Kristin Sinnott and Justin Bobb join Jonathan Ellsworth to talk about some of the kid’s gear they’ve found to be the most game changing. And even if you don’t have kids, you should still listen to learn about a piece of gear that we’ve currently named, “The JBobber.” And there’s another piece of equipment that currently has a unanimous approval rating among our Blister parents, and might be the single greatest piece of kid’s gear of all time? Check it out.
Kingswood Skis is a custom indie ski manufacturer based on the South Island of New Zealand, and we caught up with Kingswood founder, Alex Herbert, to talk about ski materials, sidewalls, cosmetics & ski repairs, base material thickness, Kingswood’s rather unconventional Race Department.
We talk to the founder of ON3P Skis, Scott Andrus, about the ON3P lineup for the upcoming season. There is a lot of new and interesting stuff going on at ON3P, and we break quite a bit of news in this conversation. Check it out.
We dive deep into the details with Revel Bikes founder, Adam Miller, about Revel’s new wheels — which he claims are the strongest wheels on the market — and this thing they’re using called “fusion fiber.” We talk about what fusion fiber is; their recyclability; the unique production process; other applications of fusion fiber, and more.
In celebration of episode #100, we of course had to have Hoji back on, our patron saint of GEAR:30. We discuss all the tinkering he’s been doing during quarantine; what ski gear has the most room for improvement; snowmobiles; climbing skins; monoskiing; and then, one of the all time greats talks about another all time great, Michael Jordan.
What outdoor gear is in need of the biggest improvement? How old is too old to try your first backflip?; If you had to opt for skis that are too long or too short, which would you pick? What should I do with my life? How does one start reviewing for Blister? Could you please provide an unbiased review and comparison of the Blister Membership, Deep Dive Subscription, and Blister Premier Membership? Luke Koppa and Jonathan answer these and many more.
On our latest “Reviewing the Reviewer” episode of GEAR:30, we talk to mountain bike and ski reviewer, Eric Freson, about his gear preferences; how many times he’s broken his neck; co-founding the freeride team at Western Colorado University; and Fresonisms like “torksmash” and “smokin rocks.”
Mystery Ranch has a long history of working with and making packs for the US military, fire departments, and law enforcement. They also make everything from backpacks for everyday use, to packs for backcountry skiing, and the company has quite a unique culture. So we sat down with product designer, Alex Rich, to discuss what it’s like to design packs for US special forces; how their military designs trickle down to outdoor packs (and vice versa); how their design ethos reflects their sustainability culture; and more.
Luke Koppa, Jonathan Ellsworth, and Luke’s mustache discuss the pros and cons of a number of current AT bindings, including the new Marker Duke PT, the SHIFT binding, Daymaker Alpine Touring adapters, frame bindings, and tech toe bindings. They then discuss four new touring skis: the J Skis Slacker, Sego Condor, 4FRNT Raven, and Volkl Blaze 106. Then it’s time to talk Tiger King.
Since we have to learn how to tele ski and shoot a tele video, we’re crowdsourcing a crash course in telemark technique (see Blister Podcast episode 125) and in telemark gear. So here in Tele Gear Part 1, we’re talking again with the artist, Geoff McFetridge; Flylow Gear co-founder and president, Dan Abrams; and Blister reviewers Paul Forward and Kristin Sinnott.
Paul Forward, Luke Koppa, and Jonathan Ellsworth talk about the signs we’re going stir crazy; Shane McConkey’s Volant Spatula vs. other modern pow skis; the DPS Koala 119; the new LINE Vision 118; our current nominations for best underwear; Luke’s new mustache; and more.
Bison Wool? Bison Down? That’s a thing? Well it’s being used by United By Blue,
who started salvaging otherwise wasted bison fibers, and is now incorporating them into a growing range of products. So we talked with Brendan Raugh at United By Blue about how the company was founded as a waterway cleanup company; how they went on to develop an entire line of apparel around salvaged bison coat fibers; how bison fibers compare to sheep’s wool and goose down; and more.
Full Tilt ski boots are beloved by some (including the likes of Bode Miller, Tom Wallisch, Seth Morrison, and Sammy Carlson), but they get pigeonholed by others who think of them as only being for park rats. So we talk to Austin Peters, the Ski Boot Engineering Manager for Full Tilt and K2 Ski Boots, about the history of Full Tilt; what makes them unique; why you might opt for a Full Tilt over an overlap boot; and what’s new for 20/21.
