What else is in store?

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There’s no place more telling
that the ski industry pushes its
boundaries beyond the lifts than in

from Buyer’s Guide 2012

Generation Next

Head/Tyrolia claims its Generation Next binding ski toes offer unprecedented stability and
re-centring capabilities based on new kinematic science. Expect enhanced solidity
both horizontally and vertically, plus much improved tilt control through a reinvented
toepiece. The binding comes with an anthropomorphic twist: the red SX visually mimics a
fox; the black, performance-oriented LX, a bull.

A screwy Party pole

K2’s on-slope answer to pole dancing is the
Party Gold. It’s Factory Team-specific and
finds its trademark LockJaw upside down
on the midshaft of the lower half of the
pole for better aesthetics. But looks aren’t
everything: it’s also got a Phillips cross head
screwdriver embossed on the tip, meant to
work in conjunction with the K2/Marker
Schizo binding. It’s even easier now to switch
forward to switch riding, or back to some lofty
powder pursuing, with a flick of the wrist!

Poles positioned

You can’t wave a stick at these: Goode’s
long patented and releasable Inter-Loc
pole system pairs up with the company’s
thin-as-can-be carbon shafts, making the
poles lighter in weight and volume. Here’s
why you want these: lightweight poles
perform best and carbon is 30 per cent
lighter than aluminum, it doesn’t bend and
it’s more durable and changeable—plus
these goodies come with 27 new graphics
this season!

Backside hoe

Last year’s K2 LockJaw Backside series has been upgraded with the three-piece aluminum version, which, as the name suggests, means triple your adjustment pleasure and a more storable pole. It’s also improved basket removability with a new threading device. Those looking for light over storability will want the LockJaw carbon/carbon, which features a bubble dial inclinometer to gauge slope angle, comes with a snow-depth ruler for measuring snowpack levels, works as an avi back-up probe, and even has a utility hook on it so it can be used as a hoe.

Tooling around

It’s always about weight in the backcountry,
so to lighten things up K2 has come up with a
party pack of innovations that has quickly made
the Seattle-based company a one-stop shop for
the backcountry skier. Take your pick of carbon
or aluminum probes, and choose between its
standard and souped-up rescue shovels, which
convert into rescue sleds when used with
Backside or many Factory Team skis. These
extra-strong shovels also adjust into a hoe with
an ingenious device that switches the blade
profi le. Super-size by picking up the Pilchuck
Kit pack, a minimalist’s dream that’s slimmed to
fit on the chairlift, yet savvy enough for shovel
and probe with room to spare. To round out the
cast: a choice of LockJaw poles and precut or
trim-to-fit skins with a new plush material that
K2 claims will climb anything your legs can. 

Marty McLennan
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