WildSnow Ultimate Ski Touring Binding Quiver — 2018

Post by WildSnow.com blogger | October 13, 2017      
MTN binding is quite similar to Atomic Backland we covered last year.

Salomon MTN binding (same as Atomic Backland) could probably be called the “WildSnow Binding of the Year.” But not always. Check out our other picks below.

Ultimate binding quiver. We’ve got most of the bindings in play that we cover below, all were tested at one time or another. If I could wave a magic ski pole, I’d have every one of our WildSnow test crew enjoy this entire selection.

(Note, I couldn’t help but come up with options that overlap our arbitrary categories — inevitable, since tech bindings are in a mature state of design. In reality, with the exception of extremes at either end of the gamut, just about any binding works for any type of ski touring. When you think about it, that’s amazing and a credit to the design engineers who’ve sweated over this product category for thirty years.)

The uber-light solution (our Category 1) is a dilemma for us. Reason being, we believe _all_ bindings in a functional real-life quiver should have at least somewhat adjustable retention-release in both vertical (up at the heel) and lateral (side) modes. As well as ideally yielding somewhat “standard” heel lift options (flat; medium; high), necessary for much of North American ski touring. A number of contenders are thus disqualified as they lack adjustable release or only go to medium height. That’s not saying we’re totally against riding such bindings…they work for some folks, but using them should be an informed personal choice — something we can’t recommend in an overview post such as this.

Giovanni Indulti showing yours truly his Italian jewelery offerings.

The author at ISPO Europe, ATK owner Giovanni Indulti showing his solid binding offerings.

Picking something exceptionally light but retention-adjustable leaves several choices. I find the most compelling to be the ATK RT and HT — 175,165 grams of yummy levitation. Bonus, RT includes an “uphill toe tension adjustment” we find useful for tuning the binding to allow touring without locking. Sadly, ATK is only broadly available in Europe, with a few North American options re-branded by Hagan.

The heel lifters have a number of height options, heel flat on ski but of course.

ATK Raider 12 2.0, also badged as Hagan Core. The heel lifters provide full 5 height options, high lift pictured here, heel flat on ski is obtained by rotating heel unit 180 degrees so the spring prongs are facing to the rear. With the heel in the rotated position you have an extra tall high-lift.

Thus, in the ATK brand my pick for North American ultra-light has to be the Raider 12, available as Hagan Core. Our review here. I’d prefer this to be brake-less, but it still fits into our “lighter” category at 372 grams per binding. Note the brakes are easily removable, at about 50 grams. Run without brake at 322 grams.

Upon writing the above, I was still not entirely happy with my picks. So I kept meditating.

At the fringes of my consciousness, a gentle whisper persisted: AtomicSalomonAtomicSalomon… Yep, the Salomon MTN (Atomic Backland) binding can be run without brake at 296 grams per binding — and dropping farther down to a svelte 236 grams in the version without boot length adjustment. See our MTN-Backland FAQ here. With caveats noted in our next category. I’d leave it there, but MTN-Backland has that annoyingly limited choices of lateral release settings, due to swap springs. Back to meditation.

Plum Guide: Release range: DIN 5.5 to 12, combination of steel, aluminum, and polyvinyl, 30mm adjustment = 4 to 5 boot sizes. Mounting pattern is 100% identical to Dynafit Speed and Vertical series. Wildsnow.com verfied 340 grams.

Plum Guide

Plum got studied like I was evaluating the fine print for guided adventure travel in a war zone. Numerous models and configurations, shopping overload. The Plum Guide XS and M models come in at 345 grams catalog weight per binding (possibly a few grams below that, we weighed at 340 here in our studio). This is now a time tested grabber, which we’ve tested extensively. Current iterations are known to be reliable. Yeah, this is an overlap choice that fits several categories — especially if you bolt on the optional brake. But worth mentioning here, and perhaps even the winner in our “uber-light but still adjustable” category.

Shop for Plum bindings.

Our next category (#2) is the “standard” touring binding, with optional brake. Hands down no-brainer in that regard is the Salomon MTN (also Atomic Backland, we’ll call this the MTN-Backland for the sake of convenience). This thing is no joke. We’ve extensively tested, modded and otherwise abused. Available count of three swap U-springs unfortunately tunes vertical release in wide increments (we’d like to see at least one more choice of springs) — but at least you can set the release somewhere near reasonable, and perfect if you’re lucky, for your size and skiing style.

Atomic Backland Binding and U-spring.

Atomic Backland Binding with U-spring installed, as well as an example U-spring to left.

