Outdoor Retailer 2017 — Dynafit, Black Diamond, Petzl, Suunto and more!


Post by WildSnow.com blogger | January 11, 2017      

Another year of innovation, new products, and a whole lot of fun at the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market in Salt Lake City, Utah. The WildSnow crew is rolling deep this year. We have seen a number of noteworthy innovations from day 1, specifically from Black Diamond, Petzl, Dynafit, Suunto, and other brands worth mentioning. If you, WildSnow readers, have specific info you’re looking for, leave a comment so we can check on brands and gear of interest throughout the show.

Dynafit ski lineup for 2017-2018 has a much more integrated look.

Dynafit ski lineup for 2017-2018 has a much more integrated look.

In terms of looks and naming, Dynafit heavily reworked their entire line of skis for next year. They are organized into 4 categories: “race” skimo skis (standard skinny skimo sticks), “speed” (stiffer high performance skinnier skis), “tour” skis (softer, more forgiving skis)”, and “free” skis (wider, slightly stiffer performance skis). They’ve also done away wih the often unpronounceable and somewhat arbitrary mountain names (Huascaran?), and are switching to simple names based on ski width (e.g. Tour 96, Tour 88, etc.) Much simpler than their previous line up, which wasn’t organized very well, and was a bit confusing what skis were meant for what type of skiing.

(They’ve also added a fifth category, or subcategory they’re calling “Speedfit.” More on that as well as new Dynafit boots and bindings as we continue our coverage.)

Some of the skis are brand new, and some are simply modified from pre-existing models. As far as I know, all skis are changed at least slightly. For example, last years Chugach is this years Beast 108, the ski is the same shape but the construction is slightly lighter, to save 200 grams.

The new “Free” line looks good, basically expanding on their Chugach ski, which was a excellent ski. The “Speed” touring line is particularly interesting, they are stiff, skinny skis that don’t seem to compromise too much on performance to cut weight (unlike many narrow waist touring skis out there). Sounds perfect for spring steep skiing in the PNW .

Black Diamond – skis, gloves, climbing gear, and technical wear

Black Diamond continues to innovate and offer improvements for their core products for Fall 2017. Standout items on the ski side of things (as we are a ski blog and everything) include a new line of skis called the “Route” series. These are meant to come in as a comparable ski to the Helio series in terms of performance. They will be offered in an 88, 95, and 105 underfoot and a poplar core and fiberglass construction. It appears that with the lack of sacrifice on performance, there will also be a smaller hit to the bank account with MSRP around $690. Win win.

BD’s new Route Series aims to bridge the gap between performance and price.

BD’s new Route Series aims to bridge the gap between performance and price.

BD is also offering a new ski mountaineering ice axe, called the Swift. It is a similar profile as the current Venom axes, but with a redesigned adjustable grip (in fact, many of the BD axes have this grip) and an aluminum head and pick (non-removable).

BD’s new Swift ski mountaineering axe with a newly designed adjustable grip.

BD’s new Swift ski mountaineering axe with a newly designed adjustable grip.

BD’s couloir harness with new ice clipper attachment – sweet!

BD’s couloir harness with new ice clipper attachment – sweet!

A new line of waterproof headlamps, as so eloquently displayed in this waterfall contraption.

A new line of waterproof headlamps, as so eloquently displayed in this waterfall contraption.

Of course, for all you aspiring or current parents – it’s time to get your little one in the vertical world this full body harness.

Of course, for all you aspiring or current parents – it’s time to get your little one in the vertical world this full body harness.

Another addition to BD’s climbing scene are BD Ropes, available in a variety of diameters and single color strands. We’d imagine these are re-branded from one of the established rope companies out there, with a bit of special BD sauce added. Anyone know the score on that?

