The Scarpa “calzaturificio” has been evolving steadily, making excellent, Italian-made ski and hiking boots since humble beginnings in 1938. Working out of the Asolo region of Northern Italy, Scarpa is owned by the Parisotto family (Sandro, Piero, Davide, Cristina and Andrea Parisotto, to be exact). Their focus on boots, and boots alone, is clearly an advantage that shows up in their output over the years. My first pair of Scarpas were the Scarpa T2 purple telemark boots—the first all-plastic tele boots on the market. I moved on to the Scarpa Denali AT boot years later and have skied the Scarpa Maestrale, the Scarpa Maestrale RS and the Rush.
Today’s topic? The Scarpa Maestrale RS. If you are curious to read our thoughts—and see the video—on the earlier Scarpa Maestrale, we’ve reviewed it here. We’ve also looked at the Scarpa Rush, a paired-down version of the Maestrale, here. Last but not least, we conducted a little interview with Scarpa athlete, and accomplished ski mountaineer, Chris Davenport. Check that out here if you want. Chris talks about working with the heritage of Scarpa and it’s a good read.
The Maestrale RS is a logical progression to a stiffer (word is +20%) and only slightly heavier boot (+40g) than the regular Maestrale. “RS” stands for Renn Sport (racing sport) in German. The translation isn’t very illuminating but the idea is that it’s more of a downhill-focused boot. In fact, the RS is the exact same boot as the Maestrale, save for the material it’s made of and the graphics. This was a smart move on Scarpa’s part because they didn’t have to invest in costly new molds. They also knew that the original Maestrale was an excellent boot—so why mess with the chassis.
Scarpa Maestrale RS—Front and Centre. The shell and cuff are made of polymide (or grilamid, to be precise). This light and stiff material has traditionally been used to make sunglasses. It’s the “special sauce” in the RS.
Here’s the “Alpine Axial Tongue Closure,” an ingenious bit of engineering that let’s you swing the tongue out of the way for easy entry and exit. Cool.
From above. Just like its little brother, the Maestrale.
Here’s a close up of the quick-step fittings from Dynafit that provide peace of mind. Last year’s Garmont Cosmos had some issues with this aspect as did the Salomon Quest a year or two earlier. No problem here. Excuse the gunk in the pinhole—that shouldn’t be there.
Bomber walk/tour mode lever. All exterior for simple field repair.
The Intuition Proflex RS liners contribute to the boot’s comfort and customizability. These liners are toasty and I often swap out other boot liners with these if I am skiing boots from another manufacturer. Removable tongue. Very light.
Very at home with a Dynafit rig. I also ski them with a pair of BigBends when doing lift-accessed days. They can handle big, phat skis with aplomb.
- Inner Boot: Intuition Pro Flex RS
- Shell | Cuff | Tongue: Polyamide I Polyamide I Pebax®
- Buckles: 4 + 50mm Power Strap RS
- Forward Lean: 16° & 20°
- Flex Index: 120
- Range of Motion: 37°
- Sole: Vibram® Cayman
- Binding System: AT, TLT
- Forefoot width: 101mm
The Scarpa Maestrale RS AT boots are the company’s entry into the ever-evolving beefy-but-light category occupied by the likes of the Dynafit Vulcan. I loved the earlier Maestrale for all the same reason I love this boot. At just an extra 40g though, the RS is noticeably stiffer than the earlier iteration. It may be a personal choice but I’m happiest skiing stiffer boots. I’m not particularly aggressive; stiffer boots just allow me to ski better. I dug the Garmont Delirium, but boy were they dogs on the uptrack. The Maestrale RS offers the double whammy of excellence on the way up (thanks in part to a 37° range of motion) and the solid feel, even flex and general beef of something approaching an alpine boot. Is this not the Holy Grail?
Silas enjoying the pow at Ice Creek Lodge with a little help from the Scarpa Maestrale RS.
Price: $699 US
Weight: 1571g; 3lbs 7oz (1/2 pair size 27)
Colour: White, Yellow and Orange
Sizes: 24.5 – 32
Light, stiff and well-crafted boot. Super comfy liner, smart in-an-out system with the tongue, reasonable price.
The RS graphics aren’t for everyone but that really isn’t an issue. I am between sizes but that’s my own fault.
Cuff Rotation 1.5/2
Quality / Price 1.5/2
This is only our opinion. Do you disagree? Did we miss something? Are we totally out to lunch? Join the discussion in the forums here, and let us know what you think. People like/dislike gear for different reasons so chime in and we'll get a well-rounded evaluation.