Posted on

We’re Hiring: Ecommerce Coordinator (FT/YR) Position

Basin Sports is the oldest businesses in the Killington community. In fact, the Basin Ski Shop opened ten days before Killington Ski Resort.  For more than sixty years Basin Sports has been a premier mountain-sports retailer with a long history of outstanding customer service.

We are currently looking for someone to fill a role in our Online Department managing our online store. Basin is a fun, fast paced work environment that offers flexible hours and numerous perks. The ideal candidate is a self-starter with the ability to learn quickly. The position offers the right candidate a real opportunity to have an impact on Basin’s Sports growth and brand image.

The Start Date is Immediate. This is a full-time position with flexible hours allowing for ample time to ski, ride, and bike.

Roles and Responsibilities

The Ecommerce Coordinator will work closely with the Marketing Coordinator, as well is coworkers in insuring a cohesive professional workplace in overseeing the duties and tasks listed below:

  • Manage the e-commerce product pages and backend website content.
  • Create dynamic and creative ads with Google Adwords and Facebook Ads
  • Write product descriptions and input product data
  • Debug Products on the backend (SEO, webpage visualization, issues with variation)
  • Manage online order fulfillment
  • Manage returns and warranties for online customers
  • Provide online Customer Service via phone, email and chat

Qualifications

  • Experience working in the outdoor Industry
  • Digital Advertising and Digital Marketing Experience
  • HTML, Java and PHP coding experience
  • Experience working with WooCommerce or a related online POS system.
  • An understanding of Google Ad platforms, or the willingness and desire to become an expert in Google advertising
  • Opportunities for continuing education and professional advancement

Preferred Knowledge and Skills

  • Online Webstore Management
  • Knowledge and understanding of the ski industry and bike industry
  • B2C experience
  • Knowledge and understanding of graphic design
  • Knowledge and understanding of HTML and other basic web code languages
  • Experience with boxing and shipping and order fulfillment is preferred.

Perks

  • Pass for summer and winter at Killington Resort
  • Employee Pricing on Products
  • Flexible hours for skiing and biking
  • Get to write and create content about the latest and greatest happenings in the ski and bike industry
  • A fun working environment that wants you to to take time to try the products you write about.
  • A chance to have a real impact on the growing part of a business and a year-round job with a future in the Killington area.
  • An incentive program tied to the growth of the online business

Basin Sports, being the oldest doesn’t make you the best. Being the best makes you the oldest.

Employment Application

Apply for a position at Basin Sports by filling out our application below!
Posted on

An Update For Season Lease Customers

This winter season was a bit unexpected for all of us. We understand that some of you are unable to return your leased equipment at this time due to stay at home orders put forth by your state. Some of you have been able to swing by and that’s great, Thank You! For those of you who can’t and won’t be able to visit the shop in the near future- it’s okay! We’ve got a plan for you.

Keep Your Equipment

No really, hang on to it. We might call and check in and see how things are going, but seriously hang on to your lease equipment. When things get back to normal next season and you do come up to the mountain to prepare for skiing we’ll be here waiting.

And if you decide you want to do a lease again for another year we’ll charge you $99 for the lease to make up for a shortened 19/20 ski season. We’re still working out some of the fine print for this package, but we want to be here for you, and support you in this unpredictable time. So keep calm, and carry on- we’ll see you in the winter.

Posted on

Basin Sports Response to COVID-19

OUR ONLINE BUSINESS IS OPEN

Basin Sports and The Lookout Bar at Killington

Dear Basin Friends,

The Basin crew is anxiously looking forward to welcoming you back.  We have been busy preparing the store and are ready to officially open our doors with great deals on hardgoods and clothing.  As Vermont continues to move forward, we will be ready to welcome you back while still taking the necessary precautions to ensure that we stay safe and well.

We are currently doing curbside drop-off and pick-up and in-store by appointment.  Please feel free to call to chat, we are here for you.

Check out our website for special discounts on a wide selection of 2019 and 2020 products.  We offer free ground shipping on orders of $99 or more.

