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Gear Review

5 5

My perfect backcountry boot.

I've spent the last year or so building my perfect quiver. The Maestrale RS completed it, slotting into the light-weight, free-walking, but burly slot in my boot collection.

I ski a pair of Ski Logik customs - 145-115-142 and 188cm - mounted with Plum Guides. I haven't measured, but overall weight is close to, if not under, 10 lbs. The Maestrales are similarly light. Everyone who has picked it up has commented on that. And, it really makes a difference. I drop at least two pounds from each stride with the Maestrale and Plums as compared to the Cochises and Dukes I ride in the resort.

I have a pretty wide foot - my Cochises with HV Intuitions are punched for the 6th toe. While we haven't gotten the Maestrales perfect yet, I think they should work without a punch. Length is spot on - 26.5 in both Cochise and Maestrale. I have a 1.5 finger shell fit in the Cochise and a 2 finger fit in the Maestrale - plenty of room for the toes while touring. (Remember - Scarpa splits on the half size instead of the whole.)

The 120 flex Maestrale is on par with the Cochise 120 in overall stiffness, but flexes differently. Where the Cochise - an overlap, alpine-style boot - has a pretty linear flex, the Maestrale feels a bit more progressive. I also find that I ski the Maestrale in a much more centered and balanced style, where I drive the Cochise forward hard and beat it around.

The side-hinged tongue takes a bit of adaptation, but becomes second nature very quickly. With it out of the way, entry and egress is a piece of cake. I'm not sure both of the forefoot buckles are necessary. They are really close together and I don't feel like they serve separate purposes when I close them. Unlocking the walk mechanism provides huge range of motion. I think the boots are capable of more motion than my ankles.

Overall, my perfect touring boot. Light and flexy for the up; stiff and burly for the down.

My perfect backcountry boot.
Responded on

Dave, what size street shoe do you wear? I want to buy a pair of Maestrale RS's, but can't try any on because no-one sells Scarpa ski boots down here in Chile. I'm travelling to the States in August and will buy two sizes on-line to try them on and return the one that doesn't fit, so I'm looking for input on sizes. I wear size 12 shoes, US and my Lange RX 130 LV's (low volume version) fit me like a glove. I was thinking about buying the 27.5 and 28.5 together, or the 28.5 and the 29.5. Any thoughts?

Responded on

I wear a 9.5 street shoe and got a roomy, touring fit in the 26.5/27 Maestrales. Best of luck in your boot search.

Responded on

I wear 12 street shoe. 28.5 Lange RX130. 27.5 Maestrale RS

Responded on

Dave, where did you get your Plum Guides?

Responded on

Used off TGR forums.