Ed Kessler

Ed Kessler

Ptown, Hatch, Turny and in between. AK!!

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Ed's Passions

Alpine Touring
Telemark Skiing
Camping
Mountain Biking

Ed's Bio

Living in Ptown and getting after it as much as I can. We are always searching for that new shred spot, the new terrain, the deepest snow and most of all the first tracks!

With a season lasting from September to May this place is truly Heavan. Big up for Ptown AK!

Check us out at www.Hatchyourtrax.com

Ed Kessler

Ed Kessler wrote a review of on December 31, 2010

Higgins...Yes Please!
5 5

I love this jacket. It's bright and steezy if you are into that, but more importantly it not only looks good but functions amazingly well. This is definitely the most I've ever spent on any piece of clothing, but I feel totally justified while lapping the lifts or skinning up a peak in the backcountry. The jacket breaths well and sheds water like it's it's job (because it is). The range of motion in the arms was well crafted, unlike many other "slim fit" shells that leave you wanting more space. Also, the cuffs fit well over gloves or under gauntlets, with velcro that is high quality, and not like the chincy stuff that Northface and Mountain Hardware use.

Most importantly in my case are the extremely well thought out and spaciously designed skin pockets! Yes! Thank you Flylow...I was just beginning to get extremely annoyed by my new BD Split Skins for icing over...that is until I got my higgins Jackets. Now my skins stay warm, dry, and ice free. Score!

Buy this jacket, shred the pow, stay warm and dry and do it again the next day. Did I mention I like this jacket?

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Ed Kessler

Ed Kessler wrote a review of on December 7, 2010

4 5

Loving these gloves. Have worn them between 5 and 25 and I have no complaints yet. I'm probably between a medium and large, and at first I thought I made the wrong choice, as the medium was a bit snug. But, after a few days they formed to my hands and have been perfect.

Super warm, super functional, and great dexterity. I've owned some good gloves and some crap gloves and these BD Virago's are definitely worth the 100 bucks.

The drawstring elastic seems a little chincy, and might present a problem is pulled to tight, but I've only had the gloves for two months and nothing apparent yet.

Warm, Styly, comfortable and functional. I like it.

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Ed Kessler

Ed Kessler wrote a review of on December 7, 2010

3 5

Thought I would add a quick update to this review....I have been having some recurring issues with the heel block lately. BD has been pretty gracious about it, but it has left a somewhat sour taste in my mouth. I have broken 3 heel block in the same number of months. I am using the right screws, not over tightening, and not kicking off my bindings. The plastic is really just crap. It's two pieces of plastic, not even melded together. One simply sits on top of the other...somehow.The plastic continually breaks on the lower portion, right near the screw head. It seems to be a combination of poor designs and cheap plastics. The climbing wire sits idly, applying direct pressure to the area between the screws. I've been told by numerous ski techs that, if you actually ski, as in...more than 10 days at the resort, then this is a common problem. I've looked at the composite makeup of other manufacturers plastic heel pieces, and wow, they are much burlier. Especially 22designs and Voile.Just something to watch out for...otherwise, I still love these bindings.

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Ed Kessler

Ed Kessler wrote a review of on December 7, 2010

3 5

Thought I would add a quick update to this review....

I have been having some recurring issues with the heel block lately. BD has been pretty gracious about it, but it has left a somewhat sour taste in my mouth. I have broken 3 heel block in the same number of months. I am using the write screws, not over tightening, and not kicking off my bindings. The plastic is really just crap. It's two pieces of plastic, not even melded together. One simply sits on top of the other...somehow.

The plastic continually breaks on the lower portion, right near the screw head. It seems to be a combination of poor designs and cheap plastics. The climbing wire sits idly, applying direct pressure to the area between the screws. I've been told by numerous ski techs that, if you actually ski, as in...more than 10 days at the resort, then this is a common problem. I've looked at the composite makeup of other manufacturers plastic heel pieces, and wow, they are much burlier. Especially 22designs and Voile.

Just something to watch out for...otherwise, I still love these bindings.

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Ed Kessler

Ed Kessler wrote a review of on December 7, 2010

3 5

I bought these because I was trying to "save weight" and also because I got a killer deal, but ultimately I should have stuck with the usual full base skin (save weight? My skis are 120 under ft, I don' think it matters at that point...stupid choice). On low angle terrain, with decent snow depth these skins did great, but once I got onto steeper slopes i definitely had to edge in uphill to keep enough skin on the track keep from sliding backwards. There is a caveat to this of course...if you buy these skins, it's for fat skis, so hopefully you are using those skis for what they were engineered for...DEEP SNOW. The same goes for this skin. These are not your ski mountaineering skins that will get you super fast to the top of any peak.

These skins are fat, heavy, and designed to save even the smallest possible weight from you fat skis, burly bindings and tired legs. Also, I've only used them twice, but even after one ski I found that if I didn't put them in the bag, they were almost worthless on the 2nd lap. Still working out the kinks I guess.

