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AT Boots

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
What should I be looking for in an AT boot? There does'nt seem to be a wjde selection of AT on the market. What should I expect in the way of a fit? I fit vary well in a Tecnica Icon. Boot is there an AT boot that has a fit simlar to the Icon?
post #2 of 16
Originally Posted by Utah49
What should I be looking for in an AT boot? There does'nt seem to be a wjde selection of AT on the market. What should I expect in the way of a fit? I fit vary well in a Tecnica Icon. Boot is there an AT boot that has a fit simlar to the Icon?
I ski a Technica Icon as my alpine boot and a Scarpa Lazer as my AT boot. Haven't done any real adjusting to either one and both seem to fit very well.

post #3 of 16
Pick up the latest copy of either Couloir Magazine or Backcountry Magazine. Both have a gear review where they go over the latest crop of boots.

I use Scarpa Lasers, now called the Matrix, and think they are great boots. From what I have heard the Garmont Adrenalins are suppose to be good as well. As usual, try on as many as you can and get the one with the best fit.

Hope that helps

post #4 of 16
I have an odd foot, an almost classic Lange race shell anatomy -- wide forefoot, medium midfoot, narrow heel, but with a lot lower volume top-to-bottom.

I find Tecnicas wider in the heel than I like. Otherwise they generally work fairly well for me.

I'm using Garmont G-Rides, which is last year's most responsive boot, but is 2d in line to this year's Adrenaline. I think it's fair to say that Garmont lasts are pretty similar to Tecnica lasts, as they're about as much "too wide" in the heel pocket as the last pair of Tecnicas I skied (Explosion X).

I found Scarpas too tall in the instep and even wider in the heel pocket.

Haven't tried Dynafit.

Jonathan Shefftz knows a TON about AT boots, you might try sending him a PM.
post #5 of 16


He is our Guru!

Very knowledgeable person and I for sure, he will give you great advice. I think is the best option to try as many as you can. Sometimes that is very problematic if you live in small city (with limitted choices).

Here in Vancouver BC I can try almost everything except Dynafit boots. I read that is good to add one more size number on their boots than you have on your street shoes.

I experienced very strange things with Scarpa too. I tried three mountaineering models, size 8 and all of them are different.

Spend some time in shops. It will pay off latter.

post #6 of 16
My alpine boots are Technica Icon Alu, and my AT boots are Scarpa Denali XT. Both seem to use a similar foot last, so if Technica boots fit you well, it's probably a good idea to try Scarpa's. It's then mainly a matter of deciding what sort of touring boot you want and the ski/binding combination you'll be using them with, so you can work out which model is likely to suit you best.
post #7 of 16
Zoran, I think you’re referring to the old UK Scarpa sizes, where a size 8 UK was really a 9 US? (My wife’s Scarpa Magics came with four sizes: UK, US, Mondo, and Euro!) Scarpa is emphasizing its mondo sizes this year, so that should eliminate some confusion (unless of course the euro sizes are still stamped on the shells, ugh).

Re fit, since Zoran noted that some Scarpa mountaineering boots fit differently, you should be aware that the Scarpa Denali series (both the current TT, the older XT, and previous four-buckle red version and the original three-buckle maroon version) use a lower shell that is significantly different than the Matrix and its brethren (i.e., older Laser, women’s Magic, and various economy models, mainly found in Europe, although one is finally being imported here this season). Ditto for the Garmont Adrenalin vs. other Garmont models. And ditto for Dynafit 700 (and economy 500, as well as older All Terrain) vs. the TLT4Pro and variants. (Unclear whether the fit on the new Aero will be like the TLT4Pro, or something else altogether.)

Another important factor is that the thermo liners (made by Intuition) in Scarpa and Dynafit expand when heated. So any spots that fit a bit loose will be significantly tighter when the liner is molded. (Although coming for a race background, filling shell voids with mushy liner foam is not exactly optimal, but I don’t care about this in the backcountry.) By contrast, the Garmont G-Fit liners are much more thin and dense - so if the shell fits you well, you’ll get a better fit from a Garmont, although mainly people for whom Garmont shell doesn’t fit them complain of sloppy fits. (I’m unclear on what kind of thermo liner Lowa is using in the Struktura Light.)

Besides fit, you should decide whether this boot is going to used for lift-served days, or exclusively backcountry days (and if so whether you want to do long tours, or more yo-yo turn-oriented outings), or for some combi days (i.e., ski half a day lift-served, then head out the access gates). Mainly AT boots emphasize different aspects of skiing. Yet another factor is whether you might to get Dynafit bindings at some point, which would eliminate the Scarpa Denali, Garmont Adrenalin (and G-Ride, but the MegaRide is very similar), and Lowa.

