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Customized insoles for soft boots
Dear Splitboarder Community,
5 years ago I decided to turn my back on the ski lifts and go exclusively ski touring. As a snowboarder, splitboarding is the ski touring equivalent, i.e. a divisible snowboard that you use for the ascent in ski mode and for the descent in snowboard mode.
Splitboarding is most common with a soft binding and a soft boot. This is the classic setup found on slopes and backcountry. This setup has been improved over many years, for example with stiffer soft boots including Vibram soles. While it is the best setup on the descent due to the flexibility of the soft boot, it still causes problems on the ascent. Since snowboards have a certain width - my snowboard is even quite narrow with 257 cm width in the middle - traverses are a real problem. Even though boots have become stiffer, you still have to build up pressure on the edge in the snowboard binding, which doesn't always work in icy conditions. The solution: crampons. However, these slow you down noticeably. In addition, the weight of the binding on the foot is also not to be underestimated.
That's why I chose a so-called AT setup for myself, i.e. ski touring boots with a hard boot binding - in my case from Phantom. This binding remains in the backpack during the ascent, which means less weight on the foot. For the ascent I have Dynafit Speed Superlite toes. Here the boot is directly on the ski, without binding frame in between, which gives me better pressure on the edge.
I was convinced of the advantages of this setup. The only problem with this is that there is no splitboard specific boot. As a splitboarder, you're "poaching" in ski touring territory. And after 5 years, I still hadn't found a boot that fit me really well. I longed for my old soft boots and was already thinking about a new soft boot setup.
By chance I came across DONI on the internet. He was my last hope to get this setup working and he did a fantastic job. I use an Atomic Backland, which due to its quite flexible outer shell comes relatively close to a soft boot - "out of the box" but did not meet my rather wide feet. Not even after heat molding twice. Thanks to the custom insole, the Intuition inner boot and the individual advice and fitting, I am now pain-free on the road and enjoy splitboarding for the first time without aching feet in the evening.
The service is not cheap, but the result can be seen and is - my opinion - worth every penny. And a new setup would have cost me much more in that case.
Thank you very much!