Like you, we are ready to get out and enjoy our favorite pastimes.  Let your Basin Sports crew help you reconnect with and be part of your outdoor inspiration.

We #thriveoutside and so can you.  Stay strong, be well, enjoy.

Sincerely,

Your Basin Crew

FAQ’s:

  • Are You Open?
    • Yes, we are open for curbside service and sales as well as online 24/7. Our in-store hours currently are 7 Days a week 10:00- 5:30 PM.
  • I Have Not Returned My Season Lease Equipment
    • We understand that this is an unprecedented time and understand if you’re unable to return your equipment on time. We do ask that you call us so we can make a not on your paperwork. We will not charge you if you do not return your equipment on time.
  • I’m a Season Tune Customer and left my skis at the shop. Will you charge me for summer storage?
    • We do not charge a summer storage fee. That’s a perk of being a season tune customer at Basin Sports. If you’d like your skis summarized let us know. Your skis will be here waiting when you return.
  • How does your Curbside Process Work?
    • Curbside service and sales is relatively easy and follows procedures that most other bike shops are following. For now Bike Shops are deemed essential by the State of Vermont. Ski Shops are not. So if you’d like to drop off a bicycle for service work you can do so.
      • Please call in advance to let us know you’re coming and what kind of work you’d like done.
      • Drive to the store and call us to let us know you’ve arrived.
      • Leave your bike by the door and walk back to your car.
      • A Bike Mechanic will then come out, disinfect and do a visual assessment of your bike- Then communicate to you what the service costs will look like.
      • The bike will then go in the store for work.
      • When you pick up the bike you can either give a credit card over the phone or allow a mechanic to bring the card into the store to ring through the sale.
  • I bought something online and have not received confirmation?
    • Due to current realities we’re short-staffed and may take an extra day to process your order. We do not ship on the weekends. Please be patient with us. If there’s an issue with your order we’ll email or call you.
  • I’d like to purchase a bicycle?
    • Like curbside service you can order a bike over the phone. Specialized is offering a great drop ship and rebate incentive on select bicycles. Purchase the bike online on their website and select shipping to our store. We’ll then build the bike and call you for you to pick it up.
  • Do you offer payment plans on bikes?
    • Yes! We do. We have a special payment option with Specialized through their credit system and have our own credit option for other bike brands such as Pivot and Norco.

 

If we didn’t answer your question, shoot us a message on Facebook or Call The Shop at 802-442-3234.

 

Stay Safe!

#thriveoutside

Posted on

Customer Appreciation Demo Day #2

Basin Sports Customer Appreciation Demo Day

Customer Appreciation Demo Day #2

You’re Invited To Basin Sports Customer Appreciation Demo Day #2!

Our Season Tuners are invited to the 2nd Customer Appreciation Demo Day of the 19/20 season. One of the many perks of being a Basin Sports Season Tuner is the two seasonal demo days where you can test the latest skis from all our ski companies.
You are encouraged to sign-up and complete your waiver in advance at the store. Demo Days typically start at 8AM and finish around 1PM. If you’d like to try a specific ski let us know in advance! That way we can notify the rep for that brand and they can bring that ski.
Brands That Will Be Attending:
  • Atomic
  • Armada
  • Black Crows
  • K2
  • Nordica
  • Salomon
  • Rossignol
Customer Appreciation Demo Day #2

Basin Sports is the oldest businesses in the Killington community. In fact, the Basin Ski Shop opened ten days before Killington Ski Resort, on December 14, 1958.  For more than sixty years Basin Sports has been a leading mountain-sports retailer with a long history of outstanding customer service.
The Torrey family, owners and operators of Basin Sports since 1991, are determined to continue providing an unmatched experience, both in the store and on the slopes. The industry has taken notice too, awarding Basin Sports the Ski Magazine Gold Medal nine years in a row and twice naming Basin Sports the best ski shop in New England.
Posted on

Everything You Need To Know About The Salomon Stance Ski

Everything You Need To Know About The Salomon Stance Ski

Salomon skis continues to impress me. From one skier to another I was never the biggest fan of Salomon. Their skis were too soft or too stiff and really didn’t fit into my style of skiing. That was until the redeveloped the QST 92 ski and now the Stance Series. Saying I’m a Salomon Fan-girl may be an overstatement but right now from 2020 into 2021 I’m really digging their skis.

