If skiing massive backcountry lines, stomping landings, and etching figure elevens sounds like you, then we encourage you to read on. Following a tradition of excellence, Atomic filled the void in their backcountry boot selection with the show-stopping Hawx Ultra XTD 130. Touting an impressive 54° of smooth cuff articulation and Atomic’s famous Memory Fit 3D Liner, the Hawx is a seriously impressive touring boot. It really starts to strut its stuff after flipping the Free/Lock 2.0 Lever into ski mode. The Energy Backbone and Progressive Shell tech provide a rock-solid platform that will push back no matter how hard you can drive it. With a multitude of binding choices and a powerful 130-flex, the Hawx Ultra XTD 130 is ready to rip anywhere that skis will take you. Best of all, it even fits “problem” feet since the entire boot can be cooked and molded around your hooves. Atomic has officially ticked all the boxes in the Free Touring category with the Hawx Ultra XTD.
Skywalk WTR Sole means a huge binding compatibility range.
Energy Backbone provides laser precision on big skis at high speeds.
Free/Lock 2.0 lever is light, durable, and easily handles ski/walk duties.
Frictionless Pivot is incredibly smooth, durable, and powerful.
Dynafit Certified inserts help the boot maintain consistent performance.
Memory Fit 3D Liner is perforated, quick drying, and washable.
Memory Fit shell offers complete shell customization.
I’m about 2 weeks in on this boot and could not be happier. I've got about 43,000 ft of skinned vert on them and here in Stowe, Vermont we currently have one of the deepest snow packs in the U.S. so I’ve had great snow in the past 2 weeks, make that incredible snow. So keep that in mind with my review.
First skin with this boot I did not like the boot at all on the uphill. My foot felt jacked too forward and heel felt high and my malleolus got hammered. I had the boots memory fit heat molded and has the bootboard ground just a hair on the heel and these things fit like a glove and are super comfortable.
Uphill performance – I am coming from a Dynafit TLT5 carbon performance. I would put the TLT5 at a 9 out of 10 for uphill performance – (only skimo race boots being better). Using the TLT as reference point -I put the Hawx xtd 130 at a solid 7.5 for uphill performance- they skin really well and are only 400 grams heavier than my TLTs. My 25/25.5s came in around 1400 grams and my TLts are 1000 grams. I keep the upper two buckles completely undone (as well as power strap) for uninhibited range of motion. If Atomic could increase the forward range of motion a little more in this boot it would be an absolute masterpiece. So let’s say it’s an almost masterpiece. I am being pretty critical here because just using the highest riser on my Dynafit speed radical heel alleviates this issue.
Downhill Performance- When you switch this boot into downhill mode you instantly feel like a badass. I feel like I can just point it and ski anything on these. They are absolutely confidence inspiring. Oh yeah – they ski powder really well. REALLY WELL. I put the TLT5 at a 7.5 for downhill performance and so far I put these at a 9 out 10 for downhill performance. I’ve skied a fair amount of wind affected mank, chunder, crust and sierra cement type snow – this boot can handle it all. The precision is just insane- on the groomer I hit a few times I could really lay into the turn and have a ton of edge grip and super solid input from boot to the ski. The cuff comes up higher than the TLT and just gives you a ton of control and it’s nice and stiff (130 flex index) but it’s a progressive flex unlike the TLT5 which has very little progressiveness to the flex (it’s there but it’s a small amount). On the Atomic I feel like there’s a great deal of progressive flex. I did a lot of research to settle on this boot and the Scarpa Maestrale RS was the only other one I was really considering (weight, how well it skins, how well it goes down). For a 1400 gram boot with a good uphill mode and range of motion that can ski down like a pure alpine boot I give this boot a 9 out of 10 overall score. Improve the uphill range of motion a bit more and you have a 10 out of 10.
**Mid January 2019, i have been skiing this boot 5-7 days a week. About 80% of the time skinning piste or BC or slackcountry and 20% liftserve. The only issue i have had is they are cold. I got some heated socks and that solved it. The boots kick ass uphill and downhill and are super comfortable. Can do long tours (4-6 hours) and be comfortable.
I have been in a Dynafit TLT5 Performance for several seasons and do a mix of BC and cable laps. I hate skiing the TLT5 with the tongue because it loses the progressive flex. I also fold the boot anytime we get good snow. Definitely want to upgrade my situation! I am in a size 26.0 (BSL 287mm) in the TLT5 and it's a perfect fit although i had to add some foam to forefoot area - i have narrow feet. (FWIW I am in a 25.5/ 279 bsl in the Dynafit PDGs for skimo races). If i go with a 25 in the Atomic Hawx XTD is there enough thickness in the shell for a boot fitter to punch/stretch in terms of length? Or would the memory fit cooking of the liner and shell stretch that? Can it stretch for length? I don't think I'll need any punches in terms of width.
Hey John, thanks for reaching out! The Hawx is higher volume than the TLT5 and may not be ideal for someone with a narrower foot. In addition, most touring boots are pretty thin and definitely more difficult to punch for length than an alpine boot. Wish I had more positive news for you in that area!
Hey David! It's a 98mm last, though we have gotten some seriously wide feet into this boot thanks to the Memory Fit plastic and unless your instep is particularly high then it'll probably end up working if you want to put in some time and effort. You can punch it very, very far too. If you're not interested in punching the lateral side of your foot then something like the Scarpa Maestrale RS 2.0 is probably worth checking out as it's a 101mm last and has a lot of liner to work with.
Hi Spindogg, essentially yes. While lots of ski companies make half and full sizes, those boots almost always use the same plastic shell and only differ by liner or insole. Atomic skipped the ruse and only made one size per shell. There is only one boot you can buy that starts with a 26, and it's labeled 26/26.5.