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Need some insight on boots for a new alpine set-up

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

 Hi - I am a new member and this is my first post. I have been lurking for a while and impressed with the knowledge and insight of the members on the myriad of topics. I need some help deciding on some boots. My background is that I have been skiing on a telly set-up for about 25 yrs.( This is how I learned to ski). I have decided that I would like to have an alpine set-up so I can switch between turn styles. I am able to do parallel turns with the free heel set up,ski bumps,and trees.I tend to ski fast except for bumps and trees and like to stay pretty much in the fall line when skiing groomers. I am 5'9 165 lbs.and definitely a geezer. I am starting with my boots since reading here on the website. I have been to a boot fitter and have a narrow foot that is relatively straight. I am interested in a ski/ hike boot and have tried Rossi Lange, and Tecnica. I was thinking a boot flex in the range of 100-110.The boot fitter suggested  a last size of 97 mm. I tried on some traditional ski boots with a 97 mm last and they fit fine. Better than a 100 mm last which I found to be a little bit loose. To get me into a ski/hike boot and a 97 mm last it seems that I would have to go up to a flex of 130. I tried on a Lange  XT 120 that was a little to big (100 mm last) and had no trouble flexing the boot in the shop.I actually thought that the flex was not all that different than my telly boots. Seemed rather smooth and progressive. The Tecnica Cochise 100 flex seemed stiffer to me and not as progressive as the Lange. The Rossi boots I could flex but unless I go up to 130 on the flex scale I cannot get a 97 mm boot and that boot still felt a little large with the 130 flex. I have not been able to find a Lange  XT 130 LV and am wondering whether that is to stiff.  I still want to be able to ski in trees and bumps but am concerned that my alpine turns will probably need some refinement and the 130 flex will be to stiff for the skiing I like to do. Any advice or insight would be helpful.




post #2 of 7

If you had no trouble flexing the Lange XT 120 in the shop, it's unlikely you would have trouble with  the 130.  The shop should be willing to order it so you can try it.  We do that all the time and if it doesn't work for the customer, we just put it in stock.  In addition, a boot can always be made softer, so if it is too stiff, a good boot fitter can fix that.  If the people you're dealing with can't soften a boot, go elsewhere because they're aren't a real boot fitter, just someone selling boots.  I can't figure out from your post why you want or think you need the hike mode.

post #3 of 7

Where do you ski ?


I'm surprised the boot fitter couldn't find you a boot. Or are you not serious yet ?


If the boot fitter was that good, he will recommend a boot or two you should be in. Its really not up to you.


Up top there is a sticky about buying boots. Have you looked through that ?


In short, wear old shoe's when you go to the Great  boot fitter. If we know where you ski we can recommend one.


He/she will look at your bottoms of your old shoe's, inspect the bones of your feet, watch you walk, check leg, knee, ankle alignment, check ankle flex, ask you about your skiing and what you want to do with your skiing.


Plan to spend about 2 hours with the Great boot fitter.

post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 

I ski in the East for the most part with occasional trips out West. I have visited with two boot fitters each indicating that I have relatively narrow straight feet and about 98mm in width and recommended a 97 mm last but depending on the manufacturer I could possibly wear 100 mm. They had me try on both the K2 Spyne 110 and K2 Pinnacle 110 both these were 100mm and the Pinnacle 130LV at 97 mm. I tried on the Lange XT120 in a 100 mm last and the Lange XT 130 LV at 97mm. The Lange boots in both models felt roomier than the K2,s. I indicated that I was interested in the ski/hike feature thus the models they chose. How much I would use the ski/hike I am not sure. The other issue was the boot flex in both the  K2 and Lange 130 boots. I was able to flex 130's however given my height and weight they thought I would probably do better in the 110 if the fit was right. Both the K2 110 boots were a snug fit and as they told me should be like a "firm handshake". So I am now looking at the K2 110 Spyne or Pinnacle 110.

post #5 of 7

Suggest you check the boot fitters forum. What I can say is that if you are a 98 mm measured across the 5th met, then no, you do not want a 100 mm last. I am 104-105 across the 5th, and ski a 97mm for firm snow and racing, a 100 for hiking and softer snow. In general, look for a boot that's snug in the back, and the shell sides should at least nearly touch your forefoot across the 5th met. Then the fitter will blow out that area a few mm, and you'll have a great fit. 


Also, Lange's run wide in front, narrow in back. If you are a 97, you will swim in a normal XT 100, so a LV (Low Volume) model, which only comes in the 130 or 110 flex. Rossi Alltrack WTR models are made by Lange, same last. Besides the K2's, might also look at the Cochise, which I think is modeled after the Cochise. But mainly, do not get a sloppy boot. Once the liner packs out a bit, you will not be a happy camper. 

post #6 of 7

I have wide feet and am slightly bowlegged. I've always had trouble getting comfortable boots. I used to wait until I got to the slope before putting on my boots, ski, and then take them off on the gondola ride down and I'd still be in serious foot pain the first few days of the season. Last summer, I got a pair of vacuum fit Fischer boots and they are an order of magnitude more comfortable than any ski boot I've ever had. With the Fischer boots, I can buckle up in the lodge, walk to the bus (with cat-trax on of course), ski my fill, and walk back to the lodge and still feel fine. The only issue is that when they are cold they are a bit hard to get out of. The vacuum fit fits not only the inner liner, but also the outer shell; on my boots you can definitely see the boots cant outwards because of my bowlegs. I highly recommend the Fischer vacuum fit boots. The fitting can take a while so it'd be best to set aside an afternoon for the fitting and expect it will take some time. I got mine in the off season and got them at a great price (brand new '16 boots at 40% off the '15 price).

post #7 of 7

FWIW you can accomplish the same thing as a boot with a walk mode by unbuckling the top buckles. 

Generally speaking narrower boots are stiffer boots. I don't know about walk mode boots but a lot of upper end boots have screws in the spine that can be removed to soften the flex. If not a tech can soften them, as mentioned above. Coming from a telly background the boots are going to feel stiff to you regardless--you probably should take some time to get used to them before any permanent softening.

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