Dalbello's Panterra line continues to impress our women's test team who awarded it a gold medal this year for its well-balanced blend of anatomical fit for the higher volume foot and leg with a matching high level of performance on snow. The women's Panterra has been a perennial favorite at our boot test for its wide comfort and convenience appeal that comes without wholly sacrificing reliable fun on descent.
The 95 flex that we tested with the IF liner put smiles on our testers' faces for its supremely cushioned, comfortable fit and soft, rangy flex feel. The 95 flex marked the comfort-conscious pick in the women's Panterra line-up, testers said, having tested the 105 flex in the past. They said that for the extra 100 bucks to be worth it a skier would need to prioritize a stiffer flex feel and more aggressive skiing over the sheer luxury and convenience of the softer (and white) 95.
The tongue-style IF liner combined with the typical Dalbello three-piece shell's architecture had our testers wrestling with a few more layers and overlaps than they might like, but so long as layer one is followed by layer two, and so on, the containment system works to grip the high volume foot and leg in a relaxed and smoothly contoured grip. Testers note that the ceiling height is high over the top of the foot from the toes to the instep and that the calf flare is noticeably voluminous. While Dalbello rates this as a 101 mm medium, testers assure that it fits as wide as most 102's in the test.
The stance is on the upright side of the spectrum, which suited the thick-calf testers best, as their muscle mass pushed the leg shaft forward and put them right where they wanted to be. Our slender-legged testers felt a bit challenged in getting forward but noted that a little additional spoiler behind the liner would have worked just fine. Turns were predictable and stable, though due to the ample room in the the system quickness scores were a bit muted for our testers who said that thicker feet and legs would connect better with the sides of the boot and in turn with the edges. Some testers mentioned that the 95 flex collapsed on hard flexion, and suggested that lighter and less aggressive skiers would be fine here but that bigger, taller, stronger skiers should pony up for the 105.
The hike mode is definitely one of the "convenience" variety that aid the stroll around the base area or standing in lines, as testers commented that the range of motion is limited to some degree, especially in forward movement. They did like how convenient its actuation was and they liked the combined roll of stroll enabled by GripWalk soles. Warm, comfy and cushioned were the primary words repeated often on test forms, but they said it skied just fine too.
“A roomy cloud! Super cushioned, comfortable and warm--easy slide in and skis just fine.” -- Liz Elling
“Toe box has decent vertical height and overall the lower boot has a really nice, wide feel. Not too upright, not too forward. Refreshing because many of the boots in the wide category have been too forward. Several wide boots also seemed to collapse on the instep when flex was engaged. This one did not, which was also nice. Nice cushy liner, wraps awesome, delivers energy in to each turn. Cuff of the liner has a pleasant articulation for a beefier calf. Pretty stellar performance. ” -- Emily Poore
“Very easy on and has a really comfy, cushy liner. Perfect for someone who prioritizes comfort over performance (not that it's bad) and wants the easiest boot on and off. ” -- Kori Coggin