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Comparative fit of AT and Alpine boots

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
 Hi - Have conflicting data about whether AT boots should be looser or tighter than Alpines. Most backcountry sites say leave a little extra room for walking. But then you read a lot of complaints about heels lighting up, and on TGR, the rule of thumb seems to be get them snugger. As a reference, I am a 10.5-11, wear a 27.7 Falcon, Gun, but a 27.0 Factor. Sold it before it packed out, largely because it was feeling sloppy already. Now interested in the Quest. Word on the street is they run a size large. Obviously, I'll go try them on, get advice from the fitter, but bigger issue I'm interested in here is: What I should look for in the store? 

I'm narrow in the heel, wide across the forefoot, not particularly long toes. (Think duck.) In an alpine, I like a snug fit, go for the heel primarily, expect work on forefoot. My Falcon 10's took two trips to Footloose, 3-5 mm wider across outside of 5th metatarsal. Go for classic toes-hitting-the-end-in-liners until I flex into a skiing stance, one finger behind if shell alone. Ski BOF or a cm behind, rarely all the way back to line unless over 110 waist. Touring tends to be sidebounds or day OB in group, not camping. 

So do I shoot for  a similar fit in a Quest/Factor, or do I allow for a bit more length?
post #2 of 9
i would aim for a pretty snug fit, too much space and the heel will just lift right out when you are hiking up, the quest is huge to size, i was given a 28 as this is the size i ski in pretty much everthing, the shell has at least 25mm behind my heel, way too much for me, skiied pretty well considering but when it packs out it would be a nightmare..... there was then a memo round salomon saying that for any kindo of perfermance fit you need to go down a shell size, so 27 would probably work great for me
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks, very helpful. In the Quest, then, that would be a 26.5 for me.

Follow up question: In alpines, I just buy them tight and punch out the fronts. But I've been told you can also address heel issues sometimes by a thicker tongue or pads under shell that keep the ankle pushed back and down. In an AT, would that work? I'm thinking different liners or a pad; main issue that led me to sell my fairly new Factors was that as the liner packed, I could tell the heels were going to get loose enough in walk mode that I'd get blisters (major issue for me in hiking boots all my life).  So it seems like if I get an AT that's tight enough to keep my heel happy in walk mode, I'll kill my toes when I kick steps, while if I make my toes happy, my heel suffers when I skin. 
post #4 of 9
get em tight. (like alpines)

if they are tight in the heel it will prevent blisters, and keep the heel back for more toe room.

better, in any boot, to make more room with punch/grind, then try to pad stuff up later.
post #5 of 9
also remember that the quest is pretty high volume in fit, if you are looking for a boot like this and not too fussed on having a dynafit compatible sole then look also at the atomic tracker, it has the same walk mode as the salomon and is based on the CS (98mm) semi plug last

all depends on the foot, the factor is meant to be a 98mm last so i think the quest may be way to voluminous for you
post #6 of 9
One thing to keep in mind when you go to your boot fitter is have him/her measure the arch length of both feet. This is usually overlooked when fitting AT boots. Good Luck
post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by CEM View Post
all depends on the foot, the factor is meant to be a 98mm last so i think the quest may be way to voluminous for you
Well, I had to get my 98 mm Falcons punched out to about 102 across the ball of the foot. ("About" meaning that I realize the initial stretch will rebound a mm or two after the boot cools and gets used, fitter took them out to 103.) So a 101, say, would be great across there. It's the heel I worry about. Now I read that the Quest was using an Impact last, and the descriptions of the Impact all say it has a Falcon rear with a higher volume front. Not true? The Falcon heel in 27.5 fits me really well as is, with some donut pads for my bony ankles.
post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
 Update: Just scored a pair of Quest 12's in 26.5, thanks to Epic member, too good to pass up. Guess I'll work out the fit kinks as I go. Many thanks for your advice, and one remaining question to you guys: Assume that like an alpine, I can soften this with shell/tongue mods if it turns out to be closer to a true 120 than I want?  
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
Update: Just scored a pair of 26.5 Quest 12's, price too good to pass up, thanks to Epic member. Will figure out mods as I go. Many thanks for your collective advice here. One last question: Assume if flex is too close to a true alpine 120, can soften with mods to shell or tongue, yes?  
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