December 13, 2013 at 10:46 AM

Ski Santa Fe, December 12: Before the Lifts Open

By Liz Simon

Trips & Quips

Liz Simon is a photographer, writer and cyclist who likes to combine the three in her quest to discover the nooks and crannies of New Mexico. Sometimes, means of transportation other than bicycle are employed---including the Rail Runner and motorcycle.

I recently purchased new skis and ski boots, which will totally change the way in which I enjoy this sport. In the past, if I wanted to "skin" (walk) up the mountain on skis, I either needed a separate set of skis and boots dedicated to that purpose, or I could use an awkward work-around called an Alpine Trekker. This is a heavy insert which snaps into any existing alpine binding and allows some articulation and walking movement while wearing regular Alpine boots. I found this ungainly, heavy and loud. Plus, at the end of the trek, I was left having to deal with two heavy pieces of hardware.
The new set up, however, includes a boot by Black Diamond called The Factor…(no relation to Bill O'Reilly.)
That boot is matched up with a Marker binding designed for touring and downhill skiing: Marker Binding allowing a wide range of motion for touring….or for what I did today:
Walked up on skins early this morning before the lifts opened. It's magical. The maintenance guys are already busy at that time of morning and I stopped to chat with a couple of them. There were beautiful ravens overhead as I walked, just floating in the cold air.

Happy Snow Trails to You
From Santa Fe, NM
The Land of Enchantments