This is where I mention the pesky problem of binding heel “auto rotation.” Meaning that situation where you’re uphilling with gusto, enjoying your heel lifters, and next thing you know you’re limping along with one heel lower than the other. Or worse, a boot heel drops down into a rotated binding and snaps into alpine mode. Groan x 2. Nearly all tech bindings can have problems with this, some worse than others. An amazing feature of the MTN-Backland is the heel lifter tower doesn’t rotate so auto rotation is impossible. Check that annoyance off your list.

The MTN-Backland divorced brake is retro genius. When it’s up, it is up. When it’s down, it is down. Easily removed, though to do so you have to de-mount the binding heel and install a different heel baseplate (MTN-Backland also available without brake, as well as a superlight version without boot length adjustment). Our only severe critique is we, sigh, get tired of these same products under different badges. Gives me sore wrists from the extra keyboarding.

More of our MTN-Backland content.

Shop for Salomon-Atomic MTN-Backland.

In view of the above, you’re probably wondering why I’d rule out the U-spring bindings in our uber-light category, and allow them in our “standard” category? I’ll admit that’s a bit lopsided. Sorry. To make up for it how about a couple of “standard” choices we have here on our wall?

Choice 2 in our “standard” bindings would be the G3 ION LT. That’s the one without brake, that’s otherwise an ION without the boot toe bumper intended to facilitate clipping in (not essential). Our favorite thing about ION? Due to the toe unit geometry and spring rate you can often tour this binding without locking the toe. That’s useful in avalanche terrain, or during mellow uphills when the fiddly process of locking binding toes is gratefully avoided. (Note: Ion is sold in two versions, max release value 10 or 12). If you don’t need to go above RV 10, both bindings work fine. That is unless you’re seeking best performance for touring unlocked, or you’re a larger individual. In those cases I’d recommend the 12 as in our testing it had significantly more spring tension in the toe unit.

We’re also impressed by the overall build quality of the ION. While it’s had a recall due to a factory assembly problem, with that out of the way we’re confident this is one of the more reliable rigs you can run. Weight of LT Ion is 456 grams (without runaway leash). Again, more overlap. Read on.

G3 ION sporting their nice crampon option.

G3 ION sporting its excellent crampon configuration, one of the easiest to install and remove.

Our Category 3 is the “crossover” binding that’s beefy enough for free touring, release-retention fully adjustable, fixed brakes. Stiff enough toe springs to tiptoe around in avy terrain without locking your toe. Reasonable weight. We can’t get past the G3 ION 12 for this position. To the best of our experience, all bugs are worked out but be sure you buy product out of later manufacturing runs (check serial numbers here). The ION brakes have always been slightly quirky, sometimes popping open in touring mode. After quite a bit of experience my take on that is you simply need to take extra care clearing ice and snow while switching to uphill mode — and if they do spring open it’s not a daybreaker — other brands are known to do this as well. ION 12, 623 grams per binding.

Shop for G3 ION

Category 4, for those of you running the biggest boots you can, as fast as you can, perhaps at a resort: The freeride or free touring option. This is a tough one. I’m of the opinion that the side-release-at-toe bindings are the future of this category. But I don’t feel available options in that genre are quite there. Fritschi Tecton needs a season of consumer vetting. Trab TR2 is an option, but we don’t like the “hold down to open” entry at the heel.

Marker Kingpin hybrid tech binding in uphill mode, with heel lift.

Marker Kingpin hybrid tech binding in uphill mode, with heel lift. 730 grams.

Pick one for free touring: Marker Kingpin has been around for a few years now. In tech binding years, it is middle aged and that’s good. No midlife crisis here, just something thoroughly tested. Several caveats. Note this is still a binding that provides most of its side release action at the heel, same place you “thrust” sideways with your heels when controlling your skis. Thus, release and control are “coupled,” if side retention-release isn’t set above the power transmission level you impart in a ski turn (or receive from vibrating skis), pop, accidental release. Also important, Kingpin doesn’t function with every boot out there, its “hybrid” heel unit has excellent vertical elasticity, but it needs a DIN standard boot heel shape or an adapter. Even then, we’ve found boots that don’t smoothly exit the heel in lateral release. Thus, shop from a reputable dealer who can check the compatibility of your boot choice.
Kingpin FAQ

Shop for Kingpin

Dynafit Radical 2.0 and Rotation. We prefer the Rotation,  but  these are more similar than different.

Dynafit Radical 2.0 and Rotation. We prefer the Rotation, but these are more similar than different. 624 grams.

