Hike and huck, slash and stomp – take your big mountain game to the next level with our Editors’ Choice Women’s 22/23 Freeride Ski Boots
Atomic Hawx Ultra XTD 115 W CT GW
Walk mode Y, 54°
Last (mm) 98
Weight (per boot) 1,458g @ 24.5
Atomic’s top-line women’s freeride boot now has the same construction as the men’s 130, with a lightweight polyamide cuff and shell. However, to reflect the lower calf position on a women’s leg the cuff is lower. The narrow 98mm last is ideal for narrow feet or a snug, performance fit. While the Hawx XTDs are a bit of a classic in freeride skiing, as one of the first to bring alpine-like performance to the world of touring, the real magic in their alchemy now is the Mimic liner. Not only is the inner foam heat mouldable, but so is the stiffener in the outer layers of the liner. This unique approach allows a true custom-fit that takes the shape of your foot, ankle, shin and lower leg, as well as that of the inside of the shell. The result is an incredibly sensitive fit with much more direct power transmission.
BEST FOR: Top-level freeriders looking for a powerful boot with a superlative fit.
Head Kore 95 W GW
Walk mode Y, 53°
Last (mm) 100
While Head offers a narrower, stiffer option in the Kore RS 105 for women, the 95 flex will suit a greater number of us. For many, having a little more room in the forefoot is very welcome, especially as your feet can swell when hiking and skinning. Even if you never plan to skin uphill or hike for fresh lines, the hike mode really works and is far easier to walk around in than a regular cuff that’s locked in place. The addition of Primaloft insulation to the women’s Kore boots is a nice touch, to fend off freezing phalanges. These boots ski and skin well but, for those of you who are tight-of-calf, you can change the cuff incline from the standard 16° to a more relaxed 9°, as with all Kore boots. A GripWalk sole and pin inserts in the base pairs with most bindings out there.
BEST FOR: Intermediate to advanced hike and riders looking for a light and accessible all-rounder.
Roxa R3W 115 TI I.R.
Walk mode Y, 52°
Last (mm) 99-101
Weight 1,450g @ 24.5
The R3 is a 3-piece cabrio design, with a shell, cuff and separate two-part tongue. For this season they’ve created a two-part tongue with a hinged section towards the top for greater freedom in tour mode, without losing support when skiing. A ladder and cable combination takes care of tension and fit around the forefoot. Lock your heel back with the 45° ankle buckle, while the velcro power strap and buckle combo up top gives firm leg hold and easy release for touring. The thermoformable Intuition liner allows for a custom fit, but one of the beauties of Roxa boots is their shaping. A lot of work has gone into the anatomical profile, with space already created in problem areas, and technology that allows boot fitters to easily work on key issue areas skiers have. All in a lightweight, powerful package for freeride femmes that want to charge hard.
BEST FOR: Super-strong skiers looking for a light boot with a powerful yet progressive flex.