22Designs Lynx Telemark Binding Review

This is a review of the Telemark binding Lynx from 22 Designs.

A Telemark tech binding made to go touring.



In this video, we are going to be evaluating how it skis, the step in step out, the durability, the tour efficiency and a little comparison with the Meidjo Binding.

The Lynx binding is the latest binding in the 22Designs line up.

22Desings is reputed to build durable bindings, from the HammerHead, Axl, Outlaw X and now the Lynx.

This Lynx binding is made for touring but its telemark descending abilities are quite good as well.

I have mounted my Lynx Telemark binding on the Helio 105 from Black Diamond. Note that Black Diamond does not recommend mounting telemark binding on this ski. If you do, you will void your warranty.

TTS the norm for touring on telemark

The Telemark Tech System family of binding includes the original TTS from OMG, the Meidjo from The M Equipment and now this binding, the Lynx from 22Designs.

The GOOD

Simply put, these bindings are the best at going uphill, touring, skinning. The low resistance of the low tech pin at the toes create this effortless range of movement that no other full frame telemark binding can beat.

So what makes the Lynx stand out?

First, the design of the binding is very innovative with the back link composite construction. This fibreglass link is strong, light and creates good power transfer when skiing. This is really what makes this binding incredible in my mind.

The Lynx binding skis really good. Laterrally, it transfers power edge to edge really good. As you can see in the video, I even tried the Outlaw X to compare bindings. Ofcourse, the Outlaw can be set stiffer, but the engagement and the latteral transfert are on par.

Tension adjustability is one of the most important factors in a modern NTN binding. The fact that you can adjust the Telemark Tele Vector is great, you can dial the amount of activeness you want from three positions, just like on the AXL. Also, you can’t adjust a screw to had or remove tension on the spring, but the addition of a spacer in the spring allows for some adjustability.

When you combine the tele vector and the spacer adjustment, this binding can be adjusted to almost any rider preference.

The BAD

There is not much to say about the bad of the Lynx.

In general it performed really well, was durable, and the design is very good.

I am having some problems stepping in, and I need to be in touring mode all the time, locking the front low tech for my pins to hold my boots.

22Designs is sending me a kit to solving this problem and the 2020 binding shipping now should not have this problem at all.

Also, the second heel anchor didn’t engage all the time and I had to force it in manually a few times.

If you are on the market for a low tech touring binding, I do recommend the Lynx from 22 design as a valid option.

It’s simple, efficient touring, skis really well and should up your game in the backcountry from any full-frame binding.

The Telemark History Ep2: The Evolution of skis and Bindings

This is my Telemark challenge for the season, going back in time with set ups from four different eras.

We will go from the 80s super long skis to today’s wide boards.

Telemark skiing has evolved so much and I’ve kept updating my gear all along.

I want to go back in time and see the advantages we might have lost along the way, or the benefits I get from the modern set ups we enjoy today.

For the 80s set up, we have the Atomic 210 cm ski, with a lot of camber, mounted with the Chili binding from Rottofella. Then, I found my original telemark skis and binding. It is the Karhu Hardbody 203 cm mounted with Rottofella 412, a front-loading binding. I will ride both skis with a Vasque leather boot.

For 90s setup, I have the X-scream from Salomon, a parabolic ski, with the very popular Voile release plate. I also have the Rossignol Big Bang, mounted on the Rainey SuperLoop binding. This ski/binding combo is mine and I have skied it 5-6-7 years, can’t remember. I will ride the Garmon Veloce with these skis.

For the 2000 setup, I have found the Karhu Kodiak, mounted on the 22designs Hammerhead. This is a short ski for me, but it should edge and carve very well. Not in the video, I will also add a Black Diamond AMP ski mounted on a Black Diamond O1 binding. This is a fat ski, very good for powder. I feel that this is the era where people started to buy more than one set up, and choose according to conditions. I will ride both skis with the super-powerful Crispi XR boot.

