Sign In:


Last Step!

Please enter your public display name and a secure password.

Plan to post in the forums? Change your default forum handle here!

Check Out Our Shop

K2 Pinnacle 130 Boot: Teton Tested

SASS Global Travel Guide, Pete Connolly, skis corn on K2's Pinnacle 130 ski boot. Lucas Moore photo. 

Check out K2's Pinnacle 130 Boots at today.

K2 has successfully managed to make a boot unlike any other on the market with the K2 Pinnacle 130. Yeah, there are a few that fit into the same category, but there are a couple features that really do separate this from the pack. 

Being new to the boot scene, K2 stepped in and managed to overcome some of the limitations other long-term boot manufacturers have struggled with when trying to create a solid downhill boot with versatile uphill capacity. No, it's not the lightest touring boot out there. And no, it's not the most aggressive downhill boot on the market either.

That said, this boot has come the closest to being the quiver killer we all have been looking for, with its impressive range of motion in walk mode that does’t degrade the 130 flex and downhill performance. At a retail price of $699.99, its versatility makes the heavy price tag worth it, although now has this boot on sale for just $467.

K2's Pinnacle 130 offers range of motion, but also the stiffness needed to effectively tour. Lucas Moore photo. 

I am 6’4” and 200 pounds, and like to use every bit of stiffness a boot offers while still spending a lot of my time touring. I travel constantly throughout the year as a guide in Japan, Argentina, and all over North America. This means that lugging two pairs of boots around with me is a serious commitment, and I was psyched to only use one boot for everything this season. I put just over 80 days on this boot, with 30 or more of those days touring. 

The first 50 or so days on this boot were on Hokkaido in that light, fluffy, deepest of deep. But since then, I have been in Washington, Colorado, California and Wyoming experiencing everything from frozen cement to dangerously saturated slush. I was skeptical at first, but every day I have spent in this boot has made me like it more and more.

Unfortunately around day 70, I found out I had a defective molding on the right boot, but K2 has been quick to warranty the issue and has promised replace it in time for me to head to Alaska. Good thing too, as I don’t really want to be in any other boot when combining touring and big lines is my goal.


There are four unique features to the Pinnacle 130 that K2 has developed and is promoting as the defining characteristics that make this boot better than the rest. The first three of these sold me. The last one, I could take it or leave it.

The Synchro Interlock delivers greater fore and aft range of motion for better touring. K2 photo.

#1: The Synchro Interlock & PowerFuse Spyne. The combination of what K2 has dubbed the Synchro Interlock and the PowerFuse Spyne is what gives this boot its versatility. It is in this system that they have figured out how to have impressive fore and aft range of motion for the way up while being able to maintain the stiffness and responsiveness both forward and laterally for the way down. The carbon fiber Spyne replaces the use of rivets entirely with its male/female interlock giving the boot greater stability and reaction in variable snow. This is completely disengaged in tour mode allowing for the greater range of motion, not just backward, but also forward. When engaged, the boot essentially has the exact same construction as its non-touring brother the Spyne 130. In other words, once in ski mode and heading downhill, you are not sacrificing performance for the ability to get up there in the first place.

Integrated tech fittings mean there's no movement or play between the binding, boot sole, and boot.

#2: Integrated Tech Fittings. For those of us using a tech binding (I have been using, and loving, the Dynafit Beast 14 this season), the integrated tech fittings is a huge step in the right direction. Instead of having a replaceable sole block that screws into the boot, allowing for movement between the shell and the piece of your boot that is actually attached to the binding, the tech fittings are fully integrated into the shell injection. 

This gives you the most stable tech option available. There are plenty of touring-specific boots that use this same practice, but none of the other “crossover boots” do. Not only is switching your soles every time you want to go for a tour a pain in the ass, but eliminating this gives you greater performance and responsiveness from boot to binding. This was something I had been looking for for the past couple years. Additionally, K2 doesn’t waste their time with an aggressively thick cushy rubber sole that reduces responsiveness to my Salomon STH 16's. A hard sharp plastic toe is more useful on a tiny rocky foothold anyway…

The INTUITION liners include tour flex notches which are strategically placed for natural flexibility. K2 photo.

