Outdoor Retailer — Backcountry Skiing Gear Rumors

Post by WildSnow.com blogger | August 12, 2007      

While cruising around the summer show, rumors of snow gear still flit about like bats during an evening in the Moab desert. At Garmont, it sounds like they might have some new Dynafit compatible boot action we’ll see sometime next winter. And speaking of Dynafit, I keep hearing murmurs of yet another binding model those guys are working on. I’ve not been able to Sherlock the nature of this. Is it another iteration of the Comfort? Or a whole new built-from-scratch effort to keep their leadership in ski touring?

Shrine Mountain Inn Backcountry Skiing
Speaking of gear flitting around, these green boots were seen bulging from a shoulder bag on some guy who looked like a bicycle racer, then they were seen again perched on this shelf next to these guys who appeared to be in a serious discussion about a large retail order. I guess when you’re florescent green you stand out in the sea of earth tones? Yeah, they’re the Dynafit “green machine,” and word is they’ll be shipping very soon.

Binding rumors sail in from other corners as well. Some folks are wondering if Canadian company G3’s expected new binding might be an AT offering rather than “yet another telemark rig.” Speculation is that since randonnee is strong in Canada, an AT rig could be coming. Now that would be truly compelling. Wonderment also applies to Black Diamond’s forthcoming telemark binding, development of which is said to be moving a bit slow. Understandable. It must be a nightmare trying to build a better mousetrap when there are so many mousetraps already.

It’s said that Black Diamond’s boots, however, will be launched next winter as expected. As we’d blogged before, the question regarding any entirely new line of touring boots is if they’re simply another version of overlap cuff designs with weights and materials similar to other extant models, or something new and unique? And will any be Dynafit compatible? Soon we will know, but apparently not this week.

Meanwhile, at the Black Diamond booth they had this funky peepshow rig where you looked through a hole a boot box and watched a tiny LCD video of blurred skiing images interspersed with even more blurred subliminal flashes of what are ostensibly the new BD boots. I have to say it was pretty amusing.

Howard and Dostie.
John Howard and Craig Dostie raise a glass to backcountry skiing.

We had a lengthy dinner and chat Friday evening with Backcountry Magazine publisher John Howard and former Couloir Magazine publisher Craig Dostie. Howard is a sharp guy and truly core when it comes to our sport and associated lifestyles, philosophies and what have you. But mainly, I get the feeling the Backcountry Mag crew are competent and generally positive guys who are overall good for the sport, and have been very welcoming to the old-guard Couloir holdouts such as myself. As mentioned in previous blog, look for gradual but significant changes with Backcountry Magazine’s online presence — probably with a philosophy of providing big servings of solid info, along with a dash of authenticity.


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