For the 2010 to today setups are all NTN based setup. We have the Black Diamond Route 88 mounted on the Bishop BMF-R binding. This is my day-to-day patrol ski. I also chose the Helio 105 from Black Diamond mounted with the 22designs Lynx. This is my setup for backcountry telemark and the one I use telemarking in the Chic-Chocs. I might also show you a few other setups I have that are different for that era, plus a surprise. I will ride those with the Crispi Evo WC telemark boot check out the full series for more fun on the telemark history gear review.

 

Telemark Gear Evolution Ep.1: Boots

This season, I will try to go back in time.

I will ski set ups equivalent to the ones I had 20+ years ago moving forward

in time to what I’m skiing today.

If you are a member of my newsletter, you know that I’ve started to mountain bike over the summer and this really inspired my to search for learning patterns.

If you want to join the newsletter, just enter your info below

This is just a just chalenge I gave myself when I found those beautiful leather boots.

And my goal is to become good enough to patrol in those before the end of the season.

Here is the Equipment I will use:

Set up Vintage:

  • vasque leather boots.

Early 2000 set up

  • Garmont Veloce

2010 set up

  • Crispi XR

2020 set up

  • Crispi EVO WC

I will gatther skis in the next few days and present the different setups.

Every week I get emails asking me about changing from a 20 year old setup to something new and for my advice.

I want to reconnect to those feelings and share my thought

It’s just that, for me, I’ve always changed gear and I remember skiing crazy lines at Whistler on my Tua 70mm skis, with my Scarpa T2’s and I want to know if gear really makes us better.

BMF Bishop Full Review

Bishop BMF Review 1-2

Last season I spent a very good amount of time on the Bishop BMF bindings. I tried the NTN and the 75mm versions.

 

The Bishop Moto: THE GOLD STANDARD IN BADASSERY

Well, that’s true. Their products are badass.

Coming from the very Burly Bishop Bomber was truly a very reliable, biffy binding. It had a very good reputation and thus a following.

Came the NTN revolution and now, the Telemark Tribe need to have NTN boots and binding, right?

Flexibility

Well, the Badassary Mojo is more than that, the BMF comes in an NTN or 75mm option.

They have created the most flexible binding on the planet.

  • You can choose 75mm or NTN
  • If you were to change from 75mm to NTN in the years to come, you can send the binding back to Bishop and they will modify it for you at a reasonable cost.
  • This binding fits all boot sizes. OK not all sizes but there is no small or large option, the BMF can be adjusted from boot sole 270 to 346mm which is about size (mondo 22 to 31) This is really nice for reselling your stuff or replacement parts
  • Plus, you can get a switch plate to easily swap your binding on many skis.

BMF-R_HD3_Switch_Kit_600x

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Skiability

This is the real question and it took me 5 minutes to say that I really liked this binding.

In short, it skies great. It’s powerful, there is no dead zone and the amount of adjustability makes it a great choice for anyone but the purist who want a true neutral feeling

Trying both options is an eye opener. Really!

To a point where I want a go back to 75mm.

BMF 75mm

Okay not full time but still, I had so much fun.

First off, the 75mm is just a great option that skies really good. It’s powerful yet you can adjust it the way you like, to get a more neutral feeling.

Plus, when you think about it, this 75mm binding is the holy grail of 75mm binding. Well almost.

  • You can a great skiability
  • You get brakes
  • you can an incredible step in

This is what resort skiers have been asking for decades.

As for no dead zone, that is something 75mm bindings have always struggled to achieve. The way this binding is engaging the boot is superb for the experts telemark skiers that demands a reliable balance in all the phase of the turn.

BMF NTN

The NTN version is also a very good binding that delivers a lot of punch. I quite enjoyed them and this has rapidly become my go to binding for the resort.

The real big difference over the competition is the ease of the step in step out. It really is better than anything else I have tried.

