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Question AT boot recommendations?

Discussion in 'Backcountry' started by sastrugi, Feb 18, 2019.

  1. sastrugi

    sastrugi At the centre of it all Ski Pass: Gold

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    +1 has to go through the trauma of new boots this year as his beloved old Lowa Struktura Evo slippers pretty much exploded off his feet at the end of last season. We're a bit off the ball with knowledge on new boots. What are the current recommendations and opinions on AT Boots we can buy either in Melbourne or Thredbo/Valley/Jindy?
     
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  2. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend Ski Pass: Gold

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    Lowa Struktura’s!
    Noice, I had a pair for about a decade.

    For AT I would look at Harro (more ‘Freeride AT’ range maybe as a way to describe what he had last season on the shelves), or Rhythm for the widest range from entry level to top end to freeride to whatever. Wilderness Sportsmay have what you are after too but smaller range.

    Rythm has a huge range.
     
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  3. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Whatever fits his feet best.... followed by lightness and amount of ankle flexion..... Would have liked to try Dynafit boots but they are just too narrow for my feet. Skied Scarpa for a while but lack of instep height played havoc with my munted metatarsals. Now (after several boot fitting tweeks), feet seem to be happy in Atomic Backland. Also feet happy in Technica Cochise, but they are as heavy as a couple of house bricks. When you are earning turns, comfort comes first.
     
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  4. sastrugi

    sastrugi At the centre of it all Ski Pass: Gold

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    @climberman Is Harro based at Wild Brumby in the Valley? I'd like the convenience of buying in Melbourne when we have more time to try everything on but I think I might prefer the convenience of buying on/near snow for tweaking as required.

    And @Fozzie Bear Interesting to hear your comments... in the old days I recall there were very definite downhill branded boots and AT branded boots... seems most companies seem to be across both and accepted by both communities now?
     
  5. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend Ski Pass: Gold

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    Harro has a winter shop at Crackenback Resort

    http://www.harrosnowsports.com.au/
     
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  6. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    @sastrugi yep, most major boot manufacturers have something in the AT lineup these days. Funny thing is I used to swim in Atomic downhill boots but the Atomic Backland Carbon not only fits me well (with last tweeks Andy Burford at Wild Brumby) but is a seriously good boot.
     
  7. sastrugi

    sastrugi At the centre of it all Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yeah, AT is a good reason for the usual companies to add a few hundred $$ to their normal boot range!

    And yeah, I remember Andy at WB now, cheers :)
     
  8. Kletterer

    Kletterer Thredbo Doughnut Tragic Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    La Sportiva is another brand that suits slender feet better. Very nice though.
     
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  9. sastrugi

    sastrugi At the centre of it all Ski Pass: Gold

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    I have buttugly La Sportiva trail running shoes and I love them to bits. I think Bogong in Little Bourke St stock them, thanks for the reminder :thumbs:
     
  10. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    Doug at emc in deepdene (far kew) has a decent AT range i think @sastrugi and is a very good boot fitter imo
     
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  11. skifree

    skifree grey Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Wilderness Sports in Jindy has i think some Scarpa models. The birdies told me pricing should be good on particular models. Call and have a chat with Beck to find out which models they have/will have by the season.
     
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  12. Arne

    Arne One of Us

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    Try the Atomic Hawk Ultra xtd in various flexes. Mine is a 120. Plenty stiff.
     
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  13. Ziggy

    Ziggy A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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  14. sastrugi

    sastrugi At the centre of it all Ski Pass: Gold

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    Thanks mr, he's been highly recommended elsewhere too. I think I can hear Balwyn calling ;)
     
  15. sastrugi

    sastrugi At the centre of it all Ski Pass: Gold

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    According that the link in the post below, these are very highly rated, thanks!
     
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  16. chrisj

    chrisj One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Are there any boots which are reasonably ok for both downhill and AT?
     
  17. sbm_

    sbm_ One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    K2 Pinnacle has done well for me in that role. I use them for 100% of my resort skiing, but have also done plenty of good backcountry day trips with them - mostly northern hemisphere trips, when I was using proper big powder skis. What you might call "powder farming", short yo-yo backcountry days close to the resort or carpark, specifically to get good snow after the resort's skied out, often in bad weather. You have to completely unbuckle the cuff for them to walk ok, but they definitely do walk ok.

    Many brands have a similar alpine & tech binding dual compatible boot.

