Scott Elite Boa Shoes

Share Facebook 0 Twitter Pinterest Google+

The search for the perfect clipless bikepacking shoes might just stop at Scott’s Elite Boa…

It’s tough to find shoes that fill all the needs of a bikepacker. For starters, they have to be sturdy enough for rugged multi-day abuse, yet remain comfortable during all day pedaling affairs. If they are destined for the backcountry, you need shoes with tenacious lugged tread for those unavoidably loose hike-a-bikes. Ideally, they should be comfy enough for shuffling around camp too. We’ve tried a plenty of options from Lake, Shimano, Five Ten, etc. Some are better than others for each of these tasks, and some wear out rather quickly. Others just don’t have the proper fit and when pushed to hiking, they cause heel rub and blistering.

Honestly, until Scott Sports sent their Elite Boa for testing, I’d never personally owned a Scott product, save a pair of ski goggles back in the 90s. I wasn’t actually familiar with their shoes at all. It turns out they have almost a dozen models in their footwear lineup. But even so, I certainly wouldn’t have suspected these particular shoes to tick all the boxes. Given their name, weight and general appearance I expected the Elite Boa to be a stiff, racing or cross-country shoe. However, I was quite surprised. After spending a few months with them, here are some thoughts.

Scott Elite Boa Shoe Review, bikepacking shoes

  • Scott Elite Boa Shoe Review, bikepacking shoes
  • Scott Elite Boa Shoe Review, bikepacking shoes

The first time this pair saw dirt was on a three day bikepacking trip. Pretty stupid. If I was smart I’d have allowed time for the shoes to break-in period prior to taking them out on a trip with big mileage days. When I made the decision to risk it, a few fears came to mind. There would be some hike-a-bike on this trip so heel slippage was a concern. But out of the box they fit really well, so that eased my mind. In the end, I had no problems whatsoever, in fact they are probably one of the best clipless hike-a-bike shoes I’ve ever used, right out of the box even. Ultimately, these shoes have been on multi-hour big and steep hikes, with no heel issues at all. The sole is fairly flexible; not too flexible, but just about right, unless you are prone to foot pain, I might guess. The tread is pretty aggressive as well, so hiking up rocky bits is no problem. It also helps that the channel for the SPD is fairly deep and keeps the cleat from grinding away, another problem I had with various shoes.

Scott Elite Boa Shoe Review, bikepacking shoes

  • Scott Elite Boa Shoe Review, bikepacking shoes
  • Scott Elite Boa Shoe Review, bikepacking shoes
  • Scott Elite Boa Shoe Review, bikepacking shoes

The Boa ratcheting system uses a dial that controls the single woven steel lace. The lace is routed through three additional semicircle control points which allows the torsion and fit to be controlled fluidly with a single dial. The lace tension is added by turning the dial clockwise in incremental steps; conversely, it’s quickly released by pulling out the dial. The single dial and fluid control comes in especially handy for fine tuning while riding. And surprisingly, the cable routing creates a uniform feel when tightened.

Scott Elite Boa Shoe Review, bikepacking shoes

  • Scott Elite Boa Shoe Review, bikepacking shoes
  • Scott Elite Boa Shoe Review, bikepacking shoes

Scott Elite Boa Shoe Review, bikepacking shoes

  • Scott Elite Boa, Bikepacking Shoes
  • Scott Elite Boa, Bikepacking Shoes

Given that this pair has seen only the spring and summer — granted heavy use for that period — it’s difficult to gauge their performance in colder weather. The upper is made from microfiber and 3d mesh nylon fabrics, which I would presume may leave the toes a little cold in the shoulder seasons. However, after river crossings and downpours they do seem to dry rather well.

  • Price: $139.95
  • Weight (US 8.5): 370 grapes per shoe
  • Place of Manufacture: Vietnam
  • Contact: Scott-sports.com

Wrap Up

If I had one complaint about the Scott Elite Boa, it would be in the fit department, even though they fit perfectly. After a full season of rugged use and the shoes have fully broken in, the front velcro strap is completely pulled as tight as it allows; right now it’s a non-issue, but I could see this loosening further over time. Overall, I can honestly say that the Scott Elite Boa is best clipless shoe I’ve had to date. The combination of a not too stiff insole with a comfy upper and rugged sticky rubber outsole makes a perfect blend of performance and plush. The shoe has proven durable as well. While most of the photos above were taken after only a couple of months of use, I can say that their current condition is not too different.

Tags

  • Usuario

    I´ve got a pair of these shoes. They are really light (around 350 gr each shoe at 42 size) and flexible for walking, the boa system is excellent. In the down side I have to say I destroyed the sole after a one hour hike-a-bike throw a gnarly path (the front sole got loose from the shoe) but Scott replaced them very fast and the new pair is lasting fine for one year now. The SPD clip maybe is a bit placed back for may taste.

  • Chris Leydig

    How does the BOA system hold up over multi-day dirt trips? I’ve got a pair of LAKE’s with the BOA system , love the fit, but the release got gummed up pretty quickly. I don’t think laces can be replaced on long tours

  • Steve

    Any consensus on these shoes for the wide-footed riders among us? I’m looking for other shoe options – and these have piqued my interest – but, yeah… the wide foot thing…

  • Usuario

    Lightweight has a price… yesterday I saw the sole getting loose a little bit again. It is the second pair so definitely they are not durable. And I have not used them much because I used my shimano MT7, those are really durable but heavier.

  • Usuario

    The BOA system is excellent, no issues with it in my case.

  • Usuario

    These shoes are narrow.

  • http://www.bikepacking.com/ BIKEPACKING.com (Logan)

    Interesting. I have beat mine up with a lot of use and plenty of rough hike-a-bikes … No issues with the soles whatsoever.

  • http://www.bikepacking.com/ BIKEPACKING.com (Logan)

    No problem with mine so far… After tons of rough use

Share This

others did. Support us and pass it along...

Follow Us

and join the conversation.
art