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Scarpa Maestrale Review/Thoughts

January 13, 2011

So as mentioned after Chamonix in Dec I got some new boots. My feet are now proud owners of a pair of Scarpa Maestrale’s, leaving my old BD Factors relegated to the bench. After a few days skiing in Whistler I thought I would share my first impressions with a review of sorts.

Scarpa Maestrale – New digs for my baby soft feet.

I wasn’t a huge fan of the fit when I was trying them on in the shop, they were uncomfortable and I was getting some odd pressure on the outside of my shin (a friend complained about the same thing and ultimately bought another boot). That was all before the liner molding, which if I’m honest fixed most of it immediately but still left me with a little shin pressure. I still took the plunge though as the other options out there either didn’t suit my foot volume (BD Quadrant too wide, Dynafits too small) and some other boots were just too heavy for what I wanted (Garmont Radium). Let’s just say I’m super happy I did take them as the shin pressure area is gone now that I’ve broken them in a touch and left me with boots that are super comfy for skinning up, skiing down, walking around BUT NOT standing around.  Odd I know but whenever I’m not moving I need to undo the buckles and switch to walk mode. My solution… spend less time standing around and more time going up and coming down cause these perform very well in both those areas.

Weight – Scarpa Maestrale size 28.0 = 1630g per boot, Black Diamond Factor size 28.5 = 2350g per boot.

General Observations

The new Dynafit tech fittings are a nice touch. I know some people say they don’t need them and while they are not a must have but they do make it easier to step in. The vibram sole looks very functional as well with big rubber lugs well spaced instead of tightly spaced like most other boots.

New Dynafit fittings

The buckles are extremely thin and tapered so that the contact points are the same width which I find can be a pain in the ass as you need to be more precise than normal when doing them up, especially with the rather annoying guard (meant to keep the buckles from flopping around when loose) on the top buckle. Thankfully I only deal with that at the start of the day.

Buckles


Touring

First thing I’ve noticed now that I’ve switched boots is the immediate weight savings. I’m saving 1.44kg in weight with the new boots which is a massive difference when you factor in lifting the boots with my hip flexors thousand of times each touring day. The second major thing I noticed is how much easier touring is with the massive amount of rear lean the Maestrale offers. Look at the photos, BD Factor has little rearward travel yet the cuff of the Maestrale pivots way back. The easier it is going up the more I get to go down.

Scarpa Maestrale Rear Lean

BD Factor Rear Lean

Skiing

Well the only chance I’ve had to ski the boot is in the backcountry and while it’s certainly not as stiff as the Factor I’m now well aware that I don’t need a Factoresque stiff boot.  The flex of the Maestrale is very smooth and progressive, perfect for the backcountry whether steep, deep or hard. I never noticed the shorter cuff when skiing but if you are one of these people that likes to rip the groomers and hit the bumps every once in a while then this boot (or blog) probably isn’t for you. They ski great and they tour exceptionally well. Everything I could ever need in a backcountry boot.

UPDATE  – Scarpa Maestrale Review Update 1 (Feb 22nd 2011)

Boot cuff height comparison – Front

Rear comparison


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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Dan Nell permalink
    April 7, 2011 7:45 pm

    Cool review thanks for this. Can I ask what shoe size you wear? I wear size 10 and think I would wear a 28 but was curious what shoe size you wear.

    • April 8, 2011 5:41 pm

      Hey Dan, I wear a US size 10 (sometimes 10.5 depending on shoe brand). The bootfitter sized me for a 27.5 Maestrale originally but it proved to be more of a “racing” fit so ultimately we went with the 28.0 which has been perfect.

      As an aside make sure you read the review update (link at the bottom of this review). I’ve had issues with bolts coming loose and I’m now hearing of other people with the same problem. So if you get a pair make sure you lock-tite all the bolts or at least make sure they are tight each time you head out.

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  1. Scarpa Maestrale Review Update 1 « Falling White

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