First Impressions: Black Diamond Glidelite Ski (“Snow Trekkers”) Review (Video)
Jan 31, 2019 at 12:14 am #3575932
Companion forum thread to: First Impressions: Black Diamond Glidelite Ski (“Snow Trekkers”) Review (Video)
I put together a 4-minute video montage with my initial thoughts about the Black Diamond Glidelite skis that includes footage from both tracked and untracked trails, with inclines up to about 15 degrees.Jan 31, 2019 at 1:55 am #3575945Jeff McWilliamsBPL Member
Up in Munising, Michigan, we have a lot of ice climbs along Lake Superior that are a far distance from the trail head, or even down an unplowed road followed by some additional trail hiking.
Making the slog into those climbs with a pack full of ice climbing gear can be tedious. I can’t help but wonder if skiing in with these vs traditional Nordic XC Skis wouldn’t work better. I could *probably* just pop my mountaineering/climbing boots right into the bindings.
My climbing boots are really rigid, though. They wouldn’t have the flex that a Nordic boot & binding would have, so I’m curious, but not 100% confident.Jan 31, 2019 at 6:54 am #3575998Wild ExpedBPL Member
Interesting. Thanks Ryan. Have you tried the longer version with metal edge (or the similar length Altais with the metal edge)? Just wondering if it’s a matter of not being able to get an carve at all/ downhill or with any ice..Jan 31, 2019 at 6:54 am #3575999
@jjmcwill Jeff – my very first foray into using a “trekking ski” was exactly for this – ice climbing approaches. For me, it was ice climbing in the Hyalite region of Montana.
My first setup was this: Dynafit 130cm skis with Dynafit bindings that mated to my lace-up Dynafit climbing/ski boots. It was a great setup.
I then evolved to Hoks, using a leather WPB boot in a universal binding, but the downhill performance was pretty scary!
I find that the BD Glidelite’s strike the balance I want between downhill and climbing.
For ice climbing, I’d be awfully tempted to ski in/out of the climbs in trail running shoes with these skis, and just carry my boots.
That said, I’m very curious to see if I could rig my ice climbing boots (a set of leather insulated Scarpas) with a Dynafit toe and mount some Dynafit bindings on the metal-edged 147’s just to see how it would go!Jan 31, 2019 at 1:31 pm #3576015Matthew / BPLModerator
Wow that looks fun!Jan 31, 2019 at 9:05 pm #3576081Eric BlumensaadtBPL Member
@danepackerLocale: Mojave Desert
Thanks for the video. Anyone who has used good snowshoes (ex. MSR Lightning Ascent) in deep, untracked snow can instantly see how much better these BD skis are for that travel. By “better” I mean less effort and much more speed.
As pictured the BD skis have a form of the old Balata style binding which fits almost any boot, from felt pacs to trail runners. Personally I’d get BD’s slightly longer metal edged version with a Voile’ release bindings and my Scarpa T3 boots for more control on turns. But well fitting Balata bindings like my Canadian Army version would work for felt pacs in below zero weather. To easily change between the two types of bindings one needs to have epoxied into the skis threaded inserts.Jan 31, 2019 at 11:53 pm #3576124BlackHatGuySpectator
@sleepingLocale: The Cascades
That is one happy dog.Feb 3, 2019 at 1:40 pm #3576542Ken LarsonBPL Member
@kenlarsonLocale: Western Michigan
Are you wearing a gaitors over the Forty Below Light Energy TR overboots as I observe snaps and a yellow lower boot covering in the video, and the picture of the Forty Below Light Energy TR overboot shown in the link looks different?
ALSO….Have you tried different shoes with the ski bindings to compare fit and control with those skis?Feb 4, 2019 at 5:33 pm #3576726
@kenlarson – I use the “high gaiter” version of the 40 Below Light Energy TR overboots, so those gaiters are integrated with the overboot.
There is definitely a direct relationship between boot stiffness and ski control while going downhill.
