Pros: Great fit with a real walk/hike feature..that works.
Cons: Name..just can't deal with the name
Shell Size Tested: 25.5
Width: 98-100 with airshell
Flex rating: 110
Ski tested with: Blizzard Bonafide
Modifications done to boot: Out of the box, none
Environment of Conditions:
*Location of review: WinterPark
*Runs Taken: 2
*Snow Conditions: Firm
*Demo or Own: Demo
Height/Weight: 5'10" 185lb
Ski Days/Season: 40-60
Years Skiing: 35
Aggressiveness: Moderate (Finesse)
Current Quiver: 12 Blizzard Bonafide, 12 DPS 112RP Pure, 12 Kastle MX88
Home Area: Squaw & Northstar
Preferred Terrain: bumps, off-piste, trees
Summary (inc. Strengths & Weaknesses):
This is a brave new world we are skiing in. 'SideCountry' is the newest category that marries lift serve skiing with back country. Manufactures such as Tecnica are jumping into this area with both feet. The Bushwacker, Cochise and Crossfire (for the ladies) are examples of such product.
This series features 3 traditional micro adjustable buckles plus a fourth buckle that doubles for walk/hike and going down hill due to its ability to be opened w/o having to be readjusted every time or loosing its position. Where the Bushwacker has its advantage over the Cochise and Crossfire is that is has "Airshell". YEs, I know, Air as a fit feature has been done since the 80's with little success but Tecnica with its channels and pockets has done a better job than any previous attempt. Granted I would not want this feature on a 130 flex race boot but in this application it does work well where you aren't looking for that Nth degree of hard snow performance, if you were, you would be looking at a different boot anyway. Where the airshell DOES work is it brings the 100mm last down to a 98mm quite well.
Walk/hike feature: This works very well with a quick 2 stage process, there is a "pull" on the spine of the boot that gets released then 2. Open the top buckle/power strap and you ready to go. In fact the second step is almost optional depending on terrain that you are walking/hiking on.
Another awesome feature of this series of boots is the ability to switch from the standard DIN soles to the optional AT/Vibram soles to make this a beefy Dynafit compatible BC boot. While there lighter choices, adding lightness can be at the expense of on piste performance.
The Bushwacker will be a great option for someone who is 60/40 more concerned with going down the hill as to climbing up. This will also be a great option for coaches and instructors. This series of boot has the first walk/hike feature I have experienced that didn't come at the cost of performance.
Other boots in class: Lange SuperBlaster, Tecnica Cochise