Dalbello MANTIS 95 (2014)
Testers loved this little powerhouse for its understated strength as well as its sensitive feel underfoot and on-snow agility. Most testers noted that the boot cuff felt a tad lower than the category average so shorter testers and those with thicker calves liked the upper boot fit best. All testers noted the quick moves that came easily, unhindered by leg-restricting cuff height. The Mantis’s quickness is enhanced by both its light weight and its narrow-side-of-medium fit in the lower. We tested with the traditional Trufit liner rather than the heat-fit EVA I.D. liner which is available as an option. The test team loved its instantly gratifying feel on the foot. A Thinsulate layer helps increase warmth. An aftermarket upgrade to a rubberized toe and heel sole set is available for those who want shock absorption during walking or increased security on boot packs and scrambles. Tester Comments: "These are the first boots I've tested that I didn't want to take off. Like a hug for my foot—awesome." "Able to put the ski on edge and power it—responsive and fun!"