SIA 12 – Sneak Peek at Next Year's Gear


Wacky new gear, hours of roaming tradeshow hallways, and lots of free drinks. Yep, that pretty much sums up another year at SIA 12. Keeping Doglotion's SIA after hours tradition alive, I had to pick a big name hip hop show that I wasn't invited to, then find a way to mission impossible into the action. Fait acomplis! Smith Optics' Redman concert seemed like the best place to start, even without tickets or any idea where & when it was happening. Google took care of the easy stuff, and my spider senses took care fo the rest. Around the building, through the back alley, straight for the smokers pit, and wham, right past the bouncer like I was Perez Hilton in a hurry.

With that blurry concert out of the way, the mondane life on the tradeshow floor actually revealed some cool gear for next year. Here's a sneak peek at some of the things that caught my eye, and stay tuned for more insight on the ever-increasing alpine-turned-backcountry craze that's brewing this year.

Only regret? Forgetting to take a photo of me picking the nose of Eric Hjorleifson's big ad on the side of Gordini booth. Next time!

Mountain Hardwear's new Chuter series of backpacks are lookin' pretty cool. Designed by ski mountaineer hard-man Andrew 'Straightchuter' Mclean, they're sure to be packed with some cool inovations. Hoping to get my hands on one for testing.

G3's new line up is lookin sweet, though I could be totally biased. Go figure. They finally have a super fat ski in the line up; the EMPIRE weighing in at 127mm underfoot. Mui Bueno. Sign me up. Test coming this spring or fal.

Black Diamond revamped their line up with a bunch of light Touring and Free Touring skis. This is the wrong photo, meant to show you the new Carbon Megawhatts, cause hey, who doesn't like carbon?

Still on the hunt for touring boots that ski like alpine boots. Scarpa had a few good choices, this Maestrale RS looked pretty cool. More coming soon.

Riding the success of this year's Rocker2 launch, Salomon is fully backing the skis with a whole range of sizes. The narrower skis also have less radical tails, making them better for touring/mountaineering and all mountain skiing. There's still a bit of drool in my mouth from seeing the Rocker2 115 – definite go to for Whistler slackcountry next year.

Hello Dolly! Salomon's Guardian AT binding could be a game changer for skiers who are shying away from the tech binding realm. Sign us up for a pair! Reviews coming later this year.

The 'Lab' from Surface Skis. Pure awesomeness. Full reverse camber, even left to right! We know the GaryWayne crew would be excited about this.

More goodness from the Surface Skis crew. Good looking line up, and they don't all have that signature kink in them that used to scare some people away. Oh, and they like to party, so there's some bonus points.

Colby James West is in da house, with his signature line of skis from Kastle. They also had some good lookin big mountain chargers that Whistler's own Hugo Harrison is helping direct.

Redman doing his thing at the Inkmonster party. Free booze even for people who snuck in 😉

Moment Skis also likes to party. Misfits cover band doing their booth proud. Too bad this year's booth party didn't end with a topless mosh pit brawl and security guards escorting everyone out of the convention center. Well, we can always hope that'll return next year.

Faction skis has been tweaking their line up, and dare we forget the monoboard!

Klint skis enter their 2nd year. Always fun to see new small companies in action. And with Paddy K repping, these bad boys might actually have a good run in Canada.

Dynastar did away with their old sticks and launched the 'Cham' series for next year. Inspired by their home turf in Chamonix, these big skis are probably ready to rip. Cool pin tails.

Oh boy oh boy. It's always a good thing when one of the best known alpine boot companies embraces the AT trend with a walk mode. It's got some cool features, unique to the Lange XT that we'll get into in another post.

Rossignol's ever famous S7 line has been tweaked this year and don't forget the Sickle. Everyone rejoice, if you've been asking the Treadways, Matty Richard and Kye Petersen about those cool Rossi's with less exaggerated tails, next year is your chance to get on a pair.

No tradeshow would be complete without Pongo Bongo. Favourite quote was the 9 year old kid walking by exclaiming "Cool! Look at all those cup holders!". Oh dear, just wait till he gets to college.

Stay tuned for videos and more details.

Created with flickr slideshow.


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