree, someone needs to forget about TUV and all that sort of thing and jus...
  • szaraz levente: I do not need a TUV certificate brake, I only hate the wire wich connect me...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Hans, the best thing to do is put your boot-binding combo on a release test...
  • Hans D.: Regarding touring boots with swappable soles for alpine use: I have Lupo TI...

  Recent Posts


Welcome to Louis (Lou) Dawson's backcountry skiing information & opinion website. Lou's passion for the past 50 years has been alpinism, climbing, mountaineering and skiing -- along with all manner of outdoor recreation. He has authored numerous books and articles about ski touring and is well known as the first person to ski down all 54 of Colorado's 14,000-foot peaks, otherwise known as the Fourteeners! Books and free ski touring news and information here.

All material on this website is copyrighted, the name WildSnow is trademarked, permission required for reproduction (electronic or otherwise) and display on other websites. PLEASE SEE OUR COPYRIGHT and TRADEMARK INFORMATION.

Backcountry skiing is dangerous. You may be killed or severely injured if you do any form of ski mountaineering, skimo randonnee and randonnée skiing. The information and news on this website is intended only as general information. While the authors and editors of the information on this website make every effort to present useful information about ski mountaineering, due to human error the information, text and images contained within this website may be inaccurate, false, or out-of-date. By using, reading or viewing the information provided on this website, you agree to absolve the owners of Wild Snow as well as content contributors of any liability for injuries or losses incurred while using such information. Furthermore, you agree to use any of this website's information, maps, photos, or binding mounting instructions templates at your own risk, and waive Wild Snow owners and contributors of liability for use of said items for ski touring or any other use.

Switch To Mobile Version