Alpine Touring
9 posts
4 users
2k+ views
wgo
February 9, 2005
Member since 02/10/2004
1,263 posts
Does anyone know of any places that would rent Alpine Touring equipment? My free-heel skills have yet to catch up with my backcountry ambitions
SCWVA
February 10, 2005
Member since 07/13/2004
1,049 posts
wgo,

I looked into getting AT gear last spring. I didn't want to learn how to tele, but wanted to be able to go up hill to get to the freshies you can find in the back country. You have two options. There is a product called Alpine Trekkers that fit into you standard DH bindings. I've been told that if you only want to do a handful of trips into the BC that this may be the way to go. They are less expensive than an entire AT set up. cost =$100-200. You can find them on ebay. Problem is that they are heavy and raise boots up off your skis, changing your center of gravity. Inregards to true AT gear, I found only one ski shop in the DC area that carries AT gear. Pro-fit Ski & Skate in Leesburg. They carry NAXO bindings. They might rent gear.

Good luck and let me know if you find someone who rents AT gear. I'd be interested in renting some before I purchased AT gear.
wgo
February 10, 2005
Member since 02/10/2004
1,263 posts
I go back and forth on whether to invest in a set of Alpine Trekkers. If there was a place near Whitegrass that rented AT gear i would be happy with that, but as it is I may end up just going with the Trekkers - I really don't want to invest in an entire touring setup for the relatively few times I would ever use it.

Anyway, thanks for the tip on the place near leesburg, i'll give them a call.
Phil
February 12, 2005
Member since 01/20/2005
1 posts
I highly recommend the Fritschi Freerides. they can be mounted on any old downkill skis you might have (i mounted mine personally) and work with your existing downhill boots. I am over 200 lbs and pretty much abuse the bindings and they hold up like champs and ski just as well.

as far as renting around here, I live in baltimore and few shops around here even know what you are talking about if you ask them. I did rent before I bought to try them out in Breckenridge, CO. I also had a buddy rent them up near lake placid from the mountaineer in Keene. If I were you I would go to the place the other person mentioned near whitegrass, WV and go ski there to check them out.

The best thing about having your own setup is skinning up and catching some turns at various hills when it snows locally. I have skiied oregon ridge north of baltimore (15 mins away) a couple of times at night after work when we had that "big" 8 inch snowstorm and it was a blast.
Swimmer
February 12, 2005
Member since 02/3/2005
143 posts
Don't dismiss tele as not being any good for downhill. You can still ski parallel with tele gear. The bindings, especially plate bindings offer a very aggressive control in parallel technique. Plus you have the option to toss in some tele beauty when the mood strikes you. The gear is lighter than AT gear. Guess what I am saying is that if you find a killer deal on some tele gear, you may want to consider it. Locally to DC is Whitetail that demos tele gear for a pretty cheap price. If you are headed out to Canaan Valley, Whitegrass rents, and I think Canaan Valley rents tele gear.

Just my unsolicited .02 cents.

Steve
wgo
February 14, 2005
Member since 02/10/2004
1,263 posts
Thanks again for all the info, everyone!
wgo
February 15, 2005
Member since 02/10/2004
1,263 posts
Actually, I did have a follow up question for Swimmer - it's possible to make alpine-type turns on tele skis? Really? How would that work? There must be some adjustments to make. Anything I should keep in mind if I try this?
Swimmer
February 15, 2005
Member since 02/3/2005
143 posts
Hey there. I am not so sure I am the best source of info on ski technique, as I am a relative newcomer. However, after skiing exclusively alpine last year, I have spent this entire season so far (around 12 days to date) on tele gear. I found a killer deal on some "old school" gear and thought "what the heck, I'll try it".

True tele style is difficult for me. I am still hashing it out. Typically I show up on the hill, do a few runs pulling parallel turns to warm up, then switch over to some traverses in a solid tele stance, beat myself up on some tele turns, then finish the night skiing parallel again.

I follow a website called www.telemarktips.com which has a VERY active forum with over 3000 registered members. There is a definate hard core group of people that bleed tele, but I am discovering there are more people that use tele gear to get into the b/c, then ski it down, alpine style.

As for changes in technique...I've never taken a class at all, so my technique probably isn't that great, nor is my ability to explain it. However, while using parallel technique I feel my body doing the same on tele gear as it feels on alpine gear. I take a few more tumbles because that heel sometimes "floats" over the edge of the ski, causing the ski to skew when I pressure down on it. However, that cleared up within just a couple of days.

I don't think I'll ever go back to alpine, if for nothing else, the lightweight feeling of gear and the ability to walk around in the boots. No more clunking and falling down stairs. I have no desire to rest my legs on the safety bar of the lift chair, because my gear is so light.

Anyways...I don't think I gave you much positive feedback, all I can say is rent the gear one day and check it out. I think you'll be quite pleased.

Steve
SCWVA
February 15, 2005
Member since 07/13/2004
1,049 posts
I have a friend that lives in Steamboat. He use to ski alpine, but since moving to the Springs he has taken up Tele. I skied with him two years ago and he could ski anywhere I could go with my alpine skis, including hammering bump run after bump run. When he got tired (or may be just lazy), he would revert back to parallel turns in the bumps. He could actually catch some big air (heli, back scratchers, etc.)in bumps with his tele gear. I never saw him fall.

When he did parallel turns on his tele gear, you couldn't tell he wasn't on alpine gear.
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