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The cold world of skimo & alpine climbing

The cold world of skimo & alpine climbing

Friday, December 13, 2013

It's back in my quiver! The Dynafit Cho Oyu!

June 24 2013

"Love to get a pair of the Cho Oyu out (skiing) with a set of Dynafit Race bindings screwed on them." 

"Both the Cho Oyu and the Nanga Parbat are offering some pretty wild, modern and lwt technology for "speed touring" skis. I have no doubt from my limited use of the Cho Oyu that either the Cho Oyu or Nanga Parbat are going to be great ski mountaineering ski. Sad it will take another winter season and some deep snow to comment any further. But for some winter conditions the Cho Oyu especially might really offer some unique soft snow surprises. All in a very good way I suspect. Good turns are only 4 months away if we are lucky. 

Really makes me think about having a short Nanga Parbat for the weight reduction and Spring conditions. And a longer, wider Cho Oyu to ski on winter snow."

More on my first impressions skiing the Cho here:

I ended up going with my gut on these and bought a 174 Nanga Parbat  and the 182 Cho Oyu and then added Dynafit Low tech racing bindings to both.  I also added the heel adjustment plate to the Cho for my other boot options (+30g).    Dynafit plate gives me a 32mm leeway.  16mm from center either way.   Which is huge.  I don't like "rental"  bindings.  

But in this case the plates offer a a lot of  sizing options for the additional 4mm of heel ramp and 30g.   The Nanga is set up specifically for my PDG boot BSL.  But the Cho offers too many advantages as a all around ski to ignore, so it has to have the option to use all my boot variations.    All in, the cost was a significant investment for me.  My plan is to use both  hard for more than a season or two!

Here are some numbers for comparison:
all are one ski weights with a Dynafit Low Tech Race, with steel springs (not Ti, +10g) mounted

167 x 74mm    Broad Peak     1320g
171 x 80mm    Nanga Parbat  1170g
174 x 89mm    Cho Oyu         1210g
(three pairs of 174cm have weighted in @ ant where from 1100g to 1180g per skis)
182 x 89mm    Cho Oyu         1340g  
182 x 106mm  Grand Teton   1800g

177 x 112mm  Huascaran with a Speed Race binding @ +70g for the binding is 1980g or 1910g as a comparison with a Low Tech.

Last season my 177cm Huascaran convinced me I could use and really enjoy more ski in any conditions, year around.  But I sure didn't want to carry more ski for weight  than my Broad Peak!   The Nanga Parbat is a longer/wider ski than, and beat the weight by 200g of my 167cm Broad Peak.  And the Broad Peak is one of my all time favorite skis for any terrain.   The 182cm Cho is longer yet and 15mm wider while only adding 20g.  (50g total with the added adjustment plates)   I am not worried about the added length on either ski.  The modern rocker profile on both lets them ski much shorter than the measured length.   The 174 Cho skied hard spring snow like a shorter BP for me.  It actually felt like a shorter 167 BP!   Which is saying a lot I think.   So I am expecting really great things from this 2 ski quiver. 

More to come as the season progresses on my impressions of the Nanga and the Cho.  The Dynafit TLT5 boots changed how we think about touring boot weights and performance.   I think the newest Dynafit ski technology will eventually change how we look at touring skis in a similar manner.  I am now holding out for a short (177cm) 110mm+ under foot ski @ -1400g.  Trust me, it is coming!  Keeping track of the lwt ski mountaineering technology just the last 3 or 4 year will tell you that.

I have come to trust Dynafit skis more than any other brand to date for my own use.  In just the short time since the Spring of  2011 I have gone back to Dynafit over and over again for my ski needs.  First the Seven Summit, early on.  Then the Broad Peak became my light weight stand by.  Last ski up from the Winter through to Fall of 2013, the Huascaran.   I ski on other skis brands which have different uses for me.  All of them, by choice, exceptional ski.   But I have found the Dynafit brand seems to keep coming up with skis that really fit my desired use.  Hard to ignore these two new light weights if you worry about the up and the down like I do.


Fernando Calvo GuiasdelPicu said...

Tried them this past two weeks here in the Picos de Europa Range, with our terrible changing snow...
good feelings , and really light to set them in the pack and climb!!

Following you from north Spain!
Great blog Dane!

Dane said...

Muchas Gracias Mi Amigo!
Fun ski isn't it!

Harpo said...

Hi Dane I am thinking of my own CO sizing. For comparison, how tall/heavy r u?

Nick said...

Dane, this question is a bit irrelevant to the skis in your post, but I'm looking for a ski to replace my sportiva hi5s which I cant seem to get a handle on. I want something fun, reasonably light weight. Looking into the dynafit huascaran, mated with speed radicals and tlt5 mtn or maestrale RS. I'm 6'3 200 lbs in street clothes. Would I be safe on the 177, or should i step up to the 186? Skiing mostly around stevens pass/leavenworth area.

Dane said...

Harpo, 6'1" and 190. Well over 200 geared up. CO ski short fwiw. Signifigant rocker for a ski like this. There is a review and some comparison here on the 174. I could live with either no problem. With out the Nanga Parbat I would likely have both sizes in a CO.

Nick? I a huge fan of the 177 Huascara. No question one of my useful and favorite skis in the quiver. Because the 177 was susch a surprise and so good I ended up build a quiver around them. I bought a 178 Hang5 and a Praxis GPO all for slightly simil and slightly different uses just to make the comparison and do the reviews. I'm here in Issaquah so we ski many of the same places I suspect. I am also on TLT boots and speed bindings. I have never skied the 177 with anything but a TLT. My 196 I use an RS on. I can't really tell you how much I like the 177 Hauscaran...but it is a lot. Only ski I worry about getting a core shot on or breaking. If that happens I'll buy another in a heart beat.

