If you want a simple backcountry touring boot that walks and skis well, check out the Hagan Core. Loaded with marketing acronyms (below), the Core boots aren’t loaded with complexity. A micro-adjustable lower buckle uses a wire to get the effect of multiple buckles locking your heel and forefoot in place. An infinitely adjustable upper Velcro booster strap acts as the top buckle. A reliable ski/walk switch in the back changes modes. Put your feet in, walk uphill, transition, ski down, repeat. The Hagan Core boots have that procedure mastered.
- MDB – Multi-Deflect Buckle system secures forefoot and ankle with a single closure.
- OCB – Oversized Closing Belt is a Velrco buckle / booster combo that levers easily.
- ESL – Easy Slide Lock ski/walk mode switch slides as easily as it’s named.
- AGS – Anatomically Guided Shell is a highly researched shell shape to just fit.
- NFT – Neo Flex Tongue is dual density to bend on the uphill and stiffen the down.
- BFC – BaX Frame Cuff is a molded X frame that stiffens the highest pressure vectors.
- MGS – M-Grip Soles are a special rubber compound molded into H shapes for grip.
- SRH – Standard Rear Heel works with tech fittings, frame bindings, and the Kingpin.
- CTF – Custom ThermoFormable liner is Ultralon foam (ala Intuition).
- OCD – Probably describes you if you managed to read all these TLAs.
Compare otherTouring Boots
|Weight (pair)||2420g [27.0]|
|Buckles||1 + Velcro OCB|
|Boot Sole Length||279mm [25/25.5]
|Binding Compatibility||Tech, Frame, Kingpin|
|Skimo Co Says|
|Usage||Lightweight touring, all-mountain|
|Notes||Molded "X" frame enhanced power transmission|
|Bottom Line||Ideal companion for long ski days|
Questions & Reviews
1) How does the fit on these compare to Dynafit? I fit pretty well into the Mercury/Neo in a 29.
2) The previous reviewer said these can have trouble fitting crampons. Do you know if they'll work with a BD Sabretooth automatic?
If you want to summarize the review, just read this- beef boot performance with skimo simplicity and weight. If you've been hesitant to get into a lighterweight, <1200g boot because of fear of giving up performance, this is a good option for you. Don't let the lack of carbon fool you, these boots are stiff, and ski much more like an overlap alpine boot. Comparably stiff if not stiffer than the TLT6 with tongue (definitely not LESS stiff), but with a more natural and progressive flex. The simple walk/ski mechanism is easy to use, and makes transitions a literal flip of a switch (or two if you loosen the cuff buckle during touring.) The boot has a very natural, progressive flex- the most similar boot out there IMO is the F1 Evo, but this boot has a more natural feeling flex to it and is simpler.
The simplicity was the biggest appeal of this boot for me- after 5 seasons in TLT5/6, I was tired of the fiddly tongues and ultra-lock switches and just wanted to flip something on my boot and ski. This meets that criteria very well.
Why not 5 stars? Two reasons- first, the ski/walk switch interferes with many crampon levers, or at least has the potential to so much that I would not feel comfortable trusting my life to it. I switched to the the Grivel ski-matics, which work well and for which there are no problems. Camp race 290s would work well too, or any crampon without a heel lever.
The other reason for 4 stars is that there is a *slight* increase in touring resistance vs. something like the TLT5/6. This is because you flex the plastic tongue with each step. It really is slight, but you will notice it. But a worthwhile tradeoff vs having to fiddle with tongues to get this sort of performance, which really is great. And I spend most of my time in zero-resistance race boots.
I didn't even notice the lack of power strap, which is NOT true of other boots like the TLT. Really.
So if you've been wanting to go light but are worried you'll miss the big boot performance, I think this is the boot for you. I am super stoked to finish off the spring with them!
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