Notice: Atomic released a new boot under the name "Atomic Backland Carbon Boot", which you can find here.
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.
Update for 2017/18: Atomic updated the color scheme and added a handy pull tab on the ski/walk lever.
Compare otherTouring Boots
|Weight (pair)||2310g [27/27.5]|
|Boot Sole Length||268mm [24/24.5]
|Binding Compatibility||Tech only|
|Forward Lean(s)||13°, 15°|
|Skimo Co Says|
|Bottom Line||Complete package|
Questions & Reviews
Yes this is a VERY late review considering there is now the newer version with the BOA. But skimo.co has a good collection of reviews for race to burlier boots so figured add to it for people looking to buy used ones.
160lbs sans gear
Foot has a high instep that's narrow otherwise
Mods done to boots:
-Replaced stock "powerstrap" with Scarpa stretch one that came off a TX Comp
-Liners are now the stock Tecnica Pro Tour liners
-Shaved down the tongue tab to make removal WAY easier (only permanent mod)
++no longer running++ Tried replacing the clog's cable system with dyneema cord which let me drop 25grams off each boot but the fiddle factor wasn't worth it for me.
-Sans tongue the walk mode rivals race boots
-Light (and ways to make it lighter)
-Enough stiffness for large majority of touring needs (110-105 w/ tongues, 100-95 sans per TGR "true" AT flex consensus)
-Can add adapter to make compatible with Kingpin and Tecton.
-Flex pattern is a little weird compared to alpine boots or burlier AT boots but with a stretch powerstrap it's much better.
-If using tongues you either have to accept a walk mode that feels more like a TLT6 or a little more time at the top transition.
-Stock powerstrap is worthless IMO
-Tongue from the factory is hard to remove (but easily modded to make easier w/o sacrificing performance)
-Stock liners not the best long term
Before this I had some TLT6's that never got along with my feet even after mods. This boot though (especially for my high instep) is awesome especially when compared to a TLT 7, its true contemporary. It's lighter than the TLT7, skis better, and walks with FAR less resistance (sans tongues), plus no dumb speed nose. I've used them in the Sierra's, Shasta, Oregon, and CO. Everything from skimo race sticks up to BD 116 Helios at 186cm. Raced in them, summited Shasta, and even some 10'ish drops. I REALLY enjoy having the removable tongues as it makes the boot walk as well as race boots since there is almost no resistance, so it makes a great average person once a year race boot. When I summited Shasta last spring they actually felt easier to hike in than many mountaineering boots since the cuff didn't offer resistance like a mtn boot. Now to the flex pattern, like many carbon cuffed boots the first bit of the flex profile can be a little harsh. When I added the Scarpa stretch power strap it really helped ease the transition of that first part of the flex curve into middle and end of the curve. At the end of the flex curve with tongues it doesn't feel like you're hitting a brick wall or continuing to fall forward like some other light touring boots will feel like. Without tongues you go through the middle of the flex much faster than with. I can't comment too much on the stock liner feel since I got these used and they were already towards the end of their life, but from other users I've heard they don't last long term (but the vented aspect of them is clutch for sweaty footed people like me).
Re modding the tongue: 1. Chamfer the front edge of tongue nub on the clog shell. 2. For the tongue slot that interfaces with that nub increase the radius on the edges of the slot that face downwards. This makes removal MUCH, MUCH easier. And because of how the tongue interfaces with the clog you don't lose ANY performance. Not modding of the boot, but another way to make tongue transitions quicker is to have a carabiner/ice clipper on your waist belt to clip the tongues on the uphill so you can easily have them on hand and not need to take off your backpack.
So if I'm going out and not planning to hit drops, or high speeds I'm reaching for these boots. Especially if I have a big day planed. I'd say for a large majority of the BC crowd that isn't looking to hit drops and just wants to get some good snow in the BC I think they'd really like this boot (if it fits your foot).
Great boots although the gaiter is not durable and the buckles have a tendency to fall off.
Compared to my old tlt6 liners the eyelids are about one inch further apart.
Has everybody else observed this?
I had the shell fitted (by a non Atomic boot fitter) but I am still having a lot of pressure on the inside of my ankle, even immediately after putting them on, resulting in bruised ankles. Strangely this doesn't happen all the time. There have been plenty of real long days where they fit super comfortably and I had no issues what so ever. Not sure why it differs so much from day to day but this issue has been so bad a couple of times that I got to a point where I am considering using those boots.
Also I find the buckles extremely fiddly and they seem to open easily when hitting on firm snow or rock while boot packing. I never had that issue with my TLTs.
The inserting the tongue and the transition from uphill to skiing mode also is quite a bit trickier than with TLT6. Also one gotta take care that the gaitor doesn't get stuck between the tongue and the shell otherwise the lower buckle doesn't close completely.
Any suggestions on how to replace the gaiter or fix it up?
It seems to be glued to the shell. Duct tape doesn't seem to be a good solution as it needs to bend in too many directions.
I never could find a way how to ski in them. They are plenty stiff with the tongue, the support is not there though.
Might be because they are VERY low(and i have smaller feet for my height), but plenty time had a feeling like i could just fall out of the boot or even break my ankle(?!?).
Tried insert bigger tongues, change lean angle, different liners....nope
Buckle screws keep loosening...
OTOH pull out the tongue and the skinning is incredible, very close to a race shoe.
Atomic seem to make the shoe without significant changes years in a row now, so might be just be mine issue.
The stock liner left my low volume foot swimming a bit, so I used the Intuition Pro Tours I had been using in my TLT6s. I molded the shell at home in my convection oven...I didn't get too aggressive with it as I was a bit nervous about DYI but successfully alleviated some of the mild pressure points I had prior to molding.
The cuff pivots and walk mode lock are the most solid I've seen in a boot of this genre. Time will tell, but after ~20 days they are still super solid in ski mode and from what I understand the serviceable cuff bushings are quite durable. They tour better than the TLT6 since there is no plastic tongue of any sort to restrict forward motion, but you do need to use the removable tongue for acceptable downhill performance. It's a bit trickier to insert than on the TLT6, but I found grinding the tab down made it more friendly. Some might find all the buckles and removable tongue fiddly compared to some one-lever style boots out there, but for me an extra 30 seconds during transitions is well worth the added performance. In downhill mode with tongue inserted, the boot skis at least as well as the TLT6 - a level of stiffness more than adequate for my 190 pounds and driving bigger skis in variable snow.
No shop around to test for size, so hoping someone here could help. What size Intuition liner should I get?
I have 27-27.5 backlands.
Would this mold correctly if I have a standard 2 finger shell fit with these boots?
My alpine boot size is 24/24.5, but with the 24.5 liner.
I have a good friend who owns a climbing shoe re-sole business. I've asked him about resoling ski boots and his reply was that they would be very easy to resole, provided one could find the proper sole material. Last we spoke, he still hadn't sourced the material. If you can find it, I'm sure you could get someone to do it.
Scarpa F1 27.0 is perfect fit, Spitfire 26.5 is tight but good..after few hours in them i belive it would be super fit as well.
Also Scott Celeste 26.0 seem ok.
So far i have been on Syborgs 27.0 for two seasons. Lately it started to feel really lose in the forefoot (i guess liner needs replacing).
So its obviously 26.5 or 27, but thats where the size breaks so it might feel quite a lot different.
Might trying atomic alpine boot help sorting this?
The fit should be the same between this and the women's version and definitely should provide the stiffness you are looking for.
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