Do you love the thrill of adventure and exploring new challenging terrains on the mountainside? Well, backcountry snowboarding is the perfect sport for you to engage in. It is, however, mostly a preserve for expert and advanced skilled snowboarders.
However, because this is a generally unwatched, unmarked, and rugged terrain, there are high risks associated with the sport. This includes potential avalanches, harsh weather, and deep powder conditions.
Therefore, a great pair of best backcountry snowboard boots is essential while venturing into this terrain. The boots you choose should be able to provide you with comfort, warmth, support, and protection from the cold.
Related: Best GoPro Mount for Snowboarding In 2024
There is a wide variety of snowboard boots in the market today. However, you have to find the one that works for you. I have narrowed down the list to some of my best picks. I hope that this will help ease your decision-making process and help you find the right fit for your backcountry snowboarding needs.
7 Best Backcountry Snowboard Boots In 2024
What Are The Key Features In A Backcountry Snowboard Boot?
There are 3 key features that every backcountry snowboard boot should come with:
Your foot should be able to cushion you against the impact of snowboarding. The foot sole, insole, liner, and overall boot shape and size should offer adequate support through this high-intensity activity.
It should also be fitted with high-quality material that can keep you warm. A waterproof boot is ideal for the sport. Keeping your feet warm will help you protect yourself from frostbite and hypothermia in severe circumstances.
A great snowboarding flex should offer a medium flex. It should be stiff enough to help you hike and soft enough to help you go downhill comfortably. Ensure you always check the boot’s flex rating before making a purchase. I recommend a flex rating of between 5-7.
It is critical that your snowboarding boots provide a great grip on the mountains. This is especially because this terrain is usually unmarked and quite challenging. Good traction will ensure the right balance and enhance your stability while snowboarding.
All these features work to ensure that the backcountry boots are able to provide you with the necessary support for snowboarding. If your boot lacks any of these, you will surely suffer a great deal of discomfort that will ruin your snowboarding experience.
How Do Backcountry Snowboard Boots Differ From Regular Ones?
It can be quite tempting to use your regular pair of boots when you want to go backcountry snowboarding. Hold that thought! While you may think that doing this will save you cash, choosing to use regular boots will do you more harm than good.
A backcountry snowboarding boot boasts great features that will prove useful.These include:
Snowboarding boots, unlike regular boots, are designed to offer great heel and ankle support. They offer great heel and toe control which is essential for snowboarding. This is because the sport involves too much movement.
Regular boots are designed with soft materials. This can easily irritate the skin. A backcountry snowboarding boot should provide a snug fit.
Using a boot that does not offer great support will cause you to suffer from a foot or ankle injury. Snowboarding boots will offer the necessary support to protect you from any accidents resulting from poor ankle and heel support.
Bindings are only designed to function with snowboarding boots. These bindings work to ensure that you have the necessary support and stability needed in the sport.
Regular boots are not able to fit and work well with the bindings. They may cause your foot to slip out of the binding and cause you to get injured.
Regular boots do not have the required flexibility for backcountry snowboarding. They typically have a lower flex which is not ideal for backcountry snowboarding. Proper snowboard boots should provide a medium flex.
They should be able to cushion your feet against high impact through high-quality design.
Regular boots are not built to withstand the rough mountain terrain and may easily get damaged, leaving you prone to harsh weather elements.
Backcountry snowboarding boots are constructed to be more durable due to the nature of the terrain covered. It is, therefore, essential that you use the necessary boots for the suited terrain to help avoid discomfort and terrain.
While you may have to spend hundreds of dollars to get the best backcountry snowboard boot, the value they offer is equally unmatched. They ensure you are well protected in this dangerous terrain and take your snowboarding experience a notch higher.
Here are the top picks!
1 . BURTON Photon BOA Mens Snowboard Boots – Best Overall
This boot features a Griplite backstay which helps reduce rider fatigue. This ensures that you do not have to keep re-adjusting the boots while riding. It is also fitted with focus cuff boosts that offer you great ankle support.
Total comfort construction adorns this boot, ensuring that your feet do not require any break-in period. It is fitted with a snowproof internal gusset that ensures your feet stay warm and dry. This is achieved by completely sealing the boot’s lower zone.
The lacing design adopted in the BURTON photon snowboarding boot is the Dual-Zone BOA fit system; this design features heel-specific tensioning that you can easily change by the twist of a dial.
A sleeping bag reflective foil placed underfoot features heat-reflective technology. This ensures that you stay warm and comfortable despite the harsh winter conditions. A B3 gel cushioning is present to help protect you from the repeated impact that is frequent with backcountry snowboarding.
