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Atomic Backland Carbon Boot

Brand: Atomic
Model: Backland Carbon
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Availability: In Stock
Price: $749.00
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Atomic pulled out all the stops for the new Backland series of touring boots. This figurative expression not only refers to pipe-organ knobs, but also to financial constraints, production impediments, and reasons that may stop you from buying them. This includes the most common reason for not-buying a ski boot: poor fit. With a unique heat-moldable shell, the Backland Carbon boots may fit just about everyone.

Here are the main points that might stop you from not-buying:

  • Carbon reinforced Grilamid shell transfers power throughout the flex.
  • Free/Lock 2.0 is a simple transition lever that doesn’t interfere with crampons.
  • Platinum Liner is breathable which helps to prevent blisters. Also washable.
  • Memory Fit heating process allows you to adapt the shell to your foot.
  • Quick Click tongue lets you walk freely and then add stiffness for the down.
  • Carbon spine and removable power strap further increase the performance.
  • Skywalk rubber sole is grippy and appears to be reasonably durable.
  • Cross laces and support zones in the liner brace your calf, ankle, and shin.
Specifications
Weight
-> ounces
1155g [27/27.5]
Weight (pair) 2310g [27/27.5]
Buckles 2
Boot Sole Length 268mm [24/24.5]
278mm [25/25.5]
288mm [26/26.5]
298mm [27/27.5]
308mm [28/28.5]
318mm [29/29.5]
328mm [30/30.5]
Binding Compatibility Tech only
Cuff Rotation 74°
Forward Lean(s) 13°, 15°
Specs Verified Yes
Design
Materials Carbon-reinforce Grilamid
Liner Platinum
Sole Skywalk
Skimo Co Says
Usage Lightweight touring
Notes Breatheable liner
Bottom Line Complete package
11/16/2016
by Robert C (downright abused product)
 
About me: 6', 180lbs, 11.5 shoe size, 29.5 in this boot. Wide forefoot, narrow heel. Skied one day in this boot before heat molding. Mostly used with a Fisher Hannibal 94 177mm.

Lots of good info already in reviews here, but I wanted to leave another long term data point. I have been using these boots exclusively the last 12 months, and have skied every one of those months. They have held up very well to all of the rocky, snow covered approach scrambles, as well as cold, long days, and deep pow turns. I appreciate the simplicity of the boot design, which has made, for instance, replacing buckles and such straight forward. I would recommend loctite for critical screws once a season. The tech interface has held up tremendously, as have the soles.

I really like the way these ski, and for my usage, they are downright excellent in terms of balance between weight and performance. Used on steeps, multiday hut to hut trips, and every day touring.

Admittedly, these fit my feet really well, but I have seen these more and more in the backcountry and I believe that is due to the ability to heat mold the liner to a shape that will work with many people's anatomy. If you are looking for a single light boot for backcountry use, this one should be at the top of your list.
Comment on this review:

10/5/2016
Question from Patrick
 
I am curious (baffled) by how the heat molding process works on the shell. Is it one step or do you mold the liners first like a traditional boot fitting to see if the shell even needs adjustment. Seems odd to heat mold the whole shell. Any experiences good or bad with heat molding these shells?
10/5/2016
Answer from jbo
 
Hi Patrick, you can basically stick the whole thing in an Atomic oven, liner and shell. Of course, not everyone needs the shell to be customized, it is a judgement call whether to do just the liner. It seems to work well overall, and can adapt to some wider feet.
Answer this question:

6/11/2016
Question from Eric
 
I have a question about the BSL for these boots.

I have a pair of Skimo skis with Dynafit Superlight 2.0 mounted for the original TLT 5 (Mountain), size 28.5. I would love to replace my old TLT's with the Atomic Backland, but of course the binding isn't adjustable.

What I'm wondering is whether I might be lucky and they might just fit anyway? The BSL for a Backland in size 28.5 is exactly the same as the TLT. But is the distance between the front and back tech fittings also the same?
6/11/2016
Answer from jbo
 
Hi Eric, the BSL for the Backlands is 1mm longer in each boot size. For a 28.5 it's 307 (TLT5) vs 308 (Backland). You'd be shrinking your gap a bit.
6/11/2016
Answer from Eric S
 
Thanks, that's good to know. But ... does the BSL actually reflect the distance between the tech fittings? I figured it means the difference between the front of the toe and the back of the boot, which is a bit different.
6/11/2016
Answer from jbo
 
You figured correctly Eric, the BSL is a sole measurement, not the tech length. However tech fittings are offset from the sole ends by a somewhat standard amount (except when they aren't).
6/11/2016
Answer from Eric S
 
Thanks. So the implication is that I probably need to actually try this to be sure. I will have to crab a pair from a local shop and check it out. But I'll still order stuff from you guys for your trouble if/when I figure out what to do next!
6/11/2016
Answer from jbo
 