Before I even dive into the technical details of the Stance Skis let me lay out the typical skier who might be skiing this ski. I’m going to focus on the Women’s Stance 88 and the Men’s Stance 90 ( Though I reference the 88 most of all). These were my two favorite out of all the Stance’s I tried at the industry test fest back in January. The Stance is a ski for the everyday recreational skier. It’s the all-mountain, daily driver, hard charger of skis. For those familiar with the XDR series this is the new inception of that. I ski like a Slalom skier. I take short and aggressive turns. I’ll lay my edge over but it’s a precise turn and I don’t like to draw it out. The Stance ski clicked with me because it was precise and edge-able. When I gained speed and wanted to make a turn I felt in control and confident that my edge would hold.

Eventually I will have a full review video for your viewing pleasure but for now you can take a look at this clip from on-snow at Pico back in January. I’m 5’9″ and 150Ilbs- and with Salomon’s Sizing this year I could either try a 168cm or 174cm. I opted for the 174cm ski and tried that across the entire collection. In the 88 in particular it felt almost short. I got the same precise turning response that I would on something in the 165 range. That was comforting to me in a way. I knew on a longer ski I could make my short aggressive turns and be confident in my edge and the skis ability to come around quickly. To give you an idea, I came down the first pitch of the day on these skis, having never skied them before. This pitch was the 49er trail at Pico. A wide trail, yet probably the steepest pitch on the entire mountain. My friend and I stop at the bottom of the first pitch and I exclaim, “Holy S–T! These skis are phenomenal!”. This same little section of trail hadn’t felt nearly as confidence inspiring on any of the other skis I had tried that day. I cannot reinforce how stable on edge the Stance Series is. It’s pretty much putting all other skis to shame in it’s waist category with it’s edge stability and dampening absorption at speed. These skis are so good in fact that I’m planning on selling my narrow waisted ski this fall and buying the Salomon Stance 88 in it’s place.

Technical Goodies

Salomon Stance 88 Specs:

  • Lengths (cm): 154, 161, 168, 174
  • Sidecut Dimensions (mm): 120/88/102 (@161)
  • Radius: 17m (@161)
  • Weight: 1,520g (@161)
  • MSRP: $725

Salomon Stance 90 Specs:

  • Lengths (cm): 168, 176, 182, 188
  • Sidecut Dimensions (mm): 126/90/106 (@176)
  • Radius: 18m (@176)
  • Weight: 1,775g (@176)
  • MSRP: $800

Salomon Stance

The Women’s Salomon Stance 88 is essentially the same as the men’s ski, yet the core is made of karuba/poplar not just poplar (Men’s skis are full poplar). Similarly both skis will have traditional metal titanal. Nothing to fancy, all designed with a full poplar wood core, race-inspired sidecut, full sandwich sidewall, and double Titanal construction for increased edge grip. Both the men’s and women’s Stance skis will feature a new technology to reduce weight and torsional rigidity of the core: laser-milled windows in the upper Titanal layer reinforced with a blend of carbon and basalt. The idea here is one, to replace the now dated XDR collection and to bridge the gap between the QST line and X/Max Collection. For skiers who need an everyday daily drive type ski the Stance is the best choice on the market. Though we focus on the 88 here, the women’s skis come in 88 and 94 underfoot- whereas the men’s is available in 90, 96 and 102 underfoot.

Personally having skiing the 94 and 96 I preferred the 88 and 90. The wider the ski got the less playful it became. I think if I were to choose a wider waist ski from Salomon I’d end up going to a QST. When the ski gets wider I still want it to be playful and forgiving, not overly damp and heavy which is the impression I got from the Stance line. A no brainier to me though is as an east coast skier (or even a west coast skier), if you want a reliable and trustworthy ski that will perform well for an intermediate to advanced level skier, the narrower Stance options are a great addition to a quiver. For carving or even east coast powder days, the stance is a great choice.

