Named after Wyoming Highway 22, which travels over the 8,431-foot Teton Pass a favorite spot for backcountry skiers, TwentyTwo Designs is dedicated to producing some of the best telemark ski bindings in the world. Started in 2004 by two mechanical engineers, Chris Valiante and Collins Pringle, TwentyTwo Designs inherited the HammerHead binding design from Rainey Designs and continued to improve upon it along with creating their own bindings.
The HammerHead binding was joined by the woman-specific BombShell binding (based on the HammerHead) and more recently, the free-pivot Axl binding. All three of these bindings are made in America at the TwentyTwo Designs facility in Driggs, Idaho – not far from Teton Pass.
The bindings that TwentyTwo Designs manufactures are designed to be used hard, but not fail you in the backcountry. They are constructed of stainless steel and come with a two-year warranty, plus they use the HammerHeel which is touted as being the easiest to use climber. The HammerHead/BombShell and Axl do have their differences which are noted on TwentyTwo Designs’s website.
The Axl Telemark binding sports a bombproof 6-hole mounting pattern, long-lasting chrome die springs, and a front assembly built of tough stainless steel. It’s the only touring binding you can adjust to your skiing style and snow conditions. It gives you the power of a HammerHead, but tours effortlessly.
Along with being made in the U.S.A., TwentyTwo Designs also strive to be environmentally friendly. They now use 100-percent renewable power at their headquarters… or in other words, fresh tracks in front of others in the ski industry.