Used to be, you could pretty much count on a new ski boot design to have four buckles. Not anymore, especially when it comes to park-and-pipe applications. Examples, the Dalbello Krypton, Salomon Ghost and now the Ace of Spades, a rare midseason boot launch from Nordica. The Ace is a three-buckle affair: one on the cuff, two on the lower. It’s also a three-piece shell design that looks like it’ll be easy to get into and out of while still providing plenty of rearward support for back seat landings. Nordica kept it as light as possible (just 4.5 pounds), and the last (interior width) is a roomy 102-mm across the forefoot (way wider than either the Ghost or the Krypton). And the flex rating? Nordica describes it as so progressive (soft at first, but stiffer as it flexes more deeply) that the flex rating is listed not as 100 or 130, but as “100-to-130.” Other niceties: Vibram sole for easy walking, Full Shock Eraser bootboard for softer landings, even a pant clip on the rear cuff.And the colors? Well, they speak for themselves—and quite loudly at that.
Ace of Spades boot (MSRP: $749)