This boot also features a medium flex profile ensuring you stay stable even when riding at high speeds. It also comes with a Vibram traction lug outsole with an Eco step. The rubber used in the outsole is eco-friendly and provides sufficient grip for the terrain.
The liner fitted in this snowboard boot can be molded with heat to provide ultimate comfort. The Imprint 3 liner offers warmth and works with the focus cuff to enhance smooth energy transfer and provide more cushioning to your feet.
This backcountry snowboarding boot also comes with a 1-year warranty.
Why Is The BURTON Photon BOA Mens Snowboard Boots The Best For Backcountry Snowboarding In 2024?
The Photon BOA snowboard boots are BURTON’S best performing and most versatile boots, which use the boa coiler closure system and convenience. They are easy to put on and remove. This ensures that the boots offer you unmatched comfort.
The Vibram outsole is perfect for rugged terrain, while the Griplite backstay and Firm flex powerUp tongue make the boot very versatile. The imprint liner fitted in this boot employs DRYRIDE heat technology, ensuring your feet stay warm and dry.
What I love most about this snowboard boost is the shrinkage foot bed reduction technology which minimizes toe drag. The optimized midsole also works to lower your center of gravity, which works to enhance overall comfort. I highly recommend this boot for backcountry snowboarding.
2 . BURTON Swath BOA Mens Snowboard Boots – Runner Up
These snowboarding boots are water resistant and have a flexible structure for maximum support. Griplite backstay works to reduce fatigue. The focus cuffs fitted on these boots help to provide your ankle with the necessary while snowboarding.
An articulating cuff on this boot helps to improve mobility on the slopes. The Swath BOA boot requires no time to break in and provides a comfortable fit from day one. This is thanks to the total comfort construction of this boot.
The snowproof internal gusset is an overlooked feature in snowboarding boots but is key in ensuring your comfort and is hard to miss on a premium snowboard boot such as the Swath. A reflective sleeping bag foil fitted on the footbed keeps you warm and comfortable on the challenging backcountry terrain.
Its ultraweave shell makes the boot lightweight, providing excellent performance. It also helps eliminate the need for heavy seaming. The foot sole is designed with rebound cushioning, which helps protect your feet from high impact.
The Swath is fitted with a moldable heat liner and provides a great board feel. These boots are reasonably priced and come with a one-year warranty that ensures you do not incur additional costs in case the product is defective.
3 . BURTON Ion Mens Snowboard Boots – Premium Pick
This boot has a strong flex rating of 8, which is great for speed control on rugged mountain terrain. It features total comfort construction, providing a great fit even when the boot is new. You do not need any time to break in the boots.
The boot utilizes a life liner which employs lightweight material for a more comfortable fit. The PU tongue construction helps improve the boot’s durability while making it ideal for all foot shapes and sizes.
It is designed with a welded backstay, providing great support while enhancing the boot’s durability. It is fitted with tuff cuff lite, which improves heel-to-toe flexibility. It also utilizes Ultralon performance foam which is a great heat management system.
The Ion Burton snowboard boot model utilized speed zone lacing, providing fast lacing. A sleeping bag reflective coil keeps you warm, while Autocant technology helps relieve fatigue and enhance your comfort.
The DryRide heat cycle lining is also breathable and helps reflect heat to keep your feet warm. This boot also has a snowproof internal gusset to keep your feet dry and warm. The boot is designed to offer you the best support while backcountry snowboarding.
4 . thirtytwo Men’s TM-2 Double Boa Snowboard Boot – Budget Pick
This backcountry snowboarding boot features the BOA closure system, unlike the models mentioned before. It is also designed to offer a medium flex, ideal for backcountry terrain. The liner is fitted with dual-density foam for maximum support. This model also comes with a level 3 liner that is fully moldable and can cushion the feet and maximize comfort.
This is a highly responsive boot, but it ensures that this does not negatively impact its comfort. It also takes a taller form which guarantees your ankle and feet have the right support and enough flexibility to enhance their mobility in rugged terrain.
The boots shell features an articulated cuff which improves durability and flex. It is fitted with a performance backstay, a tongue tension system that reduces friction, and a fused overlay. All these features work together for improved durability.
The boot also features a moldable, dual-density foam that offers great arch support and heel cushioning for great performance while backcountry snowboarding.
The polyurethane footbed employs a dual-density pod for comfort and arch support. The performance backstay in this boot enhances foot support and makes the shell long-lasting. There is a built-in harness that provides you with great mobility while snowboarding. This boot is one of the best high-performing snowboard boots on the market.
