A backcountry machine.
You know how to cover some serious distance in the backcountry, but you're not about to slog through a long sufferfest for a subpar descent. Lightweight on the skintrack and reliable when you're crushing steep lines in the alpine, the Fritschi Vipec Evo 12 is the ultimate weapon of choice for tackling big objectives and ripping them to shreds on the way down.
The heel-locking lever gives you the confidence and security you need to crush the lines you just battled your way up, while a front lateral release provides reliable release values in both ski and walk mode for added safety when you're skiing or get caught in a slide while skinning. Weighing in at just over a pound per binding, the Vipec EVOs keep it light on the skintrack, while a three-level heel riser accommodates changing slope angles as you skin across flat meadows, mellow aprons, and steep headwalls.
- A tech binding for solid uphill and downhill performance
- Heel-locking lever for added security on the descent
- Front lateral release in ski and walk mode for added safety
- Three-level heel riser adapts to changing skintracks
- Easy step-in for quick entry in the binding
- Q & A
Can't recommend unless its updated
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
So first off I have last years model, not the EVO; but according to BD the toe piece is the same...
Overall I like/liked these bindings as they ski great downhill and don't weigh you down too much uphill (I have them mounted on DPS W106 in Alchemist so it's a downhill oriented setup). I purchased these over a second set of Dynafit Radicals for two reasons: 1- they were a lot cheaper and 2- I'm not a huge fan of the rotating heel on Dynafits and the backwards moving piece of the Vipec's seemed more up my alley. It turns out I do like the heel quite a bit more but its more convenience to me rather than performance.
That being said... I've had issues with both toe pieces failing to lock in the 'step-in' or what I call 'open' mode. The pins will only stay open for you to put your boot in if you apply pressure on the switch with your pole, other boot, etc. This is annoying, especially in fresh snow. I've also had issues with one failing to stay in 'walk' mode as well. I've called BD and they sent me one new toe piece when the first one went but now it's just getting annoying, especially since they ship from Switzerland and it takes awhile. Then they told me this tends to happen when the skis are stored in 'step-in' mode; but like c'mon man why should I worry about storing an AT setup with the pins closed??... hasn't been a problem with the Dynafits. Bottom line, I wish I'd stayed with Dynafit or tried the G3 ION. I would not buy these bindings until the toe is updated. It's a shame because I really do like the mechanism in the heel.
Only reason I'm going 3 star instead of 2 or 1 is because I had my local shop test the release and it is still safe in 'ski' mode which is obviously the main thing I was worried about.
Update: So not sure who I talked with at BD originally for my warranty but the toe piece is updated with a stronger spring. Also, they sent me two new pieces for free so I'm guessing I wasn't the only one with this issue. The guy who mounted them for me said as soon as he took the second one off the same spring broke so it was only a matter of time. I have not skied the new toe pieces yet but they are basically just a beefier looking version, weight difference was negligible. Just be wary and try to talk with someone who knows the bindings, I guess its a weird situation and BD is only the US retailer and not the original maker or something, not sure on the details.
Bindings are Great - BUT BEWARE
- Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
December 28, 2017
I paired these Vipec EVO 12 bindings with the new Scarpa F1.
FAIR WARNING !!! I'm not sure it's such a great combination. There is a plastic bumper on the toe piece of the binding for forward release mechanism and on a fairly low DIN setting of 6.5 the toe box of my boot flexed quite a bit testing out the release mechanism (upon first mounting bindings).
I got out in the woods and during a hike up a steep section lost my traction and fell foward, knees to skis pretty much. I was in walk mode so the forward release mechanism resistance was increased and the release bumper literally stoved the toe box of my boot in; Pretty much an acorn sized indent which was crushing my toes. I was unable to pop the dent back out and had to ride out of the woods like this. Tossing them under the car heater on the way home the toe box returned to its original shape. These boots are listed by many sites as compatible with these bindings.
Now I'm debating whether to modify the toe box and add a piece of high impact UHMW plastic, or sell the boots and try a different pair. I really like the release mechanism and overall function of the Vipec EVO 12 binding and would like to keep em.