 

We’ll have these skis available for demo before this season is over, and purchase for early fall 2020.

Posted on

Dogs of Outdoor Retailer

Leashed Dog at Outdoor Retailer 2020

Dogs of Outdoor Retailer

Though attending Outdoor Retailer is fun and has a lot of positives, it’s also exhausting and a lot of work is accomplished over 3 short days. Working 10-12 hour days, emails, content creation and the occasional long night out leads to some serious fatigue. During the show you’re normally running from one appointment to the next, often skipping snacks and lunch- it’s stressful. One of the happier sides of the show though is all the dogs you meet hence the Dogs of Outdoor Retailer. Some very famous, with more Instagram followers than the average influencer- some just cute and there for the attention. This year I decided for my own sanity and for the additional content to photograph some of these dogs for your viewing pleasure. I can attest too, that a friendly face lick and fur pat helped reduce stress and anxiety from the show. So enjoy! This years “Dogs of OR” was an on the whim idea. Next year I plan to be more analytical and get each dog’s name and a quote from the owner.

Taking A Break

Dogs of Outdoor Retailer: Day 1

Day 1 was all business for me. Jam packed with appointments and trying to get familiar with the layout of this show. If you’re unfamiliar with the Colorado Convention Center it’s about the size of a football stadium but has 3 floors. A walk at a brisk pace front to back takes about 5 minutes. So day 1 was all about work. I snapped the pic above of this dog after my meeting with Mike Girard from Jones/NOW and then and there decided hey, maybe I should start snapping some Dog pictures and do a whole bit on it. This was towards the end of the day and I was running out of the show to meet with Bogner, so this was the only picture I got on day 1.

Dogs of Outdoor Retailer: Day 2

First thing in the morning I’m greeting with this cute pupper. One of the clauses for a dog to be able to attend Outdoor Retailer is they must be well behaved and have good manners. This Dog, whose name I did not get seemed a bit overwhelmed by the noise, but was calm and composed.

This dog is Finn the Mini Aussie, owned by Kelly Thomson. Finn founded his roots right here in Vermont. Though he now live in Colorado, Kelly used to bartend at Lookout back in the day. You may have even seen him in puppy for a few years ago. Finn loved all the attention he received at Outdoor Retailer and I’m sure he’ll be a repeat attendee.

During the Happy Hour peruse I stumbled upon this guy. His owners didn’t even see me. But once you kneel down to setup a shot, most dogs would like to come say hi with a face lick. This guy held his composure, though I did get a bit of motion blur with a happy tail wag. I’m sure he’s thinking, “Finally! Someone is paying attention to me!”

 

Over at the Black Diamond Booth (where unbeknownst to me Alex Honold the famous free solo rock climber is doing autograph signings) I came across this dog. Hard to tell in this picture but in person this dog had some wolf- like characteristics. And he’ll do tricks for treats!

 

When I came over to this dog and it’s owner we were by the Patagonia booth. The owner is on her knees with the dog and explains to me (when I ask if I can snap a photo) that she just needs a minute. See this dog, who is very well behaved did not like one dog in particular, a small little cocker spaniel and he was in the Patagonia booth next to us (we were outside). So we took a minute to get the dog settled then set up the shot. When they say all the dogs need to be well behaved to enter the show, they aren’t understating that. All the dogs I snapped photos of were some of the most well-mannered and respectful dogs I’ve encountered. Props to this owner for being able to calm her pup down and keep on going.

Is it really an Outdoor Retail Show without a Bernese Mountain Dog? I saw plenty but this is the only one I got a photo of. He was the size of a small couch too and love the attention he received. If you’ve never met a Bernese Mountain Dog the pretty much keep that puppy personality their entire lives.

Do Not Pet. There were actually a few dogs with Do Not Pet vests on. I didn’t inquire as to why this lab had this vest on. One could summarize that maybe she get’s overstimulated by people touching here. Or maybe she’s an off-duty K-9. At any rate she was more than happy to let me take her photo.

