Expert Review: Scarpa TX Pro NTN Ski Boots
This review is my honest opinion of the boots, which I purchased with my own money in January of 2021.
About this Review: This review is my honest opinion of the boots, which I purchased with my own money in January of 2021.
For telemark skiers wanting a medium volume NTN boot with tech toe inserts, the Scarpa TX Pro NTN is the one.
About the gear
- Model: Scarpa TX Pro NTN Ski Boots
- Size: 26.5 Mondo
- Height: 6’0”
- Weight: 175 lbs
- Street Shoe Size: US Men’s 9
- Experience: 43 years of skiing
- When I bought these: January 2021
- Days tested: 60+ days
- Skis: DPS Pagoda Tour 112RP, Moment Wildcat Tour 108, Völkl Mantra V Werks
- Bindings: 22 Designs Lynx
- Where I’ve used it: Backcountry (mainly the Rockies, but also the Tatra Mountains in Poland); Val Senales, Italy; Schilthorn, Switzerland; Hochkar, Austria; Černá Hora, Czech Republic; Jasna, Slovakia
- Terrain: Groomers, steeps, powder, backcountry touring, moguls
How they perform
What I was looking for
I was looking for a stiff, four-buckle NTN tech toe telemark boot to fit my narrow but high arch foot shape.
Why I chose this gear
In the telemark world, boot choices are limited and depending on your foot shape, you will be directed to one of three manufacturers. For me, Scarpa has been my brand of choice since I first took up telemark skiing over 20 years ago. When I decided to finally move to an NTN tech toe setup, the TX Pro was a natural choice.
I have a narrow foot but a high arch, so I needed something that keeps me secure but doesn’t put pressure on the top of my foot where circulation can be cut off, leading to cold feet. This led me to choose the TX Pro because its 102mm last fits the majority of narrow to medium width foot shapes, given Scarpa’s unique heel lock second buckle.
What I love about them
- Accuracy of Claimed Stiffness: For most telemark skiers, the 110 flex of the TX Pro is just right. It’s stiff enough to control even the burliest skis, but soft enough for the finesse that is telemark skiing. They are certainly more powerful than my old T2s, but after some initial adjustment and breaking in, I found they drive skis as I want them whether locked into a full NTN binding on a resort ski, or on a lightweight tech toe binding and ski in the backcountry.
- Accuracy of Claimed Fit: Scarpas fit true to size and with an Intuition liner, they can be molded and formed to your foot. One thing to note is Scarpa’s break on the ½ size up, not down. So, unlike traditional alpine boots, a 26.5 is a 27 shell with a thicker liner.
- Comfort: The TX Pros continue Scarpa’s long tradition of making comfortable, warm boots. Although they certainly put more pressure on the top part of my foot than my T2s (they are stiffer), after molding and breaking them in, I find them very comfortable for all day resort or backcountry skiing.
- Resort: The TX Pro is very similar to the old T1, which was the boot of choice for traditional 75mm bindings inside the resort. Therefore, although a backcountry boot by design, the power transfer and flex pattern allows a skier to easily control any ski on or off-piste.
- Backcountry: Mounting up a tech toe binding on some lightweight touring skis, easily clipping in, and skinning up into a high alpine environment was almost revolutionary for me with these boots. The new frictionless range of motion provided by the tech toe inserts combined with the ability to have a lighter setup made the transition to NTN and these boots so very much worth it.
- Durability: I have seen people with Scarpas that are 10+ years old. As the TX Pro is basically the same tried-and-true design and material, albeit with some upgrades, these are built to last.
Issues I’ve encountered
- Weight: As previously stated, the choices for telemark boots are limited but I can’t help but hope Scarpa will reduce the weight of the TX Pro in the future or come out with a new model. The TX Pro isn’t overly heavy (1750g per boot at size 27.5) but this is a bit heavier than even some resort/backcountry crossover boots. So, some of that gain in moving over to a tech toe binding is lost.
- Walk mode: The walk-mode switch is very durable and easy to transition. However, the range of motion on the boot leaves a lot to be desired. Similar to the weight issue, uphill efficiency is lost because the range of motion is just not on par with AT boots.
- Hot spots: With my incredibly high arch, the tops of my feet will usually need some attention. For most people, this is likely won’t be an issue as Scarpa’s boots tend to fit a wide range of foot shapes.
Favorite moment with this gear
At the end of the 2022 season, I was lucky enough to attend a telemark festival in Switzerland which allowed me to demo multiple skis and bindings. This showed me the versatility of these boots, as they performed wonderfully regardless of the ski type or NTN binding.
Value for the money vs. other options
NTN telemark boots are not cheap. They are on par with, or priced higher than, many AT boots on the market. But without a lot of options, if you are set on keeping your heel free and want to make the switch to a more backcountry setup, the TX Pro is one of the leaders. Comparable products are the Scott Voodoo NTN and the Crispi Evo NTN.
The TX Pro provides the support, flex, and fit for the most demanding telemark skiers in a backcountry package. With limited options, it is great to know that we freeheelers can get a high-quality boot that will last us for years to come.