Scarpa Spirit 4 ski boots

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Four buckles cinch these AT boots tight on the foot, providing great downhill performance. (I tested them at a local ski area here in Minnesota earlier today.) But switch them to “walk” mode, and they become more supple and friendly for skinning high faces or ridgelines of snowy white.

This is the final piece of my new alpine/BC setup, a ski, bindings and boot package I’ve been blogging about over the last couple days. I’m heading to Utah in three days to ski some Wasatch wild, including Snowcat skiing at Alta and some backcountry outside of Ogden.

The Spirit 4 boots work with all AT bindings, including Dynafit, and its tech fittings are mounted farther back in the front to yield a better pivot point for touring, according to the company. They come with SCARPA Intuition liners and weigh about 4 pounds apiece. Light and flexible in touring mode, but solid at the flick of a switch once things get steep.

Available: Now.

Price: $669.


Stephen Regenold is Founder of GearJunkie, which he launched as a nationally-syndicated newspaper column in 2002. As a journalist and writer, Regenold has covered the outdoors industry for two decades, including as a correspondent for the New York Times. A father of five, Regenold and his wife live in Minneapolis.