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  1. #1
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    Narrow touring boot quiver 2019

    I did some searching but the threads I found are 20+ pages I can't sift through, and I am special, so here's my thread. I am looking for an everyday touring boot. I have a narrow foot, just over 4" at the widest. It's pretty flat. I think you could properly describe it as low volume. I have pretty narrow heels/ankles/lower legs. I am 6'2", 165 lbs. I do not shred hard, I shred medium. I ski a 185 Cochise inbounds (with shifts! I'm finally there!), a 185 Zero G 108 for everyday touring, and I have a few other options.

    I envision a 3-boot quiver:
    - Resort and limited sidecountry (Check!)
    - Everyday touring
    - Lightweight big-day or real ski mountaineering or spring traverse

    My current boots:
    - Dalbello KR2: The KR1 was the first boot that gave me that "aha" moment, and the KR2 is even better. Fits great, skis great, this boot makes me happy.
    - Dalbello Lupo 130 c (the orange ones): This boot is basically my holy grail, a boot that I can ski in the resort and also do some touring with. The stock liner is laughably bad, but I took the Intuition wrap liner out of my KR2s and now they fit great, basically the same as the KR2, skis about the same, I could probably tell the difference if I skied them back-to-back but why do that? This is heavy and tours pretty badly with the power wrap but that's fine, I am happy with this.
    - Scarpa Maestrale RS (first gen): I've had this boot a long time and it's never made me that happy. The weight is great and it tours well, so whatever I replace it with should be similar in those regards. The fit isn't great. I have never liked the way it skis, though I find it hard to describe why. The flex feels wrong. Maybe it's too stiff for me, or maybe the curve is just wrong, I push against it and it doesn't move and then all the sudden it moves and my heel pushes back in the boot uncomfortably. Of course I can't expect it to flex the same as the Dalbellos, but it seems like I could do better. I am still using the stock Intuition tongue liner, and I would be open to trying a different liner. But it might be putting lipstick on a pig?

    It's 2019 and I bought my Maestrales like seven years ago. So I am looking for a boot to replace them and fill the second slot. I'm also wondering about that third slot.

    Boots I am curious about:
    - Atomic Hawx Ultra XTD: Looks like the right weight. I am wondering if the 130 might be too stiff. But the 120 is heavier...
    - Technica Zero G: Also seems about the right weight. I tried on a Technica Cochise before the Zero G existed, it felt funny in the instep, like it was too high for me.
    - Anything else y'all can recommend: Am I missing something? Could I go lighter? Is something like the F1 worth considering?

    I am also taking suggestions for that third boot, to climb Rainier or the North Ridge of Baker or whatever. Is the Alien RS as good as they say? Would the Fischer Travers fit? Hope this thread spawns a discussion that is helpful to others.
    that's all i can think of, but i'm sure there's something else...

  2. #2
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    A lot there, so let me start with some questions:

    -Are you trying to replace that Maestrale RS, or trying to fill that third category in your boot quiver of big day/ski mountaineering?

    -Since you are currently skiing boots that come stock with Intuition liners, and the boots you are interested in don't have Intuition liners, do you plan on skiing stock liners or getting Intuitions aftermarket?


    My take is that The Zero G and the Hawx XTD are both, to me, more of that everyday touring boot. Though we may have different definitions as I probably wouldn't do much touring on that Lupo as it is configured. Either way, the Zero G is light and the Hawx is not as light but if you go Intution it brings it down a lot. My XTD 120s w/ pro tours are 1400g. Your foot sounds like it would be really well matched with the Zero G- it does not fit at all like a Cochise. Way lower volume, snug in the heel. Hawx could work too, it is ever so slightly higher volume in the instep and heel in my opinion compared to the ZeroG.

    Based on your weight and your medium shredding, I would take it down to the Scout or XTD 120. Mostly because while slightly more weighty, I feel the flex is a little nicer with the PU cuff and not the Gril. I also think the ZG Tour Pro is quite stiff, and unless you have the mass or are skiing very aggressively it takes a lot to flex through it. You are tall so the length of your tib/fib will allow for greater leverage in flexing, but I am 5'9 165 and had a real hard time flexing that ZG Tour Pro. Am liking the XTD 120 a lot more, in spite of their less great touring prowess.

