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Gear

Freedom RS 130

Scarpa

2017

price$829

YEAR2016/2017

LEVEL

FLEX130

GENDERFemale

LAST WIDTHMedium

$19.92

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Here's a balanced mix of light weight, smooth touring range of motion, and exceptional skiability. The Freedom RS is billed as a medium-wide 101-mm last, but testers marked it as low volume pretty much everywhere, especially in the heel. It sets the bar for uphill ease among alpine- soled touring boots while still displaying strong downhill skills. The revamped liner is firm and performance-oriented but com- fortable on the shin. Gleason: "Solid to the edge; potent enough for the biggest skis."

Speedmachine 105 W

Nordica

2017

price$599

YEAR2016/2017

LEVEL

FLEX105

GENDERFemale

LAST WIDTHMedium

$19.90

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The new Speedmachine's out-of-the-box fit was one of the best of the test, if a bit roomy for a medium-width boot in the toe box and forefoot. Flex travel is long, with well-distributed pressure along the shin. Testers thought it a little softer than its 105 rating, but there's no shortage of lateral power. It levered the ski onto edge and held it there. Testers were impressed with its speed and hard-snow game. F. Dardani: "Getting forward in this boot was effortless. So confident driving into turns."

Mach 105 W LV

Tecnica

2017

price$720

YEAR2016/2017

LEVEL

FLEX105

GENDERFemale

LAST WIDTHNarrow

$19.86

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A narrower version of the well-liked MV, this snug-fitting performer suits aggressive skiers who like it tight and don't mind the thought of a little boot work. The clever Custom Adaptive Shape features make it easier for bootfitters to dial the fit. On-hill it provided constant control and predictable power. It was strong but not overly aggres- sive, quick without feeling too twitchy. Post: "Perfect for most advanced skiing women. Superior quickness and out-of-this-world edge power."

Pinnacle Pro

K2

2017

price$950

YEAR2016/2017

LEVEL

FLEX130

GENDERFemale

LAST WIDTHMedium

$19.78

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A pretty snug medium, the Pinnacle Pro fits especially close at the instep, ankle, and navicular bone, testers said. The toe box is wide. It's surprisingly strong on edge given its lightweight all-Pebax construc- tion. Testers hammered it all over and couldn't ever push it to edge-grip failure, though a few of the heavier testers thought that the flex maxed out under heavy loads. The hike mechanism offers a huge range of motion and is smooth both fore and aft. Astle: "An awesome, athletic boot."

Kyra 95

DaleBoot

2017

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price$600

YEAR2016/2017

LEVEL

FLEX95

GENDERFemale

LAST WIDTHWide

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$19.67

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From blue squares to easy black diamonds to the barstool, this was a tester favorite for its versatility and instant success on snow. It's so evenly roomy, testers checked its fit scores in straight rows. It goes everywhere willingly and is game for a challenge. With a soft-side-of-95 flex, it's not for heavy, hard-charging, all-mountain attackers, but it will work well for everyone else. Christensen: "Felt like a powerful, supportive hug. I could ski these all day, all over the mountain."

GPX 105 W

Nordica

2017

price$699

YEAR2016/2017

LEVEL

FLEX105

GENDERFemale

LAST WIDTHNarrow

$19.44

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Longer-legged, slender-calved, narrow- forefooted rippers will say yes to this address. The GPX responds well to a firm will and skilled movements. It's power- ful but light, quick but stable, relatively even-fitting, with some extra room at the heel. Testers felt the cuff rode a little tall and tight on the calf, and the stance is a bit on the forward-leaning side. Pulling or thinning the spoiler made those issues go away. Christensen: "Aggressive flex yields dynamic turns. Very responsive."

Panterra 120

DaleBoot

2017

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price$650

YEAR2016/2017

LEVEL

FLEX120

GENDERFemale

LAST WIDTHWide

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$19.36

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The Panterra is a stout boot for big, strong skiers with thicker feet and legs, yet it's agile as a big cat and powerful in a quiet, damp sort of way. The cuff is roomy and tall on the leg shaft and has a firm flex. It's engineered to best suit taller guys. The Panterra is powerful on edge, it's comfort- able and trustworthy at high speeds, and testers admired the shock-absorbing feel. Campbell: "Surprisingly nimble in and out of turns for such a solid boot. A joy in crud and bumps."

QST Pro 130

Salomon

2017

price$850

YEAR2016/2017

LEVEL

FLEX130

GENDERFemale

LAST WIDTHMedium

$19.29

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Some loved the spacey look; others were less enthusiastic. The distinctive Endofit tongue construction is not quite overlap but it's also not a classic three-piece design. It has a tricky entry and it fits very close along the top of the foot. On snow, the QST moves well lat- erally, weaving in and out of turns with a silky lightweight touch. Agile and accurate side-to- side moves were best executed with finesse rather than an aggressive assault. Harper: "A predictable, lightweight powerhouse with outstanding heel hold."

Lupo Carbon Ti I.D.

DaleBoot

2017

price$1100

YEAR2016/2017

LEVEL

FLEX130

GENDERFemale

LAST WIDTHNarrow

$19.29

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The Lupo offers lots of useful and well- designed features, a narrow fit, and a stiff flex. Yes, it's expensive, but testers say it's worth every dollar if you mold the I.D. liner-a comfort must. Laced-up entry and exit aren't easy, but testers accepted the processes because the skiing product was worth the effort. The tall, strong cuff readily rolled the ski up on edge and put the hammer down when engaged. Barr: "Great sidecountry boot for all narrow-footed rippers. Super light and responsive."

Advant Edge 85 W

Head

2017

price$475

YEAR2016/2017

LEVEL

FLEX75

GENDERFemale

LAST WIDTHWide

$19.00

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What a pleasant surprise, testers said. The Advant Edge is roomy and upright, with an open fit that welcomes skiers with large calves. The lower cavity of the liner is well padded for a cushy, easygoing feel. But the comfortable fit belies its talent. Stouter than its advertised 85 flex, it skis joyfully all over the mountain with unflinching confidence. And its low price makes it even more attractive. Carr: "I was blown away by how well it skis. A racer mom's dream boot."

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