NTN stands for New Telemark Norm - an entirely new telemark binding system that also needs a matching new style of telemark boot – basically instead of turning at the toe one now can turn at the forefoot without twisting the boot or binding. The NTN system has been around a few years now and I know a lot of people, and even shops, are still waiting to see how the new system will pan out - and if its going to take over the world. Personally, I’m finally 100% committed, have taken the plunge and am stoked.
Like other skiers and dealers…my switch wasn’t entirely without trepidation, though. My first worry was that everything would feel different and I would have to relearn the telemark turn. What I found was everything was fine and just getting into the telemark turn position drives the ski as per usual along with a noticeable addition of extra control!
From my perspective the SCARPA boots are comparable to their 75mm counterparts for fit and stiffness, ie the TX Comp is much like the T-Race and similarly I would equate the Terminator X Pro to the T1. The TX Comp is my favorite by far! I noticed that for stiffer boots a softer spring is better. So with the TX Comp I like Green springs (soft) while with the Terminator X Pro only the Blue (Medium) will do. This is important as this is very different from traditional bindings where stiffer boots require stiffer springs and vice versa.
I think this comes down to the way the new binding system is set up. The skier ends up using different muscles to flex the binding. Whereas before the whole body went into a turn, now only a few muscles are needed. I agree with others that this leaves a lot more energy for skiing.
My recommendations are to track down the NTN Demo Tour or any festival with NTN Demos and try it out yourself. Ask as many people as you can for their feedback as well. Talk to your local ski shop and see if they will do demos, take the plunge and get the right set up for you and put it on a pair of skis you love. Make sure to take into account the right cartridge, too. The Rottefella Guidelines are pretty helpful and remember the whole point of this is to enable more enjoyable skiing with being easier to use, add more control and comfort etc etc.. I’m stoked with the new set up… I’m sure you will be too.
And next year….SCARPA will have an NTN girls boot! Cooollll!!!
Martha Burley is a big mountain telemark skier who lives in Fernie (Canada) where the mountains are BIG and the snowflakes are HUGE. Martha wants everyone to try telemarking because its good for you…she finished 4th in the Sunshine 5000 ski mountaineeing race, last weekend, on an NTN set-up…