These snowboard boots are ideal for the backcountry terrain. They are designed with a welded backstay that helps improve support and comfort for your feet and ankle. The tuff cuff lite on this boot provides you with enough room for heel to toes movement.
This helps protect you from suffering any injuries while snowboarding.
A snowproof internal gusset is present to help keep your feet warm and dry. The BOA fit system that this boot employs helps you to adjust your lacing with a simple dial twist independently. It also makes it easy to wear and remove the shoes without much hassle.
AutoCANT cushioning utilizing Eva material ensures that your foot is well-positioned and reduces fatigue. The boots are also quite lightweight and a great option for Apres snowboarding. It is fitted with a life liner for enhanced comfort and DRYRIDE heat cycle technology which offers moisture-wicking functions to help keep your feet warm and dry even in cold conditions.
Due to their high flex rating, I recommend these boots to intermediate, advanced, and expert snowboarders.
This boot utilizes the BOA lacing system. I love these boots because of the stability they offer. They are also made of premium quality that is solid and unmatched. The Ions are true to size and provide great warmth to handle winter conditions without too much hassle.
You don’t need warmers when you have the Burton Ion snowboard boots.
The boots are highly responsive, making them a great choice for carving and providing great control at high speeds. The boot provides great traction in snowy conditions, but you must be extra careful on icy slopes since the lug is not too deep.
If you are on the hunt for backcountry snowboarding boots that offer great control and are highly responsive, look no further. The Burton Ion Mens snowboard boots are the perfect pick to match your needs and preferences.
The outer shell of this material is made of fur material and utilizes a buckle closure system. The liner is made of fur material, improving overall comfort and warmth. This boot wields a durable synthetic backstay that helps reduce fatigue and helps you snowboard for longer durations.
It utilizes a lock-up cuff to help comfortably hold your heel and ankle. Total comfort construction allows you to comfortably use your boots without requiring any break in time.
A snow-proof internal gusset helps keep your feet warm and dry, making the winter conditions bearable.
The boot’s medium flex rating makes it suitable for backcountry snowboarding. Though not highly responsive, you are able to carve in them while managing great stability and balance at lower speeds. The boots utilize dual-boa lacing, which I highly appreciate and they run true to size. The boots are fitted with soft liners that make them very comfortable and a fan favorite for many.
They feature superb grip and traction, making them ideal for snowy and icy terrain. They are sure to get you through without much hassle.
The BURTON ruler utilizes a multi-density EVA foam, making the boot extremely lightweight. This allows you to stay in the terrain and enjoy your snowboarding experience for longer. They are also super versatile, making it easy to switch between different terrains such as parks and groomers. This enhances the cost-benefit ratio for this model.
This boot is best suited for aggressive riders who crave a challenge. And what better and more challenging terrain than the backcountry? This is for you if you are on the hunt for a backcountry snowboarding boot.
This boot has a high flex rating and features a Vibram outsole that works to improve the boot’s durability. This boot is also quite affordable compared to other models in this list without compromising performance.
They utilize a boa closure system that is easily adjustable. The imprint liners that come with this shoe offer great comfort and support to your feet while snowboarding. I highly recommend that you give them a try, especially if you are working with a budget.
What To Consider When Purchasing Backcountry Snowboard Boots
All snowboard boots have a flex rating. It runs on a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the strongest while 1 refers to the softest. This is usually in terms of flexibility.
Backcountry snowboarding calls for boots with a medium flex. You should, however, also ensure that your boots are comfortable. This is because too much foot movement restriction in rugged terrain could hurt your feet and cause discomfort.
You need to cover a lot of ground, either hiking or snowboarding in backcountry terrain. You will need to purchase boots that are able to keep you warm amidst fluctuating temperatures.
More time is spent in backcountry snowboarding than resort snowboarding. You must be able to stay long hours in your boots without feeling any kind of discomfort. A great snowboarding boot should be able to provide the necessary support required by your feet in going uphill and moving downhill.
The comfort level typically depends on the support offered by the liner, outsole, and midsole. The question of which boot offers the most comfort is usually a matter of preference.
Snowboard boots differ in shape, and the sizing changes from one brand to another. To best determine this factor more accurately, I recommend physically visiting the store you want to purchase from.
This is because you will be able to try out the shoes in-store and they will be able to measure the size of your feet accurately. Your heel should not lift, and your fingers and your toes should not curl too much inside your boot if the boot you have picked is the correct size.
