Exclusive: My Morning with Bode Miller

For the past few weeks, Bode’s people had been contacting our people to get Bode on our Facebook broadcast "SkiTalk with Dan Egan." If you recall, a few months ago we broke the story that Bode was joining Crosson Skis. It wasn’t public at that time, but Bode had already started getting ski designs in place.

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The stars began to align as it turned out that we would all be in Big Sky at the same time: Bode, Dan, Nelson (the SkiTalk show’s producer), and me. Unfortunately, in the current climate we were unable to do the show from one spot, even with all of us literally within a mile or so of each other. The last-minute piece of the puzzle came when we were able to get with Bode the day before the show to ski the new skis and talk how everything came together.

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We met up with Bode at the Spanish Peaks' private clubhouse, where we were able to sort out which skis to focus on for the interview. Bode took the Dissenter One Eighteen, and I took the Dissenter Seventy Eight, the ski I knew SkiTalk readers would be very interested in. Since Bode knows the lay of the land at Big Sky and has much experience being in front of the camera, we let him lead the way -- plus, he is used to being in the lead.

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Bode was the consummate professional during the whole process. Not only did he help us set up the shots, but we got almost every one we needed on the first take. Bode provided the utmost level of proficiency and efficiency and was more than willing to work with our busy schedule. I am glad he was willing to work with us, because if we had worked with his schedule, we would have had difficulty making last chair.

The rumors of Bode’s aloofness are not unfounded, but to an extent they are misdirected. Bode is a thinker, a tinkerer, an I-know-they-have-been-doing-it-this-way-but-that-doesn’t-make-it-right-and-I-think-I-can-make-it-better type of guy. Bode was kind enough to share with us how the relationship with Crosson came to be (he initiated the meeting because of their aerospace connection). We discussed his moving on from Bomber, but mostly we talked about his thoughts on ski design and how he wants to revolutionize the way skis are built by using the foundation of knowledge he has accrued from his many years in race rooms and on race courses.

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One previous design aspect that we discussed was during Bode's Rossignol years when they were working with VAS (Vibration Absorption System) with the plate on top of the ski. Later they embedded the plate into the top of the ski by cutting out part of the top layer of metal, which allowed the ski to flex just enough laterally in that area to initiate and hold through the turn better. Another interesting snippet concerned one of the skis Bode designed completely when with Fischer. Bode's mad scientist brain was in full force here. He took the ski down a face and it skied like $%^& (Bode's words). Initially dejected, he decided to completely remove the binding from the ski and reinstall it, back one slot (roughly 1 cm) -- all while still on the side of the trail. He didn't even ski down to the lift but instead hiked back up and skied the same face. Bingo. That was the binding position that complemented Bode's construction concept. These are the types of nuances that Bode feels on the slopes.

Some of his concepts made me think, “I will have to wait and see on that one,” but I have enough respect to say that and not, “You are fuggin' nuts; it will never work.” The one thing that has been consistent with Bode throughout his storied career is that he has never settled for doing things one way just because it's the way they have always been done. I respect that because here at SkiTalk, we built things -- such as our reviews -- the way we wanted them, not the way they had always been done before.

About author
Philpug
I started skiing in the mid-70s in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania; from then on, I found myself entrenched in the industry. I have worked in various ski shops from suburban to ski town to resort, giving me a well-rounded perspective on what skiers want from their gear. That experience was parlayed into my time as a Gear Review Editor and also consulting with manufacturers as a product tester. Along with being a Masterfit-trained bootfitter I am a fully certified self proclaimed Gear Guru. Not only do I keep up with the cutting edge of ski gear technology, but I am an avid gear collector and have an extensive array of bindings as well as many vintage skis.

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Initially dejected, he decided to completely remove the binding from the ski and reinstall it, back one slot (roughly 1 cm) -- all while still on the side of the trail. He didn't even ski down to the lift but instead hiked back up and skied the same face. Bingo.
Thanks Phil! Really good info here for those of us who were sold on binding position modification. I starting changing my tune on this during the last year as while at Pow Mow last year Pre Covid. I played w/ position modification on my pow skis mounted w/ Marker Schizos. During my various tests on my 4 day trip, I preferred going back to the factory position every single time. Now I'm really liking the way my Pivot 14's feel as compared to my Attack 13's and Marker Schizos. They seem to allow my ski to flex more evenly and I feel more "connected" if I'm describing that properly. Is it the turntable heel, low stack hgt? Hard to put my finger on it... Am I imagining this? :huh:
@Yo Momma reminds me of your post re: using the skis recommended mounting point. The mounting point is there for a reason.
 
Very cool. Sounds like a great experience. Will tune into the interview w/ Dan Egan. I hope in it, Bode discusses the evolutionary path on these skis as he did with you in person.
 
@Yo Momma reminds me of your post re: using the skis recommended mounting point. The mounting point is there for a reason.
Very true and 99% of the time that is absolutely the case. Not really worth moving the binding fore and aft. I will say that When i was learning to mount skis years ago I screwed up a mounting pretty bad. I set the mounting screws on the Schizos a 1cm back, mounted them up and re-adjusted the binding to match the mounting point!!! LOL .... If you can't see it, did it really happen?? HA HA HA Yes those skis are gone! Evidence eliminated! :huh: :beercheer:
 
Interesting background about the process of working with Bode. Obviously there's a lot more work and planning that occurs to these type of events a reality. Clearly more than showing up at a luxury lodge, putting on high end skis and ripping virgin pow with celebs (or maybe I'm wrong!!!).......this segment provides another layer of depth to not just the interview and ski test but about some of the complexities that are involved with running SkiTalk.
 

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