Nobody wants a quiver of boots. Three seasons ago, you'd have been laughed out of the bar if you said you wanted a boot that had downhill performance, touring and bootpacking capabilities and was mildly comfortable. But this year, there are a few ski boots on the market that fit that description. The Atomic Tracker 130 INT is one of them.
WHAT IT IS:
About the only thing the Tracker 130 has in common with the high-performance Atomic boots from seasons past is Atomic's 98-millimeter last race-style fit. Working from the inside out, they dropped a fully heat-moldable Intuition liner (hence the INT) into the 130 for optimal fit and warmth. A new two-tiered power strap is anchored by a beefy metal cam strap, which tightens the liner and shell independent of each other. A fully rubberized, DIN-compatible sole and a milled aluminum switch let you effortlessly flip between walk and ski mode.
WHY IT RULES:
The Tracker 130 could very well be the vision of exactly what Atomic skier Sage Cattabriga-Alosa wanted in a boot. Sage is taking no credit for its design, but he says, "The Tracker 130 has the amazing combo of performance while skiing and while on foot. With the walk mode and added traction I was literally hopping from rock to rock like a mountain goat while in Argentina this summer." Sage's Atomic teammate Daron Rahlves agreed. Instead of using AT bindings, he puts his 130s in walk mode, throws skins on his skis, and mashes around the Tahoe backcountry locked into his 16-DIN alpine bindings. "No need for Alpine Trekkers," Rahlves says, proving once again that he's burlier than you. We wouldn't recommend that, but it goes to show the boot's versatility. One boot is all you need.