Backcountry ski expeditioning

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bgregoire
Posts: 1385
Joined: Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:31 am
Ski style: Nordic backcountry touring with lots of turns
Favorite Skis: Fisher E99 & Boundless (98), Åsnes Ingstad, K2 Wayback 88
Favorite boots: Crispi Sydpolen, Alico Teletour & Alfa Polar

Backcountry ski expeditioning

Post by bgregoire » Thu Mar 12, 2015 6:04 pm

Starting up this topic to share my passion for multi-day ski expeditioning of the XCD sort. Whether it be ski camping, hut to hut, up and down on teles, fast and far on skinnies and everything in between. Let's get everyone ready for the ultimate winter experience! :D
I live for the Telemark arc....The feeeeeeel.....I ski miles to get to a place where there is guaranteed snow to do the deal....TM

User avatar
bgregoire
Posts: 1385
Joined: Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:31 am
Ski style: Nordic backcountry touring with lots of turns
Favorite Skis: Fisher E99 & Boundless (98), Åsnes Ingstad, K2 Wayback 88
Favorite boots: Crispi Sydpolen, Alico Teletour & Alfa Polar

Re: Backcountry ski expeditioning

Post by bgregoire » Thu Mar 12, 2015 6:20 pm

jooleyen wrote: I had been planning on choosing between the glittertind, nansen, amundsen, e99, or 109 for this trip just based on what most other Norwegians seem to be using for distance. Just want to get one to use around here so I can get comfortable with it and learn it's handling. And using a pulk for sure. Did you bring all your food for your expedition or did you resupply someplace?

I guess that just shows anything can happen with gear. Just have to be as cautious as possible and try to be prepared to make repairs.
For a trip in northern scandinavia:
As for the precise ski shape you choose, really either of those are good choices for a scandinavian traverse. Amundsen and E99 would fit better in tracks (I never used the glittertind) if ever you encounter those. I'd say go with the wider Nansen or E109 if you are either new to the sport, without a XC background or wanting to have some days hunting for turns. Otherwise, the thinner ones will be more efficient going from point A to B.

For the pulk, make sure you choose a pulk system with a rigid hauling system, not simply a rope. They are are several models out there but you can make em real cheap with the orange Paris sled.

Coming back to the skis, hauling a pulk requires skins. Half skins are best. As such, make sure you get either a Asnes ski with integrated half skin trap or the new Fischer Easy Skin. AVOID the black diamond kicker skins given the annoying metal plate at the front that sticks and graps in consolidated snow and ice which is found everywhere up there!

As for food, Ski camping, I would recommend a resupply every 10 days or so max (boxes sent in advance via bus). It is totally possible in that area. If you are going hut to hut, norwegian huts have canned and dried food you can buy (self-serve) and when in Sweden, every few days, you could hit a larger hut with either a restaurant or some type of food store if you follow the main trails such as the Kungsleden.In both cases though, its relatively expensive.
Last edited by bgregoire on Thu Mar 12, 2015 10:02 pm, edited 2 times in total.
I live for the Telemark arc....The feeeeeeel.....I ski miles to get to a place where there is guaranteed snow to do the deal....TM





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CIMA
Posts: 423
Joined: Sun Sep 28, 2014 11:01 pm
Location: Japan

Re: Backcountry ski expeditioning

Post by CIMA » Thu Mar 12, 2015 8:18 pm

Though there are very few contributions I could make here, the thread seems very interesting to me!
Ski expeditioning is one of my dreams. :-)
The flowing river never stops and yet the water never stays the same.





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jooleyen
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Feb 06, 2015 4:47 pm
Location: WI, 155lbs with / 195lbs without a pack

Re: Backcountry ski expeditioning

Post by jooleyen » Thu Mar 12, 2015 9:41 pm

What are the best NNN BC backcountry boots. I mean in durability, reliability, etc. It seems the Crispi Svartisen and Alpina Alaska are the two to choose between?





MikeK

Re: Backcountry ski expeditioning

Post by MikeK » Thu Mar 12, 2015 9:48 pm

lilcliffy is our only data point for reliability with the Alaska - well that and Ben. He's got some miles on his.

I don't think anyone posting here has any info about the NNN BC Svartisen. Despite the Crispi fitting my foot shape better, the Alaska is more comfortable (comparing the 75mm versions) and that has to count for something.

The Goretex liner on the Svartisen is a nice feature, but I feel the Alaska is warmer.

Just rambling off misc. difference that might pertain to ski expeditions.