    The dividing line for me is overnight backcountry camping stuff. Much more fun with weight-weenie BC specific "slippers", tech bindings and light skinny skis (relatively speaking - still waaaay better for downhill than nordic XC gear or old school tele). I use my ageing Dynafit TLT 5's for the annual October long weekend camping trip. Guys who take downhill boots and Duke or Guardian bindings just suffer.
     
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  18. chrisj

    chrisj One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Thanks. That's exactly what I had in mind.
     
  19. Jobe6

    Jobe6 Hard Yards

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    I give a second vote for the Atomic Hawk Ultra xtd 120 though Ive yet to ski them.Been doing sidecountry on a set of 2010 mantras , Technica Diablo Magnesium boots and Marker f12 bindings awful going up great coming down.The atomic boots feel like there half the weight.Cant comment on the stiffness yet havent had the shell cold enough.
    Small note on the Atomics the sole (ie gripwalk vs WTR ) the last years boots have WTR which wouldnt fit my Marker bindings so i had to find this years release.
     
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  20. Rick Ross Da Boss

    Rick Ross Da Boss One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Lange free tour, love them. In and out or bounds, long tours the works. With foot beds I couldn’t ask for a better boot
     
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  21. tcornall

    tcornall Early Days

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    I just got a new pair of Dynafit TLT6s. They ski downhill very well (Marker Alpinist bindings on Fischer Boundless Crowns) and from a limited test, walk, stride and skin well too.

    But jeez, they were fitted tight! I did my best to give respectful weight to the fitter's recommendations whilst making sure they fitted without pain in the shop but when I got them to Buller, well it wasn't pretty. I could feel the hurt coming as I rode up the first lift.
    Then I had to take my (not very thick) socks off to stop the screaming after doing the first downhill run on the snow. Later took the footbeds out as well. Tolerable now... maybe. (It was nice the way people responded when they saw me sitting in the snow with my boots off, holding my feet and crying (almost). Lots of offers of help and expressions of concern. Maybe on-piste skiers aren't that bad after all...)

    Dunno that I would recommend these particular boots on the basis of my limited experience because I haven't used them yet in the BC but they have potential. This note is more a cautionary commentary on the current trend of tight fitting AT boots. I feel that the emphasis is leaning too much toward downhill performance at the expense of comfort when skinning or even on the flat. Or even walking when th4e snow-cover gives out.
    Terry
     
  22. Untele-whippet

    Untele-whippet beard stroker Ski Pass: Gold

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    Dynafits are very well known to be narrow boots.
     
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  23. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    @tcornall I would humbly suggest going back to your boot fitter. Touring boot fit AFAIK has always been toe wiggle room, comfy firm around foot and lock that heel down. I don't have a Dynafit compatible foot. Quite possibly, without extensive boot engineering, neither do you.
     
  24. BoofHead

    BoofHead One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    A lot of hybrid boots to choose from nowadays which do both well enough. I have Black Diamond factors which are a bit outdated. I’ve retired them for some AT boots (ScarpaMaestrale) even though I spend most of my time in downhill mode.
    A mate of mine loves his Technical Cochises.
    Many to choose from but getting the fit right is critical as mentioned.
     
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  25. chrisj

    chrisj One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Seeing a bootfitter (Alpsport) on Friday. I just wondered what would be some good brands to choose from. Thanks all.
     
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  26. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    What fits your foot best. Alpsports have about the widest range of AT boots, so it they can't find one to fit you then.......

    BTW, +0.95 (Mk III) just purchased a pair of AT boots from Alpsorts. Young French guy doing the work. Was a choice between Dynafit and Scarpa. Scarpa was the better fit, so Scarpa Gea it was. Plus footbeds, plus liner molding... cha ching $$$$$$ (Plus DPS Nina 99 Tour 1 w/- Phantom, plus Dynafit ST Rotation, ski crampons, skins........)
     
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  27. Rick Ross Da Boss

    Rick Ross Da Boss One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    I hope you bought matching arcteryx top and bottoms to go with that kit....
     
  28. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Nope.... but got a very nice Marmot shell in Iceland back in March for myself to replace the ancient Mountain Hardware shell.
     
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  29. chrisj

    chrisj One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    I'm booked with the young French guy. Alexander, I think his name was.
     
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  30. DPS Driver

    DPS Driver One of Us

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    Don't be too fixated on a brand. See what fits your foot best and go from there.

    Scarpa Maestrale is a legend boot. I wish I could fit into it.
     
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  31. chrisj

    chrisj One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Absolutely. I think I've left my run for Olympic slalom glory a bit late, so I'm going for comfort and versatility.
     
