Top 10 Best Backcountry Ski Boots of 2021 – Reviews

best backcountry ski boots

1. Atomic Hawx Ultra XTD 130

The new Atomic Hawx Ultra XTD 130 Alpine Touring Ski Boots are ultra lightweight with a confident feel on the downhill. The boots have more supportive liner and more minimalist buckles. The great touring mode, highly adaptable Memory Fit shell and super responsive performance remain unchanged.

2. K2 Mindbender 100

These touring ski boots are designed to be ultra lightweight, with an effective and intuitive walk mode. They feature a medium flex, making them responsive, reliable, and approachable for backcountry, sidecountry, and inbounds descents. For an intermediate freeride skier looking for one boot to do it all, the Mindbender 100 is hard to beat.

3. Lange XT3 130 LV ($750)

The Lange XT3 130 LV are wonderful touring boots that offer incredible ROM efficiency for a smooth and easy stride on the uphill jaunt. A burlier, warmer and more precise Dual 3D Full liner with Ultralon® foam is a dream to ski in. For sidecountry skiers or those who want one boot that can transition between the resort and backcountry, the Lange XT3 is a strong option.

4. Best Boot for Ski Mountaineering

Light, durable and supportive, this boot is ideal for climbers who ski their descents. The patented 360° rotating cuff delivers unrivaled vertical and lateral ankle agility while climbing. A zippered gaiter offers protection, and the closed-cell liner is warm and moldable for a custom fit.

5. Dynafit Hoji Free

The Dynafit Hoji Free are very capable and comfortable touring ski boots. With a slightly narrower last and stiffer flex, they should make even the hardest chargers happy, especially those with multi-norm alpine setups or frame touring bindings mounted on existing skis.

6. La Sportiva Vega

La Sportiva Vega provides lightweight touring features with powerful downhill performance. The Vega Liner has been designed for maximum ankle comfort. This is the perfect boot for long days in the mountains, side country excursions and multi-day hut trips when you need mobility, warmth and support.

7. Tecnica Zero G Tour Pro

These touring ski boots have everything to help you conquer your own backcountry objectives with an excellent 55˚ ROM walk mode, fully-rockered Vibram® rubber soles, and a true 130 flex. If you’re looking for the best in class for lightweight backcountry performance, the Tecnica Zero G Tour Pro Alpine Touring Ski Boots are for you.

8. Salomon S/Lab MTN

The Salomon S/Lab MTN features a thinner wall construction and new shell materials that allow the foot to be closer to the shell and provide enhanced sensations, more power and direction energy transmission. With its super clean and minimalist design and reputation for reliability, the Salomon S/Lab MTN is a great choice for those looking for a powerful touring boot that’s also suitable for big days in the backcountry.

9. Head Kore 2

The Head Kore 2 Alpine Touring Ski Boots are ultra lightweight and tour very well, but the focus is on downhill performance. These skis have a great walk mode with a wide range of motion, tech fittings, and a graphene-infused shell meant to cut weight, but when you buckle them down, you get a stiff, performance minded freeride boot. In addition, you get a ton of flexibility whether you choose to shred the resort on your alpine set-up or explore the backcountry with your touring kit.

10. Fischer Ranger 120 Ski Boots

The Fischer Ranger 120 Ski Boots provide lightweight feel, great performance in any conditions, and the unparalleled walkability of the Ranger ONE are for passionate skiers who want to have it all. Easy-entry design, intuitive ski/walk lever, and customizable 120 flex shell let you enjoy long days on the snow.


Backcountry (Touring) Ski Boots: A buying guide – How to choose Backcountry (Touring) Ski Boots.
How to choose Backcountry Ski Boots

Are you preparing for your first time skiing? Then you should know how to choose touring ski boots properly. Different than the other sport, you might need different equipment depending on your level of expertise in this field. For people who are already experts in skiing, they might need different ski boots than beginners, due to performance issues. However, beginners will mostly feel tortured with the equipment worn by the advanced skiers. That is why you would need to know which one to buy and what to look out for from skiing equipment. Here are some basic insights so that you could have a much smoother start on your first time skiing.

The most noticeable feature on ski boots would be the number of flexes. Ski boots use flex to define the stiffness level of the boots. The number ranges from 50 to 130. The small number indicates that the ski boots would be easy to flex, and as the number goes up, the stiffer the boots will be. If you are just starting to learn how to ski, you need ski boots with a low number of flex. The most ideal range for beginners would be around 65 to 80 flex. This will allow you to build your posture and look for your ideal stance to ski. However, once you have been able to ski properly, you might need stiffer boots to keep you from being exhausted quickly. Stiffer ski boots help to provide a better energy transfer to the ski, however, it should also be soft enough to perform front flexes. It is important to have ski boots that could fully support your weight. It means that the boots should be able to support the body while being in a neutral stance. If the boot couldn’t provide enough support to the body, then the knee will bend too much and cause muscles to fatigue much faster than they should be.

There are several types of skiing, and one of them is ski touring. Different from regular skiing, you will explore the routes with no marking, and sometimes you would need a little bit of climbing. You would need boots that fit your feet tightly. This is important because just a little space inside your boots could promote blisters and chafed skins after prolonged use. Choosing a pair of ski boots for touring requires you to pick the ones with free-heel bindings so that you could move your feet more freely and walk easier. What makes them different is that boots for ski touring would be light and allow your feelings to move in a wider range than the regular boots. In this case, of course, flex wouldn’t be the main concern anymore. When you are looking for touring ski boots, you won’t see the details about flex embedded on them. So, if you don’t see any description of the flex on some ski boots, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they are not for skiing. It could mean that they are the ones you should choose for backcountry skiing.

Last but not least, you might have been thinking that ski boots are unisex. Keep in mind that ski boots are also designed based on gender-specific features. This is because one of the purposes of these boots is to give proper support to the posture and body, so they should be made especially for gender features. For example, men and women have pretty different builds, especially the calves when it comes to buying boots. The position of calves on women should be generally lower than men. It means that if you accidentally buy ski boots for the opposite gender, you would feel pretty uncomfortable around your calves. Depending on the opposite gender, you would feel that the boots are too tight or either too loose at the calves. The other thing is the sensitivity to cold. Generally, women would be quicker to feel cold rather than men. If the problem persists, then it would trigger bigger problems with blood circulation and venous return. So, when you are looking at women’s ski boots, they would have warmer boot liners than men’s. This is the design they feature to ensure comfort. Knowing how to choose your backcountry ski boots, now you can immediately get your equipment and depart on a new adventure safely.