Bottom Line: Use them in Deep snow. Use them on all but the steepest terrain. Unless you are OCD about it, expect them to get iced up and worthless by round 2 or 3.

I've had great experiences with skins from "Climbing Skins Direct." He used to be the designer for BD and moved on to better things. I really like their setup. Less expensive, easy to use, and they just work damn well. www.climbingskinsdirect.com

Ed

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Ed Kessler

Ed Kessler wrote a review of on February 18, 2010

5 5

These things are simple and effective.

The tracker's digital display and audio signals combine for an easy to use life saving beacon. Distance to burial is displayed digitally and when you close in to the burial, the beacon alerts by audio that you need to begin a fine search.

People complain about limited distance but the bottom line is this: You should be watching your partners all the time or have eyes on them while descending or ascending. With proper training and practice a rescuer should have some type of last known location to start from and follow clues.

Great beacon, great price, easy to use, a must have!

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Ed Kessler

Ed Kessler wrote a review of on February 18, 2010

3 5

My wife bought these gloves on tramdock. They are OK. I lost my nice BD freeride gloves so I had to go to these.

They are sort of warm, but more than keep my hands warm they make them sweat, which keeps my hands chilled. The goretex does not breath well, so if you sweat your hands will not be that warm. Also, plastic material in the Palm sucks (as usual). if you are going to spend money on gloves...go with a leather palm. It's a huge difference in functionality and quality.

If you are moving around a lot, like in the backcountry they do pretty well. At the resort expect a constant fight to keep your hands warmed up. Still, pretty good deal for the price.

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Ed Kessler

Ed Kessler wrote a review of on February 18, 2010

A tad large for the helmet
4 5

I love these goggles. They work best without a helmet and just a beanie. The standard sensor mirror lenses work great in most light conditions but become a bit bright in extremely bright sun.

The goggles are comfy and rarely fog (hey, it happens to all of us sometimes). The only downside to I see to these is that with a helmet they seem just a tad too large to fit tightly under the brim. All in all a great buy, and enough strap and color options to not look like every other brah out there.

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Ed Kessler

Ed Kessler wrote a review of on February 18, 2010

4 5

Yes it's lame looking but damn it the footy is rad. I have the regular GoPro helmet cam and after working with a buddies yesterday I have to say I am very impressed with the upgrades given to the product. The rechargeable battery is HUGE.

The old GoPro eats lithium batteries like nobodies business and you had to constantly remove them to prevent battery drain. Also, the HD quality is very good. These same friends traded in their "cool" looking POV cam for the sturdiness, simplicity and compatibility of the new GoPro.

Also, with all the mounting optionx available you should be able to get some pretty sweet shots other than helmet. Hint: Try attaching the interchangable helmet mount to the end of a ski pole and hold out the pole in front for a sick shot.

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Ed Kessler

Ed Kessler wrote a review of on January 26, 2010

Lightweight and h20 proof
3 5

This jacket has been through rain, Wet Chugach dumps and dry blower pow. All through this it has kept it's breathability and still effectively wicks moisture away. This jacket was a good by, but I will admit a bit pricey. I don't think I would pay as much as I did for it again. The hood is huge and fits over a ski helmet easily. Don't expect much thermal protection with this jacket as it is simply a SHELL, that's it, that's all.

One major issue I have with the jacket are the pit zips. They are one way and catch on the fabric when you attempt to close them (same thing happens on the front zip as well). The pit zip problem seems to be a common mountain hardwear issue. I think this is because the fabric is so light and moves easily, which is great for riding. Anyhow, that's pretty much the only issue, albeit a very annoying one.

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Ed Kessler

Ed Kessler wrote a review of on January 26, 2010

4 5

I love my coal beanie. It's stylie, comfy, warm and high viz for low light photos. The stretch elastic in the fabric makes the beanie super comfy for touring, riding and just hanging around the cabin or town. Coal is good stuff!

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Ed Kessler

Ed Kessler wrote a review of on October 13, 2009

So far so good
4 5

Many people are complaining about these binding but I have only had two issues. One being that the cartridges loosen on their own, but this really is not that big a deal. Just reach down and tighten them...I live in AK, it's cold, and still it's not a big deal. The other issue is that, yes, when the snow gets wet and heavy you do get some icing under the free pivot mechanism. This prevent the toe piece from locking down (dangerous). It had really only happened once or twice and was remedied by blowing on the binding and scraping the ice out, no biggy. This took about 5 minutes to get it back to normal.

coming from Kilowatts mounted with barons I am loving this setup. People who call 01's "heavy" are spoiled featherweights. I have my 01's mounted on a pair of 09 Anti Pistes and the inserts are doing fine and I have no issue with lateral movement or undue stress on the skis.

So far, I love my BD 01's. They make touring steep slopes and deep snow so easy. So far so good.

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