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  32. Bendalong+

    Bendalong+ One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    I recently replaced my 11 year-old Garmont Adrenaline's with Scarpa Freedom SL's whilst in Queenstown NZ. 2016 model with Intuition liner standard, which was the decision maker on first fit. Far better than the K2 hybrid due to reasonably thin foot.
    Scarpa Freedom is a crossover with 120 flex rating so good stiffness for downhill with a robust walk clip. Only skied 3 days resort so far with a few walks above remarks and are suitably impressed, particularly at $799.00 and a good boot fitting @ Small Planet.
     
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  33. BoofHead

    BoofHead One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    If your bindings are a suitable ie MNC or frame/pin, you might want to consider a full AT boot for all round use if you are not a real hard charger. They are generally lighter and much easier to walk around in with their rockered soles. My new Scarpas are a full kilo lighter than my Black Diamonds, stiffer and nicer to walk around in.
    Something to consider.
     
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  34. chrisj

    chrisj One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    That's something to consider. I like the option to hire skis when overseas - prefer to travel light, so binding compatibility is a factor I need to consider.
     
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  35. Team Weasel

    Team Weasel One of Us

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    What sort of category of boot are you looking at in terms of weight class?

    I can highly recommend the Technica Zero G Tour Pro - been using them over a year and they are a great boot. About 2.6kg for the pair. Salomon Mtn Explores/Labs, Scarpa Maestrale 2.0, Hawx XTD...all have fans.

    If you want lighter, Scarpa Alien RS is grouse. TLT6s are tried and true. Scarpa F1 is well regarded too. I have no idea of which of those is available in stores here. La Sportiva make good touring boots, but it's been a while since I've looked into their stuff.

    I expect to cop criticism for saying this, but...I like buying the best boot in my size and then dealing with exact fit later. I've found a good bootfitter can make miracles happen. Maybe I'm lucky and my foot isn't on the weird spectrum, but it's worked for me thus far.
     
  36. Chaeron

    Chaeron One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    For wide foot with high instep Technica Cochise is optimal.

    Dynafit one has to deliberately buy too big by a full size.

    Scarpa good for width, but not always for a high instep.

    Choice of liner can make a difference- use my old Scarpa T2 lace-up liners in a newer Scarpa shell - the comfort is about there being less of a gap between shell and inner and the liner tightness being modifiable - or maybe I’m kidding myself and the older packed out liner is more comfortable.
     
  37. tcornall

    tcornall Early Days

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    Yeah, I'll take 'em back and see how good their 'fitting guarantee' is. He did punch out the boot a bit at the time, but I'm sure they were much tighter on the snow than in the shop. Maybe it's our feet that need the engineering...
     
  38. LevRMark

    LevRMark Hard Yards

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    Plenty of good advice about fit here. Along the same line of thinking I recently had a Scarpa rep suggest trying on as many boots as you can (if you have that sort of patience).
    Check the Scott Cosmos - one of the lighter pair boots. They work for me.
     
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  39. dr80

    dr80 One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Good balance of light weight, walk mode and downhill stiffness
     
  40. DPS Driver

    DPS Driver One of Us

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    Scott Super Guide is my boot of choice. Also the only one that fits me. Not a problem because they are a killer boot but are Scott are due to release a replacement, especially after the S1 debacle.

    Had a pair of S1’s on order last year but cancelled them when they withdrew the boot due to “quality” issues.
     
  41. chrisj

    chrisj One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Thanks for the advice people, but I ended up with a pair of Head Advant Edge 105s. They just felt so perfect that I couldn't say no. Tight and snug, but with no pressure points. I really tried to convince myself to get some K2 Pinnacles, but they just didn't match the shape of my feet like the Heads. Gonna try them out at Perisher on Tuesday.
     
  42. BoofHead

    BoofHead One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    At the end of the day they have to fit right. Enjoy.
     
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  43. Kanangra

    Kanangra Early Days

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    +1 on the Tecnicas. Stiff, light, medium to narrow fit, easy to punch out. Also compatible with a number of DH bindings - in my case Marker Griffons. Lighter than this means either lotsa carbon ($$$), or they are soft as noodles. Scarpa Maestrale range good too.
     
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  44. tcornall

    tcornall Early Days

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    Would you believe that when I took them back they did not feel quite so tight as they had on the snow? My feet must have been swollen or the higher ambient temps in the shop made the boots feel looser, or something! (Do ski boots do that? Shrink in the cold, like other things do?)
    Anyway, they were happy to bump the shells out a bit more anyway (This is the Bumps ski shop after all, I can reveal now that I have good news to tell) and I'll try again.
     
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