For this, I will mention that boot has an impact on this so take this considering I’m skiing with the Crispy Evo WC. But honestly, this is the closes we have ever been to the real step in of an alpine binding. Having a binding with a brake, that you can easily step in and out is such a joy when you are working as a ski patroller. It really makes my days easier.

Touring or not touring

As binding have become more and more active, you need a resistance-free mode to walk around the mountain. The Bishop offers their binding in the R version (stand for Randonnee) or the 3 (for non-touring.

This is really great because if you don’t need the touring option, you can save some money and weight and get a traditional binding.

But if like most of us, you end up adventuring in the backcountry, they offer a touring, resistance-free mode. Okay, it’s still a full frame binding, but it’s the best there is. It’s got a great ROM that the Outlaw X according to my tests.

Durability

Like I often say, I’ve never had a telemark binding not fail on me. And the BMF did have minor issues. Watch the video above for in depth description of my problems. But, like most companies, this problem was fixed during the season and I think it’s safe to say that this is one of the most durable bindings on the market.

Final Thoughts

Bishop as nailed it. Really.

If you are looking for a resort binding, if the step in step out is something important look no further, the BMF is just above the competition.

It skis very well in both 75mm and NTN version, it’s super flexible and will last you a long time.

The only thing still missing is a release binding. For that, you will have to look at the Meidjo which as the most sophisticated one on the market (Just my thoughts here, no hard data showing this)

Just to be clear, I still think the Outlaw X is a viable option. The 22 design Outlaw X only real disadvantage is the step in with a brake.
The price is still a major bump. At the time of posting, the price for the BMF-R is 699$ USD vs the Outlaw X at 399$ USD.

So you will probably use the switch plates and all the flexibility this binding as the offer.

 

My Teaching Philosophy for Telemark Instructors

10841787_352796034903758_8497878569894672367_o

Hello Telemark Tribe,

 

I was contacted by CANSI, the Canadian Association of Nordic Skiing Instructor to write a paper to my fellow instructors. Unfortunately, it never got published so I taught I could share it here.

Here is what I wrote for my fellow teachers.

 

When I teach telemark skiing, my number one objective is for every student to retain a clear learning objective and to know precisely how to achieve it. 

Too many times, I have taken the wrong approach by trying to have my students find instant results with advice such as: “Do this, move like that…” Sometimes it works. But often, it does not.

As telemark skiing instructors, we want to give our students several tools to achieve a given movement. Our goal is for them to be confident in the way they improve.

Introduction— The Absolute Telemark Way:

Every time I meet with students, I want to know two things: What they feel good about (their Positives) and what they want to improve (Their Objectives).

 

The positives

First, I will ask them about their experience, their strengths and what they have improved on recently. My goal is to quickly assess their mental game, because learning starts in one’s head. I am looking for positive thoughts. I will ask about things that they feel good about:

  • Types of terrain (groomers, steeps, trees…)
  • Types of turns (short, long, speedy or not…)
  • Types of telemark stance (low, active, high…)

I only ask specific questions if they cannot seem to bring positive ideas. I want to know what makes them feel good before what they want to improve.

If they are new to telemark skiing, I will ask them about their skiing or snowboarding abilities, or other sports they practise. 

 

The Objectives

Subsequently, I will ask them about their expectations and what they hope to improve.

All this takes about three minutes. If I have a large group of students, I will shorten this part and go for a direct question:

“Describe your telemark skiing experience and comfort level.”

Once I have compiled everyone’s input, the lesson starts. 

I could go many ways from here, groups, first timers… But for this article, we will use the example of a one-on-one lesson with an experienced telemarker searching to improve.

 

Initial Approach

We start with a warm up run. I will lead for the first third of the way. Then, I will stop to see how my student is doing. I will then let them take the lead so that I may assess these points:

  1. What is making them waste energy?
  2. How is their body balanced?
  3. What path or choice of lines do they make going down the mountain?

I want to integrate the student’s requested areas of self-improvement to what I observe and apply it to a specific type of terrain. 

