I will be doing some "season long" testing of a few products that are in my test fleet for this season. First in this series will be the new K2 boot, the Pinnacle 130. Stay tuned in the thread for updates but feel free to ask question or post comments on your own along the way.
Title: 2014 K2 Pinnacle 130 100mm
Shell Size Tested: 25.5
Flex rating: 130
Ski tested with: K2 Amp Rictor XTi 90/Head Supershape iRally
Footbed: Full Custom Instaprint
Modifications done to boot: Heat mold liner w/thin toe cap
Environment of Conditions:
*Location of review: Northstar
*Runs Taken: 25
*Snow Conditions: packed powder
*Demo or Own: Own
*Ski tested with: K2 Amp Rictor 90, Head iRally
This is the boot review that many have been waiting for. The new K2 boots are the “new” boots to hit the market in decades. While we have seen “ski” names on boots recently like Rossignol (Caber) and Atomic (Koflach) to name two, K2 started with a complete clean slate and did not purchase a boot company just to throw their name on a boot. K2 claims to be the only NEW boot that has not derived from a racing boot.
Like many modern boots, the K2 runs a bit long so for initial fitting, be open to down (or right) sizing the boot. The Intuition Liner is pre molded from the start so you will get immediately get a feel of the boot will be one that you can work with or not. Shape inside feels very much like a modern Lange in the first and fifth met area along with over the instep and heel pocket, K2 also created a similar navicular punch.
The Intution liner is one of the areas where K2 is differentiating them selves from boots in this segment. K2 has had a long standing relationship with Intuition with their stepchild Full Tilt who used Intuition liners exclusively. K2 commissioned Intution to make a whole new design of a custom heat mold liner for these boots and I will say they did a very good job with the shape & design. While these are not trying to be a full bore lace up liner by any means they do not have that numb feel you get from a tradition Intuition, these are not your park riding nephew Dylan’s Intuition. For those who like my car analogies, think of these as a good high performance all season tire, they might not have the precision of a good summer compound, but they are not an “aqua-tread” by any means.
The first thing you notice about the K2 Pinnacle 130, besides it’s Kermit Green color is that is a DIN sole but also has Tech fitting. Where some manufactures require you to swap out the sole lugs for either DIN or Tech, the Pinnacle combined both into one..one...one sole design, pretty simple and ingenious. Will many people have the Pinnacle as their main touring boot? Probably not but it does give the weekend back country tourer the ability to get away with one boot until they decide to get more serious. The walk/hike/bar mode works quite well with just a flick of a lever in the back of the cuff and then opening of buckle #3 and releasing of the power strap that is a take on the simple yet efficient Tecnica design but the K2’s lever releases of of the boot, similar, yet different enough. My one negative of the shell design is the soles, yes, they are replaceable, but why not make them like other designs (Lange example) that allow canting shims between the sole and shell. Make the soles, simple and flat, not the contouring that has been integrated in this series. Starting with a clean slate as K2 did, and saying that this was a boot designed with boot fitters in mind, this was something that was missed.
On the snow:
I have been in more boots over the past three years than the previous 30 combined and most recently have been skiing the Nordica Patron/Tecnica Inferno cousins along with having spent a good amount of time in the Tecnica Cochise. I will say that the Pinnicle is the best combination of these walk/hike and technical boots I have tried. While I haven’t had a chance to push the boots in varied terrain and conditions, skiing them hard on groomers, laying the skis over on hard snow they reacted as well as I would hope. I skied the Pinnacles so far 2 days, one with the K2 Rictor Amp 90 and the second with the Head iRally. In both cases in these snow conditions the boot was positive in turn initiation and held well throughout the turn. Stance was very good in a relaxed upright position and I felt very skeletally stacked the whole day.
Coming soon: more on the snow reports along with video.
Other boots in class: Lange XT130 , Tecnica Cochise 120/130
Height/Weight: 5’10” 190lb
Average days on snow: 30+
Years Skiing: 30+
Skis in your Quiver: Many in test fleet
Foot issues: 10* ankle range, right leg 1.5* canted
Preferred Terrain : (zoomer) groomers, bumps, off-piste, trees
Edited by Philpug - 11/30/13 at 8:10am