Petzl – Redesigned Sirocco, Sumtec, and headlamps

The new Sirocco helmet is sure to be a pleaser

The new Sirocco helmet is sure to be a pleaser

Petzl has redesigned their previously groundbreaking Sirocco helmet (thank goodness!). I personally resisted purchasing the original Sirocco because of the bright orange color. Now, the Sirocco is not only visually appealing, but also lower profile! The addition of the plastic insert on the top of the helmet adds about 15 grams, but is balanced out with a lower profile shape and a smoother surface for sliding a hood on and off.

Petzl has a new SumTec option that has a redesigned adjustable grip, and a replaceable (and more aggressive) pick.

Petzl has a new SumTec option that has a redesigned adjustable grip, and a replaceable (and more aggressive) pick.

New for Fall 2017 is Petzl’s version of a lightweight ski mountaineering axe; the Gully. Looks sweet!

New for Fall 2017 is Petzl’s version of a lightweight ski mountaineering axe; the Gully. Looks sweet!

Have a harness that doesn’t have ice-clipper compatible sleeves? Petzl releases the “Caritool Evo”, which can attach to any harness to allow the ease of carrying ice-screws.

Have a harness that doesn’t have ice-clipper compatible sleeves? Petzl releases the “Caritool Evo”, which can attach to any harness to allow the ease of carrying ice-screws.

Petzl redesigned their headlamp lines to improve weight-saving, and offer a rechargeable battery pack.

Petzl redesigned their headlamp lines to improve weight-saving, and offer a rechargeable battery pack.

XtraTuf– redesigned boots for the winter enthusiast

XtraTuf old style boot on the right and their new model, Legacy 2.0 on the left.

XtraTuf old style boot on the right and their new model, Legacy 2.0 on the left.

We all know a friend who is committed to the XtraTuf cult, and well, we’ve been on the verge of conversion for awhile ourselves. XtraTuf is new to Outdoor Retailer, but not to the outdoor footwear scene. I’ve got tons of friends (both Alaskans, and Alaskan wannabe’s) who wear XtraTuf’s religiously for fishing, hiking, loading gear off oar rigs in the Grand Canyon. I’ve never owned a pair myself, but I’ve always been envious of people who have, especially in the right circumstances. XtraTuf is coming out with several new boot lines for the Fall of 2017.

The Legacy 2.0 is a completely redesigned boot with added protection in the ankle, shin, and additional fabric for comfort in the cuff. Along with this the profile of the boot has changed in order to accommodate larger calves and to increase the overall comfort.

In addition to the profile redesign, the sole and grip has been redesigned to increase traction and durability.

In addition to the profile redesign, the sole and grip has been redesigned to increase traction and durability.

Although this is currently available, the XtraTuf Elite boot is my favorite.

Although this is currently available, the XtraTuf Elite boot is my favorite.

Suunto – Spartan Sport Wrist HR and watches full of features

WildSnow hasn’t covered Suunto watches much, but the brand has been producing some quality products in recent years. Spring of 2017 is no different. The big new product coming out is the Suunto Spartan Wrist HR.

The Spartan Wrist HR has a built in, and apparently amazingly accurate, heart rate monitor into this low-profile feature – packed watch (it’s really hard to just call it a watch with all of the features it holds).

The Spartan Wrist HR has a built in, and apparently amazingly accurate, heart rate monitor into this low-profile feature – packed watch (it’s really hard to just call it a watch with all of the features it holds).

The Spartan Ultra Wrist HR has a heart rate sensor on the underside of the watch. These devices are truly amazing with what they can do. We look forward to covering more of them on WildSnow.

The Spartan Ultra Wrist HR has a heart rate sensor on the underside of the watch. These devices are truly amazing with what they can do. We look forward to covering more of them on WildSnow.

The new Suunto Spartan watch has 80 pre-programmed activity modes, GPS capability, and statistics monitoring programs that seem to make it a quality training partner for any activity. We especially like the GPS tracking feature for ski touring that creates a highlight video of your route on a Google Earth overlay (this feature is part of several of Suunto’s models). Suunto watch models that have altimeter and barometers features are ideal ski touring companions (and any mountain adventure) for a number of reasons; such as navigation, weather tracking, and training purposes.

