The comparison tests were conducted primarily at Mammoth Mountain Ski Area in California during the winter of 2014. All boots were evaluated on groomed runs and on off-piste runs through powder and choppy snow. Lead review editor, Jessica Haist, enlisted a team of female skiers of differing abilities but with similar sized feet, and performed back-to-back round-robin tests in each of six selected test models. Each woman skied several runs in each boot, then switched to the next model, and filled out a survey on her thoughts for each pair. This allowed Haist to compile a group consensus for each boot in the categories of comfort and fit, downhill performance, warmth, weight, and durability. Awards were then given to the favored models for Editors' Choice, Best Buy, and Top Pick winners. Read the complete review here:
The winners are:
Salomon X- Pro 90 - Women's
The Salomon X-Pro 90 were given the Editors' Choice award for being high performance, well-fitting, and customizable boots. With a shell that can adjust from a 100 mm last to a 106 mm last, a thermo-moldable liner, and a calf adjustment for legs of different diameters, this boot can fit almost any woman's foot. Haist notes that the heel pockets securely hold feet in place, allowing for solid control of skis while zipping down groomed runs or making powder turns off-piste. The stiff flex rating of 90 relegates these boots to advanced and expert level skiers who know how to drive their skis.
Dalbello Kyra 95 ID
For a very reasonable price, the Dalbello Kyra 95 ID are extremely comfortable and accessible boots, which is why they win a Best Buy award. Haist states that this pair is perfect for an intermediate skier who wants to advance her skills on more technical terrain. This model is also highly customizable, featuring a thermo-moldable Intuition liner, a flex adjustment that can be switched from hard to soft, and a ramp angle adjustment. Additionally, the Kyras feature a walk mode, which Haist believes makes hiking to different terrain or walking from the parking lot to the lift more comfortable.
Lange RX 100 LV – Women's
The Lange RX 100 earns a Top Pick award for being a high performance boot for a ski racer looking for an everyday boot or an expert skier who wants a snug, ultimate performance fit. Haist and her testing team unanimously agreed that this was the most responsive model in the test group. A boot with very simple features, this product is focused on performance rather than flair. The tested model was a low-volume (LV) version, which will fit narrow-footed women the best, but the same boot is also sold in an average volume model as well as different flex ratings.
The full comparison review provides details on the fit, comfort, and performance of each of the six tested women's ski boots. Haist also provides her recommendation on the skill level most appropriate for each boot. If more information is needed, her Buying Advice article complements the review with more in-depth information about the differences between men's and women's boots and an explanation of why women's boots come with lower flex ratings. A chart is provided to assist women in determining the correct flex rating for their boots and advice is provided for sizing boots appropriately.
Based in Cheyenne, Wyoming, OutdoorGearLab, LLC aims to create the world’s best outdoor gear reviews by comparing top selling products on the market. The website, www.outdoorgearlab.com, is a free resource for outdoors devotees who participate in activities such as hiking, backpacking, camping, climbing, cycling, skiing, snowboarding, and yoga. The review team performs thorough head-to-head tests of outdoor gear in different categories and publishes the results in comprehensive comparison reviews complete with photos and videos. Each product is scored across a range of weighted metrics relevant to that category, competing products are ranked, and awards are given to the highest scoring models.