The Binding Basics

Ready for AT adventure? study up on the gear options. Virtually any ski will do, so the place to start is with bindings, which determine what kind of boot you need. Many manufacturers sell at/randonée bindings, but a few heavyweights control much of the market share.
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$435 We love the Marker Baron so much that we borrowed a fleet of them from Marker to mount on all of our backcountry test skis. When the Baron's predecessor, the DIN-16 Duke, debuted in 2007, it was the only alpine-touring binding that truly skied like a real alpine binding. Word spread, and shops literally could not keep it stocked. Marker released the Baron in 2008. It has the same alpine-style performance as the Duke—solid, secure, and confidence-inspiring—but is 150 grams lighter (thanks to the use of nylon instead of magnesium), and $60 less expensive. And with a DIN range of four through 12, it's more of an everyman's binding. If you're skiing the resort most of the time, but want touring capability for occasional side- and backcountry laps, you won't find a better binding.

Backcountry Bindings

Whether you're going on a day-long tour or just heading out the gates, you need a binding that works as well going uphill as it does going down. Here is a collection of some of the best AT and telemark bindings out there.

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Binding Glossary

Sound like a pro tech shop owner once you get these terms down - or least know how to shop for bindings.

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A.T. Bindings

Alpine touring bindings fall into two camps, tech-style and frame-style. They’re like apples and oranges. But there’s plenty of nitpicking to do within each category. Find your next AT binders here.