New England is home to three of the greatest Classic technique
marathons in the country, covering some of the hardest terrain in the
region. With this comes the challenge of finding a kick wax that will
A binder is essential. VG35 ironed in with a layer of
V40 ironed in on top is the standard hard wax binder, and KR20 ironed
in thin the standard klister binder.
However, the past two weekends
marathons have presented another scenario. Hard wax conditions with
very abrasive snow underneath and in the case of the Craftsbury
Marathon, numerous road crossings and some challenging downhills that
can rip hard wax right off. For both of these races Swix recommended
KR20 (klister) as a binder under a VR40/30 combo.
of a klister binder in hard wax conditions was difficult to understand
for some, but at the end of the race, those whom had used KR20 were
glad they did! The key to using KR20 in these conditions is to apply
it VERY thin. I apply 4-5 dabs of the klisters on each side of the
groove and then spread with an iron (set at the lowest temperature). If you have a pair of skis that have a softer flex apply the klister
only under foot. This provides a durable binder that will last the
distance in these conditions and not compromise glide!
This does not mean that a klister binder would always be
necessary for a marathon. In non-abrasive conditions the tried and
true combo of VG35 and V40 ironed in is the way to go!