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Colltex Mohair Mix Review

Tenacious glue on flexible and light fabric backing, with a snow-side that is tuned to balance grip and glide in a way that most ski tourers should appreciate.
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Price:  $225 List
Pros:  Super light and compact, sticky glue, good grip/glide balance
Cons:  Moody tail clip, sticky glue
Manufacturer:   Colltex
By Jediah Porter ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Feb 11, 2020
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64
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#2 of 12
  • Glide - 30% 6
  • Grip - 15% 5
  • Glue Integrity - 20% 7
  • Portability - 20% 8
  • Icing Resistance - 10% 5
  • Compatibility - 5% 7

Our Verdict

You won't be disappointed with these skins. Especially if you really value glue stickiness, the CollTex leads the field. These are the stickiest skins we know of. As in all skin evaluation criteria, sticky glue has its pros and cons. You won't have these fall off your skis. But you will wrestle them at transitions and suffer entanglements. The fabric side is optimized for balanced performance and the overall package is as light and compact as all-around ski touring skins can be.


Compare to Similar Products

 
This Product
Colltex Mohair Mix
Awards  Editors' Choice Award Top Pick Award   
Price $225 List$209.95 at Amazon$199.99 at Backcountry$179.49 at Amazon$139.99 at Backcountry
Compare at 2 sellers
Overall Score Sort Icon
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Pros Super light and compact, sticky glue, good grip/glide balanceLight, fast gliding, enough grip, optimized glue, universal tip and tailLight, fast glidingLight, well balanced performance, and an excellent tip attachmentAmazing tip and tail attachment, excellent trim tool, well-balanced grip and glide
Cons Moody tail clip, sticky glueMohair blend will wear out faster than all nylon, harder to find than other brandsDurability concerns, limited gripExclusive to Dynafit skisPrevious experience with this glue formulation was poor, 100% mohair construction is known to be less durable
Bottom Line The snow contact surface is perfectly tuned, while the glue is especially tenacious and the tail clip is a little moody, at best.Climbing skins inherently strike compromises; winner of our top award, it balances competing demands better than any other.You get exceptional glide, but pay for that with durability, grip, and some icing resistance.If you have Dynafit skis, these are the obvious and excellent choice of skins.What we see so far is great, but we have some nagging doubts we’ll address with some more skiing.
Rating Categories Colltex Mohair Mix Pomoca Climb Pro S Glide Pomoca Climb Pro Mohair Dynafit Speedskin G3 Alpinist+ Speed
Glide (30%)
10
0
6
10
0
6
10
0
7
10
0
6
10
0
6
Grip (15%)
10
0
5
10
0
7
10
0
4
10
0
6
10
0
5
Glue Integrity (20%)
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
6
10
0
7
Portability (20%)
10
0
8
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
6
10
0
4
Icing Resistance (10%)
10
0
5
10
0
6
10
0
5
10
0
6
10
0
4
Compatibility (5%)
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
2
10
0
9
Specs Colltex Mohair Mix Pomoca Climb Pro S... Pomoca Climb Pro... Dynafit Speedskin G3 Alpinist+ Speed
Measured Weight 0.87 lbs 1.23 lbs 1 lb 1.21 lbs 1.29 lbs
Material 65% mohair and 35% nylon 70% mohair and 30% nylon 100% Mohair Mohair and Nylon mix 100% mohair
Weight Per Pair 393g for K2 WayBack 80 558g for Salomon MTN Explore 95 452g for Atomic Backland 550g 586g for G3 Roamr
Glue Traditional Traditional Traditional Traditional Traditional
Tip Attachment Rigid tip loop Rigid tip loop Rigid tip loop Proprietary rubber knob into ski notch Dual self aligning hooks
Tail Attachment Camming clip on rigid strap Rubber strap and cam hook Rubber strap and cam hook Metal hook Rubber strap and metal hook
Ski Compatibility Universal Universal Universal Compatible with Dynafit skis only Universal
Precut Option? Order for length and approximate width, cut to lateral shape Order for length and approximate width, cut to lateral shape Order for length and approximate width, cut to lateral shape Yes Order for length and approximate width, cut to lateral shape

Our Analysis and Test Results

Colltex Mohair Mix skins are good to great all-around skins for your typical backcountry skiing. They glide better than average, stick to your ski better than average, and have pretty mediocre grip and accouterments. The supple construction is light and compact but is prone to tangling at transitions. We expect softer fabric backing to be more prone to ski/glue interface snow creep, but the tenacious CollTex glue stops this before it can even begin.

Performance Comparison


They're compact  and stick really well. The inherent compromises might suit you just right.
They're compact, and stick really well. The inherent compromises might suit you just right.

