Now that I have a couple days on my new pair of G3 Ion 12 bindings I wanted to talk about some of my first impressions.
My biggest concern before using them
The number one concern I had (and most skiers have) about pin bindings in general is if they will actually hold me in when I ski hard.
Now I only have about 3 days on these skis, but I was not holding back on any of those days.
To the left you can see me dropping a 15 ft cliff on these bindings. The snow I landed on was about 3 inches of soft slushy/powdery snow with a rather hard base.
To my enjoyment when I landed, and it wasn’t a gentle landing, the skis stuck around.
Some of the things I was excited for
Before these binding, I was primarily using shift bindings. While they worked just fine for me, they defiantly have some compromise.
Ease of use
I really love how intuitive the Ion bindings are.
I am especially loving the ability to transition at the top of my line from skin mode to downhill without removing my skis. This was not possible with the shift bindings.
Another cool ease of use feature is the boot stopper. Its a small piece of rubber that lines your boot up perfectly with the pins.
A second riser
This is pretty specific to my situation coming from the shift bindings, but having that second riser is a life saver.
While I have taken these bindings on some big missions already, I am sure I still have a lot to learn about them.
So far I would defiantly recommend them to anyone looking to upgrade they backcountry setup without much compromise on the downhill.
A cool feature I discovered on my 3rd day was the ability to clip your poles into your bindings as shown to the right.
Simply open the pins up, make sure the back turret in in downhill mode, and place the poles into place. Then all you got to do is lock the front pins and your poles aren’t going anywhere. Pretty useful for some short walks with skis on the shoulders.
It matters little how much equipment we use; it matters much that we become master of all we do use.
This week I wanted to do another quick gear review on a piece of gear that has stuck with me almost my whole ski career and that is a pair of G3 Via ski poles. NOT SPONSORED
Ski poles are something that we hardly ever think about until something goes wrong with them.
And that is exactly why I love my pair of Via pole so much. I have whacked countless cornices, trees, skis, and rocks with my set of poles and I am still never worried about them breaking any time soon.
I owned and snapped a pair of cheap, standard poles before I bought this pair of G3 Via’s and have never looked back since.
Some of my favorite features include:
Easily adjustable size
3 good grabbing spots if you put duct tape on (which you should be doing anyway)
Quality hand loops (they easily come off too, but never when you don’t want them to)
Nice weight / quality ratio
Good size powder basket
I really don’t know what else a ski pole can offer you other than carrying you up the mountain. (maybe some day)
A pair of skis are the ultimate transportation to freedom
Today I wanted to do a quick review on my do it all ski for the last year+
The 2020 edition of Black Crows Atris has been my every day ski for the last year now and in general I have absolutely loved them.
Some quick facts to get out of the way, I am 5′ 10″ and 140lbs. I rock the 178.3 length option on the Atris which is a little short for me, but that is what I was looking for when I got them. And if I had to define my skiing with one word it would be freeride.
Now I am not a technical kind of person so you wont be hearing about reverse camber, turn radius, twin tips, and the best wax combos to use. What I will be talking about is how the actually feel and what they best shred.
I live in South West Montana which means I am blessed with super light cold smoke powder and lots of it. And after skiing these on west coast “powder” I would defiantly say these are more suited for a lighter powder.
But on the other hand I also ski all summer, so they have seen their fair share of icy conditions. Paired with the Salomon Shift binding they have made for a surprisingly light setup for being 108 underfoot.
In the summer I value how light the Atris are for the hike up and the strong edge you can get with them for the ski down.
In the winter I love the 108 underfoot width. I find that to be the perfect width to have a blast on a powder day, but still be able to charge on a good groomer day.
Bringing me to another point, the fantastic ability of these skis to just blast through any conditions. Chowder, a little ice, the Atris don’t care.
Some of the cons I’ve seen
Can tend to be a little flaky if you’re hard on it
The backs of the skis could be a little more attuned to hold onto skin clips
They are on the more expensive side for a pair of sticks
A cool bonus is this cool pattern the snow makes when the sun and snow aligns just right
I have absolutely loves my pair of Black Crow Atris and would highly recommend them for most people. There are defiantly better skis for certain categories, such as lighter skis for backcountry, skinnier skis for icy conditions, wider skis for powder. But the Atris does it all with very little compromise.