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Ortovox Trace 25 Review: A Lightweight Ski Touring Backpack

Ortovox Trace 25 Review: A Lightweight Ski Touring Backpack

“Fast, lightweight and safe” is how Ortovox describes the Trace 25 and after testing I have no reason to argue. The Trace is as fairly minimalist pack and competes in the ultra-lightweight touring pack segment. It’s a 25 liter pack that weighs less than a pound with a claimed weight of 445 grams. If you don’t need 25 liters of storage you could look at the Trace 20 and the Trace 23 S and Trace 18 S (which are basically…

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Hot New Backcountry Skiing Gear for 2021

Hot New Backcountry Skiing Gear for 2021

Every year we see an evolution (and occasionally a revolution) of backcountry gear and this year is no exception. I’m pretty sure I say this every year, but the selection just keeps getting better! Here are a few goodies that we’ve been drooling over at Hikeforpow. Get ’em while they’re hot! I’m not even kidding – supply is a bit on the short side this year because of the whole pandemic situation driving more skiers to the backcountry. BCA Tracker…

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First Look: Pomoca Climb Pro S-Glide Skins

First Look: Pomoca Climb Pro S-Glide Skins

Well Christmas is over but I got to unwrap another sweet toy today. Well not really a toy…new skins! After using the excellent Contour Hybrid Mix skins for most of the past couple seasons I’m switching it up. Enter the Pomoca Climb Pro S-Glide climbing skins. Nice concise name. Really rolls off the tongue. Jokes aside, these skins are highly regarded by backcountry skiers, so I thought I would try them out this season. They should be fairly comparable to…

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Salomon S/Lab Shift MNC 13: The Ultimate Resort/Touring Binding?

Salomon S/Lab Shift MNC 13: The Ultimate Resort/Touring Binding?

I finally got to spend some time skiing and touring in the Salomon S/Lab Shift MNC 13 this season. Minds were blown when this binding was announced with its radical new design combining pins for touring with an alpine style toe and heel. But has it lived up to the hype? It isn’t perfect, but it’s pretty damn close. It tours like a tech binding (a heavy one, to be fair) but skis a lot like a high quality alpine…

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Mammut Ultimate V Tour SO Softshell Review

Mammut Ultimate V Tour SO Softshell Review

I was looking for a new softshell for touring this year and ended up with the Mammut Ultimate V Tour SO. Yes, the name is a bit of a mouthful. What I was specifically looking for was a jacket that I could wear over a base layer while hiking. Something that was windproof (or close to it), had a generous hood and breathed really well. I’ve been really stoked with this jacket – it hits all of those goals exceedingly…

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Hot New Backcountry Gear for 2019/2020

Hot New Backcountry Gear for 2019/2020

Every season the ski gods bless us with more new goodies than you can shake a stick at and this year is no exception. Touring boots are better than ever, more lightweight tech bindings keep hitting the market, and as always there are new skis to test drive. Here are some of the highlights of new backcountry gear for the 2019/2020 season. Dynafit Hoji Free MSRP: $899.95Weight: 1550 grams (sz 27)Last width: 102 mm Buy Now: Backcountry.com, evo.com, REI.com, Dynafit.com…

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Mammut Spindrift 32 Ski Touring Pack Review

Mammut Spindrift 32 Ski Touring Pack Review

I needed a new go-to touring pack this year for day trips and ended up going with the 32 liter version of the Mammut Spindrift. I have a smaller pack for quick trips (the Ortovox Trace 25 – review upcoming), but on colder days with lots of extra layers to pack or on longer journeys 32 liters provides more space. The Spindrift 32 is quite light, but it is not a minimalist pack. If you’re looking for a race pack…

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The Best Avalanche Airbag Packs in 2019

The Best Avalanche Airbag Packs in 2019

Avalanche Airbags are all the rage these days and with good reason. The chances of surviving a slide with an airbag is way higher than without. This article will give readers a bit of background on avalanche airbag packs and then look at the best avalanche airbag packs in 2019. There are options for many different uses, so read on to find out which one makes sense for you. What is an Avalanche Airbag? We’ll go over the basics here,…

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Fritschi Xenic 10 Touring Bindings: Overview and First Impressions

Fritschi Xenic 10 Touring Bindings: Overview and First Impressions

In our roundup of the Best Tech Touring Bindings in 2019 we mentioned a new tech binding: the Fritschi Xenic 10. Fritschi was well known for years as the manufacturers of the ubiquitous Freeride frame touring bindings. But recently they’ve made waves with the Tecton and Vipec Evo touring bindings, which are hybrid tech bindings that ski extremely well. The Xenic 10 is Fritschi’s first foray into the lightweight pin binding arena and one thing they definitely nailed is the…

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Best Climbing Skins for Backcountry Skiing in 2019

Best Climbing Skins for Backcountry Skiing in 2019

Looking for some new carpets to get you up the skin track? Well you’re in the right place. There are more options than ever for climbing skins in 2019, and this guide will help you separate the good from the bad and choose the right skins for your adventures. Skins are a critical piece of gear for backcountry skiing and having them fail can really ruin your day so get a good pair and take care of them. What Makes…

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