 

The Path to Improvement

People like to know promptly what you think of their skiing. I will often stop my students before the end of the first run to give them immediate feedback. If you both see eye-to-eye, their confidence in your teaching skills will be boosted.

Be forthcoming in your evaluation but, formulate it so that they feel their past efforts were not in vain. Remember to remind them that what they are doing is working for them. 

“If you do something and you feel it’s working, then it’s working. If you feel like you are doing something wrong, then it’s most likely wrong.”

It is that simple!

 

Then, introduce one thing that they could improve on. It has to be related to their learning objectives. It does not have to be directly related. But it needs to be brought up as part of their progression plan. For example:

“I see that you have good balance and that your telemark stance is solid. This is good because it will enable you to gain more rhythm, make tighter turns in the steeps like you talked about achieving. One of the keys to really improve your rhythm is how you use your hands.”

BOOM! 

 

You just reminded them of their positives, you have pointed out a possible solution for them to reach their goals. The direction: better rhythm, and the way to get there: your hands, are clearly pointed out. 

You now have their full attention. They will focus on doing precisely what you suggest, knowing that it will lead to them achieving their goals.

 

Building a Plan

This is the “easy” part. This is what we do as a telemark skiing instructor: Build a series of exercises that will get your student to discover new movements, thus getting them to where you think they should be.

Here are a few things that make a plan work regardless of the selected drills:

 

Share the Plan Before Doing the Exercises. 

Take a minute to explain to your student the expected outcome of your plan. 

What will they gain? If the exercise is about hand movement to increases pivot or rhythm, tell them. Relate it to the end goal; Hands = one step closer to their objectives.

 

Move Quickly From One Exercise to Another. 

Do not stick with one exercise, even if it is working. If it is working, find a variation. If it is not working, find out why and try to address it in the next exercise. 

Find “Ah! Ha!” Moments. 

If you feel that your student has had a great gain, celebrate it. Talk about the success. Try to integrate it to their skiing.

 

The Psychology of Learning

 

Remember the moment you learned something new and how you felt about your past struggles, your previous failures and successes? That is the teacher’s challenge!

Now that your students have been working hard for an hour or two, get them back to something they feel good about: terrain, types of turns, body position…

 

Finish With a Positive. 

Find a way to reveal their original skills at the end of the lesson. Link the newly acquired skills to their original positives. If you did it correctly, your student will feel like they have improved one or more aspects of their telemark skiing technique. They will know what to work on to keep improving. They will associate their learning to you, the instructor.

The worst scenario is a student leaving the lesson more confused than before. They will feel frustrated because they just do not get it. 

Or worse, they will think that they have to learn something completely different because they had it wrong all along. This mindset will not lead to a quest for improvement.

 

Remind yourself the following:

  • Everybody learns at their own pace.
  • Everybody can execute something in the way their mind tells them to; But the mind has to send the correct instructions.
  • You are responsible for the message in their minds.
  • Practice remains the number one factor for improvement.
  • There is more than one road to progress. 
  • Remember that your taught approach is not the only way to success.

 

Finally, you have to remind your students the number one rule of learning:

“If it feels good, it probably is. If it doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.” 

Because you finished the lesson on something that your student already felt like they were good at, the positive effect will create a good mental state to keep working and improving. 

 

But there is more to it… It is called proprioception!

I will talk about proprioception next time. In the meantime, you can Google it if you are curious.

That’s it for now,

René-Martin his a certified telemark instructor. He is the creator of Absolute Telemark. You can book a private lesson here

 

 

 

Selling used gear

Hey Guys,

 

I’m selling a few items. All used.

RMT00311 RMT00313

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

350$ CAD 185cm Skis with 2 years of use.

Have been collecting dust for the last 2 years.

Have been drilled another time with Outlaws.

The base is clean but dry.

A wax will erase all scratches visible on the picture Binding is in good working condition I will repair the second binding cable as I have all the pieces.

These skis have plenty of life left in them.