Of course, softer shoes = more comfort on long days!Feb 11, 2019 at 11:45 am #3577884Ari GrönlundBPL Member
Been using the OAC KAR 147 with steel edges for the past five years. Also used the AS HOK before. Have used the shorter and longer versions WAP 127 and GT 160… And the 140 is just perfect for pulling pulk and occasional downhill. Yes, I’m from Finland and the factory where these BD and OAC skis are made is just 20km away from my home ;-).Feb 26, 2020 at 2:14 am #3633251David DBPL Member
Reviving this old(er) thread.
Ryan, have you, or anyone else, actually tried mounting some pintech bindings on the BD Glidelite 147s (or OACs or Altais) and toured (on gentle terrain) on them with lightweight/skimo boots?
There are a number of skimo boots that are very lightweight with significant (>70 degrees) of cuff motion that might pair with these “skis” for those of us who are less interested in the steeper/technical downhill performance, but would like a setup that tours and climbs decently but has a bit more confidence on the downhill sections than the BD universal bindings.
Yes, I realize the boots are expensive, it might be tricky to mount the bindings, there are three-pin cross country/tele bindings and boots that might work, there are true skimo ski setups that might accomplish what I seek, etc. I am just curious if someone has indeed tried what Ryan suggested earlier.Jan 5, 2023 at 8:23 pm #3769366Bendrix BBPL Member
I’ve been trying to locate these for sale on line. Every retailer is out, and Black Diamond does not answer emails requesting product status (this product no longer has a page on the BD website). I’m wondering if the product was discontinued. Ryan, are you still using yours? Still happy with them? Have the bindings proven durable? Its been two years so how about a follow up report from you? Thanks.Jan 5, 2023 at 8:50 pm #3769369Ethan A.BPL Member
@mountainwalkerLocale: SF Bay Area & New England
Bendrix the BD Glidelite trekking skis were rebranded OAC Skinbased KAR 149 trekking skis from OAC Finland. They are available from retailers in the US and Canada. In addition, Decathlon Canada and Europe have a slightly shorter version available. If you like I can introduce you to someone at OAC who can help.
And some great news – despite BD claiming that the skin pads on the bottom of the Glidelites could never be replaced, they are indeed replaceable with the right tools and technique, and a N American retailer may be providing this service soon.Jan 6, 2023 at 8:58 am #3769391DanBPL Member
Can you remove the skins, or are they permanently attached?Jan 6, 2023 at 9:12 am #3769393Bendrix BBPL Member
Thanks for the intel. I checked out OAC and will be picking up a pair. Its brushy here, so perhaps the short (not youth) model? Thoughts?Jan 6, 2023 at 3:53 pm #3769435
I’ve been trying to locate these for sale on line. Every retailer is out, and Black Diamond does not answer emails requesting product status (this product no longer has a page on the BD website). I’m wondering if the product was discontinued. Ryan, are you still using yours? Still happy with them? Have the bindings proven durable? Its been two years so how about a follow up report from you? Thanks.
It appears BD has discontinued the Glidelite Skis.
I’m also looking into replacing the skins on mine, even though they are still working. These skis get beat up really bad due to the way they work so well in forest trekking over junk in the snow.
If I can’t figure out a cheap way to replace the skins, I might just put my pair of 147cm Glidelite skis up for sale here. :)Jan 6, 2023 at 3:54 pm #3769436
Thanks for the intel. I checked out OAC and will be picking up a pair. Its brushy here, so perhaps the short (not youth) model? Thoughts?
I don’t think the shorter ones have metal edges, do they? That can be a deal breaker for some people.
I use the 147 Glidelites, and they are plenty short for barging through thick forest underbrush.Jan 6, 2023 at 4:00 pm #3769438
Overall, coming from someone with a good number of full days on these skis, I think the bindings are the weakest link in the whole system. They squeak and jam up with snow, which are not huge issues, but more dedicated BC or XC bindings would be better.
It is pretty awesome being able to use any footwear I want with the stock bindings though. Trail runners or snow boots, doesn’t matter! Really helps to dial into the temperature range regardless of ski boot compatibility.
- You must be logged in to reply to this topic.
Our Community Posts are Moderated
Backpacking Light community posts are moderated and here to foster helpful and positive discussions about lightweight backpacking. Please be mindful of our values and boundaries and review our Community Guidelines prior to posting.