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Marker Duke or Fritschi Freeride
Posted: 14 July 2008 07:43 AM  
Total Posts:  2
Joined  2008-07-14

Does anyone have first hand experience with either of these bindings?  Which would you recommend? 

I’m looking for a new touring setup for next year.  The Marker Duke looks super tough, but how heavy is it?  Does it climb well?  Easy to use?  How does it ski?

I’ve had a pair of Fritschi’s but looking forward to potentially upgrading to the Fritschi Freeride for a little more durability.  That all depends on what feedback I can get on the Duke.

Thanks for your help.


Posted: 14 July 2008 11:14 AM   [ # 1 ]  
Total Posts:  2234
Joined  2003-10-24

I’ve not used the Duke but remember that Marker will also launch the Baron for the 2009 season. It is a lighter version of the Duke with more plastic. The Baron is 2450 grams (5.4lbs) and the Duke is 2600grams (5.7lbs). The Duke has a DIN 16 max and the Marker Baron DIN 12. The Baron is also cheaper.

You’ll need to check out if ski crampons are available now - they wern’t last season.

Did you have problems with the Fritchis? The toe seems to be the weak point and the Freeride plus doesn’t seem to be much stronger here. If you are cliff hucking and pounding a lot of resort miles then the Duke or Baron might be the way to go. I doubt I would do more than 800-1000 meters climbing on it but the same could be said of the Freeride Plus.

Posted: 14 July 2008 10:50 PM   [ # 2 ]  
Total Posts:  2
Joined  2008-07-14

I have broken a few of the toes pieces on my Fritschis, but the new Freeride looks a lot beefier than the older model I have.

I’m 6’4”, 220 lbs, so I’d really like the higher DIN and durability of the Duke, but want the lighter weight of the Freeride.

I’m going to be using them more off piste than at resorts, so I might not need the Duke.  I may have to look at the Baron.  Any idea when those will be available?


Posted: 15 July 2008 12:51 AM   [ # 3 ]  
Total Posts:  7
Joined  2008-07-05

I’ve used both. All things being equal (which they never are...), I would say the Freeride is a good all around binding if you are going to do alot of climbing. The Duke is good if your thing is to downhill and you need to get into, or out of, where ever you are. I haven’t broken my Freeride bindings (yet) and the Dukes are a hassle if you are traversing and need to free your heel (you have to take your boot out of the binding to free the heel) So there you go,it all depends…

Posted: 05 August 2008 04:11 AM   [ # 4 ]  
Jr. Member
Total Posts:  40
Joined  2008-03-27

Love the Fritschi free rides, they held up as well as I could hope for any binding this previous season in Alaska.  I’m very skeptical of the Marker Duke for a couple reasons.  First you have to take your ski on and off to lock your heel, this can be a major pain and it’s always nice to be able to fix your heel for steep side hill descending with skins on.  Second the single heel riser is very limited, it’s nice to have at least 2 options.  That said my Fritschis do worry me due to the wide nature of my skis (193 atomic thugs, 115mm waist) as they have slight torsional issues from time to time.  That said I love Fritschi’s

Dongshow Productions


Dongshow Productions

Posted: 05 August 2008 09:48 PM   [ # 5 ]  
Total Posts:  28
Joined  2008-08-05

I was told by a guy in a shop that the Markers have had reported trouble freezing up ? in cold conditions (prob less than say -10degc. same issues as i have with my poles… This prob not relevant for most, but this was in Northern Norway....

Posted: 02 September 2008 03:05 PM   [ # 6 ]  
Total Posts:  4
Joined  2008-09-02

Me and my buddies all have freeride plus bindings. Ive seen one of them huck a 50ft cliff in rogers pass bc so if you have any issues with hard core skiing, there aint an issue! Free ride plus rocks for backcountry skiing. However i have bent/briken toe peice but it was replaced free of charge. Excellent service. If you plan on having one set of skis for mostly inbounds skiing with the odd backcountry trip then maybe the duke/baron is a better choice due due to the burlier construction and weight is no longer an issue.
Get good skins though. Black diamond ascent way better than g3 rubbish.

Posted: 02 January 2009 06:48 PM   [ # 7 ]  
Total Posts:  6
Joined  2008-11-21

Erik sums it up well IMV.  Dukes for downhill and bombproof… far more sucure, IME, than the FR+… but at 2650 isn’t light so pick where you go and how fit you might be.  The Duke is an alpine binding with AT uphill capability and far outperforms the FR+ as a binding, IMV..until you go uphill.

Where are your priorities..?  where do you want the compromise..?  The Baron has more plastic and the weight save isn’t worth it to me..150 grms..??

Crampons are available now.