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/2298709773733513

 

 

 


 

 
RMT00300

RMT00309

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1000$ CAD obo

 
175cm. The Ultimate telemark setup for backcountry.
With the Alpine Heelset to have lock the heel in alpine.
 
Best setup I’ve ever had. Bare none.
 
The skis are worth $1000 USD
Fix worth $600 USD
Alpine heelset worth $250 USD
 
The skis are in fair condition. Some plastic came off the topsheet. Base have some scuffs but nothing major. Edges are clean.
Overall some good life left in them.
 
The binding have a factory defect. I haded duct tape (see photo) for the walk mode to really stay in place. Also the Heelset are missing small metal part at the back to put the binding in alpine mode. You don’t need this, has you can easily active the alpine mode with a light pole tap.
 
This is not for beginners. Skis are just phenomenal in my mind. Binding tour like no other, the addition of the heelset have been a great addition
https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/242999003045484

 

 

 
 

 

 

Contact me via facebook if interested. You pay for shipping. Selling in North America only.

 

 

Telemark Olympic dreams: No thanks

1501434_10153645729820595_1643257375_o

Over the summer the International Olympic Committee (IOC) have taken the telemark community on a roller coaster.

They first took the decision to evaluate the integration of telemark as a discipline for the 2022 Beijing Olympics.

And by the end of the summer, the decision not to include telemark in the 2022 Olympics came as a heart-breaking decision for the whole telemark community.

The process that led to the decision had everyone hoped for a different outcome.

I have to say that I’m very sad for all the telemark racers, the coaches, the volunteers. I know these people work hard and this would have changed their lives. Some money to pay the coaches, some money to help the athletes travel and train. And it would have helped grow local telemark club for a new generation.

By accepting the oldest snow sport, the IOC would have helped our sport’s visibility and recognition like nothing else. A boost we really need.

Or do we?

I am against the participation of telemark in the Olympics.

I have to go against the crowd on this one even if:

  • The sport is not growing in North America, where most skiers, snowboarders and telemarkers are. (UPDATE: I have been told that it is now growing again, so I’ll focus on the “marginal” snowsport )
  • Olympics is the greatest platform to develop a sport. It’s the biggest sport’s brand, it’s the biggest show.

So you have a marginal sport that is offered the biggest advertisement there is.

Why on earth would one pass on this?

Rene, are you crazy? Do you really love your sport?

Here are my arguments:

Money, Influence, Environment.

Money

IOC is a major corporation worth billions. That’s not bad in itself, but it comes at a price. This gigantic corporation sells the TV right for billions worldwide. With money comes power, corruption and people who’s goal is not related to the sports anymore.

The athletes in Olympics sports have no money from the games. Unlike pro football, hockey our major sports, there is no sharing. Why would we want to have our poor telemark athlete staying poor and being exploited by the billion dollar industry.

It not all bad has it would probably help pay coaches, trainers, training and so on. Can we find another way to finance all this?

Who pays? Sochi cost 50G, many traditional winter cities are not interested in investing in the Olympics anymore. The return is negligible, the massive infrastructure will serve for two weeks, and then will be abandoned. It’s still a part of the Olympic problem.

For the IOC, Athlete are the product they sell. And the good news is that it’s cheap labour.

Influence

Politics. It’s the major problem of the IOC. Once you are in, the IOC have a lot of say in the sport. They will make changes in the administration, events schedule, and even the sport’s rules if it suits their need.

Corruption, cheaters, drugs.

Looks like doping is a major problem at the world stage. From the East German era where the secret service drugs the athlete without them knowing to the recent Russian state organize doping as a system. The Russian federations got banished and then reinstated for shady reasons, this is part of the Games. Do we need that in our sport?

The show must go on. The IOC is nothing like the values it was founded on.

Environment

And finally, this is the most important reason I’m strongly opposed to the Olympics as an event. It just doesn’t make any sense to organize major events like this anymore. The impact of building the infrastructure, the impact of hundred thousand tourists in one place at the same time has been a problem for a long time.

