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locking the heel

By ccrossen | February 8, 2010

Locked the heel for the first time today since 1993; making a parallel turn was never easier and actually efficient. That said, it’s going to take a long long time to get back into the “alpine” groove. I was having horrible visions of blowing my ACL (made while paralleling on tele) today. It’s amazing how difficult it is to traverse and climb up small hills and bend down to put on my two-year old son’s skis. Still working my way through the intricacies and delicacies of Dynafit-world, but overall, I like the design, weight, and benefits. Now I just need to get my boots fitting better, and I’ll be ready to push things to the next level a bit. P<>I don’t think you can be a truly rounded skier until you master all three disciplines: alpine, AT, and tele. So I am slowly working on my way to get back toward more competency with a locked heel.

There’s been quite the commotion with tel-pine and paramarking, etc. this season (as there always is, it seems), but the bottom-line is I make whatever is the best, most-efficient, and most fun turn for the given type of snow and terrain, which is why I have stuck with tele so long – you can switch up turns, alpine or tele whenever you want, and get the benefits of both setups when needed – way more many turns and tricks to reach into, especially if you’re out on a tour in Tahoe and hit steeps, ice, breakable, and pow on the same day. However, the one thing I did learn today after 17 years of not locking the heel: making parallel turns on fixed-heel bindings are way more efficient and there’s way way more easy drive. Lots of people already know this and have abandoned tele altogether, which makes sense. Or not, depending on how you like to mix things up.

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