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Your community contributions

Good binding if you have EST
3 5

I'm happy with this binding, but there's a few things that could be improved. It's strong and stiff, which is the way I like my bindings. The straps are good quality and look like they will last a while. The footbeds are easy to remove although I leave them in.

I don't have a problem with needing a tool to make adjustments as I always carry one anyway. The only annoying thing with adjusting is that the bit you need for the ICS screws needs to be quite long as the 'rails' the screws sit in are quite high, that's definitely a design flaw.

I used to have cartels and I was expecting these to be lighter than those, but they're not.

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The footage of my buddy repeatedly trying to clip into his bindings in deep powder was probably fairly boring (amusing for snowboarders though!), but the overhead face shots on the way down - a different matter entirely!

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Hone your "slope angle" guesstimates
4 5

I bought this mainly so I can improve my ability to judge slope angles. I "guesstimate" the slope angle, then check it on this to confirm what it really is, that way I can update my "mental" model and hopefully get better to the point where I don't need it anymore.

I've found it gets harder to judge as the slope gets steeper. 30 degrees is fairly easy to judge (for me anyway!), but as you get to 40+ it gets a little harder.

OK, it's not what I'd call cheap, someone suggested I use an iPhone app (e.g. backcountry access free app) to measure slope angle, but do you really want to stop all the time, get out your iPhone, open the app, measure, put your phone back etc etc when you could just lay down your ski pole?

Having the temperature is handy, in this photo it was a nipple hardening -15C (not including wind chill!).

It has an auto power off feature and attaches to any ski pole via a velcro strap. For weight weenies - It's super light, you won't know it's there.

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No more fiddly pins!
4 5

Karakorams are the real deal when it comes to split board bindings. The days of fiddling with pins or, worse, snapping a pin on an exposed ridgeline are over! (sorry voile)

Aligning pucks is also a thing of the past. Of course it's worth spending an hour or so getting the fit snug and tight at home to avoid problems in the field. Make sure you re-tighten the screws after riding them once or twice.

In ride mode the bindings connect solidly with 5 contact points to the board.

Get yourself some heel lockdowns (enables split "skiing" although you can't put too much load on the binding as it'll snap) and on those flat run outs back to the trailhead you'll arrive at the same time as your 2-plank buddies.

Going from ride to tour, you don't even need to take the bindings off your boots.

These bindings aren't compatible with the old 'chinese' board hooks so you'll need to get the karakoram board clips as well, they're way better than the chinese hooks anyway.

I'd recommend the karakoram split crampons and you can fit these on the fly as well.

I've never had a problem with snow build-up, even in extreme balls deep powdery conditions such as Japan, all it takes is a tap to shake off excess snow.

The new bindings from spark r and d (tesla system) look a pretty solid alternative, although I haven't tried these.

My only (minor) gripe with these is the binding straps are a little low grade, could be better.

They also do a carbon version that I wish I'd bought, more expensive, but also lighter.

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Monsters!
4 5

These are absolute beasts and work really well with the Karakoram bindings. The design is slightly different from normal ski crampons in that they don't have 'free' and 'fixed' modes. It's kind of a hybrid between the two (although probably closer to 'free') and seems to be the best of both worlds. The toe end of the crampon will always be in contact with the snow (or ice!) and the rear part lifts up with your foot.

They're quite large and they do nest as advertised but they're not what I'd call compact when nested. I generally ski strap them in the nested config and then 'biner them to my backpack waist strap (or harness).

Importantly, you can fit/remove them on the fly without taking your feet out of the bindings (or bindings off the split).

Like any touring gear, it's worth spending some time at home with a screwdriver getting the fit right.

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