Our second free touring choice is the latest iteration of the Dynafit Radical 2.0, the Radical Rotation. While the “coupled” heel retention issue is still present here, Rotation offers a toe unit that rotates a few degrees, thus allowing elasticity from the heel unit without the boot toe tech fittings riding partially out of their attachment to the binding toe pins. Idea here is this prevents a certain mode of accidental release. Rotation is nearly identical to Radical 2.0, difference is a small change in the toe rotation turntable, a detent that holds it centered while fooling around during binding entry. Sadly, due to the rotating toe neither binding can be toured without locking the toe. Overall, these are very solid bindings that are totally reworked from earlier Radical versions. Some of our Rotation coverage.

Shop for Dynafit Rotation ski touring binding at Backcountry.com.

Or, be sure to check out Cripple Creek Backcountry — especially if you need advice, or service such as mounting.

Circling back, I know some of you guys will never let it rest if I don’t include Fritschi Tecton. I’ll give it an honorable mention, with caveat that we need a season of consumer vetting since this is overall such new technology. I do have high hopes.

Shop for Tecton

The pick list, in weight order (final weights vary due to manufacturing variations and brake widths, I tried to normalize for a 90 mm brake):
ATK HT, 165 gr
ATK RT, 175 gr
Salomon-Atomic MTN-Backland, no boot length adjust, 236 gr
Salomon-Atomic MTN-Backland, no brake, 296 gr
ATK Raider 12 no brake, 322 gr (sold in NA as Hagan Core)
Plum Guide XS & M, 345 gr
ATK Raider 12, with brake, 372 gr (sold in NA as Hagan Core)
Salomon-Atomic MTN-Backland, w/ brake, 385 gr
G3 ION 12 LT, 456 grams
G3 ION 12, 623 grams
Dynafit Rotation, 624 grams
(Fritschi Tecton, honorable mention, 678 grams)
Marker Kingpin, 730 grams


Please Enjoy A Few Suggested WildSnow Posts


39 Responses to “WildSnow Ultimate Ski Touring Binding Quiver — 2018”

  1. Charlie Hagedorn October 13th, 2017 10:10 am

    For Category 2 — what about the Speed Turn? Time-tested, 370 g, inexpensive…

  2. ShailCaesar! October 13th, 2017 11:38 am

    Anyone know if Speed Turn 2.0 can be fitted with brakes? Don’t much like the little leash.

  3. Lou Dawson 2 October 13th, 2017 12:53 pm

    Shail, generally not, you could retro-mod with a Plum or Atomic-Salomon brake if you really wanted. One reason for our bias to the Atomic-Salomon is the easy brake or no brake options. Lou

  4. AliE October 13th, 2017 1:41 pm

    Why no Dynafit Superlite 2.0 in Cat 1 Lou?

  5. Cody October 13th, 2017 3:12 pm

    Curious why you often speak so importantly of tunable release and side release but always seem to leave off the Vipec? Especially since it comes in lighter than the Ions and Dynafit rotations. And the Tecton is going to come in lighter than the Rotations, and Kingpin for sure (baring no problems during consumer rollout), and only 7grams more than the Ions (with brakes on both).

    Not trying to say their is some conspiracy, just seems like a logical disconnect.

  6. XXX_er October 13th, 2017 3:52 pm

    Dynafit and G3 make bindings in 10 and 12, those extra 2 din (like) seem to cost another 100$, I don’t see what they could have possibly done that justifys the extra cost cuz they look and work the same, I even have a Rad FT heelpiece on one ski and a ST on the other ….same

  7. klinkekule October 13th, 2017 4:02 pm

    i kind of mirror the sentiments on the vipec being left out – seems odd, the design is seemingly better than the ion and radical alike. Having just gotten my new tectons i have yet to use them, but oh my, the new front binding is some much better than the vipec blacks that it is frankly just pathetic. All of a sudden i need to get som more new bindings – having seem how much better the new, evo front facilitates vertival frontal release i have no choice but to do so.

  8. Lou Dawson 2 October 13th, 2017 5:20 pm

    Shoot, I had a big comment for you guys but it got trashed! End of day’s work…

    Superlite 2 doesn’t have a truly viable heel flat on ski mode, also lacks vertical release adjustment, it’s a good binding for the right person but definitely doesn’t fit my criteria.

    Our testing indicates G3 ION 12 has stronger toe springs as mentioned in post. Otherwise it would indeed be more than most people need.

    Evo is probably much better than Vipec black due to ever improving toe?

