Forums The Gear Room Couloir Hardgood Options Review
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  • #568143
    powderjunkie
    1669 Posts

    Couldn’t bring myself to post on that other very important thread, so…….

    As I was reading the article I began to realize that some of these guys set-ups seemed very familiar. I recognize a few names, but then it dawned on me how many profiles are on this forum.

    Many from the old days from the Couloir forum.

    Overall, I thought it was a good options review.

    I also thought it would be more enjoyable to make fun of jimw verts. I know Jim can take a lot of abuse from us. 😀 😀

    #591348
    UTAH
    830 Posts

    what’s that article about? sounds interesting. I rented a warren miller flick from the library, and actually enjoyed it, it had a few sections on backcountry touring and riding. I was amazed to see John Griber ripping his hard boot set up down some big mountains. He makes it look so easy. I would love to get some beta on exactly what his set up was. In pow I notice no difference between my MLT’s and soft boots, but on hard pack I hate my mlt’s, but always end up using them because they get me to the top on hard days, that I need to be kicking steps, or using crampons.

    #591349
    jive stick
    110 Posts

    Haven’t been to a gym, lately? 😉

    wowasatch.com

    #591350
    bcd
    232 Posts

    I like it (and no, I’m not just saying that because I contributed). I think that is a great format for gear reviews.

    In my opinion, traditional gear reviews are pretty much worthless. Reviews of things like skis, boards, boots, etc… have too many unknown and variable factors. They are probably a good selling point for a lot of magazines, but don’t really provide any useful information. I can get the same generic information by viewing the specs for each product on that company’s website.

    Community gear reviews, like this one in Couloir, are really the only way to get good information on a product. Reviews like this are useful because they give info on what works, and WHY it works. All the products mentioned in that article were used over a relatively long period of time. They weren’t just taken out for 2-3 hours in the frontcountry.

    I really wanted to write a review about my homemade, hack-sawed equipment, but instead had to keep it in the realm of the “commercially availableâ€Â

    #591351
    jimw
    1421 Posts

    @powderjunkie wrote:

    I also thought it would be more enjoyable to make fun of jimw verts. I know Jim can take a lot of abuse from us. 😀 😀

    I don’t know what you’re talking about.

    🙂

    Man, I haven’t even seen the article yet and you’re already giving me shit. I knew I could count on you!

    bcd wrote:
    I really wanted to write a review about my homemade, hack-sawed equipment, but instead had to keep it in the realm of the “commercially availableâ€Â
    #591352
    NJAB
    29 Posts

    I thought so too that it was well done and said so on their forum. and I was trying to suggust the same. I’m sure I still don’t have it quite dialed perfect yet. I’ve been going back and for with hard and soft since I started splitboarding. The comments in the article will help quite a bit. More of the “bread and butter” stuff would mak it that much more useful. Maybe next year 🙂

    #591353
    Ecobrad
    2068 Posts

    Like I said in the tabu thread, I thought Couloir’s review was good. Obviously, I would have liked several pages dedicated to splitting but all in all it met my expectations. If I wasn’t reading about this shit everyday on the web there would have been some good insight provided. Let’s just hope that one day soon someone will put out a boot binding combo that makes the choice obvious.

    #591354
    Zach
    127 Posts

    I know it has been said before, but keep in mind that reviews are written for people who are considerably less informed than the folks who frequent message boards like this one.

    The vast majority of backcountry snowboarders are considerably less informed.

    I’m pretty sure that Craig had been talking about doing this type of article before I ever came around… but, as long as I was at Couloir, I was pushing for it. i can’t count the number of times that I’ve run into people carrying a board in their arms, trudging out from a resort, or up some small hill off the road… people like that need to know about the different options available.

    #591355
    powderjunkie
    1669 Posts
    Quote:
    I really wanted to write a review about my homemade, hack-sawed equipment, but instead had to keep it in the realm of the “commercially availableâ€Â
    #591356
    SanFrantastico
    1514 Posts

    I liked it – I thought it was a succinct overview of most of the gear options and the tradeoffs. Props to Couloir for not seeking out someone with a traditional snowshoe setup (even if they do see more use than approach skis.) Props to Jimw for campaigning for the production of snowboard specific mountaineering boots. Props all around for articulate, well-reasoned descriptions of their setups.

    Putting the poo in swimming pool since 1968.

    #591357
    48steps
    39 Posts

    As a newbie who has spent the last year visiting splitboard.com and Couloir’s discussion board daily (or more) with the intent of learning about getting backcountry turns on a snowboard, I think the piece confirms what I have learned, that different approaches exist each with their advantages and disadvantages.

    It bears one thing out: backcountry snowboarding is by no means a settled issue. In the future, an article detailing modifications is essential…it’s an unsettled science, right?

    BTW, I am a first time subscriber to Couloir because of splitboard.com, well at least splitboarding (and because it is great mag…has PrimeMedia called yet? You said no, right? Good.)

    Thanks to everyone for free flow info! Sorry for such a long post.