Hey Eric, I'm happy to test this out for you when we get more Backland 28s in stock in a couple months.
6/12/2016
Answer from Eric S
 
Thanks, happy to take you up on that (NB: 28.5 is what I am interested in). I would have the same question about the Scarpa F1 (new manual model) when you have them.
9/29/2016
Answer from jbo
 
Hi Eric, the 28/28.5 Atomic measures almost exactly 2mm longer than the TLT5 28, so you will likely need to remount with adjustment plates. The F1 is way off as well.
Answer this question:

1/30/2016
by lance j (downright abused product)
 
I've been in the Backland Carbon all year and have grown to really love this boot. It wasn't always beer and skittles - no matter what I did I couldn't get the liner to work for me (but it is also important to know that I have ankle geometry that is well outside the standard norm - the medial protuberance is positioned fully on the leading edge of that side of my ankle and the tongue just chewed it up no matter what we did to try and flatten that location out). After switching to an Intuition wrap liner I could not be happier, the boots truly have all-day comfort along with outstanding performance pretty much everywhere it matters.

Compared to the TLT6 the cuff of the B/C is noticeably stiffer laterally giving you a better sense of control and leverage on your edges - particularly when conditions get icy. With the tongue in these ski like a solid downhill boot (though the cuff is definitely lower than any downhill boot I've ever skied). The Grilamid shoe does a great job of transferring your power through the ski.

My favorite thing about the boots is the versatility. You can skin with little to no ankle-restriction when the tongue is removed (even with my wrap liner in place of the OE liner). The boots are not what I would call race-able light, but they don't weigh you down when charging out into the backcountry or up the steeps. They're nimble enough to get the most out of an 80-90 underfoot ski, but can drive 100-110+ without making you feel like you're missing something.

The walk-ski lever is simple and solid - an absolute winner in my book. But the tour-keepers on the buckles are the opposite - flimsy and half-functional. Call it nit-picking, but they are why I wouldn't call the boot a 5-star boot, more of a 4.5.

For those with wide feet, this boot will readily accommodate you, with the heat-molding Frodo could probably fit his boxy Hobbit foot in these boots. For me (with a fairly narrow foot) that means that I have had to add shims under the boot liner. While this is less than ideal due to the the extra weight of three layers of fiber boards, the big benefit that I found is that I now have the ramp angle dialed in perfectly so that when I am skiing in a neutral stance my weight is evenly distributed over the full length of my foot. This means that I have no hot-spots or foot fatigue and that I am able to really move my weight around the entire foot to steer my skis.

Final notes:
- The tech-binding hardware is great, and I've had no problems with my Dynafit TLT bindings. Step in is easy and consistent.
- Soles have been durable so far - great for scrambling on rocks or booting your way in when there's a no-snow approach.
- While the weight is fairly low, I can't help but wish that it was possible to shave off another 100g. Seeing all the new boots that are coming for 2016-17 (particularly the Sportiva and Scarpa carbon slippers) makes the geek in me think that getting 100g out should be child's play and more than that shouldn't be too difficult with some material substitutions (ie. more carbon/composite).

The Backland Carbon is a great one-boot quiver for anyone except a weight-weenie/racer, or for big freeride hucking; but, in between those extremes is where this boot really shows you what it can do and just how versatile it is.
Comment on this review:

12/9/2015
Question from Jonathan H
 
How's the cuff height compared to TLT6 and Spectre?

Thoughts on this boot's efficacy at climbing real ice and mixed (say up to WI5 and M7) as compared to the TLT6 and Spectre?
12/9/2015
Answer from jbo
 
Hi Jonathan, the cuff height measures about 5mm lower on this boot in the size 27/27.5 versus the TLT6. I would speculate climbing performance is similar.
Answer this question:

10/17/2015
Question from Max
 
How much will the shells expend to accommodate wide feet. I currently have 100mm lasted boots that I hate and can barely tolerate with a liner for a sock. Can I stretch these out to an effective 102-104mm width?
Also how does the sizing on these run, I fit in a 25.5?
10/17/2015
Answer from jbo
 
Hi Max, we haven't been able to test the limits of the shell mold yet, but I'm told you can get as much as a centimeter of extra width. I just uploaded the Atomic size chart which is good out-of-the-box comfort for skinny-to-average width feet. You can get up to about an 8.25 foot into the 25.5 without shell modification lengthwise.
1/30/2016
Answer from lance j
 
Max, not only can these boots stretch under heat a great deal, with the stock liner there is a ton of room in there for wide feet. Wile I have rather narrow feet, I still love the boots because I could add shims under the liner to get the exact foot angle I wanted on my skis so that I feel perfectly balanced and have my weight distributed over the length of my foot in a neutral skiing stance.
Answer this question:

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