Glide


We couldn't discern any major glide differences between the Colltex and our top-scoring products, which is a good thing. Some types of pure mohair glide faster. In the case of skimo race-tuned skins, pure mohair will glide much more easily than the Colltex. For all-around backcountry skiing, you will get as much glide as you need out of the Colltex Mohair Mix.

For skinning you want ready forward glide. The Colltex slide forward easily.
For skinning you want ready forward glide. The Colltex slide forward easily.

Grip


We could say almost the same thing about the grip of the Colltex Mohair Mix as we did about its glide. We were pleased with the balance Colltex strikes with this product. Certainly, you can find skins that have greater traction than the Colltex. With that increased traction, you will lose gliding efficiency. With that increased traction, you will be able to skin more sloppily or more steeply, both of which only compromise your biomechanical efficiency. We won't argue with you here, but we will assert that some skins grip more steeply than your body's geometry is optimized for. Essentially, steeper is rarely "better". Therefore, when balancing inherently conflicting grip and glide, more grip isn't better. More technique and lower angle skin tracks are better, regardless of how you are equipped.

Glue Integrity


Colltex's glue is the most robust in the business. Like anything to do with skins, "the most" isn't always the best. Sure, getting your skins to stick tenaciously to your skis is great. On the flip side, every transition will be harder due to the greater stick. We've tested this particular Colltex long enough to know that the glue grip doesn't wane. Further, limited and anecdotal, but compelling, prior experience suggests that, up to a point, the Colltex glue formulation only gets stickier with time. With wide skis and wide skins, the Colltex formulation can be too sticky for non-strenuous transitions.

This burst-captured photo points out an issue with the supple fabric and sticky glue of the Colltex. Unchecked  the photographed twist could fully tangle the skin into a mess.
This burst-captured photo points out an issue with the supple fabric and sticky glue of the Colltex. Unchecked, the photographed twist could fully tangle the skin into a mess.

The good news of the glue grip equation is that the backing can be more supple without risking ski/glue snow intrusion and subsequent failure "creep". The thin and flexible backing of the Colltex makes them lighter and more compact than almost any comparable option. The flip side of this flip side (skin reviewing and selection is an exercise in understanding compromises and meta-compromises…) is that the super supple Colltex form is more prone to tangling in the wind and in clumsy transitions. That sticky glue becomes yet another type of liability when the skins fold themselves lengthwise and twist around, thanks to the supple fabric form.

The tail strap and clip is low profile  but doesn't work that well in application.
The tail strap and clip is low profile, but doesn't work that well in application.

Icing/Glopping Resistance


We noticed absolutely no difference between the icing proclivity of the Colltex and that of any other nylon/mohair blend skins. Across the board, there is less differentiation in this scoring metric than in any other. Icing is more a function of conditions, technique, and waxing period (after all, bare skis can ice up. If a waxed, bare ski base ices up, your skins definitely will. And do so in even more conditions). The Colltex isn't particularly bad, nor is it significantly more prone to icing than the average skin available.

Packability and Weight


Here the Colltex shines. The fabric backing is thin and supple. As compared to the next heaviest skin, the Colltex Mohair Mix (depending on, but corrected for, size) is at least a couple of ounces lighter. Of all the performance attributes, absolute weight isn't a huge concern. You will notice differences in bulk and packability more than you will notice differences in weight. Nonetheless, the Mohair Mix is a lightweight skin.

The rigid wire tip loop works on a surprising array of ski tip profiles.
The rigid wire tip loop works on a surprising array of ski tip profiles.

Compatibility


You buy these for length and approximate width, and then cut to length. Colltex offers this model in sizes that cover most options, but the selection and sizing isn't comprehensive. The rigid wire tip loop is shaped in three dimensions to accommodate tip profiles across the whole spectrum. The heel clip works on smooth and flat tail profiles, but sits off kilter on tails with notches. It'll also slide off rounded tails. We also didn't like the way the tail clip slides around, when not mounted and under tension, on the strap. Grab it wrong, and you can pull the tail clip right off the end of the strap. This is annoying in quick transitions. Further, you could conceivably lose that tail clip quite easily.

The tail clip of the Colltex can slide off too easily.
The tail clip of the Colltex can slide off too easily.

Value


They aren't inexpensive, but their performance is in line with the cost. You can sometimes find them on sale.

Conclusion


If you are absolutely sick of skins coming off your skis, check out the Colltex Mohair Mix. They are the stickiest. That stickiness comes at a cost (transitions are harder), but you will skin assured that you won't suffer glue failure. Good technique and some care will prevent or mitigate the effects of glue failure in other models, but you can get sloppy with the Colltex and have some glue stickiness left over. All the other performance attributes of the Colltex Mohair Mix are average to above average.


Jediah Porter