6 Best Ski Boots for Intermediate Skiers of 2021-2022

Backcountry-Ski-Boots

When you are past the beginner stage of your skiing abilities, it’s time to improve your equipment to help you continue to progress. Every intermediate-level skier needs to find the best ski boots to match their skills on the mountain. 

I’m Christine, an avid skier with a passion for everything about the sport. I’ve been on the snow for decades and have a lot of experience with the necessary equipment for every ability level, and I’ve used most of the boots you’ll find on this list. 

The Salomon S/Pro 100 is my pick for the best overall ski boots for intermediate skiers. These deliver a lot in both on-snow performance and comfort. They also come with a 100 flex rating, which is ideal for intermediate abilities. 

Many good options can work well for this category of skiers, and I’ll provide you with all of the best prospects in this post. My goal is to get you set up with something that will help you improve as a skier. 

Get your gear together, and let’s go.

Quick Summary:

Who Should Get This

All of the boots found on this list are great for the skier who has a good grasp of the basic skills and maneuvers needed to get down the mountain – intermediate skiers. This is you if you are comfortable going down blue runs but aren’t quite ready for blacks. 

The models you’ll find here come with a medium flex, the ideal sweet spot for performance and comfort. I recommend a flex of anywhere between 80-110 for intermediate, and nearly every option here falls in that range. 

Boots are a custom piece of equipment and personal choice. If you don’t like the options you see on the list, there are plenty of others out there to choose from. Just be sure to keep my tips and suggestions for getting a good pair in mind when shopping around. 

Best Ski Boots for Intermediate Skiers: Top Picks

Here are my picks for the best ski boots for intermediate skiers. All of the options you find here will help you navigate a lot of different terrain and conditions on the mountain. 

1. Salomon S/Pro 100

  • Best for: Overall
  • Key features: Good intermediate option, custom shell HD,  comfortable, custom fit liner, micro-adjustable liners
  • Flex: 100
  • Last: 100 mm
  • Cost: $$$

The Salomon S/Pro 100 gets my pick for the best overall ski boots for intermediate skiers. This is a solid option for any skier who wants a nice mix of comfort and performance that can allow you to explore every inch of the mountain. 

The boots come with a 100 flex rating, which is the ideal stiffness for skiers who are ready to tackle more challenging terrain but don’t quite consider themselves experts. 

They also have a custom heat-moldable shell for a skier-specific fit that helps with performance. It’s quick and easy to mold and a great feature on an intermediate boot option. 

A custom-fit 3D performance liner provides added comfort and warmth while you’re skiing as well. The S/Pro 100 also comes with micro-adjustable aluminum buckles for a custom fit that will hold tight as you are skiing. 

These boots are a little expensive, but that’s about the only negative thing to mention. 

2. Rossignol Alltrack 80 

  • Best for: Female Skiers
  • Key features: Great women’s option, affordable, comfortable, good style, power strap, easy entry, custom T3 liner
  • Flex: 80
  • Last: 102 mm
  • Cost: $$

Female intermediate skiers will love the Rossignol Alltrack 80. These boots are another option that gives you a lot of comfort without sacrificing performance, and they look great while doing it. 

They have a women’s specific cuff designed to mold around the calf to give you a natural fit that is easy to get comfortable with. 

An easy entry design means you won’t struggle with getting these on or off, no matter what temperature it is in the parking lot. 

They also have a custom T3 liner that does an excellent job of providing power transfer to your skis. 

These can be a little soft for more experienced intermediate skiers, but that makes them extra comfortable. 

Also Read: Best Women’s Ski Boots

3. Salomon QST Access 80 

  • Best for: Wide feet
  • Key features: Slide in liner, lightweight, wide last, hike and ride system, 35mm power strap
  • Flex: 80
  • Last: 104mm
  • Cost: $$$

The Salomon QST Access 80 is the perfect option for any intermediate skiers with wide feet. These have a 104 mm last, which will give you extra room without cramping or pinching your feet. 

These also feature a slide-in liner that makes them easy to step into when getting geared up for a day on the slopes. 

A hike and ride system gives you extra flex when you want to hike to reach fresh tracks or get back to your car after the ski day is over. 

A 35mm power strap helps increase power transfer and holds your feet in place for extra power transfer. 

With a wider last, these are not a good option for anyone with narrow feet

4. Tecnica Cochise 110 DYN GW 

  • Best for: Intermediate to Advanced
  • Key features: Good for progression, lightweight, performance liner, sturdy construction
  • Flex: 110
  • Last: 99 mm
  • Cost: $$$

The Tecnica Cochise 110 DYN GW is the best option for intermediate skiers who want a boot that can grow with them. 

These give you a lot of performance and are on the stiff side for intermediate boots, but that means they will help push you to the next level. 

