Ahh, catalog time. We don't know about you, but around this time of year we get a catalog fixation. All that new gear, all those pages of shiny photographs arriving in the mailbox—catalogs are one of the many crutches we rely upon to get us from this time of year (Indian summer, light fleece) to that time of year (powder Tuesdays, the full puffy).
Trust us: Your camera phone is no way to capture that epic powder swoosh you're about to lay down in China Bowl. But "real" cameras -- high-quality SLRs with their deep resolution and arrays of shot-specific lenses -- can be bulky and a pain to hump around the mountain. Until now. Panasonic's new GF1 is the latest -- and pretty greatest -- entry in the Micro Four Thirds category of cameras.
With the trend back toward flat skis, consumers get to choose their own bindings again.
"The march toward all-inclusive system skis continues apace,” we reported in our update on bindings two years ago. “Bad news,” we went on to note, “if you have a perfectly good binding that you were hoping to recycle.” It was a troubling trend for anyone concerned with personal choice or the cost of ski equipment. Touting the undeniable merits of system skis—where ski and binding are designed and sold together as a seamless, smooth-flexing whole—manufacturers were morethan happy if they could convince you that you needed to buy a binding—their binding—every time you bought a ski.