    I considered doing this post without categories, just an overview, but it was more fun to parse it out. On the other hand, too many good bindings and too much overlap for it to be perfect. A bunch of dang good bindings though…

    My gut feelings also were behind the choices, hence perhaps some logical disconnects.

    You guys have the last word, keep using it.


  9. See October 13th, 2017 6:18 pm

    I have some Vipecs that I plan to try this winter, but I’m still not entirely comfortable with the whole 2 stage forward release thing— the way the binding doesn’t completely release the boot in an upward release until the boot pivots forward and depresses the ski/walk lever. In particular I’m wondering: is the release function noticeably different from other tech bindings during upward release? Is there a significant risk of injury following release at the heel but before the boot toe hits the bumper? It seems to me that your legs are vulnerable to twisting forces transmitted by the toe during this period because the pins don’t ride out of the toe sockets like regular tech bindings and (with the heel released) these forces won’t cause sideways displacement of the toe mechanism. I can kind of visualize how twisting forces would tend to bring the boot into contact with the bumper releasing the ski after the heel lets go, but I’m interested if anyone has any specific information on this issue. Or maybe it’s not an issue and I just don’t get how the thing works. And how is the Evo toe so much better than the Vipec in a vertical frontal release?

  10. Bob October 13th, 2017 6:29 pm

    Along these lines, are there any boots other than the TLT7 that will NOT work with the new EVO toe release? Will the TLT6 work in the EVO toe?

  11. klinkekule October 14th, 2017 4:38 am

    See: the new Evo/Tecton design opens significantly easier than the Blacks and very little force is required indeed. It is not like the Blacks are bad, they are not – the Evo/Tecton design is just very, very refined and if they keep up the kind of performance they show when new – then they are a very impressive piece of kit. They have been refining the front binding for quite some time now, so hopefully it is finally “perfected”. To say that I was surprised that the difference was as big it was is a huge understatement, and it prompted the immediate plan to retire my last pairs of Blacks and Whites, and swap to Tecton or Evo on those skis as well. I talked to our local rep and apparently they mounted the Tectons on some aggressive Stöckli GS skis in order to really find what the limits of the Tectons were, and they walked away very impressed.

    The scenario you describe above – meaning lack of frontal release due to lack of required forces – is something i have a very hard time of thinking would ever occur with the Evo/Tectons. This is especially so as I would think that the frontal vertical release is probably only ever activated when in tour mode. If you eject from the rear binding in regular skiing mode, chances are that the are so much twisting forces going on that you will eject from the front binding well in advance of activating the vertical release mechanism. I might be mistaken. My distinct impression is that the front binding – white/black/eco/tecton alike – is among the safest front bindings on the market with regard to frontal release and comfort while in use.

    I have been very happy with the Whites and Blacks alike – especially the latter – and my first impression of my yet to be used Tectons are very favorable indeed. Admittedly, i have never been on any other Tech binding than the Vipec, but then i have never seen a reason to switch either 🙂

  12. klinkekule October 14th, 2017 5:33 am

    update: no, i was seemingly wrong above about the walk mode being were you need the vertical release function. The Tecton/evo front does not release at all vertically in walk mode, with Beasts and Procline alike. As such, i am thinking that full vertical lock in walk mode must be a design feature to prevent accidental release while touring – something BD or Fritschi alone can confirm or deny i guess. The Tecton/Evo vertical front release is incredibly smooth though with both Beasts and Proclines alike, and the release is obtained consistently and with a minimum of forces required. I am impressed. As such, i am thinking that if people want to retain the vertical releasability whilst touring, touring in ski mode is an easy fix. I have no idea if accidental release would become an issue then, but then again, for all users with all other tech bindings that must be eerily familiar though and kind of like coming home again 😉

    sorry to generate confusion. Feel free to edit my comments as you see fit Lou.

  13. Andy Carey October 14th, 2017 8:30 am

    With this review and all the previous discussion about the Superlite 2.0, i wonder why Dynafit won’t offer a vareity of u springs for the Superlites and when they will do so; it seems they might be losing some market share. I await your review of the new Speeds, even tho I might well be out of the binding market being over 70 and having a large quiver of pretty new skis and bindings. 🙂

  14. Dabe October 14th, 2017 4:45 pm

    another voice in the chorus of those confused at no vipec? got to be best compromise for category 4 (freeride/resort):

    2nd best side release (TR2)
    Best toe elasticity
    2nd best weight (TR2)
    Best boot compatibility

    certainly not knocking the kingpin, but the traditional tech toe doesn’t smack of a resort ready piece (on the east coast).

