How’s the saying go? Don't bring a knife to a gunfight? Backcountry skiers who find their ski day containing more chair riding than they'd expected know exactly what that means. Oftentimes, lightweight boots don't have the horsepower to drive burly boards on firmer surfaces well enough to keep the posse in sight.
Well, the Radical CR is the “gun” skiers want to holster for a no-compromises crossover between the off-area and on—as well as between the up and the down. Yes, this four-buckle polyurethane shell is a descending machine with a firm flex feel but testers said it remains lightweight and offers a long and friction-free touring range of motion.
Testers liked the Radical’s simple features. There are straightforward magnesium buckles and the easy-to-use Motion Lock System on/off switch for toggling between touring and ski modes. A pre-molded, firm-construction Custom Ready liner fits well from the get-go. There’s nothing too fancy, and everything worked perfectly. What's not to like about that?
Testers liked Dynafit's clever take on the cam-buckle powerstrap with its unique pull-string release. They also appreciated more persnickety details like the tuck-away stowage for the strap’s tail end. They called the Ultra Lock strap the best in class.
Though a 104mm last might sound wide to alpine boot buyers, backcountry models get a pass on the width metrics—the numbers there simply don't seem to describe fit tension as well as alpine boots do. Our test team said the Radical's fit hit the head pin dead center and most jotted down medium-width fit tension scores. They did note that the forefoot width and instep height both offered a little more-than-medium room to breathe. That’s a good fit combination for descent control with maximal blood flow and warmth while touring.
“Strong. Great edge power and stability fore and aft. Aggressive enough for the resort.” -- Jim Kinney
“Edge hold and snow feel was superior. Powerstrap is clever and effective.” -- Larry "Laurent" Smith
“A firm, upright cuff and the best powerstrap in the group.” -- Bob Egeland
“Powerstrap is awesome. Booster strap style retention with fast, easy touring release. Good, progressive forward flex.” -- Craig Dostie