A performance liner gives you a solid hold with plenty of comfort, while a CAS shell has an anatomical shape meant to work with the natural shape of your feet. 

They also come with GripWalk soles and lightweight buckles if you want to use these in the backcountry. 

The Cochise can be a little aggressive for skiers who are just past beginner ability levels. 

5. Nordica Cruise 70 

  • Best for: Budget Option
  • Key features: Affordable, comfortable, easy entry, soft flex
  • Flex: 70
  • Last: 104mm
  • Cost: $$

If you are an intermediate skier on a budget, take a look at the Nordica Cruise 70.

These are a basic boot that doesn’t come with many bells and whistles, but that helps keep the cost way down. 

They are very comfortable and will give your feet plenty of room while also providing enough power response and energy transmission to keep you occupied on blue runs. 

The flex of the Cruise is more in the beginner area, so if you are looking for performance over comfort, I’d go with another option. 

6. Dalbello Lupo AX 100 

  • Best for: Touring
  • Key features: Great touring boot, kinetic response tongue, Lupo air liner, effective ski/walk mode
  • Flex: 100
  • Last: 100
  • Cost: $$$

The Dalbello Lupo AX 100 is a solid choice for intermediate skiers who want to explore the backcountry

This is a lightweight model built for performance that has a lot to offer for touring uphill and skiing fresh tracks on the way back down. 

A kinetic response tongue helps increase response and moves with your leg to give you dynamic performance on the mountain.

The Lupo air liner is really comfortable and fully heat-moldable for a customized fit. These won’t pack out even under heavy use. 

They also have a very effective ski and hike buckle that lets you switch from uphill ascents to crushing your time downhill in seconds. 

The Lupo AX 100 is a little expensive and isn’t the best option for strictly resort skiing.  

Also Read: Best Ski Boots for Alpine Touring

How to Choose Boots for Intermediate Skiers

This section will show you a few essential factors to keep in mind when shopping for a good pair of intermediate ski boots. 

Comfort

When picking out boots, pay attention to their fit. Comfort is easy to overlook when focusing on exciting features, but it is critical in the long run. 

Make sure your ski boots are snug without giving you too much room. Straps or buckles help with that process, but proper sizing is crucial as well. Heat moldable liners and custom inserts can help here, and getting help from a boot fitter is recommended. 

Flex

Every ski boot comes with a specific flex, which refers to your boot’s strength. The higher the flex rating a boot has, the more rigid (and more reactive) it will be. As such, the amount of flex often determines how easy or difficult a boot is to use. 

Always tailor the flex to your skill level. A beginner flex ranges from 60 to 70, intermediate flex 80 to 110, and advanced or expert skiers want a flex between 120 to 150. These are general guidelines, and the final choice is up to each skier.

Last

The last refers to the width of the ski boot. If you have really wide feet, you’ll want to go with a larger last to give you more room. Most boots will fall into the medium last category but pay attention to this number if you have any special needs or struggle with discomfort. 

Appearance

While function and features are the most important part of choosing your boots, there’s nothing wrong with good aesthetics. 

At the end of the day, performance should be more important than appearance. It’s possible to get both, and you just need to shop around and make a good choice. 

FAQs

Here are some quick answers to a few common questions relating to intermediate ski boots and intermediate skiing. 

What is an intermediate-level skier? 

You are considered an intermediate-level skier if you can go down blue runs at a ski resort but aren’t quite ready for blacks. It has a loose definition, but that’s the best way to describe it in a nutshell. 

What does intermediate skiing look like? 

Intermediate skiing can look like a lot of different things on the mountain. Most intermediate-level skiers can turn with confidence and handle a variety of conditions. They can reach higher speeds and know how to carve and go through moguls. 

How can I improve my intermediate skiing? 

The best way to improve your skiing ability is to spend more time in the snow. Get out on the mountain as often as you can and try to ski with friends or others who are better than you, so you challenge yourself to try new things and continue to develop. 

Useful Tips and Resources

Comfort is one of the most important things to keep in mind with ski boots, so it is critical to find the right fit. While you can wing the sizing process or guess your size, it is best to know how to get the right feel before making your final purchase. 

This sizing guide provides an incredibly in-depth look at boots so that you can always get the one you need.

On the topic of sizing, it is good to know how to make your boots fit better. Not only will that give you an idea of if the shoes are right for you, but it also ensures you’ll be happy with your final purchase for reliable performance in the snow.  

The tips outlined in the video below will provide you with more information on that process.

Final Verdict

The Salomon S/Pro 100 is my pick for the best ski boot for intermediate skiers. This model has everything a skier with intermediate skills wants and needs on the mountain, including the perfect blend of comfort and performance. 

All of the options on this list are recommended for intermediate skiers. If you want to keep improving your skills, it’s vital to get quality equipment that allows you to challenge yourself and try new things.

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