Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Some thoughts on Climbing Skins

As an ex-xc ski racer I'm always trying to find a faster skin combination for my skimo skis. I've got about a dozen pair of racing skins. I delight in the fact that unlike ski wax where once you put it on the ski it’s gone for good, skins, though initially expensive, only get faster with each repeated use. Among my collection are several SkiTrab/coltex skins, Amplatz blondies, Pomoca race mohair (race width and full coverage). This summer I purchased 2 new sets. First- Coltex specials (teammate Reiner swears by them for cold weather). I bought the carving ones as they were the only ones I could find. I may keep them "wall to wall" up front, then cut them off just behind the heel. My Pomoca "wall to wall-tip to tail’s" have been awesome. In N. America so many of our races are on steep climbing dh ski areas, where you really aren’t gliding, so you go with the big grip and relax. The other pair I purchased was the new Coltex racing skins. I think they’re the purple-PDG model (named for the race). They claim 20% weight reduction and faster glide....we’ll see.

Yesterday I was talking to my old Atomic rep (I was sponsored back in the day), and he was explaining their new waxless ski. They’ve gone back to 70's technology and put a mohair insert onto an xc race ski. He says that skin company Kohla developed a teflon coated skin hair that is impervious to water. I’ve tried doing some websearch, but haven’t come up with much. It could be a pretty cool (and fast) development though for us in the skimo world.

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