Assuming that you’re getting starting with Diamirs or Naxos, you can start out just using your alpine downhill boots at first, and see what your touring partners are using. (I recently bought a road bike after mtn biking for many yrs, and although I’m happy with the results of all the research I did beforehand, you certainly learn even more once you’re actually out riding with other people.)

Okay, gotta head out now for the last day of my three-day biz trip here, then I might not be checking e-mail much over the next four days while I visit my brother. Quite the fortunate coincidence that the biz trip is in LA and my brother lives in Tahoe which means our hiking & biking plans for the next four days have been replaced by . . .
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks all for the good advice I'll be heading down to SLC and the black Diamond store late this afternoon to try on a few boots.
post #9 of 16
I was in gear-gaping heaven today at the Tahoe Sports LTD, trying on the new Scarpa Matrix (nice improvements over the Laser) and the new Garmont Adrenalin (very impressive), as well as checking out the new Diamirs (although they didn't have the new crampon, but that was compensated for by getting a piece of official Diamir candy from the sales display).
Will post more later this coming week.
(Oh, and two days of epic skiing at Mammoth, a fun day at Kirkwood, and a short backcountry trip coming up tomorrow.)
post #10 of 16
Thread Starter 
I have found a pair of 03/04 Garmont G lite G fit in my size for $215.00. I have tried on this seasons G ride and they fit well. How does the fit on these two boots compare? Is the G light G fit a good boot?
post #11 of 16
The G-Lite is basically the G-Ride but with a lower/softer upper cuff, and sporting only one upper buckle instead of two. Fit should be identical. The G-Lite will be a bit lighter and a bit more comfy for hiking/skinning/climbing. Skiing performance won't be as good as the G-Ride. Overall a fine backcountry boot, although not a good in-bounds/lift-served choice for a heavy and/or aggressive skier. (But definitely a great price!)
post #12 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks Jonathan, you da man. I do have my Alpine boots for my inbounds days and for those days doing the hike up Pinercone ridge at Park City (It's a vary short hike) and those day at the Canyons useing the gates. Since I also have to buy a lot of Avalache gear. Price is a concern. The boots are at Telemark Pyrenees. I would rather buy local and get someone who knows fit still not sure if i will go for that deal or pony up and do it the right way and buy local. thanks again.
post #13 of 16
Ah, I see they've finally revised their website - great deal on last year's Tracker beacon too.
If you want to spend a few more $ to get better ski performance + Dynafit interface, they have the Scarpa Matrix in a size 6.0, which might fit you.
My wife's Scarpa Magics came with about four different size indicators. The shell was a 4.5/5.0 UK, and her 4.5 liner was a 24.0. So assuming some sort of consistent logic to Scarpa's sizes, that should make a 6.0 into a 25.0.
post #14 of 16
Here are some pics from the extended wkend in case anyone needs add'l motivation to get ready for the upcoming season:
(in words: Friday was a spectacular mid-winter powder day at Mammoth,
Saturday also offered excellent mid-winter conditions, Sunday at
Kirkwood was limited terrain on 900 vert but still fun, and today was
a beautiful backcountry outing)
post #15 of 16
Thread Starter 
I got down to black Diamond late this afternoon. They had a few of last seasons Scarpa Denali in a 6. for $315.00. Not a bad price. Unfortunity The fit was pretty tight across the instep. So tight that I still have some pain in my right foot.. They did say that the heated liner would compress somewhat to form to my foot. Still it seemed to tight. I did try the Lazer and that shell was a better fit also in a size 6. My question is will those liners compress that much?
post #16 of 16
The lower shells of the Denali and Laser are very different from one another, so not surprising that they fit you differently. The Intuition liners that Scarpa users (ditto for Raichle and Dynafit) generally expand when heated, but will compress if under signficant pressure during the molding process. The material can also flow about within the liner to some extent.
So the standard procedure for the toe box area is to put on a big cap when heating to create more room for your toesies to be able to wiggle around once the molding is complete. You might want to consider doing the same across the instep? It is also possible to compress the material post-molding: my toe box was so tight as a result of downsizing, that I not only ground out the area a bit with my dremmel tool and also put on big homemade toe caps, but then I took some c-clamps and compressed the material in a toe box to an absolute minimum.
So bottomline guess would be that the Denali doesn't sound too promising, but if the Laser seemed a bit tight, then a skilled boot fitter should be able to fix that problem. The other option is simply to cut away additional shell material in the "U"-shaped cutout of the lower shell.
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