Couple of reviews/commentaries here on how I use the Huascaran. Hope they help some. But I liked the Hauscaran enough to buy a pair of 196...that is how good I think the 177 is. Most of my bigger boards are 188/192. The 196 came in with a bad base tune and I didn't like them very much originally. Comparing them to a 192cm, DPS RPC for example. But once the base was ground correctly...same deal, really nice ski. I do really like a longer ski. But the 177 Haus is such a fun ski, I'll never be without something similar again. It is the only ski in decades that I have skied....and really wanted to ski 12 months of the year! Huas can easily ski any condition I am actually capable of skiing.

Kerwin. said...

Wow, the 171 Nanga and 174 Cho are only 40g difference in weight? That makes the decision on what to buy considerably more challenging. Looking for a ski to replace my 178 Manaslu + Plum Guide Setup. The new ski will be used for big days in the alpine (with a TLT5P) and for local rando racing (with a Dy.N.A), any additional thoughts?

Dane said...

Kirwin, Yep, 40g! For rando racing I want the PDG..gotta remember you have skin weight as well. Wider the ski, bigger and heavier the skin.

Check the listed weights on the PDG and Nanga.... and then cut skin weight in half. Cho is a no brainier I think for BIG ski days. But BIG days..long and lots of mileage in the mtns I'd go Nanga with a narrow race skin.

Kerwin. said...

Thanks for the response Dane, you always manage to point out a few things I did not think about (i.e the possibility of using a race skin with a Nanga).

Time to start looking for deals on Nanga's and Cho's. I think I will only have the cash to buy one this year, and am currently leaning towards Cho's, hopefully I can find a used set of true rando skis in the next month or so. Hurts to be buying several sets of race bindings in a short amount of time.

Fairhaven Bike and Ski said...

Hey Dane! Thanks for all your work and awesome weight postings for all your reviews. Just curious on the effective edge length of the 182cm Cho Oyu unflexed and flexed? I have only seen them up close once or twice. I'm 5'10" and 165lbs (skied for over a decade) Debating on replacing my beat three year old waybacks which I forgot to weigh before drilling. Published weight is 1500g so the 174 would be a savings of 300g vs. 160g with the 182cm which is still a savings, but not as much. Also tracking down a 174 for the spring might be quiver is

TlT5 Performances +
Set ups w/dynafits:
160x62mm Atomic tour race
167x72mm Broad Peak
174x88mm k2 Wayback
174x106mm k2 Coomback
174x112mm k2 Back Drop

Thoughts? Funny my middle ski would then be the longest... lol

Thanks! -Kirk

Dane said...

Hi Kirk,
I don't have my 182 to measure for you. But they do ski short. More like a long 170 something. But they are so light. Been skiing the 174 here in Chamonix a lot with TLT6ps. And I am no fly weight. Ski is awesome as is the 182, which I would have preferred much of the time. If you like your Broad Peaks I would make the effort to find a 174. My guess is you'd be happier. I have no complaints on the 174 and I loved my 167 BP! Waybacks I suspect will be gone after your first boot and ski!

mtnsaremyhome said...

Thanks for the reply.... thats what I figured, we'll see if I can find a 174, sadly I heard Dynafit is done pressing them until next fall so whatever is out there in the retail world is it for a while.

Have a great day!

Mike said...

Dane, love the reviews on the Cho. I'm purchasing a pair for general touring use. First application is a hut tour in the Alps later this month. I'm a touch bigger than you- 6'2" and 200# in skivvies. Vacillating between the 174 and 182. Thinking of going for the 182, since it sounds like you've enjoyed that length as an all-arounder. Hoping to use my Alien 1.0's as well as TLT6's, so going to go with the speed superlight with adjustment plates or the speed radical.

Any new thoughts on length for the Cho's in the year or so since the last comment here?

Dane said...

Hi Mike, 2nd season in the Alps on the Cho. Along with 4 other pairs of skis including the Denali. At least for the Alps and what I use a ski for the Cho is still my favorite mountaineering ski after a short passionate romance with the Denali.

I ski my 174s with a TLT6 and the Alien 1. I would not want to ski the 182 with the Alien. 174 is a lot of ski for the weight and size. Seems short till you get on really hard snow/snow conditions or a steep skin track. Good luck! Great ski!

Mike said...

Thanks Dane.

Ok, so boot choice aside, the 174 is your go-to now? Not too short for the deeper stuff? It sounded like you were sold on the 182's last year.

This season, I've been skiing my ~160 cm race skis (Atomics & Dynastar Pierra Mentas) almost exclusively in all conditions. So I'm comfortable with a short ski. Just wondering if at higher speeds I might wish for the 182.

Dane said...

Not the best ski I own for deep snow for sure. Too short and too narrow. But likely the best all round ski I own for the kind of stuff I like to ski and sweet for weight and size touring. I never ski very fast in the back country anyway so the length isn't important to me.

If you are on race skis I suspect you'll really like the added ski under foot....nice match to the Alien as a do any set up I think. And what an Alien won't do a TLT will o na 174.

Dane said...

Not the best ski I own for deep snow for sure. Too short and too narrow. But likely the best all round ski I own for the kind of stuff I like to ski and sweet for weight and size touring. I never ski very fast in the back country anyway so the length isn't important to me.

If you are on race skis I suspect you'll really like the added ski under foot....nice match to the Alien as a do any set up I think. And what an Alien won't do a TLT will o na 174.