Tecnica Cochise Pro 130 ReviewNovember 3, 2014
- Low resistance tour mode
- Stiff Downhill Flex
- Buckled Power Strap
- Light for a mid-weight boot
- Improved lower shell foot shape
- Mid-range rear cuff ROM
- Stiff flex limit
The Tecnica Cochise is a great mid-weight, 4-buckle boot for skiers who want one pair to be stiff enough to handle charging in-bounds all day but which can double as an all day touring boot too. The Cochise is stiff, yet flexible. In tour mode the cuff ROM doesn't set any records, but it walks well thanks to a buckled power strap for fast transitions and a cuff that moves easily, if not far.
The performance of the Tecnica Cochise remains largely unchanged from the original incarnation. There is a minor improvement in the overall flexibility of the cuff for touring, but the key value of having a cuff that is held solidly in place when you want to crank turns remains thankfully unchanged. If there is any improvement in the downhill performance arena it derives from simply improving the fit of the boot to accommodate more feet with fewer customizations. For some, that will be reason enough to give these boots another try this season.
The original Cochise was generally a good fit for feet with average width but a high instep. The year the lower shell was refined to accommodate more foot shapes. The instep height was lowered; the toe box is wider, although the overall width at the metatarsus remains the same, the heel pocket is tighter and the new Triax 2.0 shell is pre-punched at the styloid. Fear not if you have a high instep, Tecnica didn’t lower the shell so much as they raised the foot with an easily removed, internal shim. For some the 98mm last may be a bit narrow, but that is more easily remedied than a boot too wide.
As before, Tecnica’s Cochise has few equals for downhill power as an AT boot. Key to that is a solid metal connection between the cuff and lower shell when locked for turning. Other boots like the Lange XT rely on a snug matting of plastic pieces which does yield a nice progressive flex, but not as stiff as the Cochise. The Cochise has progressive initiation for driving the cuff, but around 15 degrees of forward lean it hits a wall and gets very stiff. If you’re a big and/or aggressive, this is just what you’re looking for. If the 130 rated flex is too much, downshift to a 120, 110, or 100 rated flex.
A simple look at the cuff range of motion suggests the Cochise is about average for a sidecountry boot, with the cuff only going dead vertical to the rear, but changes in the lower shell now let the cuff flex further forward, making this a more comfortable boot when you’re using a low or no climbing post. What is not obvious, until you wear them, is how little internal resistance there is to moving the cuff. Thus, what Cochise lacks in range of motion they tend to make up for with unrestrained movement. Less obvious but nonetheless important, the new Triax 2.0 material is lighter, saving weight and energy on a long climb. For those who know better, you can swap out the sole blocks for Dynafit compatible soles and improve your efficiency with a 2-pin tech binding.
For those who spend equal time riding lifts and setting skin tracks the Cochise is a boot that will deliver solid turns no matter how technical the terrain, and not bog you down when you’re earning your turns. The revised last of the boot will fit a wider range of feet so you can ignore last year’s warning of only being good for feet with a high in-step. With a slight amount of extra work, even low instep feet can experience the power Cochise provides.