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bgregoire
Posts: 1385
Joined: Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:31 am
Ski style: Nordic backcountry touring with lots of turns
Favorite Skis: Fisher E99 & Boundless (98), Åsnes Ingstad, K2 Wayback 88
Favorite boots: Crispi Sydpolen, Alico Teletour & Alfa Polar

Re: Backcountry ski expeditioning

Post by bgregoire » Thu Mar 12, 2015 9:57 pm

jooleyen wrote:What are the best NNN BC backcountry boots. I mean in durability, reliability, etc. It seems the Crispi Svartisen and Alpina Alaska are the two to choose between?
Woof...durability is one thing but another is comfort. Not all slippers fit the princess and the same goes for ski boots. All boots I go for need to have a wide toe box and I have yet to slip into a boot wide enough for my toes (I'm hoping Alfa from Norway will be sublime whenever I get to try them on).

In terms of width, it goes something like this (from narrow to widest): Rossignol/Salomon(SNS though) - Fischer/Alpina, at least for the brands and models I have access to here.

As for durability, I'm pretty sure all NNN BC boots have the same exact sole, produced by Rottefella, so no discrepancies there. Next would be leather vs synthetic (including synthetic leather). My take is leather boots are much more durable. Synthetics tends to cracks after a few years. Svartisen and Alaska have been talked about quite a bit on this forum, thanks to Mikek, and I agree, they are great boots. the Alpina 1600 is probably also very good and so would most of the Crispi line although it seems most of them are unavailable in North America. Check out the Alfa boots if you are going to Norway anyways. I salivate profusely everytime I look.

PS: I regularly use the Fischer BCX 6. One of the best of the "synthetics" out there but its far from perfect. Lacing ends too low, under the ankle, and the ankle it tightened by a simple velcro that is too wide. I bought it cause it has the widest toe box I could find at the time. I do like that they use real leather on the part of the exterior, right where the boot bends most, preventing premature cracking I would expect in other synthetic boots. Its got some crazy intense heel cup action going too.
I live for the Telemark arc....The feeeeeeel.....I ski miles to get to a place where there is guaranteed snow to do the deal....TM





MikeK

Re: Backcountry ski expeditioning

Post by MikeK » Thu Mar 12, 2015 10:05 pm

Yeah I thought the sole was the same - but the Vibram soles on the 75mm versions are not all equal - some crack, some are stiffer, ect. I think it's just the bottom part of the mold for those. I'm not sure if NNN is the same deal?

Another thing to consider when comparing the Alaska to the Svartisen is complexity. The Alaska is a much simpler boot with less fiddly parts to fail. The lace system on the Svartisen isn't exactly very supportive (but you could ski with just that). The buckles are plasticy and not super tough feeling. They will fail eventually. And then there is Crispi's track record. They are not considered as high quality as the other Italian manufacturers.

With the Alaska all you need to be concerned with is a spare pair of laces.





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snowrunner
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Joined: Wed Dec 03, 2014 11:34 am

Re: Backcountry ski expeditioning

Post by snowrunner » Thu Mar 12, 2015 10:06 pm

I made a few overnight backcountry ski trip (from 2 to 6 days), and the biggest problem I've encountered so far with my partner is severely frozen boot in the morning. I wet my boat a lot in a day (mostly sweating), and after a long night outside, putting the boat back on is the worst torture ever. You need to break them again, warm them odd and endure cold feet for a long time before getting that "comfy" chilly wet boat. I've tried many tips to prevent humidity, which help a little bit, but not much, problem persist.

Next time, I don't care where I go, even if it's deadly flat, I'm definitely not leaving without a boat with a removable inner boat (ie: Plastic double boots).





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bgregoire
Posts: 1385
Joined: Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:31 am
Ski style: Nordic backcountry touring with lots of turns
Favorite Skis: Fisher E99 & Boundless (98), Åsnes Ingstad, K2 Wayback 88
Favorite boots: Crispi Sydpolen, Alico Teletour & Alfa Polar

Re: Backcountry ski expeditioning

Post by bgregoire » Thu Mar 12, 2015 10:09 pm

MikeK wrote:And then there is Crispi's track record. They are not considered as high quality as the other Italian manufacturers.
What other leather ski boot manufacturers are there in Italy that produce NNN BC boots?
I live for the Telemark arc....The feeeeeeel.....I ski miles to get to a place where there is guaranteed snow to do the deal....TM





MikeK

Re: Backcountry ski expeditioning

Post by MikeK » Thu Mar 12, 2015 10:09 pm

I never used to do this when I was into winter camping, and I used to deal with the block of ice boot in the morning, but now it's pretty common for people to use vapor barrier socks. If you are broke you can just use plastic bread bags - but they aren't as durable.





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