  15. See October 14th, 2017 11:20 pm

    “Fritschi Tecton needs a season of consumer vetting.” And I’m still not sure about the 2 stage vertical/forward release, but I’m curious enough to have dropped a few hundred on some Vipecs.

  16. See October 14th, 2017 11:23 pm

    And I hear the Vipec Evo toe is significantly different from the Black in release function, but I’m still not sure how.

  17. Lou Dawson 2 October 15th, 2017 8:16 am

    Dabe, Vipec does fit in. I mostly left out as Evo is improvement but I didn’t feel comfortable recommending such a new product before consumer vetting. Been burned too many times. Nothing worse than for example magazines that award things like “binding of the year” only to have their vaunted product have a major defect that only comes out once retail sales begin. I felt a bit uncomfortable with Dynafit Rotation in this regard as well, but considering it’s 99% a Radical 2.0 and went through a winter of pre-retail testing, my gut said go ahead and include. Total judgement calls.

    Clearly, Tecton if it works will be where most people go with this. Come to think of it, I should put the Tecton in the pick list as an honorable mention, so the weight comparison is easy.

    Thanks everyone for bringing up all your points. Blogging at its best.

    By the way, I continue to work on our Tecton specific FAQ:


  18. dgg October 15th, 2017 9:57 am

    For category #1, why no mention of the Kreutzspitze GT, available from Skimo.co? Meets all your criteria when you also buy from them the high heel adapter. Happy with them on my midwinter setup, and can’t wait to buy my second pair for my new spring setup. I hope your response doesn’t dissuade me.

  19. Lou Dawson 2 October 15th, 2017 11:03 am

    Because I figured a fan of Skimo would be sure to mention (kidding). Actually, Kreutzspitz is not widely available in North American distribution, simple reason. Also due to that, I’ve not made much effort at reviews or tests.To keep my list shorter I had to draw some arbitrary lines. If you already ski the binding and like them, then perfect! Lou

  20. Kevin Woolley October 15th, 2017 7:43 pm

    For my personal use, multiple heel heights aren’t needed, modern boots articulate so well I don’t miss the lack of a “high” lift on my Superlite 2.0, for example. And while I do tour often on trips with a relatively flat approach for a mile or two, a “flat on ski” mode isn’t critical for my use. Maybe if I had more 5 mile approaches?

    I do wish I had the “white” version of the Superlite 2.0, but bought before it was available. The release value of the “green” heel unit is definitely more than I need as a relatively careful skier weighing 165 lbs. Why doesn’t Dynafit have lighter duty spring options for this binding as an add on? I think they have missed the boat by not offering this option. I would definitely buy them with a “DIN” of 8.

    My ideal binding would be about 200 g with adjustable vertical and lateral release. With an optional brake and one lifter height. Backland/MTN looks pretty good, basic stuff you need without anything you don’t, although just a little lighter would be even better. Built in BSL adjustment would be really nice. Defies the laws of physics, but that’s what my ideal binding would be.

    Kreutzspitz GT has always looked good to me, as do the lighter ATK options, I wish these options were more widely available in the US. Any retailer listening? Glad Skimo.com is there, but I wish they had a physical outlet in Denver. One can always dream!

  21. John Baldwin October 15th, 2017 9:09 pm

    I’d like to throw in another mention of the Kreuzspitze GT as another choice in category 1. Fully adjustable release at 161g per binding! Add an adjustment plate for 20g. I’ve used them for a whole season with some 112mm skis 🙂

    Yes it is too bad they aren’t distributed in North America but Skimo.com has them or they can be ordered directly from Europe (with 2 day shipping).

  22. SteveR October 16th, 2017 9:47 am

    Would it be possible to partner with Cripple Creek or similar, do some testing, and produce a blog post which lists the RVs of the fixed release bindings which are available? I understand why you might be reluctant to do that. As an alternative, perhaps a list of bindings in descending order of lateral release force would provide a guide for shoppers without implying that fixed release bindings have a full safety release function?

  23. SteveR October 16th, 2017 9:54 am

    Or maybe just try to categorise the fixed release bindings into ‘higher’ ‘medium’ and ‘low’ RV groups?

  24. VT skier October 16th, 2017 3:56 pm

    Steve R
    SkiAlper Buyers Guide does measure release values for a lot of these bindings.
    You will have to open a subscription to get by the paywall. Try this link !


