July 7, 2015 Enlightenment vs. The Marionette Gear

Enlightenment vs. The Marionette

If you suspect the world is racing toward Hell in a Handbasket in some vague but fundamentally new way, Joseph Heath agrees with you (more...)...

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March 25, 2015 Marmot Front Range Jacket Gear

Marmot Front Range Jacket

For cold but fair-weather Alpine skiing, I love wearing a windproof fleece jacket. But I’d gotten tired of looking like a fuzzy black puffball (more...)...

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February 26, 2015 The Kabookie Bids Adieu Gear

The Kabookie Bids Adieu

A sad bit of news I unfortunately have to report following the WWSRA demo at Mammoth Mountain is word the Kabookie will not return for the 2015-2016 season (more...)...

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February 17, 2015 2015 WWSRA Mammoth Mountain Gear

2015 WWSRA Mammoth Mountain

It’s been hard, these past dry years, to think much like a ski buyer, but the makers have continued their work notwithstanding, and, snow or not, they’ve made some fantastic skis. To see what’s coming for 2016, last week I attended the WWSRA (more...)...

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November 13, 2014 Black Diamond Carbon Convert Gear

Black Diamond Carbon Convert

If you ask me, Black Diamond has been victimized, to an extent, by the very same perfect powder that makes Utah skiing so famous. Skis tuned to perform in that incomparable Wasatch snow just don’t tend to translate as well in other, less amenable climates. For that reason, reviewing Black Diamond skis always makes me (more...)...

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November 12, 2014 La Sportiva Vapor Nano Gear

La Sportiva Vapor Nano

If you want a ski with lots of surface area and very, very little weight, La Sportiva presents the aptly-named Vapor Nano: 103mm underfoot and 5.29lbs per pair (spec). The Vapor Nano is a carbon fiber ski, and an expensive one at that, featuring what Sportiva calls “Nanotube” construction, a nano-ish technology designed to deliver (more...)...

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November 4, 2014 Lange RS 130: Liner Updates Make a Difference Gear

Lange RS 130: Liner Updates Make a Difference

Lange has been making the RS-130 for so long and for so well it seems almost presumptuous to review it. This is the boot for citizen racing and elite frontside performance. Still, there’s an update for the 2014-2015 season, and while modest, it is consequential. First, the skier: you’re a racer. Lange makes a number (more...)...

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October 30, 2014 Dynafit Huascaran Gear

Dynafit Huascaran

Dynafit’s Huascaran took me completely by surprise. With the Huascaran we know we’re getting a light ski, but who could have expected how solid it is? Skiing the Huascaran in-bounds at Copper Mountain, I got no sense I was on an underweight touring plank. To the contrary, the ski seemed right at home across a (more...)...

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October 28, 2014 Fly Creek Platinum vs Hubba NX Solo Gear

Fly Creek Platinum vs Hubba NX Solo

Here are two interesting tents with very different approaches to the challenge of building a viable solo shelter. The overriding ethic of Big Agnes’ Fly Creek Platinum 1 is “make it light!” MSR’s Hubba NX Solo, on the other hand, comes at the problem more from the angle of “make it right!” (more...)...

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October 10, 2014 Volkl Reboots the Mantra Gear

Volkl Reboots the Mantra

The Mantra has changed. Yes, there have been minor tweaks to Volkl’s All Mountain masterpiece over the years, including the daring addition of a dash of tip rocker. But this time is different. For the 2014-2015 ski season, Volkl has rebooted the Mantra, giving us a ski that substantially departs from the concept and feel (more...)...

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When there is snow, SierraDescents is Andy Lewicky's California backcountry skiing and mountaineering website. Without snow, sierradescents becomes an ill-tempered hiking and climbing blog.

Pray for snow.