Doug Stewart fits a downhill ski boot. Photo Credit: Zach Walbridge.
Skirack boot fitter, Doug Stewart fits a downhill ski boot. Photo Credit: Zach Walbridge.
Laura, Skirack Nordic boot fitter helps a customer select the best boots for racing. Photo Credit: Zach Walbridge.

Ask any veteran skier if their ski boots are important, or if they affect their skiing, I would not be surprised if most said “yeah, of course.” As someone who has spent my entire life on skis and the last few decades helping people ski better, I’m here to make sure you understand just how important your boots are to your ski day.

My go-to quotes come from Warren Witheral in his Bible of a ski book The Athletic Skier. While only a bit newer than the Bible, this great ski book is full of gems. One of my favorites, when figuring out how much time a ski racer can save with equipment adjustments, the great Austrian downhill ski coach Charly Kahr is quoted in the book as saying:

“If your boots are right, you gain two seconds.
If your wax is right, you gain two tenths.
If your uniform is right, you gain two hundredths.”

~~~

Based on this idea, I repeatedly tell customers, your boots are 10 times more important than your skis. This also applies to cross country skiing and snowboarding. Our goal is to get you in the right gear the first time around.

So, how do I get boots in a way that respects their importance?
You use an expert boot fitter to ensure your boots are fitted right; that’s how. It’s the same way you get heart surgery, you use a surgeon.

Max, Skirack snowboard boot fitter helps a customer select the best boots for splitboarding. Photo Credit: Zach Walbridge.
Max, Skirack snowboard boot fitter helps a customer select the best boots for splitboarding. Photo Credit: Zach Walbridge.

It’s not hard to find the correct boot once an experienced boot fitter has:
1. Seen your foot, ankle and whole body
2. Understands the type of skiing or riding you are doing
3. Understands what skis or snowboard you use

This expertise will eliminate a lot of the trial and error that many outdoor enthusiast go through trying to find the right boot. With this level of expertise, we'll suggest the best boot option first, and then you might not need to try on another boot. Also, there will be situations when any boot will need to be modified, and an expert boot fitter will know when that is. All too often people get fixated on selecting a boot to solve a problem that can be solved easily with modification to any boot. We are ready to help you find a new boot, or dial in a boot you already have, no matter where you got it.

So, does COVID-19 affect how you can connect with expert boot fitters?
Of course, it affects just about everything we are doing. At Skirack, our doors are open and we are still taking walk-in appointments for boot fitting during open store hours. We are also setting up appointments before we are open to the public. If you would like to set up an appointment before we open at 10AM, just send us an email, and after getting an idea of what you need, we’ll get you connected with the right fitter.

Doug measures a customer's foot to help determine the best downhill ski boot for them. Photo Credit: Zach Walbridge.
Doug measures a customer's foot to help determine the best downhill ski boot for them. Photo Credit: Zach Walbridge.

Regarding our COVID-19 safety measures:
Staff, customers and anyone who enters the building are required to answer health safety questions, wear masks, use hand sanitizer, and keep a 6’ distance when not in a fit. We are not providing try-on socks - so, bring your own socks or you can purchase a Darn Tough Over the Calf Socks while you are here.

Please note these procedures are subject to change.Click here for Skirack's COVID-19 response.

Winter is coming!
Supply may be limited this season, so don’t wait to get your boots dialed in by a pro!

- Doug Stewart,
Skirack Downhill Boot Fitter
Click here to learn more about Doug.