Now, it’s gone to a whole new level with localization problems. 2014 Sochi Olympics were held in a humid sub tropical climate, Beijing the choice for the 2022 Olympics is just ridiculous. Beijing is not a mountainous city, so the skiing, snowboarding and sliding events will be held on the edge of the Gobi desert. No snow there. At all.

Climate change is the greatest challenge humanity has faced. We, as a community, cannot choose to ignore this for the sake of our sport.

The technique is a sport. I love the technique, not the sport.

A lot of sport in the Olympics are not more popular because they are at the Olympics. It’s a big show. What would have been our place in all that

I have chosen telemark because it was different, there is no drug problem in our race, there is no coaching scandals with our youth, there is none of the problems of a major sport where money and power are at stakes. Just people enjoying the sport

I’ve devoted my life to the turn, the feeling. Surely we don’t need major exposure to convince people to try. After that, the community need to self support.

I don’t love the sport. I don’t love it blindly. The more the better is not my motto.

In the end, we do need a strong telemark tribe.

We do need people to be exited about our sport, the culture, the history.

I just feel like the Olympics are done. This is not the way.

Revelstoke 2.0

Hello Telemark Tribe,

Here is few shots of last year’s gathering at Revelstoke.

If you’ve been visiting this blog for a while you know how much I love to meet fellow telemark skiers.

(if the video is not playing, you can see it on youtube here)

 

Want in?

If you’d like to be part of this year’s (2019) super trip to Revelstoke simply email me at: info@absolutetelemark.com

Hurry!

There is only a few places left.

We had a blast last season at Revelstoke, BC Canada. We were 8 telemark skiers staying at the Sutton Place and the setup was REALLY good.

Ski in-ski out great food, awesome skiing.

We’re going BACK

Seeing the results from last year, I’m very confident that this is going to be a great week again.

We skied 6 days last year, and it was a bit too much.

You can always buy another ticket for an extra day if you want, or go heliskiing, which 3 persons did last year.

WHEN: Dates are January 18th to 25th 2019.

The price is 3500$ CAD +tx (around $2700 USD)

What’s in the package

  • 5 days skiing,
  • 7 nights hotel (4*) ski in-ski out, single occ studio
  • transfer from the airport
  • Absolute telemark fun tribe
  • max group size is 8

 

18th: We arrive, first night, no skiing
19th: first day  skiing
20th: ski
21st: ski
22nd: day off. You can go heliskiing or snowmobiling or buy a lift ticket and go on the mountain. Or just chill out in the hot tub. I will not be available on that day as I will do a shift with ski patrol
23rd: ski
24th: ski and last night at the hotel
25th: flight back home, no skiing
That’s 7 nights and 5 ski days with me.
I will teach and give tips as much as I can. The good combo I found last trip was about 20% teaching, 80% just skiing so that you don’t get too much of teaching, exercises, and me talking.
I will film you during the day and we will have two evening video sessions where I talk about your skiing and what you can improve.

 

Depending on the snow condition, these should be on the evening of the 20th and on the 23rd

 

The teaching is not so much separated and I will mix depending on the group’s energy, the snow conditions and so on. In the end, I want this to be a ski trip first, with the best time possible with telemark fellows.
No meals included. The rooms are fully equipped so you can cook if you want. We usually went to the restaurent for lunch but most people went to the grocery and planed some meals for breakfast and lunch.

 

Want more info?

 

email me and we can chat about this incredible week.
info@absolutetelemark.com

Tribute to one of the members of last year: Crazy

 

How to telemark in moguls

Moguls telemark picture + PLAY

Hey Telemark Tribe,

Here is a series on how to telemark in moguls. More videos will be added along the season.

I will try to explain my philosophy to understand the bumps like never before.

You will learn and get great tips along the way.

Skip the videos you don’t like but remember that this is more than pointers, it’s a concept that makes a whole.

 

 

 

 

 

If you want to full tutorial videos, I got a great deal for you, here:

Mogul Telemark