Picture Organic Clothing is going way beyond common sustainability practices with things like castor bean oil waterproof membranes and sugar cane waste-derived polyester, and they are attempting to eliminate polybags from their entire supply chain. So we talked to Picture’s co-founder, Julien Durant, and their sustainability manager, Florian Palluel about these ambitious projects — including their new air-permeable membrane, Xpore, that they are putting in direction competition with Gore Pro and TNF Futurelight.
Luke Koppa, Kristin Sinnott, and Jonathan Ellsworth discuss some of the new skis, boots, and apparel they’ve been testing, including products from K2, Blizzard, Nordica, Rossignol, WNDR Alpine, Atomic, Dynastar, & more. We also discuss what skis we prefer for off-piste, icy conditions; the merits of slim-fit ski pants; which ski boots are best described as “donkeys”; and more.
We talk with Graham Lonetto, the Alpine Director for the USA at Swix — the company that invented color-coded waxes, and one of the largest manufacturers of ski wax in the world — about different types of waxes and application methods; the most common mistake made when ski waxing; the FIS’s ban on fluorocarbons in waxes; and more.
Ski boot liners are probably the most overlooked and least appreciated piece of ski gear out there, but they are a critical piece of equipment. So Matt Manser, the product manager of Atomic Ski Boots, is back to demystify the extremely complex, very expensive, and poorly understood category of ski boot liners. Along the way, we also discuss Atomic’s new “Mimic” liner technology and the new-for-next-season Hawx Prime XTD.
Sam Shaheen was recently testing the new SCOTT Superguide Freetour in the Italian Alps, so in our latest GEAR:30, he talks with SCOTT about their new ski, their new touring boot, the history of SCOTT, and more.
Patagonia’s Glen Morden (Product Innovation, Materials, & Development) and Corey Simpson (Communications) came to Crested Butte to ski with us and to discuss how Patagonia is thinking about sustainability and product performance; how they continue to evolve on this front; talk about a few of their new pieces; their prototyping process; and more.
In part 2 of our conversation with SCARPA CEO, Kim Miller, Kim offers his predictions for the ski industry and how SCARPA is positioning itself for the future; discusses which materials they use in their boots and why; shares the lessons learned from the Maestrale 2017 recall; and unveils a brand-new boot, the F1 LT.
On our latest episode of GEAR:30, we talk to Lange’s Global Brand Director, Thor Verdonk, about Lange’s use of “dual core” technology; why “ski boots should be alive”; the brand-new, 3rd generation, Lange “XT3”; heat-moldable shells; 3d printed boots; the future of Lange; and more.
What will ski gear look like 10 years from now? What gear has the most room for improvement? What gear will *actually* change the most, and what will change the least? And what are our wildest gear predictions for where gear could be in 10 years? We discuss all of this and more.
We catch up with reviewer, Paul Forward, about some of the skis, AT boots, and an AT binding that Paul has been spending time on in Girdwood, Alaska. Paul and Jonathan Ellsworth discuss the Volkl Mantra 102; the DPS Koala 119; the new Atomic Backland Carbon AT boot; the Fritschi Xenic lightweight touring binding; and more.
This week, Sam Shaheen visited SCARPA’s North American headquarters to talk with SCARPA’s CEO, Kim Miller. Here in Part 1 of the conversation, they discuss Kim’s impressive career in the outdoor industry; SCARPA’s philosophy of ski boot design; their position within the market; the specifics of the new Maestrale XT; Kim’s thoughts on boot/binding compatibility; and more.
Last week on GEAR:30, Sam Shaheen, Luke Koppa, and I addressed some of the questions you have been asking us about ski quivers, and we also discussed the topic of the one-boot quiver. And now, we are running part 2 of this conversation with our reviewers Kristin Sinnott, Sascha Anastas, and Kara Williard.
We’ve been thinking and talking a lot recently about ski quivers, and posted our reviewers’ personal selections for their 5-ski, 4-ski, 3-ski, 2-ski, and 1-ski quivers. And now on our latest episodes of GEAR:30 we discuss some of your related questions; what our biggest takeaways are; the dreaded 1-boot quiver; and more.
DWRs — or “Durable Water Repellent” coatings — play an enormous role in the performance of your outdoor gear, and are used on nearly every waterproof garment on the market. But most DWRs are made with chemicals called PFCs, which can be harmful to you and the environment. Nikwax, however, has never made any of their specialized cleaning, conditioning, or waterproofing products with PFCs. So we talked with Heidi Allen from Nikwax about how DWRs work; the dangers of PFCs; how the industry is attempting to shift away from PFCs; garment care; and more.