Why we chose the CAST Touring Freetour Upgrade Kit: High performance, safe, bombproof
Weight per binding: 1,500 grams (downhill mode), 1,000 grams (touring mode)
Release Value: 6 – 15 (Pivot 15) or 8 – 18 (Pivot 18)
Riser Heights: 0˚, 8˚ & 12˚
Brake Sizes: 75, 95, 115 & 130 mm (for the Pivot 18)
Heel Adjustment: 20 mm (for the Pivot 18)
There’s long been a search for the ‘holy grail’ of ski touring bindings. The Marker Duke PT 16 and Salomon/Atomic Shift are great examples of hybrid touring bindings that put downhill performance at the heart of their designs. But there’s still only one touring system that gives you the full performance, durability and safety of a traditional 18 DIN alpine binding, with the ability to tour uphill – and that’s the CAST Freetour system.
This system, founded in the Tetons by brothers Lars and Silas Chickering-Ayers, is the original downhill-focused touring system that’s long been adopted by legit freeride athletes – including Jeremie Heitz, Tof Henry and Sam Anthamatten.
The CAST system comes with all the materials required to convert a pair of Look Pivot 15 or 18 (that you have to purchase separately) to become fully fledged freeride touring machines. The process is relatively simple, as shown in this video, requiring you to swap out the mounting plate of the toe unit and attach the brake lock and risers to the heel.
In the kit you’ve got the two toe pedestals that the Pivot toes will sit on, tech touring toes for uphill brake retainers for the heels and a pair of toe shims that’ll be screwed and glued onto your skis (using the same hole pattern as the Pivot toe), plus all the hardware to mount all of this.
Once the conversion is complete, and you’ve got the necessary components mounted to your skis, it’s just a simple locking mechanism to attach both the touring or alpine toe to the ski. By placing either toe on the mounting plate, and sliding it forward, the toe unit will lock into place, with zero play.