Ski touring – differences to alpine skiing

Touring skis are usually suitable for uphill climbs as well as the subsequent downhill runs. This is made possible by their special design:

  • Skins for grip: these are attached to the ski tips and stretched across the base of the skis. They make it possible to make your way uphill without sliding.
  • Bindings with a climbing system: these are special bindings where the boots are attached to the skis at the tip only, with two pins. You can therefore bend your foot as you normally would to fight your way up the mountain. The walking mechanism ensures optimum comfort and agility even on steep terrain.
  • Boots: they are available either with the classic lacing or with the modern Boa® system.
  • Lighter than alpine skis: touring skis are above all designed to be as lightweight as possible. Their low weight makes it possible to maintain a constant speed even uphill.

Caution with downhill runs

Once you have accomplished the challenging climb to the summit, you can not only look forward to amazing views but also to an undisturbed downhill run.

Despite their wooden core, touring skis have little in common with alpine skis in terms of the way they are used and their properties. Particular care must therefore be taken on downhill runs. The main reasons for this are:

  • They are not as wide
  • The offer less manoeuvrability edge grip
  • Turns require more strength
  • Not designed for short carving & high speeds

We therefore recommend that beginners start carefully in order to slowly get used to the different handling. As soon as you have familiarised yourself with the handling and special characteristics of touring skis, you can enjoy downhill runs to the full.

Off on your first ski tour

We are happy to advise you

 

Our shop staff will be happy to help you further if you have any questions. The right equipment is only half the battle. Once you decide to take up the sport of ski touring, tips on how to do it properly are particularly valuable. As the mechanism of both binding and construction as well as the features of the touring skis differ strongly from the Alpine skis in specific parts, a fundamental enrollment is of great importance for an unforgetable and especially for a safe experience at the mountain.

Here a few important questions we will be happy to advise you on in the shop:

  • What's the right way to attach the skins and can I take them off again after climbing uphill?
  • How can I switch from ski to walk mode and vice versa when touring?
  • How do I switch the bindings from ski to walk mode and vice versa?
  • What should I carry with me when touring, and what's the best way to carry it?
What we enjoy most is equipping people who are touring beginners. The joy in their faces when they return from the mountain is priceless.
Martin Holzer
Rental expert in the Bründl Sports Shop in Waidmannsheil, Kaprun, Austria