    #591358

    I thought that the couloir hardgoods review was good, but I am biased because I helped write it (thanks Graham for including us). I do wish that we had a snowboard mountaineering specific boot. I, too, am glad that Jimw mentioned that. I do look forward to the day when there are as many snowboard boot/binding options as AT or tele, but that is not the case right now. Maybe things will change with all of the new companies making splitboards. Maybe we should make like Maggots and start our own damn boot company. Anyone care to join me? 😀

    #591359
    affix snow
    521 Posts

    @Wyomingsplit_ride wrote:

    I thought that the couloir hardgoods review was good, but I am biased because I helped write it (thanks Graham for including us). I do wish that we had a snowboard mountaineering specific boot. I, too, am glad that Jimw mentioned that. I do look forward to the day when there are as many snowboard boot/binding options as AT or tele, but that is not the case right now. Maybe things will change with all of the new companies making splitboards. Maybe we should make like Maggots and start our own damn boot company. Anyone care to join me? 😀

    I agree on ALL counts.
    Especially the Boots one. Im game…how do we “press” boots….? 😀

    #591360

    I sure do wish there was a way to make boots…Dan?

    #591361
    SanFrantastico
    1514 Posts

    The easiest thing would be to just contract with a mountaineering boot company like Koflach, Scarpa, or La Sportiva to produce a boot to spec.

    There are a bunch of ways to work a deal, but you would probably help defray the cost of a designer’s salary as you work up a design, pay for tooling up their production line and commit to buying some number of boots at some price. The boot company could take on more or less of the design and tooling costs, depending on how much exposure they want to risk & profit. It’s called Manufacturing agreement and they do it all the time in my industry, biotech.

    Putting the poo in swimming pool since 1968.

    #591362
    UTAH
    830 Posts

    I’m just curious what people envision a snowboard mtneering boot looking like( e.g would it fit in a soft boot binding or would it work with a plate binding or race binding, etc.) I ask because I like my mlt’s, I would probably go with something just a little stiffer if I had the $, and I’m sure if I had endless amounts of money I could find a boot on the market that works perfectly for what I want. I see guys ripping big AT boots on their snowboards, doing sick lines, they don’t seem limited. I wonder how much of it is lack of skill vs. lack of effective equipment.

    #591363
    SanFrantastico
    1514 Posts

    Apologies in advance for the drift… 😳

    We are talking about a plastic shell boot with stiff, crampon-compatible, vibram soles, high cuffs and flex characteristics similar to something like a Malamute or Driver X. You would use it with strap bindings or strap/plate hybrids. It’s for people who may (or in my case may not) be plenty skilled, but prefer riding softboots to hardboots and who find that current softboot offerrings are inadequate when it comes to skinning, climbing, kicking steps, and staying dry on multi-day trips.

    Putting the poo in swimming pool since 1968.

    #591364
    Zach
    127 Posts

    I’ve tried just about every iteration of boot and binding combo and cobble-job possible, and here are the conclusions that I’ve come to:

    1. Soft Boots with strap bindings, on a splitboard, are a great option for local backcountry… and pretty much anything below 15k-feet and not involving technical climbing… if you like riding in soft boots.

    2. For actual snowboard mountaineering, very little needs to be fixed. AT boots with plate bindings are a perfect option…You may not like the hard boot riding style. However, the warmth and climbing performance of plastic boots combined with the reliability and durability of metal, plate bindings overcome that problem pretty easily. Witness the fact that the guys who have really pushed the limits of snowboard mountaineering use this set-up (Koch, Griber, etc….)

    I would like to see a 2-piece plate binding (toe-block and heel block) to cut weight, and it’s likely that Bomber will be making a pair for me, before I head off on my next trip.

    Some may disagree with me, but just look at the tangible results out there:

    – BCD and bc rider have been scoring some bitchin’ runs all over the Sierra in their soft-boot – splitboard set ups.

    – All of the ground-breaking descents at altitude have been done in AT boots with plate bindings.

    #591365
    jive stick
    110 Posts

    At risk of… 😥
    😉

    @Zach wrote:

    I’ve tried just about every iteration of boot and binding combo and cobble-job possible, and here are the conclusions that I’ve come to:

    Having tried most every method, also, including yours, about 15 years ago, my conclusion leads me to the fact that the ideal solution is currently unavailable. K2 came very close the year before they got outta the bc touring game.

    All of the ground-breaking descents at altitude have been done in AT boots with plate bindings.

    Out of curiosity, Zach, have you ever heard of Tom Burt or Jim Zeller?

    I know of one company very interested in a hybrid boot specific to snowboarding. Hopefully they will get serious.
    As for the garage cobbles, well, isn’t that how the splitboard came about in the first place.
    BTW, seen most of the current cobbles in years past.
    I always think avalanche and possible release from the board. That lack is foremost in my mind of things needing address.

    wowasatch.com

    #591366
    Zach
    127 Posts

    Yup.. I know of Tom and Jim… and, all of their serious climbs and descents at altitudes above 15k were done with plastic boots and plate bindings. They both ride in soft boots and use splitboards, but not at high altitude. The risk of frostbite is just too severe, and the compromise of climbing performance isn’t worth it.

    Keep reachin’, old man.

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