I find walking the tradeshow floor exhausting. And that’s in comfy hiking shoes. Imagine being a Dog and doing that. I feel you tired Golden Retriever. I tried to get a photo down on his level (it didn’t come out well) and he just stared straight past me. Tradeshows are hard work!

Coco was a bundle of love. So much so that his owner had to hold him back for the photo. Hence the confused look on his face. I have another blurry photo of Coco attempting to give me kisses. Coco was one of my favorites.

Poco here is good friends with Finn the mini aussie I discussed earlier. What breed do you think Poco is? I see a bit of Basenji, maybe some Pit Mix, and Lab? Your guess is as good as mine.

Kicker Muse here is very Instagram famous. If you have an Instagram account and don’t follow this dog, go do it. Kicker’s sit, stay commands where extremely good too. Notice how he’s looking off camera? That’s because his owner Andrew Muse is over there. Andrew and Kicker travel around the country in their tiny house skiing and surfing. Not a bad life!

When I first met the dogs of D-Curve a goggle company, and inquired about the table a rep said “this is their table, and they’re not allowed to leave it until we say so.” It’s a great marketing strategy too. Put a large table at the front of your booth and add four very cute dogs to it, and people are bound to get drawn in. Towards the end of Day 3 some of the dogs weren’t having it (and you can see in one photo one laying down in the back of the booth) and started to jump off the table. But for the most part Carousel and Icicle were more than happy to get their pictures taken and enjoy pets from various passer-by’s.

Day 3

At first I wasn’t going to use all 3 pictures of this dog. In fact I won’t even edit 1 and 3. But this serious of shots is just too good. It’s funny too. With all the Golden’s I photographed they all perked up when the shutter went off- but this round of photos is just too good. Even the owners reactions in the background is priceless.

A Blue Heeler/ Terrier Mix this girl did not want to stay still for a photo. Characteristically correct for this mixture of breeds. But a treat dangling above the camera. Oh not that’s something worth stopping for. Thanks for being a good sport Frannie!

Remember that Cocker Spaniel I mentioned from Day 2? This dog didn’t like that particular dog either, who happened to be walking past the DC booth while were hanging out. But she posed for a photo and later was spotted hanging out with the Pit Viper crew ( A brand of 80’s looking sunglasses that are wildly popular among millennials). What mix of breeds do you think this dog is? I honestly couldn’t put my finger on it.

Yes! Husky sighting! Stalking dogs like the paparazzi do to celebrities is something I started to do on Day 3. I would seek out dogs, follow them for a moment and when the owner stopped at a booth would come over and ask if I could pet and photograph their best friend. Nevica also wasn’t too keen on posing for a photo (hence the slight blur in the face) but she was beautiful and enjoyed her pets post photo taking.

Rex The Shiba Inu was more than content to pose for a photo. I saw him as I was walking into the cafeteria to eat lunch. Luckily he was still there when I finished up and I was able to snap his photo.

What an interesting mix of breeds. German Shepherd, Sheepdog, maybe Belgian Shepard? He definitely did not want to pose for a photo but was to much fun to not take his picture.

This dog is a mascot for the company Bula, and he was pooped when I came across him. Granted it was the final hour of the show on Day 3. So I don’t blame him. Being this cute is hard!

The owner of the scruffy dog in the flannel was the one who said he went to a festival in California, took 300 dog photos, got the name of the dog and a quote from the owner. A good idea for me to attempt next year at Outdoor Retailer which will probably result in twice as many photos.

The dog on the left almost looks like Nyla the unofficial mascot of Basin Sports. Nyla is a purebred Rhodesian Ridgeback and this dog has some Rhody characteristics. I also though it looked like maybe there was some Weimaraner in there too. Rio on the other hand (to the right) was too cute and looked like a dog you’d see in a cartoon.

It’s “Ruff” being this cute. As I left the Convention Center on Day 3 I saw this girl (the last dog I encountered) at the front hall near the Ikon Pass Booth. Cutness overload! I’m happy to have photographed these dogs, and of course have the opportunity to attend Outdoor Retailer. When stress levels got high, a quick photo, pat and face lick just everything better. Next year we’ll have more photos, names for each dog and possibly something else.

