Linde Werdelin Land Instrument

Sometimes you come across gadgets which sound amazing but would never really be of any use to you. Linde Werdelin’s Land Instrument is different because, if you’re a keen skier, it could be incredibly valuable – perhaps even life-saving.

Linde Werdelin Land Instrument

Move aside from the stunning Danish-designed, Swiss-produced Biformeter watch for a second, if you will, and take a look at the small square device beside it. This is the Land Instrument, a robust yet lightweight contraption which slots atop of the watch, but can also be used completely independently and clipped virtually anywhere. It’s designed to offer protection and guidance on the mountainside, by offering several important alerts and searches.

Land Instrument Condition Checks

So you’re all set to go and scope those untouched off-piste slopes of Veriber are you? The Land Instrument offers four fundamental guidance checks for getting the best and safest conditions.

  • Freezing Levels – Combing the use of the built-in temperature sensor and altimeter, the Land Instrument can tell you exactly where it’s best to ski by finding the closest freezing conditions and at which altitude.
  • Built-in Barometer – Taking regular readings, the barometer can not only show you the latest pressure but can also chart trends over a selected time period, enabling you to see whether the conditions look like improving or not.
  • Altitude Tracking – The Land Instrument can tell you the altitude you’re currently at and will log all the information as you go, so that you can check the altitude levels across your whole trip.
  • Compass – The three-axis compass takes accurate readings to keep you right on course.

Land Instrument Alerts

  • Frostbite Alerts – The external temperature sensor is giving accurate readings every five seconds and alerts you with an alarm and display if you drop below -10°C.
  • Avalanche Likelihood – You’re most at risk of an avalanche on 30° – 45° slopes. The Land Instrument’s inclination check can tell you exactly what angle you’re currently at and warns you if you’re in a high risk area.

Records and Logging

  • Heart Rate Monitor - You can track your heart rate in real-time and it’s all recording for trend-checking afterwards. You can even enter your age, gender and weight to view your calorie requirements after a day’s skiing.
  • Logs and Graphs – You can view the temperature, altitude and your heart rate in real-time and the Land Instrument logs all the data for checking afterwards. You can see for example, how many vertical metres you’ve skiied. Better yet, it can all be uploaded to your computer via USB for easier studying.

Linde Werdelin Land Instrument

It’s pretty much all you’d need for heading off to ski in the unknown and the addition of logging all your data and being able to transfer it to your computer completes the package. It’s also an incredibly nice design, that matches with the watch perfectly. It’s just 41g, too, which means you never feel like you’re lugging around a piece of equipment and instead it can fit snugly wherever you choose.

The other big help is it’s simplistic configuration. The fact that there are just three navigation buttons, means it’s never over-complicated and they’re spaced just nicely enough to be usable with gloves on. You can view more information on the Land Instrument at Linde Werdelin‘s official site. Expect it to set you back around £1,300 .

Satski Tested on the Slopes of St Anton

AJ finds St Anton

A while ago I heard about a useful sounding gadget called Satski. It’s pocket-sized satellite navigation gizmo which tracks your moves on the mountain side. I obviously wondered whether it was any good and if it even worked, but was more interested to be honest in the promise of stats and analysis of your runs. According to Satski you can receive a CD after you’ve finished with all of your replays and vitals, so that you can see exactly how you did and pit your times against friends. My seasoned-skier colleague Adam Johnson kindly helped to give it a test run, in the breathtaking Austrian resort of St Anton no less, and he’s reported back with his findings.

I had the opportunity to trial the new Satski GPS system for a day in St Anton this season. I met up with their in-resort Rep, Alisdair, at the foot of the slopes near the Galzigbahn on my trial day to go over the operations of the GPS tool. He was very helpful and came for a ski on the first few runs to get me used to how it worked.

Satski

It’s very simple and shows your up-to-the-second position on the ski map at any time. You can also replay your day’s skiing on the ski lift map at any time and get details on distance skied, distance on lifts, elevation, average speed and top speed. The latter becoming a good game during the day but more about that later.

The GPS tool has up to date information on the mountain and town restaurants and bars including location, time taken to ski to, and any specials like live music or happy hours. You can plot a course for the day, get guided to a hidden restaurant (handy for finding the secluded Rodelhutte), or take one of the several recommended day trips for intermediate or advanced skiers.

The instrument comes with a neck strap but it was small enough to fit in my ski jacket front pocket. [It] was a hit at lunch when we pulled up Kapallstube and I soon had a wrack of ski bunnies looking over my shoulder at my morning’s skiing replayed.

Satski stats

In the afternoon we put in some serious speed cruising and we took turns with the GPS to see who went the fastest. I would stress that this is not the purpose of the Satski but it was a fun game for a few runs anyway. After I handed it back, which I did at the Krazy Kanguruh over a few drinks with Alisdair, they produced a CD-ROM of the day. You then run the CD at home and you can link through to Google Earth to see your activities in 3 dimensional display with your speed and distances constantly updating on the side of the screen. Very Cool!

The Satski website has a ranking system and I’m happy to say that my top speed, and skied elevation record, is still well above anyone else in my age bracket for that resort. Now I just need to set all the records for all the other resorts. I’m hooked.

- Adam Johnson