Our Favorite Snowboard Boots: 2016-17
Comfortable feet are happy feet.
Of all the things you should be focusing on when you’re buying a new setup (or just upgrading), boots might be the most important.
To hear this blog post in a verbal format, check out Episode 2 of our podcast, Cold Soup!
Is there anything worse than getting 5 runs in on a super good day and being miserable because your feet hurt? (Hint: there isn’t.) Think about it this way: Nike isn’t one of the biggest brands in the world just because their stuff looks cool. When your boots are too big, too small, don’t fit your arch properly, or any other myriad of problems, you aren’t going to want to snowboard. And that’s the worst, because snowboarding rules. Don’t let an ill-fitting pair of boots scare you away from an epic day on hill.
There are a couple of different lacing options for you to choose from when you come in. Boa, a twist-to-tighten dial system, has come a long way since its genesis. The system is unbelievably easy to use, has a lifetime warranty, and eliminates that chapped feeling on the ends of your hands (because there isn’t any lacing!) To add to that, there’s Focus Boa, which has a wheel on the front (for the top of the boot) and a wheel on the side (for the bottom of the boot.) Burton offers Speed Zone lacing, where there’s a handle on each side of the boot — one for the bottom, one for the top. Salomon has Str8 Jacket in a bunch of its boots — an internal heel harness (perfect if you’ve got issues with heel lift). And finally, traditional lacing.
We’ve got a particular way of fitting snowboarding boots in our stores. When you come in and put boots on and they might seem a tad small, don’t panic! This is normal. And after a couple days of working those sweet feet puppies in, you’ll be right as rain. But that’s a conversation for when you come into the shop and we get boots on your feet. Until then, we wanted to complement Episode 2 of Cold Soup — where we talk about our favorite boots in the store. Let’s get started.
There are two brands of boots you’ll find in our store, and we wouldn’t only offer two if we didn’t think they were the absolute best in the industry. Salomon, which has been our flagship boot brand for over 15 years, brings the heat every year with excellent fit and great value. Burton, the industry’s powerhouse, does everything snowboarding pretty dang well.
Spence’s Pick: The Salomon Dialogue Focus Boa
Performance-driven and built to last, the Dialogue (with Focus Boa) is Spence’s pick for favorite ’16-’17 boot.
“The ability to tighten the upper and lower zone individually can’t be understated. I’ve got massive issues with heel lift, and that side wheel lets me crank down and really lock the lower part of my foot in. It’s not the type of stiff where you can’t bend in it, but it’s stiff enough where you’re getting the energy firing back and forth when you’re transitioning from toe to heel. It’s so comfortable — not like other performance boots I’ve ridden — and my feet don’t hurt after a solid day on hill. You’ll be hard pressed to find me in a boot that isn’t the Dialogue.”
Tyler’s Pick: The Launch Lace from Salomon
With a powerhouse combination of Str8 Jacket and traditional lacing, the Launch Lace is Tyler’s boot of choice.
“I love the concept of Boa, but I’m a traditional lace type of guy. The Launch is like a sneaker — comfortable, easy to slip on and off, and looks cool as hell. But maybe the most underrated aspect of the Launch is Str8 Jacket. Sometimes when I’m riding park, I don’t want my boots so tight where my feet don’t move. I like a little give. Str8 Jacket lets me lace my boots a little looser, but still locks my foot down.”
Sam’s Pick: The Starstruck Boa from Burton
Maybe the lightest boot in the store, the Starstruck couples comfort with ease.
“I think what I love most about the Starstruck is how light is it. No lie – it’s lighter than some helmets we’ve got in the store. Crazy light. Like there’s nothing on your feet. I hate lacing up my boots, so Boa is the clear choice. Slip them on, get the inner liner snug, then pop the dial in and twist until they’re tight enough. And the break in time was next to nothing — I wore them around the store for a while, and they were perfect. Ready to conquer.”
There are our favorites, but come in and pick your favorite out for yourself. We’re open on weekends, so hit us up or pop in and we can chat. Comfortable feet are happy feet!