Various designs of the Suunto Spartan Ultra

Various designs of the Suunto Spartan Ultra.

Check back for more from OR Winter Market 2017 as we continue to explore what’s new for 2017 and beyond!


Comments

35 Responses to “Outdoor Retailer 2017 — Dynafit, Black Diamond, Petzl, Suunto and more!”

  1. See January 11th, 2017 9:26 am

    Thanks for the interesting report. Any noticeable trends in ski design/construction like thinner cores, new core materials (increased use of balsa, flax, honeycomb, foam), more prepreg carbon/ less glass, reduced width, different rocker? Are footwear makers offering more sole materials that give better grip on ice?

  2. See January 11th, 2017 9:37 am

    (Some of those Dynafits look like they have a V-werks/Hannibal/Findr core shape.)

  3. Patrick January 11th, 2017 9:53 am

    New Sum-Tec looks interesting. Any idea what the weight of the new version is? Are the replaceable pick / adze the same as those currently used on the Quark / Nomic?

  4. Tom January 11th, 2017 10:11 am

    Is ATK there?

  5. Lou Dawson 2 January 11th, 2017 11:02 am

    Tom, I’ll cover them at ISPO. They don’t have an official booth here, but there might be someone wandering around with a jewelry box of bindings. Lou

  6. See January 11th, 2017 11:03 am

    Come to think of it, that’s the same core shape as on the Denali and Cho Oyu, so I guess that trend is pretty well established.

  7. Lou Dawson 2 January 11th, 2017 11:08 am

    See, just offhand, I get a sense of narrower skis, continued growth of the human powered ski touring segment, and the weight wars might have abated a bit due to just how good plain old affordable fiberglass with a wood core does perform. Everything goes in phases. I think that overall the pursuit of crazy light skis has helped on the whole, but it’s only one factor and the cost is not attractive to the newcomer to the sport.

  8. Leroy McGee January 11th, 2017 11:09 am

    Any more info of the BD line? Interested more in the left side of that photo, what looks to be a “pro” line? The ski in the pic looks to have a similar shape as the DPS Wailer 112.

  9. Lou Dawson 2 January 11th, 2017 11:15 am

    Leroy, you would ask (smile). Yeah, those are limited edition skis that they continue to make so their sponsored skiers have something to ride when they’re filming. Not sure exactly what ski they would match, but Wailer 112 is probably close. Lou

  10. Cody January 11th, 2017 11:16 am

    I wish there was a climbing blog that covered the climbing bit of OR as well as you do for back country skiing.

    On the BD ropes, they are rebranded Beal’s. If I’m remembering correctly…

  11. Lou Dawson 2 January 11th, 2017 11:24 am

    Regarding the BD skis, both the existing line (Helio series) and the new Route series have gotten quite a bit of testing, I’m heard pretty much all good reports, and we liked the Helio versions we’ve skied on ourselves. BD ski ideas combined with the amazing expertise at Blizzard are the ingredients. It’s interesting how the fallback is Austria. It’s also a bit of a chuckle when you think back on the heady days when BD thought they could become another alpine ski company. I admire chutzpah but that never seemed very realistic. What they’re doing now is working. Lou

  12. Kevin January 11th, 2017 11:36 am

    Anything new from arc’teryx or outdoor research? I heard petzl was coming out with new nomics-is that true? Thanks

  13. MIke January 11th, 2017 12:35 pm

    have you had the chance to check out the new Scott S1 line of boots? They look a little bit on the innovative side. At least something different

  14. Terry January 11th, 2017 12:37 pm

    Lou, I’ve heard that BD partnered with Roca in Spain, to make the former’s new ropes.

  15. Coop January 11th, 2017 12:40 pm

    Patrick,
    Petzl picks are interchangeable with the nomics and other axes with removeavle picks.

    Cody,
    BD ropes are rebranded Roca Ropes, they look sweet. I do wish they had a bi-pattern option.

