The spring Sierra couloir corn harvest (that’s hard to say) is nearly upon us and sadly the pow sticks will be taking a seat on the bench. However with more daylight and warmer weather its time to get dialed for long days with lots of vertical in steep terrain. The holy grail of spring ski gear is light weight without sacrificing ski performance. Here is my top choice for spreading the smoothest of butter; G3 Finder 184cm with the G3 Ion LT bindings and the G3 Scala skins.
G3 Ion LT Binding – I’ve been a long time user and advocate of Dynafit bindings however the G3 Ion bindings are easily comparable in all aspects and even a better binding in many ways. The G3 Ion LT is the breakless and lighter version of the Ion binding. A few of my favorite features of this binding are the toe piece, and forward pressure of the heal. When stepping into the Ion binding the first thing you notice is how strong the pins snap into your boots. If you have ever doubted a tech toe piece the power of stepping into an Ion will help ease your my mind from prelease nightmares. The binding creates a solid connection and maximum performance from the bindings to the boots. My other favorite feature of the Ion binding is the forward pressure and elasticity of the heal piece. This gives the binding a DIN certified release and allows for the ski to flex and move with the binding. Again this creates a better connection from the bindings to boots. Oh did I mention it’s also super light…
**User tip – Make sure that the heal piece tower pins are turned inward when you switch to skin mode (see photos.) The pins should be facing each other as you skin. If you have the rear of the binding facing each other they tend to hit while you are skinning and could transfer you back into ski mode (photo 2.)
**Ski crampons – If you plan to use ski crampons with this binding make sure to purchase them with the binding. There is an extra piece that needs to be installed under the toe piece for the ski crampons to attach to (photo 3.)
G3 Scala Skins – Who would have thought a revolutionary change in skins could ever happen? The Scala skins are an exciting new product that changes the game on the uphill and also pack ability of touring skins. The hard plastic tip allows for the front of the ski to stay up and out of the powder and prevents snow from jamming between your skins and the ski compromising the glue (photos 4 & 5.)
My favorite feature is the skin folds over the plastic tip to create a thin and organized package that is easily slipped into your pack. This also prevents the hassle of pulling your skins apart with the glued sides stuck together.
G3 Findr 184cm – I’ve had around 20 backcountry days on the Findr ski this season and they have been super fun and reliable to ski on in all conditions, even deep powder! This is an extremely light ski that has a fantastic strength to flex ratio. It’s stiff enough ski under foot to ski chowdery hard snow, and has an early rise tip with great flex to keep you floating and popping through the deep powder. Don’t get me wrong this is not a stiff ski that will plow through icy chunder all day, but that’s the sacrifice for how light they are. I primarily use this ski for long spring ski missions with unknown snow conditions but I would also recommend this ski as a one quiver daily driver for backcountry skiers.
Plan your Eastern Sierra Backcountry Skiing trip using the Eastern Sierra Guide Book available in our store or for your convenience here on Amazon.
Former park ranger turned writer/marketer. Always down for a sufferfest, as long as it ends with ice cream. Favorite activities include backcountry skiing, trail running, and backpacking.