Ski boot tech has been changing over the past few seasons. The current trend towards very lightweight boots that are easy to get into yet still perform well has been welcomed throughout the ski industry, and was a critical factor for earning the men's ski boot Gear of the Year award for this season. But a new boot from Switzerland might take these qualities to the extreme.
DAHU, which has been in European markets since 2013, is planning to launch in the North American ski markets in 2019. The boots look like a cross between a regular ski boot and the products that Apex has been making for a few years. The Italian-made lace-up Cambium liner is more like a stylish snow boot, made with waterproof/breathable materials, Primaloft insulation, and features a rubber sole to make for easy walking when worn removed from the boot exterior. The liner slides into a Grilamid shell, which has been modified extensively to both open wide for easy entry and exit, eliminate pressure points, and reduce weight.
Read more: Gear of the Year 2019 - Ski Boots
Perhaps the most intriguing innovation is the way the boot liner's sole locks into the grooves in the shell, best demonstrated in this video from the boots' ISPO 2013 launch. Time will tell on how this performance works on snow, especially considering how the rubber tread of the liner lasts after a few seasons of après and beyond.
The person responsible for launching DAHU in North America is Clark Gundlach, who rose to notoriety as an executive at Burton Snowboards as the company transitioned from adolescence to the snowsports juggernaut it is today. “After thousands of days on the mountain, I know what an uncomfortable boot feels like. This product has the potential to revolutionize the ski boot business,” says Gundlach in a press release from DAHU. “It’s an innovation that the industry deserves. I’m excited about that. A pain-free ski experience will bring joy to every vertical foot of your day.”
The brand will have a number of flex options available for men and women with flex profiles ranging from 90, 110, 120, and 130 flex profiles. The company plans to appeal to skiers who want the performance of an overlap boot but the ease-of-entry found in three-piece cabrio boots. There is also no information about price levels yet.
SKI has not had the opportunity to test the performance of the DAHU boots, but we anticipate doing so during our ski boot test for the 2019/2020 ski season.