Our test team had a chance to test the new Gea RS to see how it compared to its predecessor and testers were impressed with the step-up performance wise brought by the stiffer Grilamid Bio cuff. Strong moves to the edge were backed up by this boot's lateral stability and supportive fore-aft flex feel, and testers said that its light weight and close-to-the-foot medium fit profile kept it among the quickest in its category. In fact, it received perfect 5.00's for both Edge Power and Quickness.
Testers also gave it a perfect score for its Dynamic Balance, saying that it put them in the, well, perfect position for good skiing movements and offered a proper feeling height against the shin for strong and comfortable moves to the front of the ski. They liked the ergonomics of the cuff's long stride when released into touring mode and said the quality of movement was smooth and unhindered.
Testers remind that the Gea RS is one of few backcountry boots claiming to be a medium width that actually fits as such. It's a closely-contoured fit, meaning a little on the snug side of the 100mm marker, but generally was about what testers expected from a middle-of-the-road fit. Testers mentioned that the liner was adequately padded and warm, citing side-by-side comparisons with other BC category entries that proved the Gea's warmth.
Testers still struggle a little to avoid some sharp plastic bits when getting into the boot and the various overlaps and strap style buckles continue to confound upon first try, but after some familiarity with the system they say the minor start-up struggles are worth it for the whole up then down performance package it offers the accomplished skier.
“So warm! I have it on side by side with a Zero G. My Tecnica toes are freezing cold, Scarpas are nice and toasty! Long range of travel in tour mode. Skis great--can handle whatever you throw at it, quick on its feet and has got some punch, has the ability to lay it out on hardpack, as well as bust through wind-buffed powder with ease. Best fitting BC boot in its catagory. Definitely more of a medium fit--which is great because most others in the group have the tendency to be mouse traps. ” -- Emily Poore
“Difficult to get on--all these layers are more complicated to navigate than a woman's anatomy! Remember that Scarpa sizing breaks differently than other brands--I'm not my usual 24.0/24.5, I'm a 24.5/25.0! It'd be nice if they'd just get on the same page with all the other brands.” -- Emily Poore