During each of my meetings at Outdoor Retailer, I asked to see the one thing that’s a wow for backcountry ski tourers. Here’s what I found on day one of the show.
Fischer debuts a new ski touring boot, the Travers Carbon. Grilamid shell, heat moldable liner, simple spring loaded top buckle and 80 degrees of cuff rotation! Stated weight of the Travers is 980g. Available fall 2016, MSRP about $1k.
Mammut wins the light airbag prize of the day. Stated weight of the Ultralight 3.0 RAS with airbag system and full cannister is 4 lbs 3 oz. The cartridge and airbag take up 2.2 liters of space so the 20 liter pack has 18 liters of usable space. It’s small but with With today’s high tech clothing I find I carry less bulk so this pack is big enough for day trips or sidecountry tours. And with the Mammut’s removeable airbag system, you can switch to their bigger pack if you need to.
Available fall 2016. MSRP $489.95. Cartridge $189. The pack is made with lightweight yet fairly durable Cordura fabric. If it gets trashed, the pack itself is replaceable for about $150.
We’re big fans of the fine optics of Julbo. Airflux is their new single lens goggle. Designed for mountaineers, it comes with a dark, category 4 tint, same as their expedition sunglasses. A lighter category 3 tint is also available,
Airflux is one of their more affordable goggles. MSRP about $150.
At WildSnow, we prefer thin ski socks and I must admit we’ve had bad luck with Smartwool socks in the past. After numerous days of use, the back of the heel would wear down to an uncomfortable, brillo like material. Now Smartwool says that won’t happen again. They developed an entire new manufacturing process to create a durable. wool based material.
The PHD Outdoor Mountaineering sock is gender specific. Seemless toe, mesh ventilation zone by instep, graduated compression on back of heel, and targeted padding. Wool in the heel area is made with a layer of nylon to improve durability, provide compression for increased bloodflow and the layer goes up a bit higher so you won’t get Achilles heel pinch.
Available spring 2016. Look for them at REI. We look forward to trying them out!