The Dynafit Chugach is a departure from the lightweight touring skis the brand is known for. They are wider, they weigh more, and have a full rocker to them, making them a burly descent-oriented ski for backcountry touring freeride skiers, perfect for deep backcountry runs in Jackson Hole. Unlike some other rockered skis, they also have a pretty solid side cut, helping hold an edge on steeper, harder snow.
I skied the Chughach several times last winter, both on Teton Pass, and in Grand Teton National Park. I skied them with Dynafit Radical 2.0 ST bindings, and La Sportiva Spectre boots. This is a pretty ideal combination; light but fairly stiff boots, and modern tech bindings with great retention and safety.
First I took them out on Teton Pass for a couple morning laps before work. Touring in them works well enough. I skied out to the powder reserves, and up the skin track to the top of Edelweiss. Skiing Edelweiss in about 8″ of new snow was fun, and they floated through the mostly untracked snow to the gully at the bottom. This steeper, narrower gully was manageable too, the skis turned quickly in this bumpy section.
Over my weekend, I took them out to Grand Teton National Park for some more turns on 25 Short. More new snow made conditions pretty ideal. Friday morning, I skied through the woods, and up the steep lower skin track. I was following the old track, and wasn’t the first person out since the storm, so the track was packed down, and quite firm. The uphill went well with them. A few steep convex slopes were interesting; leaning back in my boots a bit helped keep plenty of skin on the ground, so I didn’t slip back. At the top, I took in the views while eating a sandwich, and prepared for the way down.
Skins were packed away, boots turned to ski mode, then locked in to the bindings, toe first; with a couple swings to clear any snow out of the toe fittings. Then I made sure the boots were lined up with the heel piece, and clicked in. Skiing down the ridge line at the top, with more wind and sun affected snow than lower down in the trees, the Chugach floated over powder, and punched through little wind drifts, and light crust. In the moderately spaced trees, where the slopes steepen; I made long, arching turns. Where the Chugach really shined for me, was the more open slopes mid-way down. These skis really come alive with some speed, providing a solid platform for speedy powder turns. The run, as usual, was over much too quickly, though I could’t help but smile at the bottom.
For touring, they aren’t the lightest, and the rocker keeps a lot of edge off the ground, so these wouldn’t be my first choice if long days of mileage and moderate skiing were my objective. But, for skiing faster and harder; getting the most out of the run you’ve worked so hard for, or sidecountry tram-powered laps, they’re a solid choice.
We have them in stock at Skinny Skis, and they’re currently 30% off!
Ski Cores – Ash Poplar Ride Core
Sizes: 173 – 181 – 188 – 19
Sidecut top – middle – bottom
173: 134 – 106 – 124 Turning Radius: 20M
181: 135 – 107 – 125 Turning Radius: 22M
188: 136 – 108 – 126 Turning Radius: 24M
194: 137 – 109 – 127 Turning Radius: 26M
1,850g, 1,950g, 2,050g, 2,150g
Colors blue/ yellow