  25. Lou Dawson 2 October 16th, 2017 5:13 pm

    Steve, It’s a hard test to do, SkiAlper does the best job. I know I’ve not been shy about this sort of thing and am flattered that other websites are getting on the case (it was lonely out here for years, people told me I was an idiot for geeking out), but I hate duplication, both as the duplicator and the duplicatee… Another thing to remember is that for the test to be valid, it needs to be done with at least a half dozen bindings, and it goes out of date in a season with an update needed every year.

    One limiting factor is there might be legal issues for shops publishing this kind of thing, by the way. It’s better done by magazines and websites that are not store fronts.

  26. See October 16th, 2017 6:49 pm

    Sorry for advancing my agenda again, but it is ridiculous (in my opinion) that basic information about binding performance, and release values in particular, remains such a mystery. Sure, there is probably a lot of variation among bindings of the same model, and among different boot/binding combinations, and so on, but those are just more reasons why this information is important.

  27. Rudi October 18th, 2017 10:34 am

    It has just come to my attention that the Ski Trab Gara Titan Release binding comes in three different release values “8,10,12” thus qualifying it for category 1. I think with the increased return to center function of the heel and the removal of icing under the toe piece as a pre release fault point this binding could be among the safest bindings from a “retention” standpoint. Anyone have experience with it?

  28. Adam October 28th, 2017 3:40 pm

    Any numbers for the vertical elasticity of the Atomic/Salomon Backland MTN? Is it more or less equal to other tech bindings at 4mm?

  29. Lou Dawson 2 October 28th, 2017 8:46 pm

    Same mechanically, so yeah, same…

  30. Dabe October 29th, 2017 8:50 pm

    though I’m still skeptical of the kingpin toe for frontside daily driving, seeing Sammy Carlson absolutely destroy in MTN labs and kingpins in Drop Everything has erased any doubts of their power. That segment is invaluable marketing for Marker.

  31. Lou Dawson 2 October 30th, 2017 6:56 am

    Power, sure. Retention? No problem with set on 12.

  32. See October 30th, 2017 7:37 am

    Toes locked?

  33. John Baldwin October 30th, 2017 10:38 am

    I am reading the DIN Charts wrong? There was a good dsicussion of DIN and a DIN chart on Wildsnow at:


    The average American male is 5’10” . If they have very small feet the highest recommended DIN is 6.5 (with large feet its less). If they are aggressive type 3 skiers (which everybody seems to claim they are) then the recommended DIN is 8.5. And for those over 50, the chart says to go down one setting.

    So who is setting their bindings at 12? Do you all weigh 220lbs? Are you a type 6 skier?

  34. See October 30th, 2017 6:54 pm

    I think the “set on 12” comment was a tongue in cheek suggestion that super experts skiing insane, high consequence lines for video glory often crank their bindings past recommended settings and may even may lock the toes, or so I suspect. The point being, such exploits may not be entirely applicable to the general skiing public.

  35. John Baldwin October 31st, 2017 10:03 am

    Thanks See. I see your point. I guess we are saying the same thing. For example I question the need for binding manufacturers to sell bindings with nonadjustable DIN settings of 10. So I applaud Lou for making one of the requirements for category 1 bindings be that you can adjust the release setting.

  36. XXX_er October 31st, 2017 10:37 am

    I suppose i get the super light racing thing but I’m not racing, also I need to be able to set my vertical release 1 higher than my lateral release or I step out of them so I wouldn’t buy any of these non-adjustable tech bindings

  37. Lou Dawson 2 October 31st, 2017 11:38 am

    Glad you guys get where I was coming from with Cat 1. I just couldn’t see recommending bindings that either don’t release or else are not adjustable to some extent. On the other hand, there are some grey areas for sure, such as how many swap spring options make a binding tunable enough? As in the case of Backland/MTN. Lou

  38. mike gillam November 2nd, 2017 8:39 pm

    I have lightly used Radical ST 1 mounted on Elan Himalayas. They are in good working order, but after reading various articles on the ST 2, in your opinion, are the improvements worth swapping out my bindings? Older skier (56) using these skis as mostly backcountry (although some resort) skiing. Thanks.

  39. Lou Dawson 2 November 3rd, 2017 7:33 am

    Radical ver 1 can possibly be dangerous if it’s not “1.1, 1.2, 1.3” etc. Determine if your bindings have possible defects fixed, if not, I can do nothing else in good conscious but recommend contacting Dynafit to see if your bindings can still be upgraded, and if not, use a different binding.



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  • 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.

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    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. Due to human error and passing time, 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.

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