  16. NT January 11th, 2017 12:53 pm

    Cody,
    BJ from splitterchoss.com usually does a climbing focused post about OR, but generally after the fact.

  17. andy January 11th, 2017 3:37 pm

    The Spartan has some real problems vs. the Ambit3 Peak, which can be easily found for half the price, that have been listed elsewhere. First and foremost, you CANNOT customize the data fields in each “screen” of the watch at last check. While you can pick from a bunch of pre-set screens based on sport profiles, you can’t change anything within those screens. So, if you want to see vert gained, time of day and trip mileage on one screen because that’s all you care about, you better hope there’s a screen set to that in one of the profiles or you’re SOL. I love the look of the watch and the color screen, but it’s probably still a pretty terrible value, integrated HR monitor or not.

  18. Colin January 12th, 2017 12:59 am

    Read the same about the Spartan, but all of that seems fixable with a good firmware update, no?

    I looooove my Ambit3 Peak that I grabbed in October for like $240. I use the accurate and low-profile/slim chest HRM that it came with for runs, bike rides, and even day tours. Don’t really see any need for the wrist monitor. Though I am curious if they’ve been able to overcome the well-documented shortcoming of other brands’ wrist monitors in interval workouts (e.g. that it records peak HR, but not the valleys during the slow part of the interval).

  19. Leno January 12th, 2017 4:22 am

    Anything on the TLT? Width/volume? They have gone larger in recent years, does this continue? Also does it still need the crampon adapter? Have you ever reviewed how well crampons work with the new sole shape?

  20. JCoates January 12th, 2017 8:19 am

    I love Petzl but I am beginning to think that their helmet design team is running some kind of secret social experiment on us to see what we’ll put on our heads. Last Sirocco model made you look like a giant orange glans but this year’s model will make you look like a Nazi SS (or maybe a Stormtrooper if you go with white).

    Form follows function EXCEPT with respect to what you put on your head. Rule #1 with helmets is that you have to look cool wearing it.

  21. Lou 2 January 12th, 2017 8:20 am

    JCoats, I agree. Lou

  22. Lou 2 January 12th, 2017 8:22 am

    Leno, I covered the TLT in a previous post, and we’ll be doing a long-term review eventually. I believe the last is slightly relaxed but not by a huge amount.

    https://www.wildsnow.com/21273/dynafit-tlt-7-review-ski-touring/

    Lou

  23. Lisa Dawson January 12th, 2017 11:05 am

    The weight of the Sum’Tec is 480g and all of their tecnical tools and accessories are interchangeable between the SumTec, Quark, Nomic, and Ergo.

  24. Stretchkiwi January 13th, 2017 2:34 am

    Any more info on the Petzl Gully ice axe? Weight, hammer version maybe? Looks like a similar axe beside it, or is that the current Ride?

  25. Tobin January 13th, 2017 11:44 am

    Lou/Lisa – Any other new piolets from BD? I know they announced an updated version of the Venom at Summer OR, wondering if it got cut from production since I haven’t seen any additional updates.

    I also heard rumor of some new skis from Voile – anything of note there?

    Thanks!

  26. Cody January 13th, 2017 1:48 pm

    Tobin over on Mountain Project someone who was in a BD meeting said that there is no new piolets out of BD

  27. Lisa Dawson January 13th, 2017 3:55 pm

    Tobin, the WildSnow crew will backcountry ski on Voile’s new Ultra Vector tomorrow. We have 164cm, 177cm and 185cm lengths. Expect a report next week.

  28. Flavius January 16th, 2017 1:52 am

    Is it true that the Beast binding will be no longer produced? If yes, what would be the reason?