    I also stockpile Dynafit TLT 5/6 P in my size. The best fitting boot I have ever worn, obviously tours amazing, and skis well enough in the terrain I want it for and with the skis it is paired with. They would not drive that 108 very well though. I guess I just wouldn't want one of those bigger boots for something requiring lots of cramponing, if you see yourself doing that.

  3. #3
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    There is one great thread I am trying to remember, but I couldn't find it with my lazy attempt at search-fu. Anyway:

    There are a lot of great options in your third category, depending on your foot. Scarpa Alien RS, Fischer Travers Carbon, Atomic Backland, TLT7, Scarpa F1 all come to mind.

    I've got ~130 days and ~350k' vertical on my Fischer Travers Carbon (every day boot for me, I basically only tour and sometimes casually skimo race) and if they fit your foot, they'll do a great job in slot 3, depending on what skis you're envisioning driving with them. I've happily skied skis up to ~1500g and ~100mm underfoot with them. You can go bigger too, but at some point you'll want more boot I suppose. 95ish flex by alpine standards, fairly progressive. I have rambled at length on them here and elsewhere, but I cannot recommend them highly enough, if they fit your foot. The touring ROM will make your Maestrale's feel like alpine race boots with no walk mode. The Travers walk/skin/boot like sneakers. They're nice and warm, too.

    What bindings/skis are you envisioning for these 3 slots?

  4. #4
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    If you're in Seattle maybe just go to evo, chat with gregL, and try a bunch of stuff on?

    Lots of great options in the "every day touring" category. ZG Tour Pro might be the best from what I hear, if it fits and flexes right for you. Or Hawx XTD 130. IME, your size/weight isn't everything when it comes to flexing boots -- anatomy plays a big part, too, so you really have to try stuff on to see how they fit. It's funny to hear people say, "I'm 220# and these were too stiff for me so they can't possibly be too soft for you at 165#." If a boot fits like a glove, it's generally easier to flex because you can actually generate force...but OTOH boots that fit me weird are like a brick wall that I can't really flex at all because there's too much movement in the boot for me to get any power.

    Alien RS was way too tight in the forefoot while being pretty loose in the heels for me. Does that mean it won't work for you? No. And if it fits, it's likely the best spring mountaineering boot out right now. Otherwise the Fischer Carbon Travers seems to get lots of love.
    Last edited by auvgeek; 02-14-2019 at 11:20 AM.
    "Alpine rock and steep, deep powder are what I seek, and I will always find solace there." - Bean Bowers

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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by rangerjake View Post
    A lot there, so let me start with some questions:

    -Are you trying to replace that Maestrale RS,
    Yes, that is my primary goal. That Lupo is really for lifts and small sidecountry skinning.

    I would love it if I got a boot with a good stock liner, but they seem rare. So I may need to replace with an Intuition.
    that's all i can think of, but i'm sure there's something else...

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by mall walker View Post
    What bindings/skis are you envisioning for these 3 slots?
    Lifts and small sidecountry: Cochise/Shifts
    Everyday touring: Zero G 108 with yet-to-be-decided binding. They've currently got Dynafit Radical 1.0s but I sort of hate that binding.
    Skimo: I have a pair of Zero G 85s I'm planning to mount up with Dynafit Speed Superlite 2.0s.

    I've got a pair of Denalis I'm trying to get rid of, I just don't like 'em.
    that's all i can think of, but i'm sure there's something else...

  7. #7
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    Narrow touring boot quiver 2019

    Quote Originally Posted by counterfeitfake View Post
    Lifts and small sidecountry: Cochise/Shifts
    Everyday touring: Zero G 108 with yet-to-be-decided binding. They've currently got Dynafit Radical 1.0s but I sort of hate that binding.
    Skimo: I have a pair of Zero G 85s I'm planning to mount up with Dynafit Speed Superlite 2.0s.

