Tecnica Cochise Pro 130 ReviewPrice: $700 List | $489.96 at Backcountry
Compare prices at 2 resellers Pros: Good value, top performance, compatible with alpine and tech bindings
Cons: Minimal walk mode, heavy
Bottom line: The Cochise 130 Pro is a free ride boot that can tackle big mountain descents with ease.
The Technica Cochise 130 Pro boots are a robust, performance-oriented ski boot that will rip any line you point them towards, as long as you are strong enough to stay on top of them. These boots are in the freeride category, meaning that they are meant to be worn on short ski tours or hikes to access your ski line. They are not a true backcountry touring boot, as their weight and rather limited range of motion makes them a poor comparison to the boots we featured in that specific review, but for in-bounds skiing in any mountain condition, and out of bounds shredding whether human powered or with mechanized access, the Cochise 130 Pro is a high end boot that will do anything you tell it to.
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The Cochise 130 Pro are amongst the most comfortable boots we stepped into. They fit our medium volume feet quite well, offering a secure yet not constricting feel with their 99mm last. The C.A.S. shell provides boot fitters the ability to custom fit in problem areas, and the plastic is an upgrade from previous generations of the Cochise line. The included C.A.S. boot board is quite thick, and those with high arches may find themselves tight around the top of the foot, but the board is easily ground down to allow for more vertical space. These are a much more comfortable boot overall than the race-inspired Technica Mach 1 boot and gives skiers more room than the narrow volume Atomic Hawx Ultra 130.
The Cochise 130 Pro is designed to offer touring ability without sacrificing downhill capability. It is pretty tough to hit that sweet spot, as light weight and range of motion often come at the expense of skiing performance. Don't expect these boots to set any speed records on the skin track, but when it comes time to rip skins and ski your line, the Cochise boots will drive hard and fast and will require a strong and aggressive skier to keep them under control.
For most skiers looking into this crossover freeride boot, they will find this model will handle virtually any condition they will encounter. Firm and variable conditions at speed did not seem to phase the Cochise as noticed in softer boots such as the Nordica Speedmachine 120, and we found that this boot offered a somewhat more predictable forward flex than the similarly designed Scarpa Freedom RS.
As a freeride/adventure style ski boot, the Cochise 130 Pro employs a walk mode that allows skiers to gain range of motion for touring or hiking. The range of motion is described as 42 degrees, but we found that to be grossly exaggerated. The Scarpa Freedom RS has a claimed range of 25 degrees and has a much larger walking range. We would not want to hike or tour long distances in this boot, but it is ok for short durations where the downhill performance is required. We liked the sole blocks that are compatible with alpine bindings as well as tech bindings, eliminating the need to purchase aftermarket soles like previous Cochise boots required.
We did not experience any durability issues with the Cochise boots during our test period, and we have not heard of any people with major problems with their Technicas either. The plastic on the sole blocks seemed to hold up pretty well to rough travel over rocky terrain to access hidden stashes, and when they wear out, it is easy to replace them. Due to its metal components and locking design, the walk mode is more durable than a block style plastic mechanism, like the one found on the Dalbello Panterra ID 120. The use of velcro as a top buckle system may be a long-term concern for the performance of the boot, but only more time with the boot will tell.
The C.A.S liner is made of thick microcell foam, and offers decent warmth for cold days taking lifts, but are not too hot that our feet overheated in them on short hikes to access sidecountry terrain. The Technica Cochise 120 was reported to be a warm boot by our testers. The liner did appropriately wick moisture away from the foot when it was used in high output activities such as hiking. The roomy toe box and thicker liner material help to contribute to the warmth of the boot. The slightly wider toe box allows for enough wiggling to keep the digits warm on cold, sedentary chair rides and while waiting in lift lines. Similar to the Lange RX 120, the Cochise 120 liner comes prepared to accept an aftermarket boot heater.
We chose these boots as the Top Pick for Skiing Sidecountry (lift-accessed backcountry) terrain. These are too heavy to be considered dedicated ski touring boots, and we would choose something more nimble for those trip. For hiking to secret snow stashes or for shorter distance touring, the Cochise 130 Pro is going to offer pure performance on the down.
With a list price of $700, these boots are an average price for ski boots but offer above-average performance. We felt that these were a great value, especially considering that their competition in this review, the Scarpa Freedom RS, retail for $130 more and do not include DIN certified sole blocks.
If you are an aggressive skier who demands consistent downhill performance out of your boots, in a wide spectrum of snow conditions, and also want a walk mode feature to access out of bounds terrain, the Technica Cochise 130 Pro is one of the best boots you can find.
— Ryan Huetter
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