  29. Lou2 January 16th, 2017 7:05 am

    Hi Flavious, yes, Beast is not in 2017-2018 catalog, but is still warehoused and retailed this season. I am not privy to private business information at Dynafit offices (nor could I share it even if I was), so as to “reason” I can’t say for sure. But it’s easy to assume that Beast was poorly understood by consumers and expensive to produce, and while Beast was indeed ground breaking the Radical 2.0 seems to work fine for many skiers, and now we have Marker and Fritschi providing freeride touring rigs that compete. In my opinion the Fritschi Tecton may be very hard to compete with as it gives you release to the side at toe as well as side stability (along with major vertical elasticity) at heel, it and Trab are the only tech type bindings that do that. All others release to the side at the heel and other than Marker have limited vertical heel elasticity-travel.

    Dynafit in my opinion has also had trouble with their binding presentation, in that they end up with too many binding options and thus it gets confusing. Eliminating Beast probably helps with that, but even so, in the 2017-2018 catalog I count fully 15 individual binding flavors.

    This reflects the diversity of the ski touring world as well as the impressive pace of Dynafit binding development, but on the other hand some of that is simply the result of selling nearly identical bindings, for example they’ll provide both Radical ST 2 and ST Rotation, which are essentially the same binding only the Rotation includes the clever system that holds the rotating toe stable while you enter the binding.

    Lou

  30. justin January 16th, 2017 7:50 am

    I imagine there are more OR show posts to come, but I heard there are some new touring boots from Atomic. A burly one, and more interestingly a new light one (replacement for the Backland?). Any info on that?

  31. Lou Dawson 2 January 16th, 2017 9:17 am

    Hi Justin, sure, we’ll be covering various stuff. But remember we are not a 100% gear blog, and this time of year we begin to shift back to trip reports, essays, and that sort of thing. Then, I’ll probably be at ISPO and we’ll do a brief shift back to gear, and so on. Lou

  32. MBR January 17th, 2017 6:18 am

    Re: New for BD
    1-Isn’t there a new tech binding?
    2-And please tell me they aren’t going to offer a line of skis with black tips [eft in the photo]. I hate black/dark colored skis because they are snow magnets.
    Ciao,
    -Barry

  33. Frame January 17th, 2017 9:37 am

    MBR, re point 1. Fritschi in the states is BD/Fritschi

    https://www.wildsnow.com/21378/fritschi-ski-touring-evo-tecton-vipec/

  34. Lou Dawson 2 January 17th, 2017 10:52 am

    MBR, clearly you need scolding for not reading WildSnow.com every day (smile)!

    As for ski colors, it was our fault that white got popular there for a little while — was actually pretty funny to watch and I’ve have felt bad about ski makers jumping though hoops to make their skis white… but white does work. We still like white best and it does pick up less snow in colder climates, in my opinion, but darker skis often pick up less snow in other types of conditions so it’s probably a wash in a global sense. If I didn’t say this, Stian would jump on my case, so there it is (smile).

    Lou

  35. Willis March 23rd, 2017 12:17 pm

    I wondered if the tip of the Helio and Route series is going to be more upturned? I have the Helio 95, and the ski has a tendency to dive while skinning and deflects in variable snow conditions. I am aware of the limitations of the ski because of its lightness but the tip issue needs to be corrected. I have talk with others who have the same issue.

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  Your Comments

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  • Lou Dawson 2: It's just hooked up to an existing system like any other RV or mobile home ...
  • Crazy Horse: Another solution that readily finds the white-out pen on the editor's desk:...
  • Bill B: Hey Lou How does ASC manage the sewage from the tiny houses?...
  • Crazy Horse: I worked on a house in Teton Village three years ago where the construction...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Thanks Crazy, excellent op ed. I'd add that another part of economics has t...
  • Crazy Horse: Lou, like most articles in the liberal press, the one you quote tries to de...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Thom, thanks, just to be clear to our readers, the ski's _bottom steel edge...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Crazy, this 2014 article about Jackson and tiny houses is pretty good, stil...
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  • L: Any word on last width? Volume?...
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  • See: Regarding solar panel efficiency: I recently got an Anker 15 watt solar usb...
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  • Lou Dawson 2: OMR, sure, I enjoy the amazing creative results of drone photography as muc...

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