    I've got a pair of Denalis I'm trying to get rid of, I just don't like 'em.
    Yeah the Rad1.0 is heavy for its lack of features compared to todayís offerings. Tecton/Vipec get a lot of love here.

    The Travers/Alien RS tier boots will all rock the ZeroG85s.

    What length are your Denalis...?

  8. #8
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    that's all i can think of, but i'm sure there's something else...

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by auvgeek View Post
    If you're in Seattle maybe just go to evo, chat with gregL, and try a bunch of stuff on?
    I recommend the above.

    I ski the 26.5 KR2 for alpine with a huge toe punch and several bontex shims to reduce vertical volume. I use the softer of the two sets of tongues that come with them. I also tour with 27.5 Hawx XTD 130, also with several bontex shims. I tried to make the 26.5 Hawx work, but just could not punch the toe enough to walk comfortably in them for 5k+ vertical. I also replaced the stock liner of the 27.5 with MV Intuition Pro Tour liner which are more snug and supportive than the stock Hawx liner. I do not think you will find the Hawx 130 too stiff, but others may disagree.

  10. #10
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    I've got quite a bit of time on the XTD 130 and it has been a game changer for me at 5'11" and 220. Can actually drive just about any ski I want. But, one thing I did notice is that I can very significantly vary the flex on them by how tight/loose I do the buckles and power strap. Just off the top of my ass I would estimate I can change the flex by about 20 "points" and tune it to the conditions, skis, and emotional state. Don't know if that's of any use but there it is anyway.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by counterfeitfake View Post
    I did some searching but the threads I found are 20+ pages I can't sift through, and I am special, so here's my thread. I am looking for an everyday touring boot. I have a narrow foot, just over 4" at the widest. It's pretty flat. I think you could properly describe it as low volume. I have pretty narrow heels/ankles/lower legs. I am 6'2", 165 lbs. I do not shred hard, I shred medium. I ski a 185 Cochise inbounds (with shifts! I'm finally there!), a 185 Zero G 108 for everyday touring, and I have a few other options.

    I envision a 3-boot quiver:
    - Resort and limited sidecountry (Check!)
    - Everyday touring
    - Lightweight big-day or real ski mountaineering or spring traverse

    My current boots:
    - Dalbello KR2: The KR1 was the first boot that gave me that "aha" moment, and the KR2 is even better. Fits great, skis great, this boot makes me happy.
    - Dalbello Lupo 130 c (the orange ones): This boot is basically my holy grail, a boot that I can ski in the resort and also do some touring with. The stock liner is laughably bad, but I took the Intuition wrap liner out of my KR2s and now they fit great, basically the same as the KR2, skis about the same, I could probably tell the difference if I skied them back-to-back but why do that? This is heavy and tours pretty badly with the power wrap but that's fine, I am happy with this.
    - Scarpa Maestrale RS (first gen): I've had this boot a long time and it's never made me that happy. The weight is great and it tours well, so whatever I replace it with should be similar in those regards. The fit isn't great. I have never liked the way it skis, though I find it hard to describe why. The flex feels wrong. Maybe it's too stiff for me, or maybe the curve is just wrong, I push against it and it doesn't move and then all the sudden it moves and my heel pushes back in the boot uncomfortably. Of course I can't expect it to flex the same as the Dalbellos, but it seems like I could do better. I am still using the stock Intuition tongue liner, and I would be open to trying a different liner. But it might be putting lipstick on a pig?

    It's 2019 and I bought my Maestrales like seven years ago. So I am looking for a boot to replace them and fill the second slot. I'm also wondering about that third slot.

    Boots I am curious about:
    - Atomic Hawx Ultra XTD: Looks like the right weight. I am wondering if the 130 might be too stiff. But the 120 is heavier...
    - Technica Zero G: Also seems about the right weight. I tried on a Technica Cochise before the Zero G existed, it felt funny in the instep, like it was too high for me.
    - Anything else y'all can recommend: Am I missing something? Could I go lighter? Is something like the F1 worth considering?

