Randonnee bindings allow the skier's heel to release and pivot at the toe while traveling uphill or traversing, similar to a telemark ski, but Randonnee and Alpine Touring (AT) gear allow the heal to be locked down for ski descents, and perform similar to an alpine ski once in the locked down position. AT and Randonnee boots can accept crampons for boot pack sections of the course.
SMR (Ski-Mountaineering Racing) is the more encompassing, generic term for randonnee races which are popular in Europe, but races are gaining ground in some circles in the United States. Every sanctioned ski mountaineering race has to have a boot climbing section. Some even require crampons and clipping a fixed line. The Colorado Ski Mountaineering Cup has a race schedule and further information.
Visit the United States Ski Mountaineering Association (USSMA) for more information and upcoming races.
The instructional video clip below demonstrates how to execute quick and efficient transitions from skinning to skiing for Randonnee races.
The next video clip demonstrates steep skiing techniques
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