Liner: High-performance-fit liner with power wrap wedge tongue
Testing Location: Big Sky, Keystone, Breckenridge, Winter Park, Mary Jane, Smuggler’s Notch
Days Skied: 1½ seasons
At the beginning of last season, I began searching for my first non-racestock boot. After twelve years of ski racing on the East Coast, I was ready for a warmer, more comfortable boot that would still allow me the confidence to charge down the mountain.
I have been a Lange girl my entire life (and I’m not talking about the half-naked ladies taped to the walls of skier’s bedrooms), so after hitting up different boot shops in northern Vermont, I wasn’t surprised that a Lange boot was the right fit (literally).
Many of the other boots were too wide, allowing my feet to shift back and forth when I walked around or flexed the tongues, while others had liners so thick that my feet felt like they were suffocating. The RS 110 S.C. felt both snug and comfortable.
Eager for my first day of skiing at Keystone last season, I mindlessly threw my new Lange RS 110 S.C. boots in the trunk of my car and hit the road. It wasn’t until I pulled them out that I realized I was in for a rough start: my boots were ice cold and super stiff. I love the stiffness of Langes, but certainly not when I’m trying to put them on. I stood in the parking lot for a good fifteen minutes that day, spreading the tongue, slamming my heel into the ground, using my friends as leverage, doing anything to get those things on my feet. Since then, I make sure to keep my 110s at the mouth of the car heater on my drive to the mountain. The heat makes the plastic more pliable and creates a much more pleasant experience at the beginning of the day.
Once my feet were in these boots, I had very few complaints. I was pleasantly surprised how comfortable they were for a high-performance boot. A lot of all-mountain boots I’ve tried have a relatively thick liner (that is, relative to racestock boots) and often put my feet to sleep within ten minutes. The RS 110 S.C. stock liner is slimmer than most all-mountain alpine boots and has a fit very similar to a race boot. It’s also beautifully sculpted to fit the shape of your foot: it’s thinner around the calf, anklebone, and Achilles tendon to provide an anatomically correct and snug fit.
Though the liner of the boot conformed extremely well to my foot, the shell didn’t seem as forgiving. On my first day with the 110s, I cringed, anticipating my feet to be asleep by the end of each run. After one lap, I slid into the lift line and, out of habit, bent down to unbuckle my boots for the ride up. But halfway down I paused, realizing my feet were completely comfortable. I pushed to the front of the line with a big smile on my face and my boots buckled.
With every other boot I have skied, it has taken me at least two weeks on snow to feel as comfortable as I did my first day skiing in the RS 110. They have the stability and warmth of brand-new boots, yet the comfort of season-old boots.
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The 2011-2012 Tecnica Viva Inferno Crush boot is a comfortable, easily adjustable, stiff women's boot that favors aggressive skiers.
WARNING: THIS REVIEW MAY CAUSE WHIPLASH. (It also might change your life.)