I’m happy to report that I’ve got some new socks in for review from Stance. There are several models/styles for varying sports.
For general sports the “Performance” model is the stance offering. I’ve got some tab height nylon blends in black, gray and white. I just tried my first pair on a mountain bike ride this evening. I just happened to bag my biggest ascent ever. Coincidence?
I can’t wait to try out the mid cushion Jimmy Chin model hiking socks, and the merino wool blend hiking socks.
It’s 105 degrees here, but it’s never too early to get the gear ready for next ski season! I’ve got a couple of pairs of Stance ski socks to try out when the snow flies.
My Tecnica Zero G backcountry boots were extremely expensive. I was very surprised and unhappy to find that my boot boards, also known as Zeppas, had completely fallen apart. I had taken my liners out to let them air dry since they were wet with sweat from a tour and found the carnage:
I called the Tecnica dealer that I got the boots from and they did not have my size (25.5). I called other local dealers and none of them had replacement Zeppas either. I looked all over online and nothing. I called Tecnica and I was happy to hear that they would replace them under warranty. One problem. The replacements will not come until some time after November 1st. It is may, and we have a 165 inch base. There is a LOT of backcountry skiing left this spring, plus fall of next season. Waiting until November means missing out on potentially dozens of backcountry ski tours with my Tecnica Zero-G boots.
I’ve been into 3D design and 3D printing as a hobby for quite some time, and this was a perfect opportunity to put some of those skills to good use. I designed up a new version of the Zeppa and did some test prints, revising and printing numerous times. Eventually I came up with a satisfactory design so I printed the Zeppas in a softer rubber material that has some cushion to it, like the original boot boards.
The work awesome! Better than the originals!
I’ve had many people reach out to me who apparently have the same problem and want me to print them. Sounds like a business opportunity! Let me know if you need some. Reach out to me via any of the social network links in the header.
Written by: Tony Korologos | Tuesday, September 20th, 2022
Tags: GoPro • Video
I’ve been rolling with three GoPro Hero 7 Blacks for a few years so it was time for an upgrade. I now have my hands on the new GoPro Hero 11 Black, which I intend to use for all my mountain sports as well as some FPV drone flying.
I’m looking forward to trying some horizon lock, especially for skiing and biking. Hope to do some biking soon.
I’ve been suffering bad blisters on my old Technica Cochise 130 touring boots. I tried everything to resolve the blisters from tweaking/molding the liners, Squirrel’s Nut Butter, athletic tape, moleskin… None of those things addressed the problem, which was that the boots were too big. I finally did it right, and got some new boots completely fitted, molded, orthotic-ed (just made that word up), and every possible customization and adaptation to my feet possible. I have faith in Technical and that’s one reason why I chose them again with the Zero G Tour Pro. That at the fitter said these boots are the best of the best.
Above: note the alternate buckle. Interesting.
This walk/ski mechanism above is very hot right now.
I’ve done one tour with them so far, then the snow melted. The tour was a success. No blisters on the achilles. I had a little bit of rubbing on the right ankle bone, but I think I need to change socks to a less abrasive pair.
I felt great in ski mode. My feet and my skis were connected. My foot wasn’t floating around in the boot. My toes didn’t go numb either, which was another issue I had.
This is way too early to come to a conclusion and I may need another tweak or two to the boots, but they’re already a huge improvement.
Do it right the first time. Get the right boot. Get the right size. Get fitted by a pro.
My gloves have been super worn and I’ve desperately needed new ones. Stopped by a couple of bike shops and found the selection to be very limited, and very overpriced. So naturally my next stop was Amazon, where I found these Moreok gloves, one pair at about $7.00 and the other at $15.
It’s so hot here right now that I’m using two pairs of gloves per ride. One pair I use on the sweaty climb. The second pair I use on the downhill to insure I have a clean and solid grip.
So far the gloves are well worth the money and have more padding than my previous gloves. We’ll see how long they last. Stay tuned for a possible follow-up report on that.
I picked up these Atomic Bent Chetler 100’s last spring when we thought the COVID lockdown would be two weeks. TWO WEEKS.
Designed by legendary skier Chris Benchettler, the Bent Chetler 100 is a versatile, all-around ski suitable for a wide variety of ski conditions.
Length tested: 172. Other lengths available are 164, 180, 188.