#3: The PrecisionFit Tour INTUITION liner. Designed specifically for this boot, K2 basically combined the comfort of the INTUITION liner with the performance and power transfer of a race liner. Standard INTUITION material is used around the entire foot for a great fit no matter how your foot is shaped. The cuff is re-enforced with a thin hard rubber PowerCollar that helps to increase responsiveness and the addition of the PowerWedge helps to keep you forward and charging hard. 

The tongue itself is heat molded for comfort, but is stiff and ergonomically designed to use your shin’s pressure both forward and laterally without slippage. I have always been a fan of INTUITION liners and didn’t really think any improvements needed to be made. That said, the additions of stiffer materials around the cuff really do add to the boots overall performance and help to increase its stiffer feel. Once in tour mode the fact that those reinforcements stop above the ankle mean that you still have the mobility you want.

The Power Buckle is a hybrid between a buckle and a strap combining the two to reduce extra steps in buckling. K2 photo. 

#4. The Power Buckle. It's a feature that K2 seems to be really excited about, but I am just not really sure what it accomplishes. Yes, it combines the upper strap with a buckle, so there is one less step and it's a bit lighter, but I always struggled with making it work in the way it was designed. I still found myself resetting the velcro between touring mode and skiing as releasing the buckle made the cut too loose even for touring. I will say that it doesn’t seem to reduce the performance on the downhill at all, but it doesn’t do much of what they claim on the up in my opinion.


Pete enjoying some ridiculous Japanese pow on board the Pinnacle 130. Lucas Moore photo.

Despite loving this boot throughout the season, I managed to crack the shell right at the flex point on the front of the right boot the other day. After contacting K2, they tracked the issue down to “an extremely low number of boots globally,” and have promised full warranty replacement in a timely manner. It seems as if durability over time would be the big limitation on these, which is a huge disappointment when considering all of the pluses this boot offers.

It should be noted that, after the initial posting of this review, it was brought to our attention that several folks in our audience, including a sizable one in our forum community, have had breakage issues with this boot, either with the buckles, the shell material, the metal walk mode, or bolts unthreading themselves.


Pete uses the Pinnacle 130 to successfully tour with a comfortable range of motion. Lucas Moore photo. 

I am obviously a fan of the boot on the whole. That said, it does have a few little downsides that should be fixed, although I hear they will be unchanged for next year. Luckily they don’t compromise the performance or even the fit, just the usability.

First and foremost is how difficult it is to undo both toe buckles. They simply did not give the buckle enough lip for your finger to grab, especially in gloves. And if you are one of those people wearing mittens, forget it. Also, make sure that the boot is in ski mode when putting the liners back in. Otherwise there are two plastic edges on either side of the PowerFuse Spyne on the inside of the boot that will catch on the heal of the liner. I learned the hard way and put small tears in the heal of one of my liners. Never felt it after the fact, but could have ruined them pretty easily.

Check out K2's Pinnacle 130 Boots at today.

This is not the boot for you if you spend 100% of your time touring lines with long approaches. And it's not the boot for you if you do not spend an ounce of your own energy making your way up hill. But if you are looking for that elusive quiver killer that can handle a bit of extra weight on the ups and you don’t want to sacrifice performance on the downs, this is a great option. 

The boots are now on sale for $467 and worth every dollar. Although I tend to break everything I use, the fact that they will be replaced so I get to keep skiing in a boot I love makes a difference. But you'll have to decide for yourself if the frequency of durability issues that many users of this great-skiing boot are reporting is too much for you to worry about.

From The Column: TGR Tested

About The Author

stash member Pete Connolly

Mountain Ops Director and Ski Guide for SASS Global Travel in Argentina and Japan. Brand Manager the rest of the time. TGR Contributor on the review side of things. Graphic Designer when it fits in the schedule. LET IT SNOW.

Good looking, true size, flex… but dont help. The quality is sooo poor. Broke twice in 40 days. Buckles of butter. Dangerous. Can check it on the tgr forum-pinnacle 100-130. Dozens of same cases. This boot really sucks!

Had these boots and broke the walk mode, the buckles ended up all bending and one fell off, and the powerstrap sheared of. Terrible build quality but skied alright… Ended up going to the Cochise 130 pro and miles better