    I am also taking suggestions for that third boot, to climb Rainier or the North Ridge of Baker or whatever. Is the Alien RS as good as they say? Would the Fischer Travers fit? Hope this thread spawns a discussion that is helpful to others.
    Iím loving the Salomon S/Lab X-Alps with Pro Tour liners for everything but Resort use. Incredible walk ability, fun skiing, and the best fitting boot by a significant margin for my low volume feet / low instep / chicken legs. At least try them on before you buy anything else.

  12. #12
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    I went on a tour yesterday and I am fucking done with these Maestrales. They don't fit me. I can't ski well in anything other than easy soft snow. At this point I might just start dragging the Lupos around until I get a lighter option.

    I'd like something that makes a day like yesterday fun instead of annoying. Yesterday was Snoqualmie backcountry with every possible type of snow- deep powder in sheltered north-facing terrain, sun crust over powder on south aspects, scraped out steeps, refrozen avy chunder, everything. Days like this are common.

    I tried on the Tecnica Zero G and the Atomic Hawx in a shop a little while ago. Both seemed a little roomy, the Hawx definitely more so. So maybe the Zero G can be made to work. I especially appreciate Dromond's comment above, sounds like his feet are similar to mine, and I didn't realize that shimming boots that much was legit. I just thought unless I wanted to go down a size and punch like crazy, I was kind of hosed. Agreed I should talk to gregL.

    After a long time using tongue boots, I found the Tecnicas a real bitch to get in and out of, even in the shop. Is this just how overlap boots are?

    The Lupos are almost 2000 g. I don't mind carrying a 1500 g boot to make this kind of skiing fun. I feel like a 1300 g boot probably won't cut it.

    The skimo boot I want someday will be in the 1000 g range, I will try to worry about that later. Sure, some people say the Alien RS skis as well as the F1, but my experience and skill level suggest to me I wouldn't like it on all but the longest fastest days.
    that's all i can think of, but i'm sure there's something else...

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by counterfeitfake View Post
    I've got a pair of Denalis I'm trying to get rid of, I just don't like 'em.
    super light but suprisingly stiff and I sure get tossed around on rough snow, actualy not bad in pow cuz of that early rise tip I assume
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by counterfeitfake View Post
    I tried on the Tecnica Zero G and the Atomic Hawx in a shop a little while ago. Both seemed a little roomy, the Hawx definitely more so. So maybe the Zero G can be made to work. I especially appreciate Dromond's comment above, sounds like his feet are similar to mine, and I didn't realize that shimming boots that much was legit. I just thought unless I wanted to go down a size and punch like crazy, I was kind of hosed. Agreed I should talk to gregL.
    Seriously, go talk to greg or another boot fitter you like who tours. As to whether you want to size down and punch or shim under, that's depends on what your shell fit is like. Again, working with a bootfitter with a touring background will be SO much more helpful than any kind of feedback we can provide over the interwebz. It's not like you live in podunk where you're better off buying options online and trying to fit yourself.

    After a long time using tongue boots, I found the Tecnicas a real bitch to get in and out of, even in the shop. Is this just how overlap boots are?
    I've had good luck getting into and out of overlaps by lacing the liner onto my foot and then slipping it into the shell. But yeah, annoying to put on cold.

    Regarding flex: IMHO, the more progressive flexing options are typically the second (or even 3rd) tier, softer, non-carbon-infused options that are slightly heavier. e.g., Hawx 120, ZG Tour Scout, etc. This should work well for you considering your professed desire for quality of flex over the best weight/stiffness ratio. Plus, they're cheaper.
    "Alpine rock and steep, deep powder are what I seek, and I will always find solace there." - Bean Bowers

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  15. #15
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    Sorry to bring this back from the grave but counterfeit what did you end up replacing the maestrales with?

    I am similarly rocking 26.5 lupo ti's as a resort/sidecountry boot (super happy with them) and had the same pair of maestrales before I finally gave them to a friend. Looking for a longer distance light backcountry boot that skis downhill well since im used to lupos and like to ski aggressively. I have tried on my friends 27.5 solomon mtn lab and thought that could be an option. I have low volume feet and wear a mens 10 (9.5 for soccer cleats). I live in southern oregon now and have no local bootfitter I trust.

    Thanks for your help!

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