Posted on

New AT Touring Ski Boots for 2021

K2 Mindbender 130 and 120 Flex boots

We’re back from another Outdoor Retailer Trade-show and have New AT Touring Ski Boots for 2021. This year in the boot world the focus has been on four buckle touring boots withGripWalk and pin compatibility. We also saw more and more companies pushing for 130 flex and 98 to 100mm last in boots with an uphill mode. The biggest notable difference breaking out onto the AT Touring scene is the Lange XT3 130. Though we didn’t get to look at all AT boots for 2021 we did put our hands on a few. Salomon has a new Shift Boots collection and K2 and Rossignol have also improved upon their existing models.

New AT Touring Ski Boots for 2021: Lange XT3 130

Lange XT3 130Lange’s new XT3 130 has improved upon it’s patented V Lock hike to walk system. The updated V Lock system adds an additional 2 degrees of rearward motion and 11 degrees of forward motion. This results in 53 degrees of total range in motion of the cuff- pretty impressive! The redesigned shell sheds weight (though felt heaver than any other boot in it’s category), providing a balance of agility for the climb up without sacrificing performance on the downhill.  The sole’s new construction, which sandwiches Grilamid between two layers of Polyurethane, was developed for durability. The Lange XT3 130 has (you guessed it) 130 flex so it’s stiff- and has GripWalk and pin compatibility. The boot is also available in 97mm and 100mm lasts.

Pro’s

  • True 130 flex. This boot is stiff!
  • Two Lasts Options
  • 53 degrees of total range in motion

Con’s

  • It’s heavy. Though touted as a lighter upgrade than previous models, the XT3 is on the heavier side.
  • Velcro cuff strap

Final Thoughts

If you are one of those people looking for the stiffest of stiff Alpine Touring boots, we’re not going to sway you away for the Lange XT3 130. With two layers of Poly and Grilamid, this boot is super stiff. It’s going to be warmer than a Atomic Hawx XTD 130 for sure, but it’s also going to take longer to warm up and longer to cool down. The strap is a standard Velcro strap which we suspect will wear out quickly. Other boot companies offer cinch straps so if we as a user were to purchase this we’d upgrade the strap to something aftermarket. Lastly, the weight of this boot was a big turnoff. Having skied in the Atomic Hawx XTD 120 this season, the XT3 felt like a brick by comparison.

New AT Touring Ski Boots for 2021: Salomon Shift Pro 130

The Salomon Shift Pro 130 is the newest backcountry compatible alpine touring boot. The Shift Pro draws inspiration from it’s S/Pro collection but with a 4 buckle design and more durability for everyday resort use. The 100mm last boot includes a Sensifit insert, new instep geometry, lightweight construction, a customizable shell, a 40 degree range of motion cuff, and a seamless liner. Salomon’s Coreframe construction provides the power transmission and performance of a traditional alpine boot. GripWalk and Pin Compatible- the Salomon Shift Pro is also available in a full range of flex options.

Salomon Shift Pro 130

Pro’s

  • Performance, The Shift Pro really defines what an all-terrain, alpine touring boot should be. This boot performs well for touring but also will hold it’s own for downhill only days.
  • Seamless liner. No bunching our weird pressure points. Out the box the Salomon Shift Pro will feel good. Some of our employees who have tested this boot have yet to heat mold their liners- it’s just that good.
  • Easy to use flip switch from alpine to walk mode.
  • Wide range of flex options

Con’s

  • Price. This boot will put you back $970 (in-store may be cheaper) whereas other boots in it’s category are less.
  • Velcro strap. Like the Lange boots, velcro wears out fast. We prefer cinch straps for touring and higher flex boots.
  • Only comes in 100mm last. Most people fit in that category, but if you prefer 98mm last you’ll need to look at the S/Pro

Final Thoughts

The Salomon Shift Pro 130 is really filling in any loose ends that the QST and Shift collections had. We’re digging it because there’s a whole range of men’s and women’s options in flexes to choose from. You’re not just limited to a top tear option. The last is 100mm which is the most common footprint of skiers. We do wish they offered a 98mm last in the 130 flex but can settle for  finding that last in the S/Pro line. The Coreframe construction is simple and easy to use, though may be cumbersome in sub-zero temps. The price is also a bit high, which  would make us as a user consider other options. But if you’re deadset on salomon and want to be on a 100% Salomon Package, we’re not about to stop you. And if that price point really doesn’t bother you- we’re more than likely to convince you that this is the boot for you.

