Second pair of boots, where to go from here? (Fitting in a non-ski state)

smokeythedog

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I'm in the market for my second pair of boots, and I'm mainly looking at all-mountain boots. My current boots are Head Edge 70s that I've had since 2013. I've never known anything about boot flex, but I'm 23 now and I like to ski hard and steep. I'm 183cm tall, and my current skis are Völkl Deacon 84s (182cm) and Nordica Enforcer 104 Frees (179cm).

I plan on getting fit for boots, but what should I be looking for? I would test them on a mountain first, but it's not possible for me. I'm sure I'll need a lower-volume boot since my feet are fairly narrow. Should I be considering race boots (like the Head Raptors) although I don't race, or strictly all-mountain boots? Should I consider touring boots? Is there a good used market for boots?

Some boots that catch my eye are the Dalbello Panterra and DRS, Head Raptor and Edge, and Tecnica Mach1, but I'm well aware this is a bad way to choose boots. I'm appreciative of any advice on how to move forward!
 

raytseng

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Gather together your pennies; and have the right expectations on costs and budget if you don't have an unlimited bank account to spend on this.

If you are on a budget it's important to keep that in mind if you have enough to pay for the boots that will be best for you; if you want to compromise to save money and get an upgrade but still not the ideal boots; or you just ski on your old stuff more until you have enough budget to spend on htis.
 

Ogg

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Best way to move forward is to let folks here know where you are located so you can be directed to a good boot fitter near you, who can then lead you the rest of the way.
I think a better question is where does he ski. I've always bought my boots several hundred miles away from my home, near where I most often go to ski. I would, personally, be very reluctant to buy them from any "ski" shops near me.
 

Pequenita

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I think a better question is where does he ski. I've always bought my boots several hundred miles away from my home, near where I most often go to ski. I would, personally, be very reluctant to buy them from any "ski" shops near me.
True, but he’s in a non-ski state...
 

Ogg

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True, but he’s in a non-ski state...
I'm in state with many ski areas(NY) but I bought mine in another state(VT) because that's where I usually ski. I would not buy boots anywhere near where I live because it is at least 150 miles from any decent skiing.
 

Pequenita

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We're parsing words here. The point is, really, get to a bootfitter, skier's choice where they want to go, and we can help with the choices/decision. But the internet is not the place to figure out whether one has a low or high volume foot, etc.

fwiw, OP, width is not indicative of foot volume. I have a really wide foot, and it is low volume because it's a pancake.
 
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smokeythedog

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I think a better question is where does he ski. I've always bought my boots several hundred miles away from my home, near where I most often go to ski. I would, personally, be very reluctant to buy them from any "ski" shops near me.
I’ll be skiing Vail, A-Basin the most along with Telluride, and Sun Valley. I’m in Indianapolis for the next month and then moving to Denver for a year.
 

Ogg

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I’ll be skiing Vail, A-Basin the most along with Telluride, and Sun Valley. I’m in Indianapolis for the next month and then moving to Denver for a year.
Wait until you move. I'm sure one of the many forum members from CO can recommend a good boot fitter. If you did a bit of searching in the boot fitter forum you could probably find recommendations already posted.
 

Henry

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Smokey, it is very common to return to the boot shop for adjustments after a few days. Your feet break in to the boots (some claim the boots break in and mold to the feet), so loose spots need to be tightened and tight spots need to be loosened. Buy the boots where you'll ski so you can get into the shop for the fix, then back to the slopes.

You're 6' tall, age 23, and "ski hard and steep." You need very substantial boots. I don't know if "all mountain" boots are a real thing or just marketing blather. (Some of the best all mountain skiers I've known ski in 150 flex plug real-race boots.) You need boots that fit your foot length, width, height (volume), and have the forward lean stance that suits your morphology (body geometry). I'd guess that you would do best in boots in the 120 to 130 flex range...yep, it'll take a period to get used to them. Race-type boots like the Raptor aren't real race boots but usually have a narrow fit and offer great control. Other boots have a fit for wider feet and great control. A good bootfitter will be able to measure your feet, look at them with an experienced eye, discuss your needs, and suggest some great boot candidates for you to try on. When you've decided on the boots the fit process can begin as well as alignment of the legs over the feet. Expect minor modifications to the boots. The person whose new boots fit just right out of the box is a rarity. Rule of thumb--if they're comfy in the shop, they're too big. Oh...higher flex rate boots usually cost more and are better made. There is no industry standard for flex rates. One maker's 120 might feel like another's 110 and a different boot's 130.
 

Tricia

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Indianapolis! Heart of the Midwest.
I used to know a good fitter in Chicago, but I lost track of him and that's still pretty far from you.
I’ll be skiing Vail, A-Basin the most along with Telluride, and Sun Valley. I’m in Indianapolis for the next month and then moving to Denver for a year.
A Racer's Edge in Breckenridge is a possibilit.

Gregg Hoffman used to be at Lion's Head Vail, but his shop is not operating this year. One of his top fitters is still in the area.
Jeff Harper. @Blue Streak knows how to reach him.

@coskigirl uses a guy named Larry in the Boulder are.
 

Prosper

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I bought my Intuition liners and had some shell punches done at Larry’s. Would highly recommend him and his shop.
 

Marin

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Dalbello Panterra are OK , kind of all mountin boot , not much forward lean .
If you ski hard and steep, specially Carving ,I would go between , Head Raptor or Tecnica Mach1, (This is Narrow boots , so make sure your feet wide is not more then 98mm) .
I would Also Add Fischer RC4 The Curv ( if you have Narrow foot) or RC4 Pro if you have little wide foot. And do not go less then 120 flax.

I have Dalbello Panterra and Fisher RC4 Pro( my foot is 101mm) , they both 120 flex , they are day and night . Fisher is my every day boot, much stiffer boot , more performance boot , and I can fill big diffrence is curving, and .
Dalbello is very comfy boot , and I would say would be my powder ski day boot or relax day boot . They still good boots , but I would not call them big performance boot.
 

Prosper

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Dalbello Panterra are OK , kind of all mountin boot , not much forward lean .
If you ski hard and steep, specially Carving ,I would go between , Head Raptor or Tecnica Mach1, (This is Narrow boots , so make sure your feet wide is not more then 98mm) .
I would Also Add Fischer RC4 The Curv ( if you have Narrow foot) or RC4 Pro if you have little wide foot. And do not go less then 120 flax.

I have Dalbello Panterra and Fisher RC4 Pro( my foot is 101mm) , they both 120 flex , they are day and night . Fisher is my every day boot, much stiffer boot , more performance boot , and I can fill big diffrence is curving, and .
Dalbello is very comfy boot , and I would say would be my powder ski day boot or relax day boot . They still good boots , but I would not call them big performance boot.
I (as well as many others on SkiTalk) would recommend not going to a boot fitter asking for a specific boot. Every foot is different and what works for one person very well might not work for another. Let you boot fitter recommend the boot or boots he or she thinks would be best for your skiing and your foot.
 

Ken_R

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I’ll be skiing Vail, A-Basin the most along with Telluride, and Sun Valley. I’m in Indianapolis for the next month and then moving to Denver for a year.
Call ahead of one of your trips and setup an appointment with a local bootfitter. There are some great options at all the places you mentioned. Well, Vail has SBF but they are not open this season due to Covid. It is a weird season but I am sure you can get the service you need.
 
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