Description: Tecnica's entry into the side county market is lead by the very well fitting Cochise. While the Blizzard "flip core" series and particularly their Cochise is getting all the rave reviews, Tecnica, the boot division's "Cochise" is just as much a formidable player in it's own fast growing category "side country". Sidecountry is one of the fastest growing category aimed at skiers that enjoy "earning their turns" by hiking to their preferred lines be it in bounds or it. Where the Cochise (and little brother Bushwacker and little sister Crossfire) succeed in still being good as a ski boot going down the hill as a climber hiking back up. The Cochise has one of the most efficient walk/hike systems offered today with it's IFS (Itelligent Freeride System (who comes up with these acronyms anyway?)) and unique "Power Lock" power strap does work very well (I am sure we will see variations from other manufacturers down the road). This sidecoutry series from Tecnica also allows the ability to swap the soles from DIN to Dynafit and back as you please a feature that Atomic Tracker or Salomon Quest do not offer. The Cochise comes standard with the Dynafit compatible versions where the other boots in the series come with the DIN ones. Optional soles are $40-50.00.
Background: My regular boot from last year was a Tecnica Inferno 130, so I was interested in seeing how the Cochise differed on snow. Since I am one to use cars as basis of comparison, I will not stop here. Where my Inferno 130 felt like a BMW M3, the Cochise feels like the Range Rover, an SUV that was meant to be off road but still has it's proper english mannerisms and can be driven comfortably on the autobahn but not quite the M3 on the back roads. While I haven't taken the Cochise in it's intended off piste environment…yet..I have no doubts that it will perform admirably.
On snow: On hard snow the Cochise felt like a relaxed Inferno, it was easy to feel the family relations. lateral reaction wasn't as precise as my Inferno but that was not to be expected either. This is a boot that I expect to be an 80% boot for my skiing this year. Since I will be doing some guiding, videoing and photographing friends that will be visiting Tahoe, the Cochise with its great options will be a very comfortable boot to use and still have the ability to rip it up.
Shell Size Tested: 25.5 300mm snell
Width: 100mm @ 26.5
Flex rating: 120
Ski tested with: '12 Blizzard Bonafide
Footbed: Full custom Instaprint
Modifications done to boot: swapped Dynafit soles for DIN ones.
Environment of Conditions:
*Location of review: Northstar
*Runs Taken: 10
*Snow Conditions: Chalky man made to marbles.
*Demo or Own: Own
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
Foot: measures 26.5cm with a b/c width and limited dorsal range.
Other boots in class: Atomic Tracker 130, Salomon Quest 12, Black Diamond Faction
See product page HERE.