New AT Touring Ski Boots for 2021: Rossignol Alltrack Elite 130

Rossignol Alltrack 130The Rossignol Alltrack Elite 130 offer’s a no-compromise with with tech fitting and enhanced downhill performance for an all-in-one ski boot. The Thinsulate liner is 100% compatible and comes pre-articulated, so out of the box the boot should perform well. The heel cup is also well designed and like many other 98mm last boots will really hold your heel in place on ascents. The Alltrack also has Dynafit compatible touring lugs, offering a secure connection to tech bindings.

Pro’s

  • Price. The Alltrack Elite 130 will put you back $699.95- Far cheaper than other 130 flex class boots.
  • Great out of the box liner
  • Easy and Efficent flip switch for walk to ski
  • Dynafit Compatible tech lugs
  • Higher quality Velcro strap

Con’s

  • Only uses Grilamid plastic. Not poly, Still a stiff boot- but in the softer side of 130
  • Only comes in 98mm last

Final Thoughts

Many who traditionally ski in the AllTrack resort model will have a hard time switching to the Alltrack Elite. I say this because the Resort Alltrack 130 is 100mm last not 98mm. So this touring model will feel snugger than typical. Many boot companies make their all-mountain touring boots in 98mm last for a more secure fit, especially while touring uphill- where your foot is likely to move around a bit. The price on this boot is superb for a touring boot though, and clearly other companies are finding it hard to compete. If you had trouble fitting into an Alltrack before, definitely try this one out- the fit is going to be much different and with that great price point you can’t go wrong here.

New AT Touring Ski Boots for 2021: K2 Mindender Boots

Relativly unchanged from last year the Mindender is back and is one of our favorites. We love the big “mitten compatible” buckes, the cinched cuff strap and the spring loaded walk to ski mode. Available in men’s and women’s models, the Mindbender offers up a lot of options for both men and women. The women’s 98 flex, and men’s 100 flex boots will both have 100mm last on them- the rest of the line will be 98mm last.

Price wise, the Mindbender 130 will put you back $699.95. Still cheaper than the Lange or Salomon options. K2 uses TPU in it’s boots calling this their Powerlight core. TPU typically regains it’s flex in the cold versus polyurethane which will get stiffer the colder it gets (to a certain extent). This results in a true to flex feel and is lighter than most plastics used in ski boots.

New AT Touring Ski Boots for 2021Pro’s

  • Price, A decent and competitive price point in the touring market at $699.
  • Mitten friendly, spring loaded walk to ski switch.
  • Big easy to use buckles
  • Cinch cuff strap
  • Light

Con’s

  • Color (can someone just make a straight up black boot already)
  • Only TPU Plastic
  • Buckles stick out and snag on stairs and other objects. You may need to replace them.

Final Thoughts

This boot was the lightest of all the boots I touched. The price is right and the fit is pretty decent out of the box. The buckles are mitten friendly and easy to use but be warned, if you unbuckle your boots in-bounds, these do stick out and we’ve already seen people coming in with bent or broken buckles. The Mindenders also come in a whole range of flexes so you don’t just have to get into a 130 flex. This boot was our favorite at the show, it checked all our boxes for weight, multi-use compatibility and easy to use buckles. The K2 Mindbender is our 2021 pick for favorite Alpine Touring Boots.

Posted on

NILS Barbara 2.0 Pant Gear Review

Women in red ski jacket

NILS Barbara 2.0 Pant is unexpectedly spectacular for long days on the slopes

 

NILS Skiwear is one of the first Fashion focused ski clothing companies to incorporate Gore-Tex into their collections. A smaller brand than many others, NILS has been able to incorporate high fashion accents into technologically comfortable winter skiwear. With the innovative design of the high waist, stretch bottom suit they soon began to dominate the stretch suit market. Over the course of the next several years NILS established a reputation as the best fitting women’s skiwear collection in the business and the product offering was extended to include sweaters, fleece, resort wear and petites. The universal active sportswear layering system and waterproof, breathable outerwear system is consistently regarded as the most complete offering for women in the industry.

