In the 100 mm ski boot category Nordica has been in flux the last couple seasons-a normal cycle in the ski business-but for 2014-2015 they‘ve back to making commendable product.
Their zig-instead-of-zag resulted in a couple ski boot models that didn’t really uphold the standard for which Nordica became a household name. That’s done.
The Nordica NRGy series is all new and at Footloose includes the NRGy Pro 130, NRGy Pro 110 and the ladies Belle Pro 105. The NRGy are 100 mm and have essentially gone back to basics; simple shells with few superfluous gimmicks.
The NRGy uses technology that Nordica actually pioneered with first the Beast and the Speedmachine of the not-too-distant past. The NRGy Pro is the direct (albeit taking the scenic route) successor to the Speedmachine...welcome news for those loyal to the brand and the boots.
The instep of the shell has softer plastic for ease of entry and exit and other than that, with the exception of the adjustable spoiler height (questionable as a necessity…from any manufacturer) there are no other gewgaws.
Nordica is also introducing “Custom Cork” liners in the NRGy series. The liners have a panel filled with a cork composite as the outer layer of both the medial and lateral sides of the liners. This adjusts by either heating in the shop (recommended) or after a few runs in the boots.
As a backing for the usual padding of the liners, the cork panels augment the fit as well as the longevity and support throughout the life of the boots.
As a matter of education: the NRGy cork liners are very good but cannot be compared to Zip Fit liners. Being likened to Zip Fit’s is complimentary as far as Nordica should be concerned-the Custom Cork liners are well made and definitely enhance the fit and performance of the NRGy ski boots.
Along with the high quality Custom Cork liners, the NRGy is well and simply constructed: replaceable toe and heel lugs, the 130 has dual cuff alignment screws-in the 110 a single, bolts at the rear of the boots that can be either taken out to soften or installed to stiffen the boots, a wide ranging buckle catch setup at the top of the boots, adjustable spoiler height (?) and burly power strap.
The ladies Belle Pro 105 has the Custom Cork liner, single cuff alignment screw; the rear liner cuff has the contour one would expect for the calf.
For tippin’ ‘em and rippin’ ‘em the NRGy has plenty of muscle. Long skis, fat skis, hard snow, soft snow…whatever you are stepping into and onto, the NRGy has the horsepower. Yet if subtlety is more your style the NRGy will not demand otherwise.
In the 98 mm ski boots we’ll carry over the Patron in a 110 flex and the corresponding ladies boot, the La Nina 90. Both have had good success and maintain simple lines and clean construction. They are taken from the same molds as the Dobermann EDT 130 that you will also find at Footloose.
The Patron and La Nina are as low a volume as can be found…low instep, intimate rear-foot and heel, commensurate mid-foot and good toe box for a low volume shell.
The Patron is power steering for the skis. The Patron 110 and EDT 130 are pretty exacting, the EDT being the more demanding by far, the La Nina perhaps a bit less so by virtue of it being a softer flex, though the shell is from the same mold as the 110 and EDT. The Patron 110 is a detuned version of the EDT 130 without the rigidity of the fixed zeppa and is better suited for us mere mortals.
The EDT (stands for “Efficient Dynamic Technology”…your guess is as good as mine) 130 is unique in that a big part of the EDT is the zeppa or bootboard at the bottom of the shells’ interior. It is a very firm material that is fixed through the boots soles. What it does is twofold; strengthen the torsional characteristics of the boots and, an immediate revelation, makes the boot so longitudinal stiff that the tail of the skis loads so much and so abruptly that, until one gets used to it, it launches the skier very forcefully out of turns and into orbit.
As one gets used to the efficiency of the EDT and catches up to it, the utility of the boots becomes apparent-the EDT 130 does uphold the standard for which Nordica became renowned.
The Patron 110/La Nina is super dependable on snow…efficient to a fault. There is good versatility for differing conditions, excellent adaptability for terrain, turn shape and speeds.
The cuff of the series is a bit lower than in a vast majority of the boots at this level; neither here nor there but functionally the skier can exert more leverage over the boots which opens the range of motion a bit so it is not uncommon to feel like the boots are somewhat softer flexing at first though the ROM is very predictable. There is no question as to the lateral strength of the Patron/La Nina… formidable.