Your backcountry snowboarding boots should fit perfectly to have a great time on the rugged terrain. If not, they will pick your skin and cause great discomfort.
This is the rubber material fitted on the underside of your boot. Each boot design has its unique sole construction aimed at providing traction. Backcountry snowboarding boots need to provide a great grip against the snow surface. It will help protect you from slipping and falling in the snow.
The lugs on the snowboard boot you choose should be reliable and utilize heavy-duty material for enhanced durability. This will help ensure maximum traction as you hike through the area.
Most older version snowboard boot models have laces as the locking mechanism. With the growth and enhancement of the sport, new methods have emerged, including quick pull closure systems or dual-zone BOA systems.
The new closure systems are quick to apply. They generally, however, tend to be more expensive. Laces are more suited for backcountry snowboarding because they are easier to replace once they get worn out.
Bulky construction may cause the snowboard boot to be unnecessarily heavy. A backcountry model should average at an average of 5 pounds. The lower the weight, the better due to the long time spent in the terrain.
You must try and find the perfect balance for both uphill and downhill movements on the backcountry terrain. A heavy boot will cause early exhaustion and is not able to provide the necessary support and cushion needed by your feet.
This is an inner layer shaped similar to a boot that is designed to offer comfort and is typically removable. Most liners are constructed using EVA foam which is helpful in cushioning the feet against impact frequently with backcountry snowboarding.
Liners help shorten the time needed to break in your boots. It works together with the footbed, which is also removable to provide maximum support for your feet.
The best backcountry snowboarding boots should be able to protect you from the cold and harsh weather elements. If your boots allow in water and moisture, this may cause discomfort and cause frostbite and, even more seriously, hypothermia.
The backcountry is prone to intense weather fluctuations and you must always stay ready in case of any rains. A waterproof boot will help keep you dry and comfortable and help you enjoy snowboarding better.
your backcountry snowboarding boots should be designed with breathable material. This is because snowboarding is a high-impact activity, and your body will tend to generate high heat.
If the materials used are not breathable, then this may cause your feet to overheat, which may result in frostbite. Ensure that the boots you pick are made of high-quality material and are designed to offer you comfort and great ventilation.
How Do You Care For Backcountry Snowboard Boots?
Are you on the hunt for backcountry snowboarding boots? Purchasing these boots is quite an investment, and it is important that you are aware of the best practices essential to making them last longer and offering you value. Below are the steps to follow to properly care for your boots.
You should always take time to clean out your boots after a snowboard ride. The first step is to remove your liners and soles. Use a damp microfiber towel to wipe any away dirt, sweat, and grime that may have built up during your run.
For the outer shell of your boot, use a damp cloth, mild detergent, and water. Ensure that the outside and inside of your sole are thoroughly cleaned. You can then hang them up to dry. The best way to hang them is upside down.
A boot dryer will come in handy in this step. However, you can still dry your boots without the dryer. All you have to do is use a dry rag to wick away any moisture left in the shoe and place them in a dry area away from any sunlight.
Always close the buckles and fasten the laces to ensure that your boots do not lose their form. Your boots should always stay ready for the next snowboarding ride.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Are Some Reliable Backcountry Snowboard Boot Brands?
The brand thirtytwo also comes in a close second. There are a multitude of brands investing in the production of backcountry snowboarding boots. The models listed in this review are some that I can recommend because I have used them, and I trust them to offer you value for your money.
What Are The Benefits Of Using Backcountry Snowboard Boots?
Are There Recommended Accessories Or Features For Backcountry Snowboarding?
You must carry out extensive research before you go backcountry snowboarding. This is because there are many risks associated with the terrain compared to resort snowboarding, where safety and rescue personnel are present to always look out for you.
The backcountry snowboard boots listed in this review pose some great benefits and features essential to all snowboard enthusiasts. The BURTON photon models feature moldable heat liners, which offer great cushioning against impact, Vibram outsole for great grip and traction. They feature an eco-friendly design which is essential for sustainability.
I advise that you visit a physical store whenever you wish to purchase a snowboarding boot for backcountry terrain in order to ensure you make the best choice based on the fit, your preference, and your needs.
While the backcountry terrain is always tempting for adrenaline junkies, it is still important that you adequately prepare before venturing terrain.
It is smart to ensure you check the avalanche bulletin to stay prepared and well-informed of the backcountry condition. Always ensure that you carry the necessary gear and accessories for your safety during the trip. This will ensure a seamless and wonderful backcountry snowboarding experience on the terrain.