The NILS Barbara 2.0 is no exception to the high standards NILS sets. The Barbara is they’re best selling women’s winter ski pant with a regular fit and mid waist rise. Designed to fit like your favorite pair of jeans, the Barbara is 20K/20K waterproofing to breathablity. This is the highest set standard for winter pants. Essentially the fabric is of a highest quality to resist water up to a certain pressure per square inch. For example brands like Arc’teryx are 20K rated.

Seams are critically seam sealed. Critical seam sealing is different than full seam sealing. Critical seam sealing essentially means that the critical seams have been taped for waterproofing. Full seam sealing can make pants more stiff and restrictive hence why NILS went with Critical seam sealing to allow the pants to move more freely. To top it all off, the zipper is a YKK zipper. High quality, durable and easy moving- YKK’s are the zippers of choice amongst winter ski companies.

Performance

We can go on and on all day about the tech of the Barbara, and some of you came here for that. But let’s be honest- if it doesn’t perform on the slopes, what’s the point in owning a pair? 60 grams of synthetic ecoloft insulation adds a good amount of warmth without the additional weight. Typically the heaviest winter pants you find (that still retain decent breathability ratings) is 100 grams. So 60 is slight above average for warmth.

When you first pull on the Barbara you’ll notice how stretchy it is. It moves with you and not against you. I personally like it, because it’s a quiet snowpant. Some pants with Gore-Tex Pro are stiff and in some ways restricting to move in. The Barbara is definitely not like that- and like your favorite pair of jeans, is incredibly comfortable. The best performance feature I found was the warmth factor. On those cold, slow chairlifts, my bum did not get cold. It was nice and toasty which is kind of a big deal. In comparison to other shell pants I’ve worn I was pleasently suprise by the warmth of the Barbara. The other nice thing too was that I wasn’t overheating. I was a happy warm and not sweaty.

Final Thoughts

For a good looking, functional pant that will keep you warm I think the Barbara is a great choice. I would recommend this pant to the skier who maybe won’t spend an entire day on the slopes. Someone who will take a few runs then maybe hang out in the base lodge. The seams are critically seam sealed and not fully taped which means, once they do get wet eventually water will sneak in. The other aspect of this pant is that though it is functional and oh so warm, it’s not necessarily technical. It feels like it’s more designed for the comfort and function aspects of skiing, not necessarily the technical aspects that sometimes come with the sport. So if you’re a weekend warrior, a mom with a VIP chair in the base lodge, or just someone wanting to get into a quality ski pant, I’d say the NILS Barbara 2.0 is your ticket.

Shop NILS Here

Posted on

What Is Helly Tech?

Red Helly Hanson Aegir Race Jacket

Helly Tech® is the waterproof and breathable outer layer between you and the elements. Its unique membrane will keep water molecules out, while allowing sweat vapor to pass through – keeping you dry from the outside and comfortable on the inside.

Our Helly Tech System

HELLY TECH® is a tough weatherproof outer layer, specially designed for the harshest conditions.
It is a combination of a DWR-treated outer fabric, a highly breathable and waterproof membrane, and often a highly breathable inner fabric, mesh or lining.

Helly Tech Is Waterproof

The robust outer membrane keeps water out, keeping you dry, even in the most extreme conditions.

Helly Tech Is Windproof 

The outer layer protects you from powerful winds and piercing temperatures.

Helly Tech Is Breathable

The unique material allows sweat vapour out, keeping you dry and comfortable.

What Our Pros Say

 

 

When I’m out there on the mountain, I couldn’t live without the waterproof and breathable Helly Tech® fabric. I need protection from the elements to keep me dry and a breathable fabric so I don’t overheat.

Adria MilanProfessional freeskier

 

 

Shop The Best From Helly Hansen