SierraDescents.com

Marker Tour F12

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Visions of an Alpine Touring binding from a heavyweight Alpine manufacturer like Marker have been dancing in the dreams of A/T skiers for many years now—mine included. Those dreams seemed to come true with the 2008 release of Marker's touring-capable Duke, but spontaneous performances of the Hallelujah Chorus proved a little premature (more...)

— April 12, 2011

Andy Lewicky is the author and creator of SierraDescents

Scott April 12, 2011 at 6:40 pm

Does it still have the awful riser bar that comes from the underside of the pivot plate like the Marker Duke/Baron did? And only one riser height? Fritschis blew Markers out of the water in that regard, I love the many positions and ease of use of the Fritschi climbing risers.

Andy April 12, 2011 at 7:52 pm

Two position riser, not sure if it's the same design as the Duke's. Seemed easy enough to engage/disengage, but I need to spend more time with it...

Chris April 13, 2011 at 6:24 am

I've been saying that the minute I actually get a pair of skis over 110mm, I'll mount them with something like a pair of Dukes - because the only time I can imagine using a pair of skis that fat is in the resort or the sidecountry, where weight simply doesn't matter to me.

But in pure backcountry, I'm still rocking on a pair of Dynafit Speeds - only 335gm/pair. I may finally start using brakes with a pair of Dynafit Verticals (530gm), but that's still a fair cry lighter. I've used these bindings skiing 45+ degree slopes from Mt Vinson in 2008 to the Forever Young Couloir in Rogers Pass last week. Yeah, and every time I've wanted this binding to release and save my knee it answered, so I'm 100% confident in them.

Still, thanks for the review - because next year I WILL have those 120mm boards, and I'm going to want a binding that will be able to drive them through the Cascades!

Andy April 13, 2011 at 6:40 am

Chris, I don't think the Marker Tour poses any threat to Dynafit, except regarding big planks, as you say. But it is a very interesting challenge to Fritschi...

Also, I should clarify, my opinion is that Dynafits are not suitable for hard, regular, in-bounds skiing (as the Tour is). I realize many people would disagree with that.

Scott April 13, 2011 at 8:35 am

Based on what I think you mean by "hard, regular, in-bounds skiin", I'd agree with your opinion there. Sure hordes of people rock Dynaifts on-piste in the Alps with no problems, but on-piste in the Alps and in-bounds in the states are wildly different beasts, as are European and American skiing styles.

John April 13, 2011 at 12:31 pm

I have F12's mounted on 186 Lhasa Pow's with a total of 25 days on them. 15 inbound powder days and 10 BC. They ski great and touring is ok. The climbing bar is fairly easy to use. Switching from tour mode to downhill is a bit of a pain. You have to scrap all the snow and ice from the track system completely, before it will lock into place. Overall, I was very happy with the bindings up until a couple weeks ago. I noticed a very small amount of fore and aft slop in the toe peice,but could not feel it while skiing. After a 2 hour skin last Sunday, I noticed the toe slop had significantly increased. I ran across another guy using the F12 and he had the same issue. I have heard that Marker will "repair it" or swap them for Barons/Dukes. At this point, these bindings probably are not an option for me going forward. By the way, I'm 5'11 165 lbs.

Brad February 22, 2012 at 5:42 pm

Love the reviews. Very clear and descriptive. Fair balanced in my view. I have been riding the Dynafit TLT vertical and love them on my light weight gear set up (K2 Backups) for real climbs and gentle powder descents. I am going into a heavier ski set up for off resort powder/steeps and have been debating the binding. I note that both Solomon and Tyrolia are coming out with new designs in 2012/13. They look like they may overcome some of the issues between Fritschi and Marker. Can't wait to see what you have to say.

Andy February 22, 2012 at 7:15 pm

Brad see here and here for more on the Guardian and Tour, respectively...

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