The dual rocker technology is distributed as follows: Front rocker 20%, camber 70%, and tail rocker 10%.
The ski features HRZN Tech in the tip and tail for increased surface area and float. The Light Woodcore, directional shape, and Powder Rocker make carving, slashing, and even sliding (when necessary) a breeze.
The turning radius of the 172’s is 18, while the 164’s are at 16.4. The 180’s 19.5 and the 188’s 21.
I only had a couple of chances to ski the 100’s last spring before the resorts shut down due to COVID. The resorts are back open now for the 2020-2021 season and I’ve been riding the Bent Chetler 100’s exclusively.
When I first tried the 100’s, I was not used to them at all. I was coming from the perspective of much wider and much longer skis. Now I’ve got the feel for the 100’s and I’m really digging them. I’ve managed to experience quite a variance of conditions from light powder to groomers to ice. The skis are playful and easy to ski, but strong enough to take on more aggressive skiing and terrain.
In powder they float well for being relatively narrow. I’m typically on 108’s and 116’s underfoot. Here’s a little pow video.
While they don’t necessarily ride on top of super light pow, they have enough float to get the job done.
Some of the most fun I’ve had skiing the Bent’s is making quick, short turns in tight places:
The Bent Chetler 100’s are a great one-ski-fits-all solution, or a great all-mountain addition to a skier’s quiver. The ski is reasonably priced at around $600 (without bindings).
It only took me 30 years to upgrade mountain bikes. My old Scott Pro from 1990 served me well, but I badly needed an upgrade. Here was my list of requirements:
Full suspension (front and rear shocks)
29 inch wheels
Hydraulic disc breaks
Around $2k price range
Medium frame size
Shopping was a little difficult because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Some shops were not open or were only open by appointment or special hours. Some shops didn’t have inventory that met my requirements. After visiting 4-5 shops I got a little bummed out and bagged the search. Then after a few days I took it back up again and found a Scott bike and a Specialized StumpJumper in my size and with my requirements at one shop. I test rode both. The Scott felt cheap and didn’t ride very well. The StumpJumper rode very smooth and “felt” like the one. I pulled the trigger right there and have been thrilled with the choice so far.
The bike is a 12-speed (photo below). I didn’t have enough knowledge about the gearing options and manufacturer to have a “requirement.” I’m happy so far with this 12-speed setup. It climbs well. I just wish I had a gear or two more for higher speeds, but this is a mountain bike, not a road bike.
The rear shock (below) is fantastic. After riding a hard tail and hard fork I’ve felt every bump for 1000’s of miles. Nice to have some absorption now and the shocks are a must when riding bumpy and rocky trails.
After my first ride, I had a flat tire. We have these nasty, nasty thorns here in Utah. So after some research I decided to go “tubeless.” This is a process where they remove the tube and treat the rim with some tape, then fill the tire with air and sealant. Since then I’ve had no flats at all. Going tubeless was the right decision for sure.
I also upgraded the pedals. My feet kept slipping off of the stock pedals. The new pedals cost about $80, so that may factor into the purchase if considering this bike.
Total upgrades: $140.00.
On The Trail
I’m not the world’s foremost expert in mountain biking. That said, I’m quite happy with how the StumpJumper performs in varying terrain. I’ve taken it through mud, sand, rocks, gravel, pavement, slick rock, bark, pebbles, and just about any mix of terrain one could think of. The only area that the bike doesn’t perform well is in sand, which is not unexpected. The tires are pretty fat, but not fatties.
I find the bike climbs very well and I almost never need to use the lowest gears.
Downhill biking is a blast with the 29 inch tires and full suspension. I love catching air and knowing that I can land softly without too much of a kick.
I’m just scratching the surface on my StumpJumper, and the whole mountain biking experience. I’m thrilled with the performance, durability and style and looking forward to many years of riding enjoyment.
One of the most essential items in a skier’s backcountry equipment list is a good shovel.
The shovel must be light and compact for carrying, while being strong and efficient when digging in a rescue situation.
In for review is the Access TS Shovel, which looks to be up to the task.
The Access TS features a telescopic “T” handle with 32cm and 46cm lengths, anodized aluminum blade, and weighs only 620 grams.
I’ve been carrying the Access TS Shovel in my backpack for a few days in the mountains. Have yet to put it through some tests of pit digging and rescue training. I will report back with a full review when I’ve had a chance to fully evaluate the TS.