(This post sponsored by our publishing partner Cripple Creek Backcountry.)
Worker bees have been busy at G3, developing new items in almost all of their product categories (gems covered here will begin retail in fall of 2018, and be field tested by us over coming months).
New for 2018/2019 is the SEEKr ski. This is a lighter version of the FINDr made with similar construction but designed with different dimensions. FINDr shines on hardpack; SEEKr will be more playful in softer snow. Honestly, we’ve had mixed emotions about G3 skis; Louie likes their aggression, Lou and I prefer something a bit more dialed back. SEEKr answers that with the ELLE 100 version, same construction but slightly softer. Design philosophy of all G3’s planks is to trim weight by using as much carbon as possible — while providing adequate dampness for downhill performance. Common wisdom in ski design is that dampness can be relativly inexpensive and less technical if provided by mass, while being much more difficult to engineer by material science. To that end, G3 says they’ve achieved remarkable damping by using a special variety of PU plastic sidewalls, created with a proprietary process rather than simply adding strip of plastic to a mold layup. We’ll be testing this soon, with high hopes.
The SEEKr is built with a slight camber and early rise. Here’s how it’s layered:
G3 is offering a new line of climbing skins for the 2018/2019 season: the Alpinist+ and the Splitboard+. “Plus” are two complete lines of skins for ski and snowboard touring, featuring new design and reformulated adhesive.
With the Plus series, G3 challenges the idea of full tip to tail coverage. “Skins that cover the entire base of your skis are overkill and heavy.” G3 research reveals the most grip comes from under the binding; the fabric on the tip and tail creates unnecessary drag, similar in energy expenditure to adding weight. To increase glide and efficiency without compromising grip, G3 Plus skins use plush-less tip and tail connectors. More, the stiff, plush free material used for the Alpinist+ tip creates a rigid platform that keeps snow from creeping under the skin. The elongated tail shortens the body of carpet, lightening up the skin without compromising grip or glide, and making transitions easy with a refined camming clip.
Alpinist+ and Splitboard+ skins are available in four plush fabrics:
Universal: Nylon plush material provides optimal balance of grip, glide, weight and durability. Designed for any location and all conditions.
Grip: High-traction nylon plush material for durability and versatility. Designed for maximum grip and tractions, ideal for steep ascents and icy skin tracks.
Glide: 70% mohair for glide and 30% nylon for durability. All-purpose skin built for cold and dry conditions with improved waterproofing.
Speed: 100% mohair. The lightest and fastest skin, best in cold, dry conditions. Has improved waterproofing to increase glide and overall speed. The G3 CEO is said to be obsessed with skin glide — we’ll test these ASAP to see if the boss got what he wanted.
Also note that updated overlapping length sizing for the Plus skins, allowing the choice of more skin fabric for additional coverage or less material for weight savings.
Splitboard+ skins offer a new camming tail connector that features a straight edge to line up on your board and a simple camming clip that requires little effort and will hold the tail strap in place. The tip connector is asymmetrical, custom tailored for splitboards. The low profile, self-aligning stainless steel hand on each skin tip allows for a secure, lightweight connection.
In other gear, look for an updated binding safety leash boasting a more easily clipped hook, a G3 branded merino wool toque that’ll authenticate you as Canadian whether you be ice fishing, hockey spectating or even border crossing, and a re-branded Scott 30 liter backpack with optional Alpride avalanche airbag system. The latter of which is in once sense mundane, but could be considered interesting as it continues to round out G3’s product line. Are ski boots next? Stay tuned.
For those interested in details about the pack, here are photos of the Cabrio:
Pack weight without Alpride: 1560 g / 3 lb 7 oz
Alpride system: 690 g / 1 lb 8 oz (Cabrio will be available with or without Alpride)
Cartridges: 440 g / 1 lb
Total weight: 2690 g / 5 lb 15 oz